Sunday, June 5, 2016

Crazy Good Crumble

Strawberry Raspberry Pineapple Crumble

Summer is almost here and all the fresh fruit it has to offer is produced closer to home and available at reasonable prices. Walk through your grocery store. I guarantee that berries and other fruits which are pricey in the winter will suddenly go on sale. Seasonal fruit is great because it solves the fundamental dinner party or backyard BBQ question:

What do I make for dessert?

Instead of wasting your money on a pricey bakery item, why not make a crumble?

Crumbles are the first desserts I learned to bake. Taught to me in home economics’ class in high school, they’re impossible to screw up and guaranteed crowd-pleasers because they’re low in fat and take only a bit more effort than serving the fruit as is. When choosing fruit in the grocery store, follow your nose; we humans have evolved so that good fruit and veg will have a pleasing odor. Don’t be afraid to sniff the fruit before you buy it. If it smells good, you’re good to go!

Now bring it home with you and make that crumble!


Here’s How You Do It

Difficulty Level: Easy
Prep  time: 10-15 Minutes
Bake Time: 35 Minutes

Serves 6 or more

Ingredients

FRUIT FILLING

3 ½ Cups of Seasonal Fruit, cleaned and chopped – I used strawberries, raspberries, and pineapple for my crumble, but use whatever is in season

¼ Cup Unsweetened Apple Sauce

1 Heaping Tablespoon of Brown Sugar

Zest and Juice of 1 Lemon – Lemon juice makes the flavors of most fruit shine extra bright.

1 Pinch of Salt

1 Tablespoon of Cornstarch – Keep your filling from getting too soupy

CRUMBLE TOPPING

1 Cup of Butter or Margarine

1 Cup of Rolled Oats

1 Cup All Purpose or Whole Wheat Flour – The topping is supposed to be crunchy, so the type of flour doesn’t matter that much

¾ Cup Brown Sugar

2 Teaspoons of Cinnamon

1 Teaspoon of Salt


Equipment

1 Knife and Cutting Board

Measuring Cups and Spoons

2 Big Mixing Bowls

1 Wooden Spoon

1 Baking Dish – The dimensions of the dish will depend on you. If you like a dryer fruit dessert, use a rectangular baking pan. If you like something that’s fruitier and soupier, use a deep brownie pan

Baking Spray

Preheat the oven to 350 oF.

In your first mixing bowl, dump in all the ingredients for the filling and give it all a quick stir with a wooden spoon to combine and evenly distribute the cornstarch.

Stick the bowl in the fridge while you prepare the crumble top.

Wipe the excess moisture from your wooden spoon with a paper towel or clean tea towel.

In your second mixing bowl, add the oats, flour, cinnamon, brown sugar and salt and stir everything with your now dry-ish wooden spoon to combine.

Add the butter or margarine and press everything together with your fingertips using pinching motions. By pinching the butter into the dry ingredients you’re forcing them to accept the fat. By using your fingertips – which are cooler than your palms – you’re preventing the butter from melting too much while you work. Do this until your mixture takes on the texture of damp sand.

You’re now ready to assemble your crumble.

Spray your baking dish with cooking spray and pour in the fruit mixture, spreading it evenly throughout the pan with the back of the wooden spoon.


Pour the crumble top over the fruit, making sure the fruit is completely covered.

Bake for 35 minutes or until the tips of the crumble top are golden brown.

Cool on the counter for 10 minutes  and serve!

Enjoy!

-Samantha R. Gold

Questions? Comments? Requests?

Bring it on!

I can be reached at:  for.the.culinarily.challenged@gmail.com

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