A yummy peach crisp (photo courtesy GoDairyFree.org).  Individual blueberry crisps (photo courtesy Dole).  An apricot-blackberry cobbler (photo courtesy Good Eggs).
While some people love pie crusts, were’re on there opposite end of the spectrum. We’re there for the filling.
We’d rather have a bowl of custard or chocolate pudding than a custard or chocolate pudding pie. We’d rather have an apple crisp than an apple pie.
We prefer the crisp, crumbly topping (the crisp is called a crumble in the U.K.) to the soggy bottom crust and dry top crust of the traditional shortcrust pie.
And we prefer the ease of sprinkling on the topping rather than rolling crusts.
Another easy option is a cobbler (third photo, recipe below): It’s the same baked fruit as a crisp but with a topping of crisp biscuits, the “cobblestones” which gave the cobbler its name. They don’t absorb moisture like pie crusts, and refrigerated biscuit dough makes the topping easy.
RECIPE: SUMMER FRUIT CRISP
Use the abundance of berries and stone fruits: apricots, cherries, nectarines, peaches, plums and the cross-bred apriums, plumcots and pluots (olives are also a stone fruit).
You can use a single berry and stone fruit, or mix them up. We subscribe to the mix-up option; for example, peaches and plums, blueberries and raspberries. It’s more interesting.
Use sugar sparingly in order to enjoy the natural fruit sweetness.
1 pound of stone fruits, pitted and quartered (you can leave pitted cherries whole)
1 pint of berries, rinsed well and patted dry
Cane sugar to taste, depending on the sweetness of the fruit
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
Zest from 1 lemon
¼ cup flour 1 teaspoon
Optional: 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
½ cup sugar (or less depending on the sweetness of the fruit)
Pinch of salt
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup golden brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
Optional: 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
8 tablespoons chilled, unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1/2 cup old-fashioned oats
For The Topping
Vanilla ice cream or whipped cream
1. PREHEAT the oven heat to 375°F. Butter a 13×9-inch baking dish or 6 to 8 individual ramekins and set aside.
2. MAKE the topping. Add the ingredients to a large bowl and use your fingers to combine, pinching the butter into the dry mix until it forms balls the size of a pea.
3. COMBINE the filling ingredients in a medium bowl. Toss well to combine and transfer to the prepared baking dish or ramekins. Top with the crumb topping.
4. BAKE for 30 to 40 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and bubbly around the edges. Let cool for 15 minutes before serving. Garnish as desired and serve.
FOR A COBBLER
Instead of the topping, use a tube of refrigerator biscuits. Gauge how many you need for your baking dish, and slice them in half horizontally if you prefer a thinner “cobblestone.”
1. COOK the fruit per above. Then, raise the heat to 400°F and add the biscuits.
2. BAKE at 400°F 12 to 15 minutes or until biscuits are golden brown and filling is bubbly.
3. RESERVE any leftover biscuits for individual berry shortcakes: fresh berries and whipped cream on a split biscuit.
Apple Crisp Recipe
Peach Cobbler Recipe
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The Difference Between Pies & Tarts