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Strawberry Crumble

Strawberry Crumble

I love strawberries but I'm a strawberry snob. It's not just that I'm addicted to the taste of fresh strawberries...I also love them because they fit so well into my diet, which requires moderate calories and low carbs. A cup of strawberry slices delivers no fat, only 53 calories and 13 grams of carb. 

The snob part? I prefer local Maine strawberrries, which have far superior taste when compared to the California and Florida products. The shipped-in strawberries, like most industrial produce, has been bred for shelf life and shipability, to the expense of taste. The Maine strawberry season is extremely short, from late June until early August, but our feeling here is that it's better to enjoy the good stuff for a few weeks than to be disappointed the rest of the year. 

So why am I writing about a strawberry dessert in April? Because I succumbed to low prices, just like the people who shop at WallMart and buy Kia cars instead of BMW's. Weird weather delayed the Florida strawberry crop this year so most of their product hit the market just when the California berries were arriving, with the predictable result that prices are obscenely low. At the entry to my local supermarket there was a huge display of California strawberries for $1.49 a pound, and that's the kind of thing I respond to without even thinking about it. 

I usually just enjoy them sliced on my cereal in the morning, or cooked into a compote. But this crumble, which you'd think would be extremely sinful – so full of strawberry flavor and enhanced by the crunch and sweetness of the topping –  is only 124 calories and 15 grams of carbohydrates per serving (and only 3 Weight Watchers Points). That's good eating and healthy eating on the same plate, which suits me just fine.  

Strawberry Crumble

Print recipe only.

6 servings, about 1/2 cup each

Ingredients

For the topping: 

  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup no-calorie granulated sweetener, such as Splenda
  • Scant pinch salt
  • 3 tablespoons cold butter, cut in small dice
  • 6 tablespoons "old-fashioned" rolled oats
  • 1/4 cup dry-roasted unsalted almonds, chopped

For the filling: 

  • 1 pound fresh strawberries, cored and cut in half (about 14 ounces or 3 1/2 cups after prep)
  • 1/8 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon cognac
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice

Method

1. Place the flour, granulated sweetener, salt and butter in a bowl. Rub the butter chunks between thumbs and forefingers until the chunks are broken down and the mixture starts to clump. Add the almonds and rolled oats and stir to mix. Keep chilled. 

2. Preheat the oven to 375º. 

3. Prepare a 6" x 8" x 2" rectangular (or 8" diameter round) ovenproof dish with cooking spray. Place the strawberries, vanilla extract, cognac and lemon juice in the dish and stir to combine. Taste and correct the flavoring with additional lemon juice or sweetener as required. 

4. Spread the topping over the strawberries and bake in the preheated 375º oven for about 40 minutes, until the filling is bubbling and the topping has begun to brown and crisp. 

5. Allow to cool for ten minutes or so before serving. 

Optional but recommended additions: a dollop of vanilla ice cream, whipped cream or whole-milk Greek yogurt.

Nutritional Estimate: 6 Servings, about a half-cup each. Per serving: 124 Calories; 15 g Total Carbs; 2 g Dietary Fiber; 3 g Sugars; 7 g Fat; 11 mg Cholesterol; 37 mg Sodium; 3 g Protein. Weight Watchers: 3 points.

Print recipe only.

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Comments

Ohhh! Ahhh! I like the looks and sounds of this. ;-)

Paz

i did notice that about strawberries strutting their stuff so early this year! i too just threw them in the basket, then as usual, watched a fair number of them rot as i tried to figure out how to eat a coupla quarts of strawberries a day...will try this recipe...when is rhubarb happening?....

Hey Erica...thanks for looking in and leaving your comment...give it a try: really quick and good. Rhubarb as far as I know is a strictly local product...ie no one is growing rhubarb in CA, FL, Argentina or New Zealand growing it to ship into our stores...so when not in season or if you live in the sun belt the only option is frozen if you can find it. It is a northern, cool weather crop and the season is basically from April to September, though it always seems to be more plentiful in the earlier parts of the summer (perhaps because it does not like heat)...By the way, rhubarb is easy to grow a couple of plants in the backyard, if you live in an area where the average temperature doesnt get much above 75º (refrain from harvesting until the second year after planting, though, to allow it to get established). When you do get some, try my Strawberry Rhubarb Cobbler ( http://www.stephencooks.com/2010/02/strawberry-rhubarb-cobbler.html ).


Have fun!

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