Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp
Neil – that is, the produce supervisor Neil – hooked me up this week! I was roaming around the produce section, looking to get my hands on super-in-season, tart, delicious and oh so perfectly Spring rhubarb, and couldn’t find it. I turned around in front of the grapes, pretty bummed, and there was Neil. I asked for Rhubarb, and he pulled it out of a box on his cart, not even tagged or priced yet, and replied “sure! Just got this in from Washington state.” Would it be too much to tell you I almost hugged him and jumped for joy? That’s how much I had my heart set on this Strawberry Rhubarb crisp. So thanks Neil!!
Fruit crisps are one of the best (and slightly indulgent!) ways to enjoy fruit that is in season. Because strawberries and rhubarb are a perfect pair, and in season right now, I used them in this recipe. But you can always substitute different fruits based on what’s available, what’s in season, on sale – the sky is the limit! So try new flavors and combinations – you may just find your new favorite dessert.
Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp
For the Fruit:
1 1/2 lb fresh strawberries
4-5 stalks fresh rhubarb
zest and juice of one orange
1/2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon corn starch
For the crisp:
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup all purpose flour
3/4 cup oats
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 sticks unsalted butter, diced
1 t vanilla
1-2 tablespoons of cold water
1. First prepare the fruit: Rinse the strawberries, chop off the green leafy top, and cut in half. Very big strawberries can be cut in quarters, but in general you don’t want them too small… once cooked you still want the fruit to retain its shape a bit. Place all cut strawberries in a large bowl.
2. Rinse the rhubarb, and lop off the ends. Cut the stalks into about 1/2 inch pieces, and add them to the bowl with the strawberries.
3. Add in the zest and juice of the orange, (better than lemon here because the rhubarb is already tart, so you want to accentuate the sweetness with a citrus that isn’t as tart as a lemon) the sugar, and cornstarch to the bowl. Mix to combine, and set aside to let the juices begin to thicken up.
4. Preheat the oven to 350°F.
5. Next, prepare the crumb topping: In a food processor, combine the flours, oats, brown sugar, and salt. Pulse a few times to combine.
6. Add in the butter vanilla, and one tablespoon of water. Pulse until (about fifteen pulses or so) the crisp begins to come together. Add another tablespoon of water here if need be – it should still be crumbly, but you should be able to press it together with your fingers into big chunks.
7. Pour the fruit into a shallow baking dish (9×13 works, or you could use 8 individual oven safe ramekins for a great dinner party dessert!!). Using your hands, spread the crumble out over the fruit, keeping some of it in big chunks – SO necessary for extra-delicious crisps.
8. Bake for 30 minutes in the middle of the oven, or until the fruit is juicy and bubbly, and the topping is golden brown. This is a great dessert when you have dinner guests – prepare early in the day and pop in the fridge. While you’re eating dinner, bake the crisp, and it will be ready with very little hands-on effort from you right when you need it.
9. Let cool for five to ten minutes, and serve warm with ice cream, whipped cream, or on its own. Let’s be honest, this dessert really doesn’t need any help!
Karen Lenahan, born and raised in New Haven and Hamden, has had a food blog, Small Kitchen Big Taste going on three years. She is a passionate foodie, and loves bringing healthy and delicious food to her table, and inspiring you to bring it to yours.