How would we describe our strawberry rhubarb crisp recipe? Well, picture sweet, gooey, bubbling fruit with a crumbly topping of toasty oats and almonds. After that, add a scoop of ice cream to your vision and watch it melt just a little. It looks good, doesn’t it? Well, let’s get that strawberry rhubarb crisp out of your mind’s eye and into the oven!
What’s in a Name?
Wait, are we making a strawberry rhubarb crisp, or crumble? That’s a trick question – we’re basically making both 😉. Crisps and crumbles are really similar, in that they are both cooked fruit desserts topped with a crumbly flour mixture. A crisp recipe tends to add oats in the topping that go “crispy” when you bake them. However, the terms crisp and crumble have become somewhat interchangeable (unless you’re from somewhere like Australia, where we’re firmly in the “crumble” camp 😀).
Sweet, Sour, Strawberry, Rhubarb
Rhubarb is a classic ingredient for a crisp. The edible stems of the rhubarb plant have a lovely tart “smack”, which contrasts beautifully with sweet strawberries. However, we’ve gone one step further and added some orange zest! You’ll love the almost “marmalade-y” hint this adds to the flavor. Orange makes a great complement to the rhubarb, strawberries and sweet crispy topping.
A quick note on safety: if your rhubarb comes with leaves attached, cut them off and get rid of them! While rhubarb stems are healthy and delicious, the leaves are poisonous. Remove the leaves and throw them away (or compost them!), keeping them well out of reach of children and pets.
Keep That Crumble Crispy
You don’t want to cook this crisp only to end up with runny rhubarb and soggy strawberries! Luckily, there is plenty of advice out there for getting your crisp right. A few of the most important steps are:
- Leave the strawberry and rhubarb pieces large so they don’t go completely to mush.
- Include a thickener (we use arrowroot starch) to make sure the fruit juices form a thick sauce.
- Don’t go crazy with the crumble: a good crisp recipe only needs 1 – 1.5 inches (2.5 – 4 cm) of topping. Otherwise, it can get dense and doughy.
Is That Your Stomach Crumbling?
We know – you’ve seen the pictures, read the article and you can’t wait to get cooking! Well, we recommend slowing down, just a bit 😉. It’s important not to set the temperature too high when you bake this yummy dish. Cooking this crisp slow and steady will make sure your fruit stews properly, but your topping doesn’t burn 😀.
So, now you have all our tips for baking the perfect strawberry rhubarb crisp. Enjoy! And don’t forget the ice cream …
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