June 04, 2011

Nectarine lime crumble

My dear "followers," I hope you haven't given up on me. What yesterdays post lacked in imagination (and butter), todays is sure to make up for. The story behind this recipe begins sadly, but ends deliciously.

Lately, I have been craving something sweet. When grocery shopping last week (at my awesome locally owned grocery store) I decided to purchase a huge bag of chocolate chips from the bulk section. However, I became distracted while chatting with the sweet gal who works specifically in the bulk section. You see, she informed me that they were expanding this section, and she asked me for suggestions of foods I would want to be able to purchase in bulk. I was so overwhelmed/excited that I stood stammering for about five minutes trying to articulate all of the foods that would fit into that category. It was at this moment that I made my great mistake: carob.

I bought carob chips instead of chocolate chips. Like, a lot of carob chips. For those of you who have not had the pleasure of biting into something you think will delightfully satisfy your chocolate cravings, only to be met with the distinct yucky sweetness of carob, let me just tell you: it isn't good. Comparing carob to chocolate is like comparing margarine to butter, non-dairy hydrogenated alternative to real whipped cream, Pee Wee Herman to George Clooney.. okay, getting carried away again... but, in all seriousness, this is not a mistake you want to make. 

Utterly crushed (I'm not dramatic at all), I decided to make something else chocolate. At this point, the only real chocolate in the house was cocoa powder. So, I thought it may be fun to try chocolate granola (hopefully a recipe of chocolate granola will be on its way soon). I was only making a small batch, so I decided my toaster oven would be the best appliance in which to cook my experiment. Wrong again. Apparently, things cook much faster in the toaster oven. So fast, in fact, that the smoke alarm was practically going off about 15 minutes after I put the granola in. Frustrated, I decided to take up my dessert project another day. 

That day was today, and the result was nectarine lime crumble. It is sweet and fresh tasting; a perfect summer dessert to pair with ice cream or frozen yogurt. I made a small batch (only about four or five servings), but it could easily be doubled by using twice the ingredients (obviously, hence "double") and making two layers of the nectarines. A double batch would probably bake about 25-30 minutes. 

Nectarine lime crumble
about 4 or 5 servings
zest of 1 lime
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup brown sugar
3 or 4 tbsp butter, chilled
3 or 4 nectarines, sliced
1 tbsp honey*
1 tbsp fresh lime juice (about 1/2 of a lime)**
vanilla ice cream, for serving (or plain yogurt, then you could justify it as a breakfast food)
Preheat oven to 375. In a small bowl combine flour, zest, and sugar. Cut in butter with a pastry blender or a knife until butter is in pea-sized pieces. Lay nectarine slices in one layer in a pie dish. Drizzle with honey and lime juice. Sprinkle flour mixture evenly over top. Bake about 15 minutes, until bubbly and golden on top. Serve with a large scoop of vanilla ice cream. Enjoy.
*the nectarines are already plenty sweet, as is the crumble topping, so the honey could be omitted and you would still have a sweet-tooth satisfying dessert
** my husband thought there was too much lime (I did not), so if you want to be on the cautious side, perhaps add only 2 tsp of fresh lime juice instead of the tbsp. 

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