A healthier fruit dessert
Special to The Washington Post
Fruit desserts seem virtuous, but butter-laden toppings or heaping helpings can negate healthful aspects. In this recipe, the fat is kept to a minimum, and individual ramekins or Pyrex containers (8-ounce) control portion size.
Strawberry Rhubarb Crumbles
For the filling
1 pound rhubarb (trimmed), thick stalks cut into quarters or long halves, then cut crosswise into 1⁄4- to 1⁄2-inch pieces (4 cups)
1 pound fresh strawberries (hulled), large ones cut into eighths, medium ones cut into fourths, small ones halved (about 3 cups)
1⁄2 teaspoon almond extract
3⁄4 to 1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
For the topping
1⁄4 cup quick-cooking or regular plain oatmeal
1⁄3 cup flour
1⁄3 cup packed light brown sugar
1⁄2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3 tablespoons salted or unsalted butter, cut into 1⁄2- to 1⁄4-inch cubes
For the filling: Combine the rhubarb, strawberries, almond extract, 3⁄4 cup of the sugar (or 1 cup sugar for a less-tart mixture) and the cornstarch in a mixing bowl. Stir to coat evenly, and let the mixture sit for 10 to 15 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil. Place eight 8-ounce ramekins on the lined sheet.
For the topping: Combine the oatmeal, flour, brown sugar and cinnamon in a separate mixing bowl. Add the butter, and use your fingers to incorporate it into the dry ingredients until the mixture has the consistency of fine crumbs.
Stir the fruit mixture, then divide it evenly among the ramekins. Sprinkle each portion with equal amounts of the topping. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes or until the fruit is bubbling around the edges of the ramekins and the topping is just starting to brown.
Let the crumbles cool for 10 to 15 minutes before serving.
NUTRITION Per serving: 210 calories, 2 g protein, 42 g carbohydrates, 5 g fat, 3 g saturated fat, 10 mg cholesterol, 5 mg sodium, 3 g dietary fiber, 31 g sugar