Blueberry Buckle

You may have tried blueberry muffins, crisps, cobblers, grunts (yes, grunts), pies and tarts, but how about a buckle?  A buckle not only shows off blueberries at their best but just about any mix of fresh berries. Cakelike under a firm and crispy crust, buckles make great breakfast treats.  Serve a buckle with whipped cream for dessert or as a tasty snack just about any time.

Blueberry Buckle

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Butter a 9X13-inch baking pan

Ingredients

Cake

1 ½ cups all-purpose flour

1 t baking powder

½ t salt

½ cup (1 stick) butter at room temperature

½ cup granulated sugar

½ cup light brown sugar

2 eggs

½ cup milk

1 ½ t vanilla extract

2 cups fresh blueberries

Topping

½ cup all-purpose flour

½ cup light brown sugar

½ cup quick rolled oats

½ t ground cinnamon

Pinch of salt

4 T butter, cut into small cubes

½ chopped walnuts or pecans

Procedure

For cake:  Sift the dry ingredients together and set aside. Cream the butter and sugar mixture in a mixer.  Add the eggs one at a time.  Add the dry ingredients alternating with the milk and vanilla. Fold in the blueberries and pour the batter in to the baking pan.

For the topping: Combine all the ingredients with a pastry blender or fork until the butter forms pea-size lumps.  Sprinkle over top of cake.  Bake for 45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.  Cool.  Run a knife around edge. Cut and serve.  Whipped cream makes a lovely addition.

Photo by Michael Kirigin

 

Peach Pie Revisited

Ripe peaches at the farmers market

Selection for pie

Peaches' Destiny

Yes, I know, I’ve already published a peach pie AND a peach tart.  But I’ve made more pies and I have some new photos.

It’s that time of year again and peaches are at their peak.  If you  love peaches as much as I do, now is the time to grab your rolling pin, don your apron and go for it.  Here it is then, no corners cut, with a crumb crust for more complex flavor and texture.

Peach Pie with Crumb Topping

Crust:

1 ½ cups flour

¼ t salt

1T sugar

8 T unsalted butter, cut into ½ inch cubes

4 T ice water

Pulse flour, salt and sugar in a food processor. Add butter.  Pulse briefly.  There should still be bits of butter visible.  Add ice water around bowl and again, pulse briefly, just until dough holds together when pressed between your fingers.  Don’t let a ball form.

On work surface, press dough outward with the heel of your hand.  Pat into a round, wrap in plastic and chill for a half hour.

Crumb topping:

½ cup walnuts

1 cup flour

1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar

½ cup old fashion rolled oats

¼ t salt

½ cup butter, melted but not hot

While dough is chilling, prepare crumb topping in food processor.  No need to clean it first.  Pulse walnuts very briefly until roughly chopped.  Add flour, sugar, oats, salt and pulse for one second.  Transfer to a bowl, stir melted butter through and set aside.

Filling:

3 lbs. ripe peaches

juice from ½ lemon

1 cup light brown sugar

¼ cup instant tapioca

½ t vanilla

½ t cinnamon

¼ t freshly grated nutmeg

4 T butter cut into a ½ inch dice

Prepare peaches. Bring a pot of water to a boil.  Cut a small cross in the stem end of each peach.  Submerge peaches in water, a few at a time for one minute.  Remove and let cool enough to handle. With a paring knife, catch hold of the cut skin.  It will pull off easily.  Cut peaches into ½ inch slices or into small cubes. Place back in pot you have just emptied.  Add lemon juice, sugar, tapioca, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt.

Roll out dough to a 12 inch round.  Place in a deep dish 9-inch pie pan, crimp edges and chill for 15 minutes.

Pour off liquid that has collected in bottom of peach mixture.  This is very important to assure a firm filling and not a soupy one.

Place mixture in pie shell, heaping slightly in center.  Dot with butter and then top with crumb mixture breaking it into small clumps.

Place in a 400 degree oven for a half hour.  Lower heat to 350 degrees.  Bake for another half hour or until crust is golden brown and filling is bubbly.  Let cool.  Serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.  Prepare to receive rave reviews.

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