Season Change. By calendar, it started mid-August with the first-day walk to school with my favorite first graders, their twin-boy shoulders somehow wider and more square as if readying themselves for the Grade One of Life. By weather, St. Louis was blessed with an entire week of unseasonably lovely-cool, windows-open September-in-August days. And by behavior, the local wildlife is girding for winter, the neighborhood deer and turkeys and just today a flock of Canada geese feed in Dawson Field across the way.
In the kitchen, season switch occurs more subtly, first with an openness to soup, still summer-light but warm not chilled; substituting eggplant for summer squash and plums for peaches; then finally, the irrefutable sign of the last days of summer, tomatoes gently warmed not in sunshine but in a skillet, pushing aside quick-chopped raw tomato salads.
For some years, I've made a tomato cobbler at this very-same seasonal moment. Tomato cobbler, it calls to me. Is it the light? The absence of frog calls at night? The deafening cicadas? Somehow, it's just time. No other time could be so right as this brief window of late August-early September. But until last year, no Tomato Cobbler recipe struck me as just right. One after another just seemed too complicated – too heavy, too rich – for late-summer.
But now? I've made this particular Tomato Cobbler four times now, most recently just last week when we sat outside with friends for an impromptu weeknight supper. Good friends, good wine, good conversation – and one incredible Tomato Cobbler.
It's time, Tomato Cobbler Time, that is.
A quick note. The recipe "writes" longer than it "makes". It's simple, really. Just make some biscuit dough and pop it into the freezer. Cook some tomatoes. Nestle the biscuits onto the tomatoes and bake awhile. Add the goat cheese and bake awhile longer at higher heat. That's it! It's really a "summer easy" recipe. Make it once and you'll be set.