Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp

Strawberry Rhubarb CrispRhu the Day
I am not really sure when I realized that I was a fan of Rhubarb. It’s not a plant you see a lot in Bay Area gardens, mainly because it prefers colder climates like in Washington and Oregon. That being said, I lived in Oregon for four years. There were plenty of berries but not a lot of rhubarb.

It’s only been in the last ten years or so that I have gone crazy for rhubarb. It took one great strawberry rhubarb pie to get my family hooked. For that reason, I feel compelled to try any rhubarb recipe that comes along.

Over the weekend we held a get-together for a friend who was in from out of town. This meant I was feeding a decent-sized crowd. The main course was easy to put together. Then, I went looking for something for dessert that was fresh, tasty, and said spring but would still feed a lot of people.

When I found this Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp recipe, I knew the search was over. This crisp was a big hit. My son said it was like crack…he couldn’t stop eating it.

I ended up doubling the recipe. But, even keeping the original proportion yields a decent-sized crisp. Don’t worry about leftovers. Even if you do end up with some, this makes an excellent breakfast.

Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp Recipe
Yields 6 servings
Adapted from Food and Wine Magazine

This old-fashioned recipe has a generous, crisp oat topping to complement the tangy filling. The recipe is best served warm with Vanilla Bean Ice Cream.

For the filling
2 pounds rhubarb stalks
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 pound strawberries
3 tablespoons cornstarch
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

For the topping
1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups light brown sugar
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/4 cups quick-cooking rolled oats
3 tablespoons canola oil
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup slivered almonds (optional)

Preheat the oven to 375°F.

Prep the rhubarb and strawberries
Hull and quarter the strawberries. Slice the rhubarb into 1/2-in thick coins.

Make the filling
In a bowl, toss the rhubarb with 3/4 cup of the sugar and allow it to stand for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. In another bowl, toss the strawberries with the remaining 1/2 cup sugar and allow them to stand for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Using a slotted spoon, transfer the rhubarb to the strawberries and discard any rhubarb juice.

Add the cornstarch, lemon juice, and vanilla to the fruit mixture and stir well. Transfer the mixture to a 9-by-13-inch glass baking dish.

Make the topping
Combine the first seven ingredients in a medium bowl. Using a pastry blender or your fingers, mix the ingredients together until large crumbs form.

Sprinkle the topping evenly over the filling and then sprinkle the slivered almonds evenly across the top.

Bake the crisp for 30 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 325° F and continue baking for about 30 minutes longer, until the fruit filling is bubbling and the topping is nicely browned.

Allow the crisp to rest for 10 to 20 minutes before serving.


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