As I mentioned previously, The Gastronomer tends to acquire cookbooks at a faster rate than she can try out the recipes. Last year, I decided to help her out by attempting at least one dish from each of the neglected books. At the time, this task appeared quite feasible, but since then our collection has swelled by a factor or two or three, and it seems that our cooking progress may never catch up. In any case, one of the cookbooks we received was entitled "Ready, Steady, Spaghetti: Cooking for Kids and with Kids." As we are not kids and rarely cook with them, this book was an excellent candidate to gather dust on the bottom bookshelf, but I resolved to find a recipe suitable for adults and give it a whirl.
This crumble caught my eye, as desserts containing raspberries often do. Being from a children's cookbook, the recipe was quite simple and straightforward; fortunately, this is just how a crumble recipe should be. I served it as a fruity, sweet conclusion to the meal that started with smoked mackerel pate and Filipino pork adobo, and it turned out fantastically. The only downside I could foresee from the perspective of cooking with kids is that the most labor-intensive part of the preparation was peeling and cutting the pears: not the most child-friendly kitchen task. Still, it's hard to find a recipe for which kids can really do all the steps independently, and this one is easy and yields a delicious end product.
Recipe from Ready, Steady, Spaghetti: Cooking for Kids and With Kids.
- 6 large pears
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 3 star anise (optional)
- 1 cup raspberries
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup light brown sugar
- 2/3 cup unsalted butter, cut into cubes
- ice cream, to serve
Cook, covered, over medium-low heat for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the fruit is tender but still holds its shape. Drain the pears and discard the star anise. Transfer to a large ovenproof baking dish or six 1-cup ramekins. Sprinkle the raspberries over the pears.
Combine the flour, sugar, and butter in a bowl. Use your fingertips to rub the butter into the flour, until the mixture resembles coarse bread crumbs. Sprinkle over the fruit, then bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until golden brown. Leave for 5 minutes, then serve with ice cream.
Yield: 6 servings
Estimated Start-to-Finish Time: Not given
Actual Start-to-Finish Time: 1 hour 20 minutes