Berry Delight or Berry Cobbler

By Caitlin McMullen Edited by Jake Watson

Dotti is a 92 year-old woman who loves to cook sweet treats. For the past 2 years she has been coming into my workplace every Saturday, making me try some of her inventions or her traditional recipes, which have been passed on for generations.

Some of these recipes shared have been within her family for 70 years. She told me that she hasn’t shared her recipes with anyone before, so I’m privileged not just to eat them, but to find out how she does it. Dotti doesn’t go by exact measurements or steps; it comes naturally to her, something that I aspire to at her age. Going strong for a 92 year-old, she loves having friends over, insists on making me a cake every time I go over (even though she is cooking something else for me), and has two chickens which she hasn’t named.

‘Berry Delight’ or Berry Cobbler
You will need: Berry cobler
3 cups of blueberries (fresh or frozen)
3 tablespoons of white sugar
Orange juice
Nearly a cup full of flour
Teaspoon baking powder
Pinch of salt
Half a cup of sugar
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1. Preheat the oven to 190 degrees.
Dotti says “If you’ve got a new oven, it might not be the right temperature, so get a thermometer. That’s why I refused to get a new oven-because they don’t make them like how they used to. My oven has lasted me since 1976”
2. Get a baking dish, and mix the blueberries, 3 tablespoons of sugar, and maybe half a glass of orange juice.
“I don’t use measurements. It’s all just by feel”
3. In a small bowl, mix nearly a full cup of flour, a tiny bit of baking powder, and salt.
4. In a medium bowl, use a beater to whip the butter, add 1/2 cup sugar to make it light and fluffy.
“It should look like yellow clouds”
5. Beat in egg and vanilla extract.
“There’s nothing better than fresh eggs. I got chickens for my birthday two years ago. They’re stupid hens but they have good eggs.
Me: How are they stupid, Dotti?
“Well they don’t always lay eggs because sometimes they’re being temperamental-or they like hiding them on me.”
6. Add the flour mixture, stirring until ingredients are combined. This should form like a batter.
7. Drop batter by rounded tablespoons over blueberry mixture
8. Bake in the oven for 35 to 40 minutes, until topping is golden brown and filling is bubbling.
“I like to make this in winter because it’s nice and warm. The berry filling gets very hot so make sure you cool it down for about 10 minutes before eating”