Summertime in Kentucky means a number of things. Flip-flop weather, cricket choirs, sweet tea, cookouts, and sunshine. However, for Betty Deatherage, a 73 year old Berea native, blackberries are the name of the game.


Beginning around July, any respectable fencepost can usually be spotted sporting a decent blackberry patch. However, the best thickets grow deep in the hollers of cow pastures and rolling farm land. Grab yourself a few 5 gallon buckets and a friend, and you’ve got all you need to make a day of picking.

“There’s no wrong way to eat a blackberry,” says Deatherage. “You can spin them into almost anything. Dumplings, tarts, cheesecake, ice cream, and muffins. Oh, and cobbler. Can’t forget that!”

Betty recalls many fond memories of picking berries with her mother and sisters.

“We would be out there all day,” she said. “It wasn’t like it was a chore, though. We wanted to be there, because we knew the more berries we picked, the more cobbler Mama would make!”

The recipe comes from a long line of women, passed down generation to generation (as any good recipe is). From kitchen to kitchen, this rendition has put a smile on many faces.

“I wish everyone could taste it,” Deatherage said. “To me, it’s like the taste of summertime… and memories.”

Graves’ Blackberry Cobbler


  • 1 stick margarine
  • 1 cup self rising flour
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract


  • 3 cup blackberries
  • 1 and 1/2 cup sugar

Melt margarine in 13x9x2 inch pan. Mix flour, milk, egg, vanilla, and the 1/4 cup sugar.

While the margarine is melting and you are mixing the batter, put the berries and the 1 and 1/2 cups sugar on the stove in a medium saucepan, getting it hot.

Pour the batter into the melted margarine. Add the berries into the batter. Spread the berries to all edges of the pan.

Bake at 400° for 20-30 minutes until the crust is golden brown.

(*Optional: top with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream.)