The first week of blueberry season I bring home a half flat from the Farmer’s Market and set it on my kitchen counter. Everyone, from neighbors to friends to window cleaners, marvels at the size of the berries, asks for a taste, and before I know it they are gone.
The second week of blueberry season I have time to stash some in the refrigerator and throw a handful into a fruit salad for breakfast, a green salad with dinner or even bake a batch of Blueberry Oat Muffins.
By the third week of blueberry season I start to look for new recipes. In years past I have sought out the surprising or unusual and discovered Blueberry Salsa and Blueberry Chicken Salad. Both were fresh and wonderful and worthy of a home in my recipe box.
This year, however, I have so far been keeping it simple and sticking to the basics. Somehow I have gotten several years into blogging without posting a recipe for a Berry Crisp. I mentioned it at the market and was given a tried and true recipe from Good Housekeeping by Cheryl from MeadowGlenn Farms.
Of course I changed it a little. I cut it in half to better serve the needs and appetite of my family. Then I added some sliced almonds to the streusal crumb topping. This crisp dresses up the berries with some sweet crunchy toasted bits but without masking that fresh berry flavor. I’ve made three now and I’m about to make another. It may not be the ultimate in state of the art culinary innovation but it tastes wonderful!
Summer Berry Crisp
adapted slightly from a recipe MeadowGlenn Farms attributes to The Good Housekeeping Research Institute
3 Tablespoons granulated sugar
1 Tablespoon cornstarch
2 teaspoons lemon juice
4 cups blueberries (or any mixture of summer berries)
6 Tablespoons old-fashioned oats
¼ cup packed brown sugar
3 Tablespoons flour
¼ teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 cup sliced almonds, roughly chopped and toasted
2 Tablespoons cold butter, cut into pieces
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
In a medium bowl, combine the granulated sugar and cornstarch until blended. Add the berries and lemon juice; toss to coat.
Transfer the berry mixture to a shallow 1-quart baking dish ( I use shallow oval baking dish that matches my Italian Countryside dinnerware) spreading the berry mixture evenly.
In a small bowl, combine the oats, brown sugar, flour, cinnamon and almonds. With fingertips (or fork, if you prefer) work in the butter until coarse crumbs form. Scatter the crumbs evenly across the top of the berries.
Bake the crisp at 375 degrees for approximately 30 minutes, or until the crumb topping is browned and the fruit is bubbling.
Remove the crisp to a wire rack to cool for at least one hour.
Serve warm or cold, with ice cream or on its own.