I do! I do!
Well, I did...all gone now.
My dessert preferences have definitely taken a turn towards rustic and hearty. Don't get me wrong. My heart still skips a beat when I see a fancy, schwoopy, piped, spun-sugared architectural marvel. But really, the older I get, the more like myself I become and apparently foof-less desserts are what I am.
Un-iced cakes and cupcakes, crisps and cobblers...serve me some of those and I'm as happy as the Cookie Monster in a Peek Freans factory (really...cookies aren't a sometimes food).
This year, my baked go-to dessert has been studies in baked, stewed and roasted fruits. I know I haven't posted much about this, and I'm not sure why. Maybe my thoughts are deluded in that they aren't fancy enough to blog about. Maybe they are so omnipresent in my kitchen that I just don't think of them as blog fodder. Really, everything that comes out of a functional kitchen (even one with Beelzebub) is food blog fodder.
Residents of my part of the world know this has been an odd summer with the coldest July on record for a good 15 -20 years. Normally, I'd have turned my scullery into an ice cream factory by now, but with such pleasant temperatures, I've kept with my baked fruit desserts. In cooler months, I'd usually be using wintered fruits--apples, pears or some canned or frozen fruit--so it was a bit of a treat for me to use in-season blueberries and peaches for this buckle.
Buckles--at least this one--combines the best of several dessert worlds. A stewed fruit base, a cakey top and then there a streuselly top. Add ice cream, custard, chantilly cream or just straight pouring cream and I think this may be pretty darned close to a perfect dessert...if I could figure out a way to incorporate cream cheese icing, then I would call it a perfect dessert.
While this isn't a true non-recipe recipe--the cake part is, as we know, chemistry and we know what happens when things go askew so it is necessary to measure things out--the fruit and topping are really done by feel and can easily be changed to match your mood, palate and pantry: change the fruits to what's available, just keep roughly the same weight and spice or sweeten it to your taste; if you want to add Scottish Oats or chopped nuts to the topping go ahead. It's all up to you.
500g chopped peaches
1 rounded Tbsp cornstarch
2-3 Tbsp brown sugar
pinch of salt
squeeze lemon juice
200g ap flour
1 dspn baking powder
1/2 tsp vanilla
50g ap flour
Preheat oven to 350F/180C.
Tumble the fruit layer's ingredients into a 9" cake pan (or equivalent).
Sift together flour, baking powder and salt; set aside.
Cream together butter and sugar. Beat in eggs one at a time, then mix in milk and vanilla.
Stir in sifted flour mixture and pour over fruit.
Rub together topping ingredients, to a sandy texture. Sprinkle on top of the batter.
Bake for 45 minutes or until golden. and a skewer comes out cleanish.
Serve warm with ice cream, custard, chantilly cream or pouring cream, if desired.
What I'm reading: Cold Comfort Farm by Stella Gibbons
I'm a quill for hire!