My housemate found an amazing deal at our local market--12 pints of slightly-smooshed strawberries for $8.50! They seemed completely fresh, just perhaps stacked wrong or something of the sort. Because of their less-than-beautiful appearance, we knew they were destined for baking or cooking of some sort, and we found out that 12 pints of strawberries goes a really long way! We made Strawberry-Rhubarb Double Crisp, Strawberry-Rhubarb Pie, and Strawberry Limeade (a variation on this Sparkling Strawberry Lemonade) for a barbecue that evening, and then I made Strawberry Jam and Yeasted Sugar Cake with Strawberry Sauce in the next few days. Recipes for all the baked goods will be coming up in the next few days.
For today, it's this amazing crisp from Dorie Greenspan. This crisp has two unusual elements that really make it stand out. First, it has "crisp" as both a crust and a topping, adding more delicious oats and spices as well as providing a more stable base so that things don't all fall apart when scooping out a piece. Second, the crisp topping/crust includes crystallized ginger, which gives a great kick and really adds to the flavor. Yum!
Ginger-y Strawberry-Rhubarb Double Crisp (adapted from Dorie Greenspan's Cooking from My Home to Yours)
Makes one 9x13 crisp
For the crisp mix:
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
heaping 1 cup rolled oats
3/4 tsp ground ginger
3/4 cup finely chopped walnuts
1/4-1/2 cup very finely chopped crystallized ginger (depending on how ginger-y you'd like it)
1 1/2 stick (12 T) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
For the filling:
2 large stalks rhubarb
4 1/2 T cornstarch
3/4 cup cold water
4 1/2 cups strawberries, hulled and sliced (about 18 ounces)
1 1/2 cup sugar
3/4 tsp ground ginger
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter or spray with oil a 9x13 Pyrex baking dish.
2. Make the crisp mix. Put the flour, brown sugar, oats, ground ginger, salt, and cinnamon in a large bowl and sift the ingredients with your fingers to blend them, making sure to break up any lumps of brown sugar. Mix in the nuts and crystallized ginger, then pour over the melted butter. Using a fork, stir the ingredients together. Spoon half the mixture into the baking dish and pat down lightly to form a crust. Set aside remaining topping.
3. Cut up the rhubarb. Cut each stalk lengthwise into 3-5 long strips, then cut the strips into 1-inch pieces. Make sure the strips of rhubarb are thin or they won't cook all the way through! Lay out the rhubarb in a closely-packed single layer on the crust (no need to be super-fastidious with this). I used about 1 1/2 large stalks of rhubarb to accomplish this; your mileage may vary depending on the size of your rhubarb.
4. Make the strawberry filling. Dissolve the cornstarch in the cold water and set aside. Put the strawberries, sugar, and ground ginger in a medium saucepan and mash up the berries with a fork, pastry blender, or potato masher. Place the pan over medium heat and stir occasionally until the mixture comes to a full boil. Pour the dissolved cornstarch into the pan and, stirring with a whisk, bring everything back to a boil. Keep cooking and stirring until the strawberry filling is thick and no longer cloudy, about 3 minutes. Pull the pan off the heat, stir in the vanilla, and pour the filling over the rhubarb. Scatter the remaining crisp mix over top.
5. Bake the crisp 45-60 minutes until the topping is golden and the strawberries are bubbling up around the edges. Serve warm.