In this cherry banana smoothie, the unmistakably bold and bright flavor of tart cherries is balanced by banana, sweet yogurt, and almond milk. Tart cherries are one of my favorite fruits, and they are ripening out on the tree in our yard right now! We planted our cherry trees a few years ago (one sweet, one tart), and each year they produce more cherries. The past couple of years have been exciting, because our trees have actually yielded enough cherries for us to make things with them!
A radiant cherry and cranberry filling, mixed with a classic crisp topping of oats, graham cracker crumbs, and brown sugar, makes this cherry-cranberry crisp burst with flavor and color. If you are looking for a festive and delicious holiday dessert that is easy and doesn’t involve making a pie crust, then this is a great option! Don’t get me wrong, I love to make pies–in fact I will be making one this evening–but…sometimes it’s nice to throw a dessert together quickly and without much fuss. And the gorgeous colors and many health benefits of tart cherries and cranberries are an added bonus!
I used frozen Montmorency red tart cherries and frozen cranberries for this recipe. I have written in a previous post about my love for this particular type of cherry (Michigan is known for them), but any tart cherry would work fine. I made the filling for this crisp before assembling it and baking it, so I could make sure I had the level of sweetness that I wanted. Everybody has a different threshold for tartness, and this way you can adjust the sweetness before you bake the crisp.
Also, it helps to make sure you mix the cherries and cranberries well while they are cooking in the filling, because the cherries are sweeter than the cranberries, and if someone ends up with a spoonful of mainly cranberries, they may be in for a very tart surprise! However, when mixed up, the cherries and cranberries make a delightful burst of sweet-tartness, and I am so pleased with this very bright flavor and color, and the antioxidants inside it all.
The crisp topping is very simple. My aim with this crisp is to make it as flavorful and at the same time as easy as possible, so it can be a recipe you can turn to when you are a bit pinched for time, but still want a beautiful dessert. It is a crisp topping I use all fall for apple crisp, and it is simply four ingredients–old fashioned rolled oats, graham crackers, brown sugar, and a bit of butter.
I can hardly believe that Thanksgiving is tomorrow already, in addition to it being my husband’s birthday! And my daughter’s birthday is a few days after that. Busy times, and yet I am trying to focus on what is most important, and one of those things continues to be gratitude. In these times when there are pressures about holiday shopping, I try to remember also that time is a gift. Spending time with loved ones is a gift, especially if you can be fully present for them.
Food brings people together, bridges gaps, and expresses love. If you are celebrating Thanksgiving tomorrow, I hope you have a great day, and if not, I hope you have a great day, and weekend as well! I am sharing a quote that my yoga instructor shared with our class: “Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend.” ~ Melody Beattie
May you have all those things this weekend, and thank you for reading this blog!
For the filling:
- 4 cups of frozen tart cherries
- 2 cups of frozen cranberries
- 1 cup of sugar (or a bit more, if you desire more sweetness and less tartness)
- 3 tablespoons of cornstarch
- 1/4 tablespoon of almond extract
For the topping:
- 1/2 cup of old fashioned rolled oats
- 1/2 cup of graham crackers, crumbled
- 2 tablespoons of brown sugar
- 3 tablespoons of unsalted butter, cold and cut into small pieces
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Get out a 9 x 9 inch baking dish (8 x 8 inch works too).
Place the frozen cherries and cranberries in a medium saucepan. Add the sugar, cornstarch, and almond extract. Gradually bring to a boil, stirring as the mixture warms up, to combine the ingredients. When the mixture starts to boil, stir it continually for about a minute, as it starts to thicken and the fruit bursts. Turn the heat down and simmer for a couple of minutes, tasting the filling and adding more sugar if desired. (My family likes it with the 1 cup of sugar, so it’s sweet but with a hint of tartness. If you are used to more sweetness, you might want to add a bit more sugar.) Let the filling cool a bit while you make the topping.
In a small bowl, combine the oats, graham cracker crumbs, and brown sugar. Spoon the filling into the baking dish. Make sure the cherries and cranberries are mixed up, so they can complement each other, and not be in their own corners of the baking dish. Sprinkle the topping evenly over the filling. Dot the butter pieces on top of the filling, distributing them evenly. Bake in your 350-degree oven for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the topping is golden. Serve warm or at room temperature. Serve with vanilla ice cream if desired. Enjoy!
Luscious tart cherries, blueberries, and black raspberries are baked with a biscuit topping until the fruit is sweet and bubbling and the topping is fluffy and golden in this delicious cherry berry cobbler. This recipe is a classic that never goes out of style. The fresher the fruit, the better this cobbler tastes.
The sweetness of the blueberries and black raspberries (and some sugar) balance the tartness of the cherries to make a mouth-watering fruit filling full of flavor and those much-sought-after antioxidants. The biscuit topping is golden and moist, pairing beautifully with the fruit. I really notice a difference in taste when I bake with high quality butter, and butter from grass-fed cows is gaining popularity as a relatively healthy fat. With just a few basic ingredients, this cobbler is easy to make and tastes impressive.
My favorite thing about this dessert, aside from the luscious flavor, is that much of the fruit came from my very own yard! Our wonderful cherry trees gave us even more fruit than we expected, allowing me to make two cobblers, a few batches of breakfast jars, and a smoothie with them, and our black raspberries are coming along nicely! I wish I could say I picked the blueberries in this cobbler, but those I did buy from the grocery store, yet they were still sweet and juicy. In any case, seasonal fruit tastes better than candy in my book, and it reminds me to savor the moment, because each season is fleeting.
I hope you are all having a great summer so far. It has been very sunny, but much drier than usual here lately. We finally got some rain last night, and the air smells so fresh, especially since the storms cooled things off. We had an interesting Fourth of July–we got to go for a sail with my brother’s family in his boat, out to a sandbar near a small island. He put down the anchor and we all went swimming off of the boat in gorgeous, cold, clear water. That evening, we hiked a mile at dusk to the top of a hill in a nature preserve, overlooking a lake. Someone from the preserve had a campfire going, and we roasted marshmallows and ate s’mores while the fireworks showered dazzling colors over the lake. Then we hiked down in the dark woods by flashlight. It was amazing to be surrounded by so much natural beauty, up in northern Michigan for a few days.
Now it is good to be home, though a little bit tough getting caught up and back to reality, and though a lot of our flowers need some more rain, the sweet peas are thriving! I hope you all have a great weekend! I’m a bit late, but looking forward to joining Fiesta Friday , co-hosted this week by Suzanne @ apuginthekitchen and Jess @ Cooking Is My Sport.
Cherry Berry Cobbler
- 2 cups of tart cherries, washed with the pits removed
- 2 cups of mixed berries (I used blueberries and black raspberries)
- 1 cup of sugar
- 3 tablespoons of flour
- 1 cup of flour
- 1/4 teaspoon of salt
- 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder
- 1/2 cup of unsalted butter, softened at room temperature
- 1/2 cup of milk
- 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Wash the fruit and remove the pits from the cherries. Place the fruit in a 2 quart baking dish or casserole. Add the sugar and 3 tablespoons of flour to the fruit and stir gently to combine.
For the topping, combine the cup of flour, the salt, and the baking powder in a large mixing bowl. Cut in the butter with a pastry cutter or fork until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add the milk and vanilla extract and stir just until a batter forms. Drop the batter by the spoonful on top of the fruit, distributing it as evenly as possible. Bake in your 350 degree oven for about 50 minutes, or until the fruit is bubbling and the biscuit topping is golden. Allow to cool for about 10 minutes. Serve with vanilla ice cream, whipped cream, or just with itself, which is the way I like it best. Enjoy!