Once in a Great While, Your Favorite New Dessert Hugs you “Hello!”

And this is that very moment.

Crisps are long time Farmhouse favorites.  Easy to make.  Everybody loves them.  If you char it a touch? Eh, what the hell — Add great quality vanilla ice cream.

Do me a favor? Use Light Muscovado sugar.  It really is a divine supplement to traditional brown sugar…which I find too cloying.  Too sweet.  And that is what makes this crisp so perfect.  It’s a great way to use any kind of berry, any kind of stone fruit, any kind of hodgepodge of fruit left over on your windowsill and without making something saccharin, like cheap drugstore perfumes, create something heavenly that harnesses the very miracle and warmth of sunshine

Crisp in the Works
Crisp in the Works

Abi’s Farmhouse Crisp (made with plums and apricots)

Preheat your oven to 350’F and place rack in the middle of the oven.

To make the “crumb” or “crumble” or the Crisp part of the “crisp” — Melt 2 sticks of unsalted butter on the stove and let it cool for a bit while you measure out the following.  Mix the following into one bowl.  Use your clean hands:

  • 1&1/2 cups all-purpose flour (be partial to King Arthur flour)
  • 1&1/2-2 cups of Old Fashioned Oatmeal (never instant!)
  • 3/4 cups packed Light Muscovado Sugar
  • 1&1/2 teaspoon ground Cinnamon
  • 1/4-1/2 teaspoon of fine sea salt (look for the fancy jars) or Kosher Salt

Add in the melted butter (all of it) and mix with your hands.  If you like a bit of crushed nuts or dark raisins, add those too.  Take 1/2 of this mixture and press it into the bottom of a roughly 9″ baking pan.  I use something cute like this heart shaped pie pan but a simple square dish is good too.  Anything sturdy.

*Never feel ashamed for spending good dollars on high quality baking dishes (Emile Henry or Le Creuset come to mind).  They conduct heat most evenly, resulting in well cooked dishes versus buying trendy bake ware that murders any crust and leaves centers runny. Ick.

Assembled and ready for the oven: cue Anni's "Happy Dance."
Assembled and ready for the oven: cue Anni’s “Happy Dance.”

Back to this amazing Crisp!

For the fruit part, seriously, use any left over stone fruit or berries in your kitchen, orchard or garden. Do not be afraid to mix and mash any thinly sliced fruits.

For these pictures, I used left over apricots (that the blasted birds hadn’t gotten!) and some dark Santa Rosa Plums. But I’ve made this just as happily with yellow peaches or dark plums from the store.

Mix in one bowl:

  • 1/2 cup of white sugar (**If the fruit is a touch hard, add in +1 tblspn granulated sugar)
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch (*make this a heaping tablespoon if the fruit feels hard)
  • 2 pinches fine sea salt
  • 10-11 thinly sliced stone fruit (here I used 7 apricots, a handful of small Santa Rosa Plums, and 1 yellow nectarine because I didn’t have enough for the 7 cups needed)
  • Fresh juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 heaping teaspoon of vanilla extract (buy the best friends!)

Let this stand a few minutes (about 5 for ripe fruits or 10 minutes if the fruit is harder) to let the fruit macerate a bit in the sugars and cornstarch.  Pour into the dish on top of your bottom crumb and spread evenly.

Using your hands dribble the remaining half Crumb or Crisp mixture over the top.  Bake for 55-60 minutes (uncovered) or until the crisp is golden brown (I like it a touch brown-brown for crispness) and the fruit comes bubbling up.  Let this cool for at least 25 minutes before serving.  I let it cool almost completely (about 45 minutes) so the juices and fruit congeals better, like a pie.

Sure to be an absolute hit at ANY party or dinner.  ANY time of the year!

Happy eating!


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