April 9, 2012

Cherry Almond Crisp

I brought this Pioneer Woman dessert over to my in-law's house for our Easter dinner. It was a big hit, and the husband actually said that this was the second cherry dessert I have surprised him with; meaning, he was surprised at how good it tasted. (The husband is a skeptic when it comes to cherry desserts for some reason. He explained that he usually finds them way too tart, but this one wasn't and he really liked it!) Silly, skeptical husband aside...all the kids and adults loved this crisp. The Pioneer Woman does it again!

Cherry Almond Crisp
From: foodnetwork.com, Ree Drummond 2012

1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
Dash nutmeg
1 1/2 sticks cold butter
1/2 cup slivered almonds
Four 12-ounce bags frozen tart cherries
1/4 cup cornstarch
2 teaspoons almond extract

To Serve:
2 cups heavy cream
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
***Vanilla ice cream, optional*** (We skipped the whipped cream and just served it warm with vanilla ice cream.)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Start with the crumb mixture. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, brown sugar, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, cinnamon, salt and nutmeg.

Cut the cold butter into pieces. Add the butter to the bowl and use a fork or pastry blender to cut it into the flour mixture. The mixture should resemble a moist, coarse meal. Add the slivered almonds and combine thoroughly.

Place the still-frozen cherries in a bowl, add the remaining 1/2 cup granulated sugar, cornstarch and almond extract and gently stir the cherries to combine.

Divide the cherries between 8 ramekins (about 1/2 cup each). Top with the crumb mixture, evening out the surface.

Bake until the topping is crisp and golden brown, about 45 minutes. If the topping appears underdone, continue baking in 10 minute increments until it's done.

To serve: Add the heavy cream and granulated sugar to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk attachment and whip. Keep in the fridge until ready to serve.

Serve the individual crisps warm or at room temperature with a dollop of freshly whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.

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