Sunday, April 26, 2009

The Days I'd Gladly Crumble

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It’s a sad fact in the lives of the fairer sex: there will be no less than three days a month allocated to the dark recesses of victual Sodom & Gomorrah in which no snack food will survive my estrogen soused cravings. Let’s take, for example, the 12-pack box of generic ice cream sandwiches in the freezer. “What 12-pack box?” My husband asks. Exactly my point.  

So what to do when there’s no novelty ice cream treat outlet? No forgotten stash of tortilla chips in the cupboard? No year-old stray gummi bears smushed into the stiff crevices of that bag of Succotash in the freezer (What? You don’t eat your gummis frozen?)? What if you’re in the advanced rabid stages of PMS with nothing to nosh?

Just follow me you hormonal, weepy, cranky, bloated, blemished, ravenous train-wreck.
 
Behold the apple crisp. Or blackberry crumble. Or blueberry Brown Betty. You can call it whatever the hell you want, the point is this is fast. And in all likelihood, you have the ingredients on hand. And those ingredients just happen to be on the “lady times” approved food list: butter and sugar. More importantly, it’s delectable.  

Let me just establish my crumble edict first, no oatmeal. None. Oatmeal has no place in a crisp, a crumble or a Brown Betty in my world. Now that we have that out of the way, here’s the recipe.

Fruit Crumble

Here’s the beauty of this recipe: you can use just about any fruit you’ve got around. I'd stay away from the extra mushy varieties, like plum, banana or apricot but if that’s all you’ve got, go forth with my mixed blessings. Sliced apples and frozen fruits are perfect. You can save some extra crumble in the fridge and sprinkle on top of muffin batter or coffee cake batter.

Ingredients

For Crumble:
1 pound of butter (4 sticks) melted
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup brown sugar
½ teaspoon salt
5 cups flour

Fruit:
I usually use 5 to 6 sliced apples or two 10 ounce bags of frozen fruit (blackberry is my all time favorite).

In a large bowl, combine all crumble ingredients and stir together. Keep working the crumbs with your spoon or your fingers until the butter is absorbed and forms clumps.

In a baking dish, 8x8 Pyrex for example, layer fruit directly into the pan and then sprinkle crumble on top.  Don't worry if the fruit is still frozen.  

Bake at 350 for 45 minutes or until the fruit starts to bubble and the crumble is golden brown.