Summer Fruit Crumble
For the fruit
Unsalted butter, for the baking dish
1/3 cup (77 grams) packed light or dark brown sugar
3 tablespoons (30 grams) flour
¾ teaspoon ground cinnamon
6 cups fresh fruit, such as blackberries, peaches, raspberries, blueberries, plums, cherries or apricots (pitted and coarsely chopped or sliced, as needed)
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice (from 1 lemon)
For the crumble
½ cup (70 grams) flour
¼ teaspoon nutmeg, preferably freshly grated
¼ cup (49 grams) granulated sugar
½ cup (111 grams) packed light or dark brown sugar
8 tablespoons (4 ounces; 1 stick) cold unsalted butter, cut into ½-inch pieces
½ cup old-fashioned rolled oats (56 grams; do not use quick-cooking or instant)
1 cup toasted nuts (about 4 ounces) of your choice, such as pecans, almonds or hazelnuts, chopped (optional; see notes)
For the fruit: Generously grease your baking dish with butter.
Combine the brown sugar, flour and cinnamon in a mixing bowl. Add the fruit; use a flexible spatula to gently toss together. Transfer the mixture to the baking dish, spreading it evenly. If there is any remaining sugar mixture at the bottom of the bowl, scatter it evenly over the fruit, then drizzle the lemon juice evenly over it. Wipe out the bowl, because you'll use it for the next step.
For the crumble: Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
Whisk or sift together the flour, nutmeg and granulated sugar in the same mixing bowl. Add the brown sugar, stirring to incorporate. Add the butter; use your fingers, a pastry blender or two table knives to quickly work the butter into the dry ingredients until it resembles coarse crumbs (not too fine). Stir in the oats.
To assemble, scatter the nuts, if using, over the fruit. Then scatter the crumble topping evenly over the top.
Bake (middle rack) for 25 to 30 minutes, until the fruit is bubbling at the edges. Switch the oven to broil for a minute or so to further brown the crumble topping a bit -- watch it carefully to avoid burning.
Serve warm, or at room temperature.
Notes: Toast the nuts in a small, dry skillet over medium heat for 5 to 7 minutes, until lightly browned and fragrant, shaking the pan to avoid scorching. Cool completely before using. The unbaked crumble can be covered and refrigerated for up to a day in advance.
Serves 6 to 8
Nutrition (based on 8 servings) | Calories: 330; Total Fat: 12 g; Saturated Fat: 8 g; Cholesterol: 30 mg; Sodium: 0 mg; Carbohydrates: 56 g; Dietary Fiber: 5 g; Sugars: 38 g; Protein: 3 g.
Adapted from "Maida Heatter's Book of Great American Desserts," by Maida Heatter (Alfred A. Knopf, 1985).