It is time to carpe diem these last couple weeks of summer and OD on stone fruit so we can survive happily on apples and pears for the next 8 months.
Late summer peaches plus raspberries plus a bit of blackberries (just because I had some and didn’t want them to go bad/feel left out) make up the fruits for this dish. Of course you can go just peaches or just peaches and raspberries… I’ll let you do you.
What better way to celebrate these fruits by making a crisp/cobbler/crumble/buckle/bumble/brown betty/slump/grunt/sonker/pandowdy? I prefer dishes in the crisp/cobbler/crumble family but seriously what TF is the difference between a crisp and a crumble? Literally TABLESPOONS of butter/flour make the difference in the recipes I had my lab analyze.
Further research showed that this is a highly controversial topic. Because I’m not looking to incite a gang war amongst the crisps and the bloods,
I’m going to go ahead and call this recipe a crisp/crumble due to its inclusion of oats, flour, and butter in the topping.
Although I was v v v tempted to purchase the Cabernet Sauvignon Grape Pith Flour for the topping, I was able to quell the temptation and choose a sensible
allergy-friendly zomg did I just write that almond meal/flour.
A bit of AP flour is normal for the topping, but I wanted to have that nutty flavor without the literal chunks of nut – some nut bits always get invariably burned and texturally speaking, a toasted, semi-soggy from sitting in baked fruit juice nut just isn’t my jam. (Also, if you sub the AP flour in the filling for some gluten free “flour”, all your
basic GF friends can enjoy this recipe in its entirety too!)
On the topic of toppings, the other part I love about crisps/crumble toppings is the oats. I love oatmeal, ancient grains, oats, farro, quinoa, etc. etc. so anything toothsome and textural I like to have in abundance when making a dish. Hence, why there is a shit ton of oats in this recipe when compared to traditional crisps/crumbles.
In my crumble opinion, it tastes better this way, trust me.
Another part that makes this recipe king delicious is its inclusion of fresh ginger. To me, the fresh ginger makes all the fruit sing in a zippy sort of way. When fruit cooks down it has a tendency to become overly sweet and cloying so the ginger helps keep the dish in balance.
A note on the fruits: You should always peel peaches when making cobblers, crisps, crumbles, etc. because their skin can be unpleasantly thick and very furry (not unlike the Israeli soldier you fell in love with on your birthright trip). The easiest way to get the skin off a peach, tomato,
small animal, etc. is to score the bottom of the fruit/vegetable (FYI tomatoes are actually a fruit so…) in the a shape of an X with a paring knife and blanch in boiling water for 30 seconds or so. Remove the fruit from the water and immediately place into an ice bath until it’s cool enough to handle. (FYI it should be cool enough to handle within 10-ish seconds.) The skins should slip riiiiiiiiiight off.
Peach & Berry Crisp/Crumble w/ Almond & Ginger
*for when you wanna get stoned
- 4# firm but ripe yellow peaches (approx. 8-10 medium), peeled, pitted, and sliced into 1/3″ wedges
- 1/2pt raspberries
- 1/2pt blackberries, halved
- 2T sugar
- 1T brown sugar
- 1.5T AP flour
- 1t grated fresh ginger
- zest of 1 lemon
- 1/4t salt
- 1.5C rolled oats, not quick cooking
- 3/4C firmly packed brown sugar
- 1C almond meal/flour
- 1/2t salt
- 1/2t ground cinnamon
- 1/4t ground nutmeg
- 8oz butter, cut into large pieces + more for buttering dish
- Lightly butter a medium-large baking or gratin dish and preheat oven to 375F.
- For the filling
Combine all ingredients except the fruit in a large mixing bowl. Add the peach and toss to coat. Add the raspberries and blackberries and gently mix in. Add filling to buttered baking dish.
- For the topping
Combine all ingredients except for the butter in a large bowl. Add the butter and with either your hands or a pastry cutter, incorporate the butter into the mix until it has broken up into pea-sized bits.
- Place the topping a handful at a time onto the fruit and gently pack down. Once all the topping has been evenly distributed over the fruit, place the crisp/cobbler onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper (this prevents the bubble-over fruit juices, etc. from bubbling over onto your oven floor for eternity).
- Place this all in the oven for 1 hour until the topping is browned and bubbly. Serve warm or at room temp with your fave ice cream/frozen yogurt/tofutti/almond dream/arctic dream/frozen custard/creme anglaise/whipped cream/heavy cream/heavy whipping cream.
Strawberries are one of my favorite fruits but most strawberry desserts are pretty miserable.
Chocolate dipped strawberries are the most overrated dessert of all time. Strawberry ice cream can be pretty hit-or-miss, most often a miss. Strawberry rhubarb stuff… that’s pretty good I guess (but it needs the rhubarb to make it great!).
When making a dessert with strawberries, I always veer simple and make sure to purchase my fruit in-season and from the green market (versus just munching on them raw where it could be December and I really could care less just give me my gawd damn berries mmkay). Green market strawberries have a sweetness and depth of flavor no supermarket berry has ever come close to.
A great, super simple dessert that anyone can do – even if they live in a studio with a hot plate for a kitchen and a shared bathroom – is macerated strawberries. I always gravitate towards a simple flavor profile of vodka/vanilla/lemon combo with a bit of aged balsamic for added depth, inspired by April Bloomfield’s recipe in A Girl and Her Pig. Using my recipe below as a guide, you can sub in your favorite strawberry flavorings – adding in herbs or switching up the sugar, alcohol or spices.
I prefer to spoon these strawberries over vanilla gelato for the perfect summer dessert but they’re are also great over angel food or cheesecake, yogurt, pancakes or oatmeal. (NOTE: if you have these in the morning, remember the vodka is still quite active).
with Vodka & Vanilla
- 2 pints Tristar Strawberries (or other green market variety), hulled & halved
- 1/3 cup good quality Vodka
- ¼ Granulated Sugar
- 2 Vanilla Beans, halved & insides scraped out (discard beans)
- Zest & Juice of ½ Lemon
- ¼ cup Aged Balsamic Vinegar (that syrupy ish)
- 2T Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- Large pinch of Maldon Salt
- 2t Black Pepper
- Using your hands, mix together all ingredients except for the strawberries in the bottom of a large mixing bowl. Add the strawberries and toss to combine, smooshing around 1/3 of the strawberries into a pulp with your hands as you do it. Taste for sweetness and acidity and adjust if necessary.
- Cover and chill until ready to serve.