That title there is a long one, isn’t it? I’ll be forthcoming – there is no recipe for ice cream in this link, though maybe another day. It’s really just a serving suggestion. 🙂 This here post is about fruit crisp, summer farmers markets and knowing your audience.
First, fruit crisps. Know them? Love them. They are a cinch to make, flexible to include almost any fruit you have on hand and are somehow easy to make but still feel a little fancy when served, especially when topped with ice cream.
Second, I was a late-joiner to the farmers market craze but am now hooked on my weekly Saturday morning visit. It’s a great way to start the weekend, to explore local produce and product offerings, and to experiment with foods you might not otherwise try. This last week there were lots of strawberries and rhubarb for sale so the makings of this fruit crisp were decided for me.
Finally, know your audience. This doesn’t apply just to food, but to life. It’s probably the most important professional advice I’ve ever received when it comes to formal presentations at work, and is equally important (if not more) to keep this in mind in the kitchen. Who are you feeding? Do they have special dietary concerns, aversions or passions? What did you feed them last time they were over? (This one is hard to keep track of, and in my case, the answer is almost always “Mexican food”) Is there something special they love to eat that would make them feel like the whole meal was in their honor? If I can find something to hit that last point, I will go that route 100% of the time, time permitting. In the case of this recipe I was looking for something to make for dessert for a belated Father’s Day celebration for my beloved Daddio and know that this man loves desserts, homemade treats and rhubarb, so a fruit crisp in his honor it would be the ticket.
The dessert was a hit on the patio on a hot summer Saturday night and some of us (*ahem me*) made it back for seconds. If rhubarb isn’t your thing, leave it out, add some other berries, or go for straight strawberries. Find your bliss here, my friends. And don’t forget the ice cream.
- 5-6 stalks of rhubarb, washed and diced into 1 inch pieces
- 1 lb fresh strawberries, washed and quartered
- 1¼ cups granulated sugar, divided
- 1/2 lemon, zested
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- ½ cup freshly squeezed orange juice
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- ½ cup light brown sugar
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup quick-cooking oatmeal
- 3/4 cup cold butter, diced (1 1/2 sticks)
- Vanilla ice cream, for serving
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
- In a large bowl combine the rhubarb, strawberries, ¾ cup granulated sugar, and the lemon zest.
- In a measuring cup, measure the orange juice and add the cornstarch, stirring until dissolved, then mix it into the fruit.
- Pour the fruit mixture into an 9 × 13 inch baking dish.
- For the topping, combine the flour, the remaining ½ cup granulated sugar, the brown sugar, salt, and oatmeal.
- Add the cold butter and mix until the dry ingredients are moist and the mixture is in crumbles (the butter should be the size of grapes).
- Sprinkle the topping over the fruit, covering the fruit completely, and bake for 1 hour, until the fruit is bubbling and the topping is light brown.
- Serve while warm, topped with ice cream.
- This recipe is easily prepared gluten free by substituting gluten free flour and oatmeal.