Five Fabulous Fruit Desserts

by Sarah Henry on July 14, 2009 · 11 comments

in baking,fruit,recipes

I’ve been waxing on a lot lately in this space about food films and food books. And I’ve been digging doing blogs about resourceful residents who grow and forage in the urban jungle.

But it’s time to talk about cooking again. The weather has turned positively balmy in Berkeley this week and we’re heading into the lazy days of summer (for some) so it seems a good time to reintroduce recipes into the rotation, don’t you think? Let’s start with dessert and dish about some of the great-tasting fruit in farmers’ markets right now.

My son got things kick started by suggesting we make a lemon blueberry bundt cake for a backyard barbie our neighbors threw last weekend. He was trying to cheer me up. I was hot (my little cottage is like a proverbial oven on steamy days, when the inside temps can hit close to 90 degrees), hormonal (i.e. cranky & crabby), and a herniated disc was giving me hell. (Taking a poll: Should I try a steroid shot for a bad back that’s been nothing but grief for 6 months now? Opinions? Experience? Horror stories? Do tell.)

I was also covered in flea bites from a trip to a public pool. (Word to the wise: When swimming at an unfamiliar spot dry off on the concrete and avoid the green stuff, no matter how inviting it may look. Scratch. scratch. Word to local readers: Stay off the grass at Temescal Pool.) What better way to beat the blues than to bake a cake with your sweet son who does not, thank you very much, want to go to the beach, the samurai exhibit, or the pool?

Gabe sourced the blueberries from Lance & Nancy’s bushes next door and plucked a couple of Meyer lemons off our tree and away we went. My son thinks a bundt tin is a cool contraption and loves watching what happens when you pour buttermilk into the mix. He was chuffed with the end result — remember, I’m a card-carrying member of the baking-challenged brigade. The cake was a hit at the party and the leftovers got scoffed up the following day by Gabe, his buddy Griffin, and sister Nora, who were ravenous after running around at soccer camp all day. A soccer camp, mind you, that serves mostly organic, healthy lunches and snacks. How fantastic is that???

We’re also a bit partial to a fruit crumble, crisp, or cobbler in my house — my standby recipes for crisp or cobbler come from Deborah Madison’s Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone. We use whatever fruit combo we happen to have on hand. Nectarines and blueberries are swell together, as in this Blueberry and Nectarine Cobbler from Nicole at Baking Bites. Or try this Nectarine and Peach Cobbler from Elise at Simply Recipes. Or this Plum and Peach Crisp from 101 Cookbooks, which goes easy on both the sugar and butter and includes yogurt to keep things moist.

My friend Marge, channeling her inner Martha, excelled last week at a scrumptious crumble with strawberries, rhubarb, orange rind and juice, sliced almonds, and oats, among other ingredients. Maybe if we beg her she’ll post the recipe here. We ate at her place while we played the board game Apples to Apples. But alas, no camera in tow to record this delectable dessert — the kind that almost gets eaten in one sitting but there’s just enough left over for brekkie — in bed! — the next day. Play hard. Eat well. Don’t forget the cream.

Here’s my list to get you jazzed about whipping up something fruitful some time this summer. And do share the wealth, fellow fruit lovers. I wanna know: What’s on your dessert menu?

The List

1. Glazed Lemon-Blueberry Poppy Seed Bundt Cake

Recipe from Cooking Light. Garnish with fresh blueberries and ribbons of lemon rind. Especially appealing for afternoon tea with a cuppa.

2. Strawberry Rhubarb Crumble

Recipe from Deb at Smitten Kitchen or try this version Rhubarb Strawberry Crumble from Eating Well. Either way, serve with lashings of cream laced with vanilla essence.

Recipe from Margaret to come (no pressure my friend;).

3. Pavlova with Berries, Kiwis, and Passionfruit

The pav recipe I routinely turn to is in Sydney Food by Bill Granger. My sister, Amanda, and sister-in-law, Alice, also make to-die-for versions. But between them, Mand and Ali have seven kids, demanding jobs/lives, and they’re not too sure about this blogging business so you’ll just have to take my son’s word for it: Their pavlovas rock. Regardless of whether this dish actually harkens from Australia or New Zealand it’s a Down Under delight. The version here, from Stephanie at Joy of Baking, looks pretty darn delish. Plus the girl has created a chocolate pavlova. Oh my!

4. Baked Peaches

What could be simpler or more scrumptious than a baked peach? My sis-in-law, the aforementioned Alice, dots the top of each peach half with butter and brown sugar. In the version here, Jamie Oliver stuffs ‘em with raspberries.  Works wonderfully with vanilla ice cream and caramel sauce, also found in Sydney Food. Apartment Therapy’s the kitchn offers a grilled version, topped with bourbon vanilla whipped cream, for you outside cooks.

5. Lemon Sorbet

Refreshing. Easy. Fast. Say no more — other than you do need an ice-cream maker. This version comes from Tori at Tuesday Recipe.

Be Sociable, Share!
http://lettuceeatkale.com/wp-content/plugins/sociofluid/images/digg_32.png http://lettuceeatkale.com/wp-content/plugins/sociofluid/images/reddit_32.png http://lettuceeatkale.com/wp-content/plugins/sociofluid/images/stumbleupon_32.png http://lettuceeatkale.com/wp-content/plugins/sociofluid/images/delicious_32.png http://lettuceeatkale.com/wp-content/plugins/sociofluid/images/google_32.png http://lettuceeatkale.com/wp-content/plugins/sociofluid/images/facebook_32.png http://lettuceeatkale.com/wp-content/plugins/sociofluid/images/yahoobuzz_32.png http://lettuceeatkale.com/wp-content/plugins/sociofluid/images/twitter_32.png

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

marinasrecipebox July 14, 2009 at 7:16 pm

Sounds delicious!

Marina
http://marinasrecipebox.wordpress.com

Reply

Nicole July 14, 2009 at 9:17 pm

Eeeeeeeek fleas on the grass at Temescal Pool!!!! Thanks for the heads up.

Reply

Sarah Henry January 2, 2010 at 8:59 pm

I know, how icky is that?

Reply

"Marge" July 15, 2009 at 6:56 am

I’ve arrived! I’ve been Lettuce Eat Kale’d!

Here goes: 4 cups of rhubarb, 1 pint of strawberries, the zest + juice of one orange, 2/3 c. of sugar (though I notice that the Eating Well recipe only calls for 1/2 … next time I’ll try it with a tad less sugar.)

For the topping, I improvise on whatever crisp topping recipe I come across. I like an “oatey” topping so I usually increase the amount of oats called for. One time when I was making a topping, I didn’t have the walnuts called for so I put in sliced almonds instead. I’ve been doing it ever since.

Oh, and here’s a tip from my inner Martha: I usually double the topping recipe and set aside half of it in the freezer. That way, I can whip up a crisp at a moments notice with whatever fruit I have on board. (I did it once with cherries and the result was pretty weak. Come to find out, thanks to my buddy Heidi, that one is supposed to use *sour* cherries in pies and crisps. Can you say forage?)

Reply

Sarah Henry January 2, 2010 at 9:01 pm

Belated online thank you, Marge, for sharing your divine dessert with us — and your inner Martha moments.

Reply

Jane Boursaw July 21, 2009 at 11:10 pm

Oh my goodness, everything in this post sounds delicious, Sarah. I have zero time for baking or cooking, but this beautiful blog of yours is encouraging me to make time, especially with the bounty of fresh fruits here in northern Michigan.

Reply

Anna July 24, 2009 at 7:38 pm

What a delightful blog! I will write about it to my readers too! :)

I totally remember the Cooking Light Blueberry cakes. Not sure when this one you write of was published. Long ago, in my days before Ava, before The Lemon Lady adventures, I loved to throw dinner parties and bake all night long. Early morning, all day some weekends. Cooking Light published one of the best ever Blueberry pound cakes. Ahhh…I easily baked a hundred of those in my lifetime. Someday again…I’ll bake another.

Reply

Sheryl July 23, 2010 at 11:03 am

Being a total fruit lover, this is really sounding fabulous. Problem is, I have to bake it or cook it all…unless I move to Berkeley, that is. Then I’ll just pop in for a visit.

Reply

Leave a Comment

CommentLuv badge

{ 3 trackbacks }

Previous post:

Next post: