Tag Archives: strawberries

Strawberry Pistachio Crumble

10 Jul


Me and Ted Allen have a lot in common. We have both lived in Indiana, we both love food, we both like to say, “You’ve been chopped” when someone does something wrong, and most importantly, we both believe that pistachios are the best nuts. In fact, we concur on the top three nuts of all time! See?:

I wonder if he’d also agree with my top three fruits rating: Pineapple, Strawberries, and Blueberries?

Whatever the case, I was ecstatic when I found this recipe for Strawberry Pistachio Crumble on Chef in Disguise. I love fruit-centric desserts because they seem more healthy (not saying they actually are…this is my rationalization speaking). And, I love nuts in desserts because the salty, savory element cuts the sweetness and makes for an interesting taste experience. So if my second favorite fruit (strawberries) and my favorite nut (pistachios) are having a party, you know I’m there!

Indeed, this Strawberry Pistachio Crumble is out-of-this-world good. I am having a very hard time restraining myself from eating the whole dish in one sitting. The crunchy nut-oat topping is the perfect contrast to the soft, sweet strawberry mixture. It was divine on its own, but would also be magnificent with some ice cream on the side.

Side note: I spent a good chunk of time shelling countless pistachios to yield 1 1/2 cups for the topping (yes, I was being cheap by buying a bag of unshelled nuts for this endeavor), but it was totally worth it 🙂  Lots of love went into this dish!

Strawberry Pistachio Crumble (original recipe by A Spicy Perspective, adapted by Chef in Disguise)

Ingredients:

For the Filling-

  • 4 lbs strawberries, stems removed and halved
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 3 tbsp orange juice
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 3 tbsp cornstarch

For the Topping-

  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1 1/2 cup chopped roasted pistachios
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter, cut into cubes

Preparation:

  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  • In a baking dish (I used 13×9), mix the strawberries, lemon zest, orange juice, vanilla, sugar, and cornstarch. Spread the berries out evenly.
  • Using a food processor, mix the ingredients for the topping until the butter is well combined, but the mixture is still crumbly.
  • Spoon the topping over the fruit and bake for 40-50 minutes—until the edges are bubbling and the top is golden.
  • Cool completely before serving.

Makes 8-10 servings.

What are your nut and fruit rankings? 🙂

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Strawberry Shortcake: I Found My Soulmate

3 Apr

Strawberry shortcake is my favorite dessert.  I am from the camp that strawberry shortcake must be composed of strawberries, whipped cream, and a biscuit. That’s right…a biscuit. Not angel food cake, not pound cake, certainly not those heavily processed dessert shells sold in stores…a biscuit. Said biscuit must be served warm, split in half horizontally, and spread with a touch of butter.

Additionally, strawberry shortcake must include sliced strawberries in a sugary strawberry sauce, simply made from combining strawberries and sugar and letting the juices develop in the refrigerator.

And of course, strawberry shortcake must be topped with a generous dollop of whipped cream.

That’s not too much to ask, is it? You would think not, but it was with great frustration that I have spent years in search of the perfect strawberry shortcake recipe reminiscent of what I remember from my childhood. So you can imagine my delight when I stumbled across a new recipe yesterday that includes the essential elements described above, but that was not quite like what I remember from my childhood. It was better. Simply perfect.

This recipe for strawberry shortcake includes a delicious shortcake that is essentially a giant biscuit pressed into a 9×9 pan. The top and sides of the shortcake become slightly crispy, while the inside is soft. It is easily split in half to make something of a sandwich with strawberries inside. And it’s not really a sweet biscuit; the sweetness comes from the other elements of the dessert.

In fact, a main reason that this strawberry shortcake is out-of-this-world-delicious is the whipped cream.  I usually just use store-bought whipped cream, but this time I made it myself. The hit of lemon zest in the whipped cream transforms the strawberry shortcake into something exciting and unique.

I cannot imagine a better strawberry shortcake. Thus,  my quest for the perfect recipe has ended. Why continue when I am head-over-heals in love with this dessert?

In sum, this strawberry shortcake is my soulmate. But I’ll be nice enough to share it with you 🙂


Strawberry Shortcake (adapted from recipe by Mary Nolan)

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 pounds strawberries, stemmed and sliced
  • 5 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • Unsalted butter, to taste
  • Whipped Cream with Lemon Zest, recipe follows

Preparation:

  • Mix strawberries with 3 tablespoons sugar and refrigerate while juices develop, at least 30 minutes.
  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Butter a 9 inch square baking pan and line with parchment paper.
  • Sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, remaining 2 tablespoons and 1 teaspoon sugar, and salt in a medium bowl. Add heavy cream and mix until just combined. Place mixture in prepared baking pan and bake until golden, 18 to 20 minutes.
  • Remove shortcake from pan and place on a rack to cool slightly. Cut into 6 pieces, split each piece in half horizontally, and spread with butter, to taste.
  • Spoon some of the strawberries with their juice onto each shortcake bottom. Top with the shortcake top, and a generous dollop of whipped cream.

Whipped Cream with Lemon Zest (recipe by Mary Nolan)

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream, chilled
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated lemon zest

Preparation:

  • Using a mixer, beat the heavy cream, sugar, vanilla, and lemon zest until soft peaks form, about 2-3 minutes.

Where do you stand on the strawberry shortcake debate? Are you a biscuit-lover like me, or do you prefer some other vessel for your strawberries?