As I write this, Alicia is probably on her way to Tanzania to climb Mt. Kilimanjaro. Guess she won't be baking for a while! I haven't baked from Maida for at least a week either--moving to France will do that to you. Also, I promised myself I wouldn't make any new recipes until I had caught up on all the stuff I baked in Livermore. This is one of those recipes.
As part of my quest to do as much seasonal fruit baking as possible while in California, I chose to make the Blueberry Crumble to bring to a big family gathering. I also brought my Mom's famous green Jell-o salad, a rice salad, and a lot of cheese and bread. No-one starved, that's for sure!
This recipe calls for blueberries alone, but it turns out that blueberries weren't exactly in season in California. We could, however, get beautiful organic blackberries and raspberries for a song. So I bought some Washington State blueberries and complemented them with the blackberries and raspberries.
I think that was a good choice: blueberries can be kind of sweet and boring by themselves. The more acid blackberries add some needed zing. I also used tapioca instead of flour because I like that gooey mouth feel. I'm putting both in the recipe so that you can choose.
The crumble was delicious by itself or with ice cream. It went head to head with some beautiful but extremely artificial "apple" cupcakes that Alicia and the girls crafted. This sparked a debate between the sugar-happy crowd and the "not-too-sweet" crowd. Everyone was happy, I think. And I need to make that Jell-o salad again.
Here's the recipe for the crumble. Enjoy it before summer is over!
6 cups (24 oz.) blueberries (or a mix of berries)
1/3 c. (2.3 oz.) brown sugar (go easy if you're using just blueberries)
3 T. flour or 2 T. tapioca
3/4 t. cinnamon
2 t. lemon juice
Heat the oven to 375. Butter a 2 quart baking dish and dump in the berries. Sprinkle the sugar, flour/tapioca, and cinnamon over and toss to mix. Drizzle the lemon juice over and give it another toss. Let that stand while you get the topping ready.
1/2 c. (2 oz) sifted flour
1/4 t. nutmeg
1/4 c. (1.7 oz.) sugar
1/2 c. (3.5 oz.) brown sugar
4 oz. (1 stick) butter, cold
1/2 c. (1.3 oz.) old-fashioned oats
1 c. (3.5 oz.) chopped toasted pecans (This seemed like a lot to me--you might want to dial it down a bit)
In a medium bowl (or a food processor), whisk/pulse together the flour, nutmeg, and sugars. With a pastry cutter (or a food processor), cut in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in the oats. Sprinkle the nuts over the berries, then sprinkle the topping over the nuts.
Bake for 25-30 minutes or until the berries are bubbling. If the topping isn't golden enough for you, you could put it under the broiler. Serve this with ice cream. Maida also suggests White Custard Cream (ha!) or sour cream or unwhipped cream, so I guess you should use whatever dairy topping (Greek yogurt?) floats your boat.
Enjoy and feel virtuous about the lack of hydrogenated fat and red dye #2.