A sweet tangy filling bubbling underneath a buttery oat crumble… This Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp has to be one of my favorite Spring desserts. It just has it all: it’s a snap to prepare, it doesn’t have to look perfect and it’s a delicious crowd pleaser. It’s best enjoyed with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream on top, or just on its own.
A Crisp or a crumble – do you know the difference?
I actually pondered first about what to call this recipe. A crisp or a crumble? In France, I grew up preparing and eating “crumbles” – and that was the only name I ever knew. I have always loved the combination of soft fruit filling against the crunch of the topping. This dessert is very popular in France, and I remember making it very often during my University years as it’s simple, affordable and always pleases your company.
When moving to Canada, I started to hear about “crisps” and “crumbles”, and assumed these were basically two different words for the same dessert. But as I did more research I learned that “crumble” designates a dessert made of fruit filling topped with a crumble of flour, sugar and butter. While a “crisp” is topped with a crumble of flour, sugar, butter and oats.
So, if like me you didn’t know the difference, now you know!
This Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp is one of the simplest recipes that came out of my kitchen in a while. I love how it’s quick to make, simple and doesn’t need to look perfect. I’d even say the more rustic it looks, the better!
The filling is a great way to marry rhubarb and strawberries, which are two star produces of Spring and early Summer. Choose crisp, vibrant-colored rhubarb stalks and ripe strawberries. For the topping, the use of oats, walnuts and plenty of butter guarantees a crisp topping to create a scrumptious contrast with the tender, juicy filling.
- Make sure you rinse the strawberries and rhubarb thoroughly under cold water and pat them dry delicately before you start.
- The rhubarb needs to sit for at least 15 minutes in sugar before combining it with the strawberries. This initial step is essential – do not skip it! It will cut some of the tartness of the rhubarb and it will also allow the rhubarb to render some juices, to avoid having a liquidy fruit filling once cooked.
- Likewise, do not get tempted to add more strawberries, or you will end up with a mushy/liquidy fruit filling.
- I often use the oats that I have on hand, which are instant oats or rolled oats – and I think they both work great here. However, avoid steel cut oats.
- I love walnuts in this crisp topping. The taste and texture pairs perfectly with the strawberry rhubarb filling. Pecans would work perfectly too (1/4 cup)
I hope you enjoy this Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp as much as I do!
Any questions, don’t hesitate to leave a comment.
You may also like:
- Raspberry Jam Swiss Roll
- Raspberry Jam-Filled Sable Sandwiches
- Spiced Berry Jalousie Tart
- Lemon Poppy Seed French Yogurt Loaf
For the filling:
1lb (0.45kg) rhubarb, sliced in ½ inch thick pieces (ends removed, no leaves)
1lb (0.45kg) strawberries, hulled and quartered
½ cup (100g) white sugar
2 tbsp (15g) all-purpose flour
1 tsp vanilla extract
For the crisp topping:
¾ cup (95g) all-purpose flour
¼ (50g) brown sugar
¼ (50g) white sugar
¼ tsp salt
½ tsp cinnamon powder
¼ tsp fresh grated nutmeg
¾ cup (75g) oats (rolled or instant)
6 tbsp (85g) unsalted butter, cold and cubed
¼ cup chopped walnuts (or pecans)
Make sure you read the cooking notes before you start.
Pre-heat your oven to 350F (180C)
For the filling:
Combine the rhubarb slices with ¼ cup (50g) sugar in a bowl. Set aside for 15 minutes, so the rhubarb renders some juice.
In the meantime, in another bowl, combine the strawberries, ¼ cup (50g) sugar, flour and vanilla extract. Transfer the rhubarb into the bowl of strawberries, using a slotted spoon so all the juice remains in the bowl. Carefully toss everything until evenly coated. Transfer the fruit mixture to an ungreased 2-quart baking dish.
For the crisp topping:
In a large bowl, combine the flour, brown sugar, white sugar, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and oats. Add the cubed butter and mix the ingredients together using your hands (rub between your palms) until you get a crumbly, sandy texture and pea-size bits of butter are still visible. Add the chopped walnuts and toss to combine.
Sprinkle the topping evenly atop the fruit mixture. Do not pack it down.
Bake for 45 minutes, until the topping is golden and the mixture is bubbly.
Let cool for at least 15 minutes before serving.
Did you make this recipe?
I’d love to know how it turned out! Please let me know by leaving a comment below, rate the recipe and/or share a photo on Instagram: tag @pardonyourfrench and hashtag it #pardonyourfrench. Bon Appetit!