the taste space

Blueberry Rhubarb Cranberry Crisp with Pistachio Crust

Posted in Desserts by janet @ the taste space on June 14, 2010

Hi. My name is Janet. And I am a hoarder.

I like to buy things on sale. I like to buy things for dishes I plan on making. As such, I have purchased seemingly obscure ingredients and spices for ethnic dishes.

I try to cook with fresh ingredients, so my fridge is usually packed with food and my freezer is filled to the brim. My excuse is that I have a condo-sized fridge, which I feel is not much bigger than a beer fridge. :P One year ago, this is what my fridge looked like, when I was profiled on blogto.com.

Since I have a tiny kitchen in a tiny apartment with limited storage, I have kitchen appliances and food stashed in each room.

I realize this can be a problem, but I still begged my mom to bring me more fresh rhubarb from her backyard. I used the last batch to make a sinfully delicious baked rhubarb and apples with earl grey tea, cardamom and orange zest, a savoury Indian-spiced lentil and rhubarb stew and rhubarb baked oatmeal. And I still had more recipes to try…. so it was justified to ask for more, right? :)

I figured I would also try to help clear some room from my freezer when I saw the blueberry rhubarb crisp with a pistachio crust from Gourmet (June 1999).  I knew I had frozen blueberries, so I was off to the races. But then when I measured them out, I was a cup short. Oh no! What to do?! :)  Luckily, fruit abounds in my freezer, so I had to decide between mango and cranberries.  In the end, I used cranberries to add to the blueberry/rhubarb  mixture. And you know what? It was perfect. Sometimes the wacky impromptu substitutions work well!

This seemingly odd combination of tart, soft baked rhubarb with not-so-sweet blueberries and even more tart cranberries was wonderful. The pistachio crisp topping had just the right amount of sweetness for the base and since I squished the topping together, there were nice hearty globs of topping for the fruit filling. The only thing I would do differently next time is increase the fruit filling.

This was delicious slightly cooled from the oven as is, but the leftovers were perfect with vanilla yogurt the next day. The warm crisp with lightly melted vanilla ice cream is an equally decadent treat. Dessert? Breakfast? Sometimes I can’t decide.


This is my submission to Magazine Mondays and Gourmet Unbound.

Blueberry Rhubarb Cranberry Crisp with Pistachio Crust

1/3 cup granulated sugar – consider doubling
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour – consider doubling
3/4 pound rhubarb (2 cups) – consider doubling
1 cup blueberries (I used frozen) – consider doubling
1 cup cranberries (I used frozen) – consider doubling

3/4 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter
1/3 cup shelled natural pistachios, finely chopped

1. Preheat oven to 375°F and butter a 9×9 ” 2-quart shallow baking dish.

2. In a bowl stir together sugar and flour. Trim rhubarb and cut enough of stalks into 1/2-inch pieces to measure 2 cups. Add rhubarb, blueberries and cranberries to sugar mixture, tossing well, and spread mixture in baking dish.

3.  In a bowl whisk together flour and sugars. Cut butter into 1/2-inch cubes and with your fingers or a pastry blender blend into flour mixture until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add pistachios and toss well.

4. Squeeze a handful of topping together and coarsely crumble in chunks over filling. Squeeze and evenly crumble remaining topping over filling in same manner. Bake crisp in upper third of oven until filling is bubbling and topping is crisp and golden, about 50 minutes.

5. Serve crisp warm or at room temperature, alone or with vanilla ice cream or yogurt.

Serves 6-8.

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7 Responses

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  1. Joanne said, on June 15, 2010 at 7:36 AM

    Oy my fridge is a disaster at the moment. Don’t even ask about my freezer.

    I DO have tons of frozen cranberries though! As in, about five bags. I’m a huge cranberry hoarder. And pesto. I hoard homemade pesto as well. It’s a problem.

    This crisp looks amazing! I love the pistachio crust on top. Breakfast AND dessert. And maybe dinner as well. Depending how gluttonous I feel (very).

  2. Mrs. L said, on June 17, 2010 at 3:54 PM

    I’d be afraid of what I’d find if I looked in the back of my freezer!
    And I’d eat this for breakfast any day :)

  3. Ivonne said, on June 21, 2010 at 9:28 PM

    There is nothing odd about this, Janet! Delicious!

  4. […] Janet of The Taste Space made Blueberry Rhubarb Cranberry Crisp with Pistachio Crust from the June 1…. Earlier, she made a Miso Glazed Black Cod from the July 2008 issue of Food & Wine. […]

  5. Emily said, on June 23, 2010 at 7:08 PM

    YUM!!! The pistachio crust sounds divine. I can’t wait to try this!

  6. Kevin (Closet Cooking) said, on June 24, 2010 at 12:13 PM

    Blueberries, rhubarb, cranberry and pistachio would be an excellent flavour combination for a crisp!

  7. […] of your berries to create a sweet juice, just as if you baked your crumble and it is oozing those lovely fruit juices. I cringed when I mashed my blackberries (my beautiful blackberries!), but it is what […]


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