Loving Hands Times Two–Berry Picking and Baking

cherry berry crisp-2Summer is short in the North Country of upstate New York and the season for picking wild berries is even shorter.

I didn’t get out picking this year but my mother did, and she bought home zillions of tiny, perfect blueberries, from a secret spot in the northern Adirondacks. A special person, my mom’s husband, had a birthday yesterday so I made the berries into a dessert for him. So, we had loving hands multiplied by two—hand-picked berries and a homemade cherry-berry crisp.

I’m not going to go through the whole recipe for the crisp here because there are so many recipes available and you probably have your favorite. I always use a crisp recipe that includes oatmeal because I like oatmeal, it’s good for us, and, most important of all, it means I can justify eating leftovers for breakfast!

The recipe I used this time was from allrecipes.com: http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Triple-Berry-Crisp/Detail.aspx. The best thing about this recipe is the idea of making a lot of the crisp mixture and patting half of it in the bottom of the dish before adding the berries and putting the rest on top, like a traditional crisp. Why didn’t I think of that before?

Like everyone else, I changed the recipe to meet my own needs—I didn’t use the white sugar (because my fruit was very ripe and sweet enough), I used half of the butter called for (because no one needs that much butter), and I used blueberries and cherries (because that’s what I had). The wild blueberries made this extra-special—look how tiny they are! And they have so much more flavor than cultivated ones!

I love crisp because it’s so versatile and easy—you can use pretty much any fruit you have on hand (okay, maybe not watermelon . . .) and make a dessert that evokes the season. Rhubarb crisp for spring, berry crisp for summer, apple crisp for fall, you get the idea.  If you love to bake but don’t have hours available, you might give this recipe a whirl. It’ll be good even if you don’t pick your own berries!

cherry berry crisp-1

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