As the weather turns warm and berries come into peak season making them much more affordable, all I want to make are crisps, crumbles and cobblers with those sweet, tart little gems. This is far and away one of my favorite recipes for a crisp with it’s complex flavors – naturally sweet berries or any type of fruit gets topped with a crunchy crumbly layer. You get a hint of heat from crystallized ginger balanced by the acid of lemon zest and juice. Pecans are the perfect nut to round out those flavors. Keep this recipe handy throughout the year to use with other fresh fruit as they come into season – substitute the berries for stone fruits, apples, pears, etc. Just be sure to adjust the flour accordingly to the type of fruit and the amount of extra juice it will create as it bakes. Berries and stone fruits render more liquid than apples and pears. If you can’t get your hands on fresh, use frozen, but frozen fruit will require more thickening agent than fresh fruit as well.Always always rinse your berries and leave to air dry in the sink taking care not to mush them too much in the process. You want a berry crisp, not berry puree. 😉Sprinkle on a tablespoon or so of flour and toss with the berries to help soak up those extra juices. Evenly layer on the crumble topping after you’ve worked the flour, oats, sugars, pecans, crystallized ginger, cinnamon, salt, lemon and butter together with your hands to form a texture somewhere between that of cornmeal, small peas and solid dough.It gets baked in a 375 degree oven for 20 minutes covered, then 20 minutes uncovered until the berry filling is bubbly. Crank that oven up to broil for another 5-10 minutes to evenly brown the top – be sure to keep a watchful eye because this step can quickly go from golden brown texture like sun to burnt to a ruined crisp. That’s a sure way to ruin the day. Enjoy topped with your favorite vanilla ice cream or frozen yogurt. We’ve found that the vanilla frozen Greek yogurt from Trader Joe’s adds a tangy twist that’s a welcome balance to the sweet, rich berry crisp.
Adapted from Whole Foods http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com/recipe/peach-blueberry-and-pecan-crumble
- 4 cups fresh berries - blackberries, blueberries, raspberries
- 1/2 cup plus 1-2 Tbsp AP flour
- 1/4 cup old-fashioned oats
- 1/4 cup crystallized ginger, finely chopped
- 5 Tbsp granulated sugar
- 5 Tbsp dark brown sugar
- 1/2 cup chopped pecans
- pinch of salt
- pinch of ground cinnamon
- zest and juice of one lemon
- 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Rinse and dry berries, then toss with 1-2 Tbsp flour (I used 1 1/2 Tbsp).
Layer into medium sized baking dish.
In a medium bowl whisk together flour, oats, ginger, both sugars, pecans, salt, cinnamon, and lemon zest ensuring everything is evenly coated in flour.
Add lemon juice and butter. Cut butter in with two forks, pastry cutter or just use your hands until the butter is pretty evenly distributed and the texture resembles large chunks.
Evenly spread over the top of the berries.
Cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes, then bake uncovered for 20 more minutes or until the filling is bubbly.
Turn oven to broil and brown the crumble topping.
Allow to cool slightly and serve topped with ice cream, frozen yogurt or whipped cream.
Store leftovers in the fridge.