Fresh Peach Crisp.
Fresh peach crisp is one of those homey, comforting desserts that signals the end of the summer and start to fall. This recipe includes fresh peaches topped with a buttery, brown sugar, almond, oat streusel.
Ok. So, I probably should call this Peach Crisp, and this Blueberry Crisp, a Peach Crumble and Blueberry Crumble, respectively. Fruit cobblers, crumbles and crisps are all variations of the same basic dish: a think layer of fresh fruit baked with some kind of sweet pastry topping. Cobblers are easy enough to distinguish from crisps and crumbles because their topping is basically biscuit batter. The biscuit batter is dropped over the fruit in large spoonfuls, giving it the appearance of a cobbled road… hence, the name.
fruit crumbles and crisps are very similar.
In both cases, the fruit is topped with something like a streusel. The streusel gets a bit crispy and crunchy while it bakes and becomes a wonderful contrast of textures from the soft fruit filling underneath. The only difference between a crisp and a crumble is that crumbles contain oats and crisps do not.
This recipe contains oats. So, it’s really a crumble. And yet… I’m stubbornly, defiantly, calling it a crisp. Why? Well, because I’ve always used oats in my fruit “crisp” toppings, my mom and grandma used oats in their fruit “crisp” toppings and my own family has hence grown accustomed to what a fruit “crisp” is, according to the way I make it. And, I don’t think I’m alone. I think most of us call these types of desserts crisps, not crumbles. And… communicating what we mean, is the point of language after all, is it not?
If I suddenly started calling what everyone in my house calls a “crisp” a “crumble”, it would just confuse the very important matter of, “What are we having for dessert?“. They would, or course, eat it all the same. So, it probably doesn’t matter. But… for my birthday this year, one of my favorite aunts got me a card that says, “Don’t talk to me about rules, dear. I make the rules.” Even though my birthday was way back in March, this card is still prominently displayed on my desk. So, that probably explains it better than anything.
You, dear reader, can call this Peach Crisp recipe whatever you like.
I just hope you’ll make it. It’s quick, easy, and delicious. It’s homey and comforting. It’s what Sally Schneider, in her cookbook, A New Way To Cook, calls a “bowl and spoon dessert”. I just love the very idea of a bowl and spoon dessert. As much as I like cake, cookies, brownies and the like, I am especially partial to any dessert that requires you to scoop it up with a spoon.
And also… there are fresh Colorado peaches in this peach crisp. Which… well, I’ve already gone on and on (and on) about how amazing fresh Colorado peaches are in talking about this Peaches and Cream Crepe Cake, and Peach Ice Cream, and Peach and Raspberry Pie. So, I’ll spare you additional commentary here about the fact that for a few weeks out of every year, we are absolutely spoiled with the best peaches in the world.
But what I will say is this: As with most fruit desserts, the amount of sugar used should be balanced with how sweet the fruit is. In this case, the peaches I have on hand are very sweet. So, the amount of sugar in the recipe reflects that fact. If you are using peaches that are only moderately sweet, you might want to increase the amount of sugar in the filling by a tablespoon or two. Taste a bit of the fruit and make a judgement call. Just like me, you make the rules too. Anyone who complains can just go to …. 🙂
One final thing: I want to extol the virtues of eating any kind of fruit crisp for breakfast. It is one of the very best breakfasts in the world.
- 1 cup dark brown sugar
- ½ cup ground flax meal
- ¾ cup almond flour
- ¾ cup dry roasted, unsalted almonds, roughly chopped
- 1 cup old-fashioned oats
- ⅔ cup butter – softened
- 1½ tsp ground cinnamon
- 1½ tsp ground nutmeg
- Dump all the crisp topping ingredients into a medium size bowl. Mix with your hands until all the dry ingredients are moistened with the butter. Cover and set aside while you prepare the fruit.
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
- In a large bowl, add the flour, brown sugar, granulated sugar, salt and vanilla and mix briefly just to blend. Add the sliced peaches and toss together with your hands to coat the peaches in the other ingredients.
- Pour the peach mixture into a 9×13 inch baking dish. Crumble the topping over the peach filling, squeezing the topping together in your hands to create some larger sized chunks of topping.
- Bake for about 40 minutes, until the crisp topping is golden brown and the peach filling is bubbling. Remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack. Serve warm or cool.