Saturday, July 14, 2012

Fresh Cherry-Almond Crumble

A few years back I developed a recipe for a cherry crisp that used coconut and almond in the topping.  It was delicious, but it used canned cherries, and since cherries are in season and I happened to have a whole bag of them sitting on my counter-top, I decided to alter the recipe to use the fresh cherries.  I wasn't sure how it would turn out but it was fantastic!  So here it is, for you to enjoy.  You could, of course, leave out the coconut and/or almonds if you prefer, but I think they add a bit of flavor and texture that really makes this dish unique.  We served it with homemade vanilla ice cream on top.

As a note, if you don't have a cherry pitter you can just slice the cherries in half and remove the pit.  It takes a little longer but will still get the job done.

Fresh Cherry-Almond Crumble

Cherry Filling Ingredients:
4 cups fresh cherries, pitted
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp lemon juice
1/4 cup water
1 Tbs cornstarch
1 Tbs butter

Crumble Topping Ingredients:
6 T all-purpose flour
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup white sugar
2 T shredded coconut
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup oats
1/4 cup chopped almonds
6 T butter

In a medium saucepan, combine the cherries, sugar, and lemon juice.  Stir together and let sit for 15-30 minutes to release the juices. 

Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 400F and make the topping. 

In a small bowl combine all the topping ingredients except the butter.  Using the largest holes on a cheese grater, grate the butter over the topping mixture.  After all the butter has been grated, mix it lightly with your hands until the butter is evenly distributed.  Refrigerate the topping until needed.

Once the cherries have released some juices, add water and cornstarch to the saucepan with the cherries and heat over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally.  Bring the mixture to a boil, then stir constantly and continue to boil for at least one minute, or until the liquid thickens and the cherries are very soft.  Remove from heat and stir in the butter.

Pour cherry filling into an ungreased 8" or 9" square baking dish.  Spread topping evenly over cherry mixture.  Bake at 400-degrees F for 20 minutes.  Serve with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.

Serves 6-8.

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