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Blueberry Crumble

August 6, 2011

Blueberry Crumble

Summer really is equivalent to abundance. Abundance of sun and fun, get-togethers, travels, delicious seasonal menus, and with that, abundance of ripe summer produce. Rows of colorful peaches, pluots, nectarines, plums, apricots, cherries, and papayas are perfectly lined-up every Tuesday at our farmer’s market. Sprouts, my neighborhood market, usually puts berries on 2 for $5 sale per pint almost all summer-long. Clearly, our household consumes more fruit than ever in the peak of summer.

Blueberry Crumble

Before we get to the subject of this post (read title: Blueberry Crumble), I wanna just share with you my amazing trip to Chicago back in late July. Despite the torturous heat and humidity, Bearik and I had a blast. We walked a lot, sweated a lot, ate very well, and was inspired by the city’s breathtaking landscape and architecture. It was my first time in the Windy City and it was love at first sight. Bus/rail system connected right next to the airport? Check. Dunkin’ Donuts on the street corner? Check (there’s no Dunkin’ Donuts in Los Angeles and they are my favorite donut chain followed by Winchell’s). Throng of Cubs and Fire fans on game day walking the streets and taking public transit? Check. Ease of traveling north to south again because of public transit? Check. Cheap eats? Check. Downright NOT pretentious bars? Check. It was an immediate attraction. I FELL IN LOVE WITH CHICAGO.

Chi-Town

My summer’s been so rad. Later this month, we go beach camping at El Capitan for a full week. I guarantee you my nephews will go bananas waking up next to the beach every day and building sand castles for countless hours. I love the simplicity of camping as a vacation alternative. The simple joy of waking up with mother nature greeting you good morning, the comforting warmth of the sun mixed with the cool ocean breeze, the uncomplicated meals cooked over a portable stove and yet it’s the most delicious meal you’ll forever cherish because your loved ones are around you.

Blueberry Crumble

Okay, switching gears and back to subject of this post. I plan on serving this Blueberry Crumble on an upcoming end of summer BBQ party at my house with a bunch of close friends. This recipe is from America’s Test Kitchen‘s Backyard Barbecue issue and it couldn’t be any easier. I dig dessert recipes that don’t require use of an electric mixer or five spatulas or three baking sheets. I did use a food processor to make the crumble for ease but you can always rely on your pastry cutter or two butter knives if you want a sink free of kitchen appliances to wash.

Blueberry Crumble

Blueberry Crumble

The one slight adjustment I made to the recipe is to lessen the amount of sugar. My blueberries were already sweet and I found that following the recipe’s full 1/2 cup of sugar was a little too much on the sweet side. I lessened that to 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons instead. Think about it, you will also top this with vanilla ice cream, so you definitely don’t want your bowl of Blueberry Crumble cloyingly sweet. You can also add a smidgen of ground ginger to the crumble, but that’s optional. If you like spice, then I say go for it. The ATK recipe only used cinnamon which was also fine on its own.

Wishing you a couple more weeks of amazing weather and grand time with your loved ones… and maybe with a bowl of Blueberry Crumble in hand.

Blueberry Crumble

America’s Test Kitchen advises to not use instant cooking oats nor use frozen berries and I agree. Instant oats will result to a soft crumble and frozen berries will ooze out too much liquid. You want a gooey filling with a crunchy topping, not the opposite. Serves 6-8.

Ingredients:

1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons granulated sugar

4 teaspoons cornstarch

1/4 teaspoon salt, split in half

5 cups fresh blueberries

2/3 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup old-fashioned oats

1/3 cup packed light brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Smidgen of ground ginger (optional)

6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pieces and chilled

Directions:

1. Preheat your oven to 375°. Combine the sugar, cornstarch, and 1/8 teaspoon of salt in a large bowl. Tumble the berries into the bowl and gently coat with the sugar and cornstarch mixture. Transfer to an 8-inch square baking dish and set aside.

2. In a food processor, combine flour, oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, and remaining 1/8 teaspoon salt to grind and process. Add your chilled butter pieces and pulse until big clumps form – about the size of a dime. Using your hands, pinch any powdery parts of the crumble. Top the blueberries evenly with the crumble mixture.

3. Bake the crumble until the blueberry filling is bubbling around the edges and the topping is golden brown, about 30 minutes. Let it cool for at least half an hour and serve.

*You can make this one day ahead and keep fully cooled crumble in the refrigerator covered in plastic wrap.

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9 Comments leave one →
  1. August 10, 2011 7:11 am

    Lovely. Both your pics of Chicago and this crumble. Summer is about abundance. Thank you for sharing such a yummy treat with me. My long day at work will be all the more sweeter now that I’ve visited your blog. Hugs from Austin!

  2. Betsy Curtis permalink
    August 11, 2011 11:35 am

    Where do you use the flour in this recipe? I see it in the ingredients list but not the directions.

    • August 11, 2011 6:39 pm

      Hi Betsy! Thanks so much for your comment. The flour gets processed with the oats, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt. I have updated the post to reflect that. Apologize for the omission. Hope you like this dessert! It’s yummy stuff guaranteed. 🙂

  3. Betsy Curtis permalink
    August 13, 2011 6:45 pm

    I had decided to add the flour in with the oats and hoped for the best, I had all the ingredients all ready to go and just couldn’t wait for for your reply. I’m not much of a baker, yet, but this was definitely an easy dish and I love blueberries! I found your blueberry crisp through ZITE in my iPad and will definitely be looking for more recipes from you in the future.

    • August 15, 2011 2:26 pm

      Well, Betsy, your gut was right all along. The flour indeed goes with the oats as part of the crumble. Hopefully you saw my first response back to you. Thanks so much!

  4. August 15, 2011 10:04 pm

    Amazing! Love the colours of the crumble and the simplicity of the recipe! YUM!

    • September 18, 2011 11:35 am

      Thanks! You nailed it… the simplicity of this recipe really made me realize that as long as you have fresh ingredients, you don’t need 20 spices and 30 steps to make a totally awesome dessert. Thanks for stopping by!

  5. Nicolefran permalink
    June 22, 2012 8:05 pm

    This is my favorite berry crisp recipe and I couldn’t find it in my archives or at ATK. Thank you!!!! 5star recipe if you haven’t made it you should.

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