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"A Buckle is a sweet dessert made from a yellow batter, resembling cake batter, with the filling mixed in with the batter. Typically a berry filling is placed on top of the batter, then topped with a streusel type topping. The batter rises up as it bakes and the berries and streusel topping sink at uneven intervals, forming a buckled affect in the cake."
"The slump, a New England variety of a cobbler, is a dessert that is basically the same as a grunt as far as ingredients and construction. It consists of fruit, berries, or a mixture of fruit and berries, which are cooked beneath a crust of biscuit or dumpling type dough. [...] The slump was given its name because when served on a plate it has a tendency to slump."
I believe a buckle is more cake like with the berries added to the batter. The topping is usually crumb-like which gives it a buckled appearance, thus the name.
The slump is more like a pie or a cobbler, in that the fruit is baked with the dough on top and is also called a grunt in some States.
AntoniaJames is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.
Susan G. Purdy, in her delightful "As Easy as Pie" (Atheneum 1984) has an interesting discussion about the terms "slump," "grunt," and "cobbler" (which are one and the same thing).
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When I think of a slump I think more along the lines of the Pennsylvania Dutch and a savory cobbler so to speak. It has a crust but is then filled with sausage, tomatoes, apples and the like. Sort of another name for pot pie.
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