Whipping up a warm and bubbly fruit crumble is one of the easiest and most delicious desserts you can make. There is beauty in its rustic elegance and all you need is a scoop of ice cream or a dollop of whipped cream to make this sweet treat really shine.
There is a subtle difference between a crumble and a crisp. At first glance they are quite similar and sometimes the names are even used interchangeably. Traditionally, crisps have oats mixed into the topping while crumbles have a more streusel-like topping. Crumble toppings tend to have a sandier texture while crisps offer more of a crunch to each bite because oats become lightly toasted in the oven. Both crumbles and crisps can be made with or without nuts, depending on your personal preference.
When you find yourself with several cups of soft or slightly mushy blueberries, there's no need to worry. Crumbles are at their best when prepared with very ripe fruit. The point of the filling is to allow the fruit to release its juices. This process happens even faster in the oven when the fruit is already ripe and soft.
An ideal blueberry crumble is the intersection of this delicious juicy fruit filling with a perfectly crumbly topping. If you find your crumble isn't as crumbly as you would like, take a closer look at the butter. It should be incorporated into the dry ingredients while still cold from the refrigerator. This will ensure that it maintains a lovely crumbly texture as it bakes in the oven. Using soft butter will result in a sloppy topping.
- For the Filling:
- 5 cups fresh blueberries
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- For the Crumble Topping:
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 8 tablespoons/1 stick cold unsalted butter, cut into cubes
Gather the ingredients. Preheat oven to 375 F.
In a large bowl, combine the blueberries, sugar, cornstarch, lemon juice, and cinnamon.
Pour the blueberry filling into a 10-inch cast iron skillet or deep pie pan.
In another large bowl, prepare the crumble topping. Whisk together the flour, brown sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt.
Using your fingers or a pastry blender, cut the cold butter into the flour mixture until large heavy crumbs are formed.
Sprinkle the crumble mixture over the blueberries. Bake in a 375 F oven until the fruit juices are bubbling around the edges of the pan and the topping is firm to the touch, 30 to 35 minutes.
Let the crumble cool for at least 15 minutes before serving. Serve with a scoop of ice cream or a dollop of whipped cream.
- Using cold butter and working it into the flour mixture makes for a pastry-like topping reminiscent of pie crust. Crumble topping freezes incredibly well and can be kept on hand for crumble anytime.
- Crumbles will keep, covered and refrigerated, for up to 1 week. Serve cold, room temperature, or re-warmed in a low oven for 20 minutes.