Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Rhubarb Raspberry Crisp

Because most of my cooking is driven by seasonal ingredients, you're likely to see a lot of rhubarb recipes on here in the coming weeks. When produce is available at the farmer's market with which I can make a dessert, I feel it is my duty to oblige by making a host of sweet treats to honor those ingredients. Since rhubarb is so tart, it pairs wonderfully with fruit that can temper the tartness, a much better option than simply drowning it in sugar. I was lucky enough to find a vendor at my farmer's market selling frozen raspberries and strawberries from last season, so I got to savor a true bite of Wisconsin summer while maintaining true to buying local and seasonal produce from the farmer's market. While raspberries bring a bit of sweetness to this crisp, they also bring their own different tart flavor, blending beautifully with the rhubarb and orange juice and zest. Who can resist a bowl full of soft, sweet and tart fruit, topped with rich and crunchy topping, with smooth and creamy vanilla ice cream swirling in each bite?

Rhubarb Raspberry Crisp
adapted from Martha Stewart
serves 6

1 1/2 pounds rhubarb, cut into 1-inch pieces (about 4 cups)
1/2 cup granulated sugar
Zest and juice of 1 orange
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
8 tablespoons (1 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1/2 cup rolled oats
1/4 cup hazelnuts, skinned, toasted, and chopped (optional)
1/2 pint fresh raspberries
Vanilla ice cream, for serving (optional)

1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Combine rhubarb, granulated sugar, and orange zest and juice in a large bowl. Stir to combine.

2. In another bowl, combine flour, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Rub butter into flour mixture with your fingers until it is well incorporated and large crumbs form. Add oats and nuts and combine.

3. Turn rhubarb into a 8- or 9-inch square baking dish, scatter raspberries evenly over surface, and cover with crumb topping. Bake until topping is brown and crisp and juices are bubbling, about 45 minutes, covering with aluminum foil to prevent overbrowning, if necessary. Let cool slightly; serve warm, with ice cream, if desired.

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