Thursday, August 7, 2008

Recipe - Plum and walnut crisp

Day 327

I'm trying to learn to like baking. This is hindered by several factors: I have a mental block concerning accurate measurements, I can be impatient, and there are only two in our household and one of us doesn't like sweets (I'm looking at you, husband). So with those against me, I've been looking for easy recipes that are easily reduced to one or two servings. With all the summer fruit tempting me at the farmer's market, I've been experimenting with fruit crisps. They usually have only a few ingredients with easy to reduce measurements, and a relatively low-fail rate.

Last night I hit on a winner. I was inspired by some small, firm, ink-colored plums that turned up at the farmer's market yesterday. Epicurious produced this recipe, which I have adapted for two servings below. The topping was perfectly crisp and the walnuts provide extra crunch and a slight bitterness that compliments the sweet-tartness of the plums.

1/4 cup chopped walnuts
2 Tablespoons unbleached all-purpose flour
2 Tablespoons light brown sugar
dashes of cinnamon, ground ginger, salt, and nutmeg
1 1/2 Tablespoons unsalted butter, chilled and cut into 1/2 inch pieces (did I mention I hate measuring? Just estimate 1 1/2when you slice through the butter wrapper, it'll be fine)

4 small, ripe but firm plums, pitted and cut into 6 wedges each
2 Tablespoons white sugar

Preheat oven to 400. In a medium bowl, combine the walnuts, flour, brown sugar, and spices. With your fingers, rub the butter into the flour mixture until combined. Put mixture in fridge for 15 minutes to firm up.

In a small pie plate or small Pyrex dish, combine plums with white sugar. Remove topping mixture from fridge and break apart with a fork. Spread topping evenly over plums. Back for 25 minutes or until topping is golden and plums are bubbling. Allow to cool for at least 15 minutes.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm off to breakfast on the husband's uneaten portion I stashed in the fridge last night. :)

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