Blueberry Crisp with Vanilla-Oat Crumb Top


Blueberry Crisp with Vanilla-Oat Crumb Top

If you have never made a blueberry crisp before and you love berries, stand back to enjoy a real treat. This time of year, my supermarket has big boxes of berries for a good price. Some for cooking, some for eating raw on oatmeal, and some for the freezer. I created this recipe for a newspaper article about on frut crisps fifteen years ago. It was a very popular story. So I went to lunch at a friend’s house and I spied the homemade crumble with the mush of blue-black fruit underneath a thick layer of crumbs cooling on the counter. I was definitely looking forward to dessert since blueberries are a favorite fruit. One bite and I went into dessert heaven for a few moments. I asked for the recipe and imagine my surprise when my hostess pulled out the newspaper clipping with my own recipe. I was thrilled to rediscover one of my favorite desserts. She even made the Paradise Cream, which is so incredibly yummy.

Serves 6

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 cup rolled oats (quick cooking or old-fashioned)

2/3 cup packed light brown sugar

Pinch of salt

1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons (1 1/4 sticks) chilled unsalted butter, cut into pieces

6 cups (3 pints/12-ounces each) fresh blueberries

2 tablespoons sugar

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon cornstarch

Juice and grated zest of 1 large lemon

Preheat the oven to 350º (325º if using Pyrex). In a small bowl, combine the flour, oats, sugar, and salt. Sprinkle the vanilla over the surface. Cut in the butter pieces with your fingers, pastry cutter, or food processor until evenly moistened and soft coarse crumbs are formed. Set aside or refrigerate in a covered container. Can be made the day ahead.

Place the blueberries in an even layer into a shallow, buttered 10-inch pie plate, 8-inch square baking dish, or 1 1/2 quart ceramic gratin dish. Sprinkle with the sugar, flour, cornstarch, lemon juice, and lemon zest, tossing to evenly coat the fruit. Cover the fruit with all of the topping to make a thick layer.

Bake in the center of the oven until the berries are bubbling and the topping is golden brown, about 40 to 45 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature with some Paradise Cream.

Paradise Cream

Makes 2 1/4 cups

1 cup cold whipping cream

2 tablespoons sugar

1/2 cup sour cream

Place the bowl and beater in the freezer for at least 1 hour to thoroughly chill. Place the cream and sugar in the bowl. Whip on high speed with an electric hand mixer or stand mixer with the whisk attachment until soft peaks form, about 3 minutes. Whisk in the sour cream gently; it will stabilize the cream and make it thicker. Cover and refrigerate until serving.