Even though I complain about the heat and humidity for the entire summer–I’m a fun housemate–there are still times that I HAVE TO turn on the oven. If I didn’t, there wouldn’t be pies and crumbles made with the bounty of summertime fruit that I just can’t resist buying.
While pies take a touch more time and care, and though they are always worth the effort, a crumble is an easy, laid back reminder that summer baking can be done without much fuss and with ingredients that are often already on hand. You can really use any fruit you like for the filling and the topping can take any number of mix-ins, or can be kept simple with just flour, sugar, salt, and butter. I love a crumble topping with lots of texture and this one delivers with chewy oats and toasty coconut. The warm richness of the topping pairs so nicely with the off-tart flavors of plum, raspberries, and blueberries.
Coconut Crumble w/ Summer Fruit
Feel free to use any mixture of fruit, I had about 4 1/2 cups and only sweetened it lightly, as the topping and ice cream are both a sweet compliment to the tartness of the fruit.
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup flour
1/2 cup rolled oats
1 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
pinch of salt
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
6 Tablespoons butter, cubed
Combine all ingredients in a bowl and work butter into the mixture with fingertips until you have coarse crumbs–some sandy bits and some that stick together in chunks. Set in refrigerator while you assemble the filling.
2 plums, seeded and sliced
8 ounces raspberries, rinsed and dried
12 ounces blueberries, rinsed and dried
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/4 cup sugar
Preheat the oven to 375*F.
Combine all ingredients for the filling in a large bowl. Toss gently to combine. Scrape the fruit mixture into a 8-inch pie dish and top with refrigerated crumble. Bake for 25-35 minutes, or until the top is golden and the juices are bubbling.
Vanilla Ice Cream
adapted from Jeni’s Splendid Ice Creams at Home
If you don’t have a vanilla bean, use 2-3 teaspoons of extract.
2 cups milk
1 vanilla bean, split and seeded
4 teaspoons cornstarch
1 cup heavy cream
2/3 cup sugar
2 Tablespoons corn syrup
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
3 Tablespoons (1/5oz) cream cheese, soft
In a small bowl, combine 1/4 cup of milk with the cornstarch, set slurry aside. Set the cream cheese in a large bowl with a mesh strainer over the top. Set aside.
Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan heat remaining milk with the cream and vanilla beans + pod. Heat to a simmer, cover, and remove from heat. Let steep for 30 minutes. Remove the vanilla pod from the milk mixture and add sugar, corn syrup, and salt, reheat to a low boil. Quickly whisk in the cornstarch slurry and continue to boil, whisking, until thickened. Whisk a ladleful of the hot mixture into the cream cheese, before straining the remaining hot mixture into the cream cheese mixture and whisk to combine. Prepare an ice bath and pour the hot ice cream base into a large plastic bag. Chill bag in ice bath until cooled and process the mixture in an ice cream maker according to manufacturers instructions.