My friend Christina is one of those remarkable women who successfully juggles, well, everything. She works outside the home and has all but raised three lovely people (smocking the girls’ dresses no less) – no small feat in this fast–paced, highly demanding time we live in. She’s also a wonderful wonderful cook who entertains with ease (we have squeezed our way into their Christmas lunch list — the Dodges are no dummies).
Add to that, she has an incredible (and massive) garden that she lovingly tends.
Did I mention there are chickens, too? (thank you for those lovely fresh eggs Christina!)
Christina has even planted fruit trees behind the garden. Yes. Fruit trees. And it’s no wonder she did so because Christina’s summertime kitchen overflows with delicious fruit-filled treats… muffins, pies, and jams, etc. Last summer she made a swoon-worthy Peach Crumble and, thankfully, she shared the recipe. I’ve monkeyed around with it only very slightly and have noted changes and additions along the way. I’m not sure how long I’ll have to wait to harvest and bake with Christina’s “Burr Farms” peaches but I will be patient as I know it will be well worth it.
I keep telling Christina that she needs to blog about her gardening and cooking. Her response: “there are just not enough hours in the day at this point…”. I’ll keeping pushing her and I’ll let you know when I ‘break’ her just like I did Jennifer!
A couple of Abby thoughts:
When peaches are at their season’s height, I like to use a combo of both yellow and white along with the bluebs but one or the other works just as well. Regardless of color, remember to use only ripe peaches that give slightly at their shoulder and have a heady, peachy aroma.
As you can see, I like a thick coating of the topping. Christina likes to use pecans in the mix but, for this version, I used sliced almonds. Any nut will work well and, for the best flavor, make sure to lightly toast and cool them before adding them to the topping mixture.
Blueberry-Peach Ginger Crisp
Makes 6 to 8 servings.
For the Topping:
3/4 cup (3 3/8 ounces) all-purpose flour
3/4 cup ( 5 1/4 ounces) firmly packed dark brown sugar (C uses granulated)
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger (C omits)
6 tablespoons (3 ounces) unsalted butter, cut into 8 slices
Pinch of table salt
1/2 cup sliced almonds, lightly toasted (C uses pecans)
For the Fruit:
1 pint blueberries, rinsed and dried (C omits)
2 1/2 pounds ripe peach (white or classic or even a combo of them both), rinsed and dried (C uses 3 pounds)
1/4 cup (1 3/4 ounces) firmly packed dark brown sugar
3 tablespoons finely chopped crystallized ginger (C omits)
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice (C uses 2 Tablespoons)
2 teaspoons all-purpose flour (C uses 1 Tablepsoon)
3/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract (C uses 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg)
Pinch of table salt
2 tablespoons (1 ounce) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
For Serving (optional):
Vanilla ice cream
Sweetened whipped cream
To make the topping:
1. Combine the flour, brown sugar, ground ginger, butter, and salt in a food processor. Process until combined and forms small clumps. (If you prefer, you can mix this by hand. Combine all the ingredients except the almonds in a medium bowl and, using your fingers, pinch and stir until the butter is no longer visible and the mixture forms small crumbles.) Add the almonds and toss in the work bowl just until they are mixed in a bit. Refrigerate the topping until you’re ready to use it.
To make the crumble:
2. Position an oven rack in the center of the oven and heat to 375°F. Lightly grease a shallow, 12-cup baking dish (glass or ceramic – I use a 9 x 13-incher). Put the blueberries in a large bowl. Cut the peaches in half, remove the pits and cut into 1-inch thick wedges. Sprinkle the brown sugar, crystallized ginger, lemon juice, flour, vanilla and salt over the fruit. Gently toss until the fruit is evenly coated.
3. Scrape the fruit into the prepared baking dish, dot with the remaining butter pieces and spread evenly. Sprinkle the topping evenly over the fruit. Bake until the topping is browned and the juices are bubbling, about 45 to 50 minutes. Let cool for at least 10 minutes. Serve warm with or without ice cream or sweetened whipped cream.