I'm trying to stay off narcotics long enough to type up something intelligible, and these moments of clear-headedness are being spent wondering why I thought I would be back to normal within 24 hours after surgery.
For those of you who were around for Thirsty Friday, you know that I have just had my four sources of wisdom extracted from my mouth and I'm now a very numb, slightly swollen, wisdom-toothless lady. However, wisdom teeth or no wisdom teeth, this lady still knows how to bake.
I've been doing a lot of thinking while lying on the couch over the past couple days, and my brain keeps flashing with the obnoxious declaration, "ohmygoodness it's almost July!" I cannot believe that we are saying goodbye to June already, but it seems as though it's time to break out the red white and blue nail polish and start lighting some fireworks.
I love 4th of July, it's one of my favorite holidays. My family has always been enthusiastic about the holiday and there are always way too many glow sticks and far too much cherry licorice, as there should be at any good party.
I always feel like this particular holiday, just as much as Thanksgiving, demands a pie. It just seems like the proper American thing to do. However, when I'm baking for a crowd, multiple pie crusts-making is often not so appealing. Crisps however, are just as delicious and much faster than pies. Seriously, this whole thing comes together in mere minutes.
You can also shove in some fancy hazelnuts to make that crumbly topping even more irresistible. And heck, with all the time you're saving you probably have a few minutes to make some ice cream to serve alongside your crisp!
I interrupt this post to say that cherries might very possibly be my favorite fruit. I honestly cannot get enough. They are super sweet yet just tangy enough to make them incredibly addicting.
Also, if we are at a picnic together, I'll probably put half of my pits on your plate to hide my cherry-addiction shame. I do the same thing with watermelon rinds. Sorry, not sorry...
We begin with cherries. A whole lot of them. A cherry pitter is not absolutely necessary but you'll be thankful for one after you've pitted your first pound by hand. Believe me.
Our cherries are tossed around a bit in some sugar, lemon juice, salt, and cornstarch for thickening.
After the cherry filling has been assembled, we work on our crispy, crumbly topping.
Our crumbly topping is a no fuss combination of oats, sugar, butter, cinnamon, and hazelnuts.
Sprinkle liberally and then into the oven it goes!
While your crisp is baking, make a simple ice cream base with heavy cream, whole milk, cinnamon, egg yolks, and sugar. This may be the best ice cream that I've ever made. It seriously tastes exactly like a cinnamon roll smells. Yes, it's heavenly, and you need it right now.
Also, it's Summer so we need quick and easy. Normally, I allow my ice cream base to chill overnight, but the past few times I've wanted instant frozen gratification so I cooled my base in an ice bath. The choice is yours.
Your crisp is finished when the top is deep golden brown. It's just as pretty as a pie and it only took one third of the time!
Oh, and if you are baking for a crowd, you can certainly double this recipe.
4th of July, we are ready for you!
Look at that sweet, melting ice cream, and those perfectly plump cherries. So good, so right.
Happy July friends!
Black Cherry Hazelnut Crisp with Cinnamon Ice Cream
for the cherry filling
- 1 1/2 lbs black cherries, pitted
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 3 tablespoons cornstarch
- 2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
- pinch of salt
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
In a large bowl combine cherries, sugar, cornstarch, lemon juice, and salt; toss to thoroughly combine.
Pour in the bottom of a 9-inch tart pan.
for the crisp topping
- 1/2 cup old-fashioned oats
- 1/2 cup raw hazelnuts, finely chopped
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold
In a small bowl stir to combine oats, hazelnuts, sugar, and cinnamon. Use the tips of your fingers to work the butter into the oat mixture. Mix until crumbly. The butter should be in pea-sized pieces.
Sprinkle the oat mixture over the cherries evenly. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until the top is deep golden brown. Allow to cool 30 minutes before serving. Enjoy!
for the cinnamon ice cream
- 1 cup whole milk
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 5 egg yolks
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
In a small saucepan combine milk, whipping cream, and cinnamon. Bring to a simmer over medium heat and remove from heat. Add vanilla extract.
In a small bowl whisk to combine egg yolks and sugar. Slowly stream half of the warm milk mixture into the egg yolks while whisking constantly. Pour the tempered egg yolks into the saucepan and return to heat.
Cook for about 5 minutes, until the mixture has thickened into a light custard, then remove from heat and place in an ice bath.
Stir often, until the mixture has thoroughly chilled. You may have to change out the water once or twice.
Churn your ice cream base in an ice cream maker according to your manufacturer’s instructions. Transfer to a freezer safe container and chill until set. Serve alongside warm cherry crisp. Enjoy!