Summer Fruits: Plum and Rhubarb Crisp
While this may look like a Where’s Waldo photograph…Waldo, in this case, is a wild parrot that I need to fight with to get at said plums to create this plum and rhubarb crisp recipe. Oh, and Waldo here has a partner…Wanda. While I’m not certain who’s who…the 2 of them are having a field day in the plum tree just chomping away at the summer fruits it provides.
As you may have noticed, I had a few guest posters the past couple of weeks while I was on vacation. Thanks to all of my friends for filling in for me while I was away, and thanks to you for checking out what they had to say. I think you’ll agree that they’re all fantastic cooks and writers.
I took a little jaunt to the City of Love…Paris. Which was a big part of my inspiration for this rhubarb crisp. (Well, that and the fact that there’s an enormous plum tree right off my deck that is full of beautiful plums.)
There’s not much about Paris that would dull the romantic senses: the food, the architecture, the wine, the cobblestone streets, the fashion, the food, the Seine…oh I could go on and on. If you couldn’t tell, I’m a big fan of Paris.
Back to my kitchen. I love rhubarb, but hadn’t been able to find it this year until just recently so I knew I had to make this one bunch of it count (as the rhubarb season is fast coming to a close). Craig isn’t such a big fan of the tart and tangy stuff, as his taste buds prefer sweeter noshes than this food item dishes out. But he does love the plums from that tree. How do I know that? On more than one occasion I have found him standing in the corner of our deck pulling a plum off a branch with one hand, while the other is busy feeding a plum into his mouth. Proof enough? I think so.
So mixing up a warm batch of these crimson red summer fruits with a heady mixture of seasonings was a perfect metaphor for our trip to Paris. His favorites…my favorites…all intertwined with some ingredients to pull the two, seemingly, disparate parts together into one cohesive warm and juicy delight. If the filling wasn’t enough, the sweet and crumbly topping is the final pièce de résistance this dish needs. One spoonful of this fruit crisp will have you moaning with pleasure.
The tangy flavors dancing on your tongue causing your mouth to water and having those flavors meet up with the sweet plum and vanilla. Then, as you think your taste buds can’t take any more, that sweet and crumbly topping gives your mouth another texture and subtle sweetness for a warm afterglow.
Recipe: Plum Rhubarb Crisp
- 4 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter
- 1/4 Cup Brown Sugar
- 1 3/4 – 2 Cups Rhubarb (cut into 1/2″ pieces)
- 12 – 14 Red Plums (small to medium size – pitted and chopped)
- 3 Slices Fresh Ginger (1/8″ thick)
- 1 Tablespoon Honey (neutral flavor)
- 1 Tablespoon Orange Juice
- 1/2 Vanilla Bean (seeds scraped)
- 1/8 Teaspoon Ground Nutmeg
- 1 Cup All Purpose Flour
- 1 Cup Almond Flour
- 3/4 Cup Brown Sugar
- 8 Tablespoons (1 stick) Unsalted Butter (melted)
- 1 Teaspoon Cinnamon
- 1/4 Teaspoon Salt
- 1 Tablespoon Turbinado Sugar
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Farenheit.
- In a large saucepan (4 quart), over medium high heat, melt the 4 tablespoons of butter and add the 1/4 cup brown sugar and stir to combine.
- Add the rhubarb, plums and ginger slices to the pan and stir.
- Add in the honey, orange juice, vanilla, and nutmeg. Cook over medium high heat for 5-7 minutes or until rhubarb begins to soften, but still holds its shape.
- While filling is cooking, mix together the dry ingredients.
- Using a fork, so as to mix lightly, stir in the stick of melted butter, forming a crumbly texture.
- Remove the ginger slices from the cooked filling.
- Pour the fruit filling into a 2 quart baking dish and sprinkle the crispy topping on top. Do not press the topping into the fruit.
- Sprinkle the tablespoon of Turbinado sugar on top and bake for 20 – 25 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and the juices are bubbling.
- Remove from the oven when the top is deep golden brown.
You may want to put a baking sheet on the rack below the crisp when it bakes, to catch any juices that may overflow. Serve with fresh whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.
Turbinado sugar is also called raw sugar. If that is not available, you could use granulated sugar.
Preparation time: 15 Minutes
Cooking time: 20 Minutes
Diet type: Vegetarian
Number of servings (yield): 8
Culinary tradition: USA (Southern)