A family barbecue inspired this adaptation of a fruit crisp from my mother resource, The Joy of Cooking. Most of my family were finally able to make it out for a summer gathering and I celebrated by making dessert, something sweet, soothing and old-fashioned to round out the meal of veggie burgers made from my recipe for pakoras with buttercup squash, onions, garlic, and fresh baby chard, chives, and parsley from my patio garden, salads, and herbed new potatoes.
It's a pretty fast and simple recipe and you can throw it together in 10 minutes, apart from the time it takes to cut up some fruit, and the baking time. It's pretty forgiving -- you can use any combination of seasonal fruits and or berries. I make it in a cast iron frying pan because it cooks quickly, and is easy to serve, and pretty. Just make sure to grease the pan before you put in the fruit. Make this for anyone you love, even if its just you.
GF Fruit Paradise Pudding (This version plums and nectarines but substitute any)Ingredients for a large cast iron skillet:
About 4 cups of chopped fruit, about 1 inch pieces
Enough sugar to lightly cover the fruit. Use your judgement depending on the tartness of the fruit but probably not more than about 1/4-1/2 cup
Lemon juice, fresh only, if fruit is not sour or to boost flavour, a few tablespoons
1 C brown rice flour or all-purpose GF flour mix
1/2 cup packed brown sugar (or up to 1 cup to taste)
1 generous heaped teaspoon baking powder
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup margarine (I use organic whipped, Earth Balance)
1-2 eggs (or egg replacer for 1-2 eggs)
About 1/2 cup milk alternative, enough to make a medium-textured batter, like a pancake or pourable cake batter
1/2 tsp cinnamon, dash ginger, and dash allspice -- all amounts to taste
Cut the fruit into about 1 inch chunks directly into a greased skillet or other baking pan. You can leave the skin on because it will soften and meld into the batter.
Dust the fruit with a bit of sugar and stir it around to distribute. The goal here is to keep the fruit tart to provide a nice contrast with the sweet cake, so DON'T over-sugar. make the batter by putting all the dry ingredients into a bowl and mixing thoroughly with a fork. Put the margarine into the dry mix and work in with the fork so that it resembles cornmeal, as for pastry. Some lumps are okay. Mix the eggs, if using, and milk in another bowl and add to the dry ingredients. Mix with a fork until you have a pourable but not thin dough. Pour the batter over the fruit, using the fork to spread it as evenly as you can to cover the fruit. Bake in the middle of the oven at 375 degrees until it's a nice brown on top and the fruit is soft, anywhere from 20 to about 35 minutes.
Serve warm or cold naked, with vanilla ice cream, or as we did with almond cream.
Please note that though the crust looks dark in the picure, it is not burned, but has strong carmelization. You might want to take it out of the oven when it's a bit lighter.