Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Plum-Cherry Crumble

Plum-Cherry Crumble

Portions of this upcoming post originally appeared in the piece "Cobbled Together: American Fruit Desserts" on NPR's Kitchen Window, which you can find here.

Next up in the cobbler family--the crisp (or crumble, as it's called in England), whichever you call it, it's the cobbler's thrifty cousin, sporting a simple crumbled top of sugar, flour, butter and sometimes oats or nuts. All of that is simply scattered over a fruit filling — a great choice for the crust-fearing baker. Of course, you can easily turn this into a pie or tart with the addition of a bottom crust. My mom's Crumble Top Apple Pie (made with Northern Spies, of course) is one of my favorites and this Whole Wheat Plum Crumble Tart has become a go-to recipe.

Though unless you've stockpiled some tart cherries in cans or freezer bags, you'll likely have a hard time getting your hands on tart cherries this time of year. But this crumble recipe would work well with any kind of stone fruit for a dark, rich and smooth filling, that's made sweet and crunchy by the buttery almond crumble top.

Plum-Cherry Crumble

Plum-Cherry Crumble

For filling:
2 c. tart cherries, pitted
1 1/2 lbs. plums (about 4 c. or 9 plums), cut into 1/4-inch slices (or substitute your favorite stone fruit)
1 tsp. orange zest
1/3 c. brown sugar, packed
2 Tblsp. cornstarch

For crumble top:
3/4 c. sliced almonds
1 c. all-purpose flour
1/4 c. light brown sugar, packed
1/4 c. granulated sugar
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
3/4 tsp. salt
1/2 c. (1 stick) unsalted butter at room temperature, cut into 1/2-inch chunks

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a medium bowl combine cherries, plums, orange zest, brown sugar, and cornstarch. Pour the filling into a 9x9-inch baking pan.

2. In a small bowl combine sliced almonds, flours, sugars, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Stir in the butter and use your hands to form small clumps with the dry ingredients. Scatter crumble top over the top of the filling.

3. Bake 40-50 minutes until the topping is golden brown and the filling is bubbling. Let cool and serve still warm.

Related recipes:
Peach-Blackberry Cobbler
Peach-Pecan Pie
Whole Wheat Plum Crumble Tart

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