Rhubarb Cherry Mini Crisps
These individual crisps made in shallow crème brûlée molds create a dazzling display of color, texture, and flavor. Add an additional tablespoon of sugar to the rhubarb if you prefer a sweeter filling.
4 tablespoons cold, unsalted butter, cut into 6 pieces, plus soft butter for greasing the baking dishes
1 pound rhubarb, ends trimmed and stalks sliced crosswise 1⁄4 inch (0.65cm) thick
1⁄2 pound (227g) dark red cherries, stemmed and pitted (about 1 1⁄4 cups)
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1⁄2 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
1⁄2 cup (100g) packed light brown sugar
1⁄3 cup (42g) all-purpose flour
1⁄2 cup (45g) old-fashioned rolled oats
1⁄4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1⁄8 teaspoon kosher salt
1⁄4 cup (35g) pine nuts, toasted, optional
1⁄4 cup to 1⁄2 cup (60 to 120ml) cold heavy cream, for serving
Preheat the oven to 375°F (190°C). Smear a bit of soft butter inside four 8-ounce (227g) crème brûlée dishes and set on a rimmed baking sheet.
In a large bowl, combine the rhubarb, cherries, granulated sugar, and vinegar. Toss well.
In a food processor fitted with the metal blade, combine the cold butter, brown sugar, flour, oats, cinnamon, and salt. Pulse about 35 to 40 times, in short bursts, until the mixture just begins to clump. Transfer to a small bowl. Stir in the pine nuts.
Pack 1 cup of the fruit into each baking dish. (Mound it high.) Divide the topping among the dishes and press to adhere. Bake in the upper third of the oven until the fruit bubbles vigorously and the topping is deep brown, 35 to 40 minutes. Cool for at least 10 minutes.
Serve warm, cold, or at room temperature, drizzled generously with cream.
Tip: I love the crunch of pine nuts in this recipe, but feel free to leave them out.
Spiced Caramelized Yam Wedges
These yams develop an almost chewy crust from an hour long stay in the oven. Don’t pull them out earlier.
3⁄4 teaspoon kosher salt
1⁄4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1⁄4 teaspoon ancho chile powder
1⁄8 teaspoon cayenne pepper (for a subtle heat), or slightly more, to taste
1 teaspoon dark brown sugar
2 medium yams (1 pound, or 454g, each), peeled and sliced into 1/2-inch-thick (1.25cm) half-circles
1 tablespoon olive oil
Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C). In a small bowl, mix the salt, black pepper, chile powder, cayenne, and brown sugar.
Mound the yams on a rimmed baking sheet. Add the oil and spice mix. Mix thoroughly, making sure to coat every piece. Spread into a single layer with room between each piece.
Roast in the center of the oven for 1 hour, turning the pieces halfway through, until a dark crust forms on both sides, Let stand 5minutes before serving.
Tip: For best results, do not line your sheet pan, and choose yams that are an even thickness from end to end.
Avocado Tangerine Salsa
Is it a salsa or a guacamole? Questions like this give me a headache. Here’s what’s important: it’s a vivid amalgamation of the two, with bright citrusy flavors and a swift chile kick. The proportions are completely flexible and may be modified to suit your taste. You can also swap blood oranges, Cara Cara oranges, or even navel oranges for the tangerines. But no tomatoes! Double, triple, or sextuple the recipe to feed a crowd.
Makes about 2 cups
4 small seedless tangerines, peeled and white pith removed
1 avocado, diced
1⁄4 cup (40g) diced red onion
1 tablespoon minced fresh cilantro
1 1⁄2 teaspoons minced jalapeño or red chile, or to taste
1 teaspoon lime juice
Tortilla chips, for serving
Dice the peeled tangerines. Gently stir the avocado, onion, tangerines, cilantro, chile, and lime juice in a small bowl. Season with sea salt to taste. Serve with tortilla chips.
Recipes reprinted with permission from RIPE © 2012 by Cheryl Sternman Rule, Running Press, a member of the Perseus Book Group.
Photography © 2012 by Paulette Phlipot.