Simple and easy summer dessert (peach and blackberry crisp)

I haven't posted a recipe here in a long time, and I was completely inspired by these fresh, local peaches and blackberries. A crisp, or crumble, is one of my favorite desserts - easy to make, always delicious. You cannot mess them up - all you need is flavorful fruit to make them turn out great. I like to use peaches and berries in the summer, apples or pears in the fall. My grandmother Helen always made the most delicious apple crisp, so I'm partial to the version of hers that I remember.

These are local peaches and blackberries through our CSA, Good Natured Family Farms. The first week we had the peaches from our CSA, we ate them so fast that I never actually used them in a recipe. We had some friends over for dinner during the week and a crisp made the perfect, quick and easy dessert as I already had all the ingredients on hand.

One of these days I'll have to attempt a pie. Or maybe not. The easy, somewhat messy looking crisp seems to win out every time.

Served warm over vanilla icecream, the dish was instantly devoured. Little effort, big reward - just how I like it.

This original recipe used pears, but I've found substituting just about any fruit works with this somewhat general crisp recipe. I always omit the nuts from this recipe, per Ryan's preference. Enjoy!

Peach and Blackberry Crisp
(modified from Harvest Pear Crisp, Cooking Light 2002)

6 cups sliced fresh peaches and blackberries
1 T fresh lemon juice
1/3 c granulated sugar
1 T cornstarch
1 1/2 t ground cinnamon, divided
1/3 c all-purpose flour
1/2 c packed brown sugar
1/2 t salt
3 T chilled butter, cut into small pieces
1/3 c regular oats
1/4 c chopped walnuts (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 375.
2. Combine peaches and blackberries with lemon juice in a 2-quart baking dish, toss gently to coat. Combine granulated sugar, cornstarch, and 1 t cinnamon; stir with a whisk. Add cornstarch mixture to fruit, toss well to coat.
3. Lightly spoon flour into a dry measuring cup; level with a knife. Place flour, 1/2 t cinnamon, brown sugar, and salt in a food processor; pulse 2 times or until combined. Add chilled butter; pulse 6 times or until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add oats and walnuts, pulse 2 times. Sprinkle flour mixture evently over fruit mixture.
4. Bake at 375 for 40 minutes or until fruit is tender and topping is golden brown. Cool 20 minutes on a wire rack. Serve warm or at room temperature over icecream, if desired.

Note: Step 3 can be done without a food processor by simply cutting the butter in with a fork until it resembles coarse meal.


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