The Renovation

Sunday, November 21, 2010

I’ve been avoiding the topic.  I’ve been posting about cheerful things – The Sound of Music, my birthday, ballparks I’ve visited.  But now it’s time for me to share the bad news.

I’m about to embark on a kitchen reno.

Anyone who knows me will remember that for years I’ve said I’d never renovate my kitchen.  I hate the thought of losing it, even for a few weeks.  I would move first.

That was before our cold water supply pipe developed a leak while we were on holidays this summer, and deposited a small pool of water on our kitchen floor.  If we were fixing the ceiling and the floor, we’d might as well change the countertop, right?  And from there, new cabinets practically suggested themselves.

On Monday morning, I’m losing most of my cupboards and the oven.  I’m ahead a few recipes, so I’ll be posting those over the next few weeks.  If the reno goes longer than expected, I’ll have to find a dessert recipe I can make in my crock pot. 

In the meantime, a few photos from our reno:

Change we expected to see:

The floor has been removed to the cabinets.
The rest will come out when the cabinets do, on Monday!

Change we did not expect to see:
This was not the result of a recipe gone wrong.
If the drywall guy loses his balance and falls on your stovetop, this is approximately what will happen.  Luckily for him, when he fell I was not thickening the cherries for this recipe.

Knowing that this was my last weekend to bake for a while, I wanted to make something that I love.  I could have gone with a lot of recipes, but when I saw the cherries in my freezer my search was over.  I knew I’d be making cherry cobbler.

Depending on our summer schedule, I freeze as many different kinds of fruit as I can. But the one kind I always freeze is cherries.  It’s partly because I love them, and partly because it’s impossible to buy frozen cherries.  If I run out of strawberries or blueberries in February, I can pick them up at the grocery store.  But if I run out of cherries, I’ll be waiting until the following July.  And I’ll be freezing cherries again next summer – assuming I make it through this reno.

Cherry cobbler, posed decoratively on packing paper.
Do I know how to stage a photo?

Sour Cherry Cobbler
(adapted from epicurious.com)

4 cups sour cherries, pitted
2 Tbsp cornstarch (if you’re using frozen cherries like me, you’ll need about 3 Tbsp)
2/3 cup sugar (first amount)
1/2 tsp almond extract
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 Tbsp sugar (second amount)
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
6 Tbsp cold unsalted butter, cut into small bits

Combine the cherries, cornstarch, 2/3 cup of sugar and almond extract in a medium-sized pot.  Stir at medium heat until thickened.  Pour into a buttered 8” x 8” baking dish.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl stir together the flour, 2 Tbsp sugar, baking powder, salt and butter.  Add 1/3 cup boiling water, stirring until the batter is just combined.  Drop the batter by heaping tablespoons over the cherries and bake the cobbler in a preheated 350 degree over for 45 minutes, or until the top is golden.

46 comments:

jillbert said...

I've never tried sour cherries, but I want to!

The reno will stink when you're living through it, but it will be so nice when it's done. Can't wait to see the final result!

Kayte said...

Cobbler looks fantastic. My condolences on the renovation...lol...just kidding. You will love the new kitchen, just think what you can do in a new kitchen!!!

Valerie said...

Best of luck with everything, Beth. Not having a working kitchen is going to the tough, but at least you still have some things to keep your followers satisified. :-)

That cherry cobbler looks scrumptious! I love the presentation.

Also, Ouch!! That poor stovetop.

Lea Ann said...

I know how you feel, I'd love to renovate but just can't bear the hassles. One of these days I will. That's a beautiful little dish in that first photo. And this cherry cobbler looks wonderful.

Jess said...

The cobbler looks delicious! Good luck on the renovations :)

Claudia said...

The drywall guy ...fell? Oh my. I've been looking for a recipe for sour cherries - I could find them in WI but not in MN. talian recipes use them a lot.Best of luck with dreaded kitchen renovation - when I did it - it was summer and we grilled for six weeks.

ezsrecipes.com said...

So sorry about your stovetop, that is no good! I hope it is not too expensive to replace! Your cobbler looks wonderful!

Dishesdone said...

Good luck with the renovation! Not an easy thing to live through but the outcome will make it all worth it! A new kitchen, lucky you!

The cobbler looks amazing, and I think it would be nice topped with whipped cream rather than a drywall guy :)

katerina said...

I can totally understand you. But just see the good side of it. A bran new kitchen which will host all your culinary creations. Hang in there! this cobbler is beautiful. Thank you very much for your beautiful comment on my blog.

Julie said...

The cobbler looks so delicious! Cherries are so wonderful in cobbler.

How great to have a new kitchen. Funny how we think of one thing to redo and it snowballs from there. That's too bad about the stove :(. Can't wait to see pics of the redo.

Chow and Chatter said...

lovely cobbler I am sure your new kitchen will be lovely when its done

Pam said...

Freezing cherries is a great idea... the cobbler looks amazing.

Have fun creating your new kitchen.

Cakelaw said...

What a fabuous looking cobbler - I can almost taste it by looking at the photo. Oh dear re your stove - I hope they are going to replace it! Good luck with the reno.

BakingWithoutaBox said...

Bless your heart! But you will get a "brand new" kitchen to enjoy. I feel your pain. My kitchen is all packed up. Makes me sad just to look at the barren shelves and empty counters.

Shannon said...

oooh i LOVE sour cherries, this sounds fabulous! Hopefully there's enough left over to keep your mind off that stove... eek. just imagine how awesome your kitchen will be soon!!

Beth said...

Thanks to all of you for your inspiring comments and your concern. I should have mentioned that the restoration company has been very good about replacing the stove. That definitely helped me maintain my sense of humour about the situation!

Faith said...

I feel the pain of losing your kitchen. It's no fun. However, It will be worth it once the renovation has completed. Your cobbler looks great!

Jeanne said...

I can't wait to see the results! How sad that your stove got smashed, and what a challenge to be without a kitchen for a few weeks. After reading about this cobbler, I wish I had frozen some cherries this summer too!

SavoringTime in the Kitchen said...

Thank goodness they are replacing your stove and thank goodness you've already celebrated your Thanksgiving. This will be quite the Christmas gift to have a new kitchen.

What a wonderful last dish you prepared before the work started.

Jennie said...

I can totally relate to how you're feeling! I went for months without a real kitchen and it SUCKED! The wait will be worth it though! Looking forward to more recipes!

Barbara said...

Ouch! when I saw that stovetop!
I went through a renovation 4 years ago. Not fun. In fact, I gutted the entire apartment and moved out for 3 months. When they had a kitchen and bathroom for me, I moved back in and lived with the mess for a few months. So glad it's over. I wish you patience, a good contractor and no more broken stove tops!

Sophie said...

Good luck with the necessary renovations!!!

Your sour cherry cobbler looks so delectable, Beth!

Vittle me this... said...

cobbler looks amazing!

Kristen said...

That must have really hurt to fall hard enough to break a stove. I guess this means you will be gaining even more new things in your kitchen. I don't envy you the inconvenience, but I am sure in the end, eventually, sometime, when it's finally done, you will have a wonderful place to create.

LDH said...

I am not sure what I would do with myself if my kitchen was closed for a period of time :)

augh.. cracked stove top. Last year while helping my husband replace an over-the-stove microwave, he pressed too hard with his knee and broke it. I got another stove from Craigslist that had four working burners (we think) when we picked it up and only three when we got it home. Such is life :)

Reeni said...

What a lovely cherry cobbler! And ouch - that looks as if it may have been painful. I hope all goes well and quickly so you can enjoy your new kitchen!

Val said...

Cherry cobbler.....what could be better??? mmm.

julie said...

Holy moly! He really did a number on your stove! I sure hope he's covering the cost of that!

Good luck with the reno. It's a pain when it's happening but SO worth it once it's all done. We had ours renovated last year.

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Julie

theUngourmet said...

Last year I dropped a pan on my stove and shattered the top of it too. We had to run out right away and buy a new one. I can't live without a stove for long. ;) Best of luck with the renovations. Have a great Thanksgiving!

comfortablydomestic.com said...

Oh, my! I am pretty sure that my heart sunk in my chest when I saw what happened to your stove. Good luck with the reno!

Chiara "Kika" Assi said...

Good luck with the renovation! I agree with you... I'd rather move!! Hang in there ;-)

Joanne said...

I had to live without my oven for a few weeks this summer and it broke my soul into about a gazillion pieces. So my heart goes out to you. But think about how awesome your kitchen will be when all this is over! That should get you through. And and this cobbler. Which looks fantastic.

Peggy said...

This cherry cobbler sounds fantastic! I'm sure when the renovation is complete, you'll just love it! Can't wait to see the end result!

Monet said...

Firstly, thank you so much for visiting my blog...I'm glad it brought me to yours! I'm so sorry to hear about your kitchen renovation (I hate being out of mine) but it will be worth it in the end! This cobbler looks like a fantastic recipe. Thank you for sharing!

Rita said...

Your cobbler looks wonderful! Just think how happy and enchanted you will be when it's all over and you have a new kitchen. There is always a rainbow out there.

Emma said...

Ow at your poor stovetop! But at least you will have a lovely new kitchen soon!

Lovely crumble, just beautiful.

Sue said...

I would love to renovate my kitchen, and even add on, but it's too expensive right now...sigh. I guess you will be getting a new oven too! You'll be so happy when it's done, I'm sure! Your cherry cobbler looks so pretty and yummy, though I don't even like cherries:)

Carolyn said...

OMG, your stove top!!! I hope they are paying for that one. Yikes! I have no excuse for a reno on my kitchen, but if I did, the only thing I would want to change is the plain black countertop, which shows EVERY crumb and streak. Well, I might ask for a double oven and maybe another set of burners! Good luck with the reno!

Megan said...

Oh my goodness. I did not realize that could happen to those stove tops. Let's hope that's the only accident and the rest of the renovation goes smoothly! Happy Thanksgiving!

Grapefruit said...

Good luck with the renovation! I have one coming up in a couple of months as well & can only hope it goes by quickly.
And that's one pretty cobbler - sour cherries, yum!

Tasha said...

I'm sure this cobbler is amazing. I'm am not the kind of person who thinks ahead enough to freeze cherries, so hopefully I will remember this recipe when they are in season. It looks so yummy.

I don't envy the renovation process, but having a new kitchen will make it all worth while. Hope it goes smoothly.

Amie Kaufman said...

Oh yuuuuuuuuuuum, that looks delicious.

I feel your pain on the reno--ours starts in January, and I'm dreading it. We're going to have approx 2 weeks of a crockpot, an electric frying pan and the BBQ. It'll be okay, right? RIGHT?

Fingers crossed you don't end up reverting to no-bake desserts to satisfy our demands here (because you know we'll rise up in revolution if you miss a post, right?).

Foodessa said...

Oh, do I know a little something about living through never ending renos...especially cooking on camping elements etc. Here's hoping that things get back to normal for you a.s.a.p.

Cobbler is a true staged gem...great work with those cherries ;o)

Ciao for now,
Claudia

Mimi said...

Good luck with your kitchen renovation. I'm looking forward to the after pictures!
Mimi

shaz said...

Oh wow. Good luck with your reno! I always freeze cherries too, because I love them so :) And they do seem a bit harder to find, even here in Oz. You know? I've never made cobbler before, but looking at this one makes me think it's high time I started.

Erin @ EKat's Kitchen said...

Beth, your cobbler looks delicious! Renovations are always a beast, but they're always worth it in the end! Hope there's no more surprises and that the drywall guy will pay for a new stove/stovetop.

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