Comforting Home Food…Rhubarb Crisp

Dessert pudding wasn’t an every day affair in our house growing up, but when it made an appearance, it was usually something to celebrate.  Mum might make her famous “Hurry-Up Chocolate Cake”, lemon freeze, five-star peach pie, or a fruit crisp.  Mum has a serious arsenal of delicious desserts she can pull out and put together like it was nothing.  I aspire to get to that kind of culinary organization one day!

Fruit crisps are probably my favourite dessert.  They’re simple, warm and right now, remind me of home!  They can be made with whatever fruit you have on hand and instantly fill your kitchen with the delicious smell of cinnamon, fruit and sugar.  Apples, strawberries, rhubarb, raspberries, plums, apricots…they can all go in to create a flavourful dessert.

Rhubarb is, for me, the first sign of spring.  Living in Toronto I had a small patch of rhubarb in our garden, but this was nothing compared to the patch my parents had at the farm.  It was huge.  It would start to peek through the ground in March or April and as soon as it was ready to be picked, it would find its way into a rhubarb crisp.  Rhubarb is the first of many fruits (technically rhubarb is a vegetable) to come in the Spring and Summer.  Rhubarb is just good news.

There was rhubarb at the market this week and given the cold (6-9 degrees with rain) weather, I had to snatch it up and turn it into a rhubarb crisp.

Rhubarb at home is typically green...this rhubarb is red!

No need to arrange the apples like this...I was just practicing

Look at all that Rhubarb Goodness

This is a half batch of the topping...Also, I had no oatmeal and used muesli instead...hence the raisins

Ready for dessert

Rhubarb (or any other fruit) Crisp – based on my mum’s recipe

fruit – enough to fill a desired container

1 c Whole Wheat Flour
1 c Brown Sugar
1 c Oatmeal
1/4 c butter

Combine the flour, sugar, and oatmeal.  Using a pastry cutter (or a food processor) cut the butter into the dry ingredients until it resembles coarse oatmeal.   Fill the desired container with fruit.  Top with the topping.  Take a couple of table spoons of butter, break it up and drop it over the topping (this is in addition to the 1/4 c of butter above).  Bake for 30-45 minutes in an oven preheated to 325 until the fruit is soft and the topping brown.

Enjoy hot with ice cream!

Note – the topping can be increased or decreased based on the size of your container.  I don’t add sugar to the fruit as I like the flavour without.  You can also add cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger or just about any other flavour to the topping to spice things up a little!


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