Tomato Cobbler with Drop Cheese Biscuits


You might not think of cobbler as a savory dish but one bite of this will change your mind. The Cheddar-studded biscuit topping absorbs every drop of the intensely concentrated tomato filling.

Tomato Cobbler with Drop Cheese Biscuits
Makes 6 to 8 servings
  • 1¼ cups self-rising flour
  • 1 cup plain yellow cornmeal
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cubed
  • ½ cup diced sharp Cheddar cheese
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
  • 1¼ cups cold whole buttermilk
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 2½ pounds assorted heirloom cherry or grape tomatoes, divided
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
  • ½ medium red onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ¼ cup unsalted butter
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • Garnish: chopped fresh basil
For biscuits:
  1. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt. Using a pastry blender, cut in butter until mixture is crumbly; stir in cheese and basil. Stir in buttermilk just until combined (dough will be sticky). Refrigerate dough while preparing filling.
  2. Preheat oven to 400°.
For filling:
  1. In a 10-inch cast-iron skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium heat. Add half of tomatoes and ½ teaspoon salt; cook, stirring frequently, until tomatoes are just soft, about 5 minutes. Remove from skillet. Repeat procedure with remaining tomatoes and salt. Remove tomatoes from skillet.
  2. Heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil in skillet over medium heat. Add onion; cook, stirring occasionally, until tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in garlic; cook for 1 minute.
  3. Stir butter into onion until melted. Stir in flour; cook for 1 minute. Stir in vinegar and tomatoes; cook, stirring frequently, until heated through, 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from heat.
  4. Drop cold biscuit dough by heaping ⅓ cupfuls onto hot tomato mixture.
  5. Bake until biscuits are golden brown and filling is hot and bubbly, 30 to 35 minutes, covering with foil after 20 minutes to prevent overbrowning. Let stand for 15 minutes before serving. Garnish with basil if desired.