Deliciously sweet and tart Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp enhanced with two secret ingredients that deliver intensified flavor in filling and added crunch in topping. This is simply the best.
In the Northeast, rhubarb is in season from May thru July. If you see these beautiful stalks of crimson red, grab some along with some sweet strawberries to create a simply delicious crisp made even better by adding two special ingredients.
One of them brings out the sweetness in the strawberries and also the tartness of the rhubarb. The other makes the topping more addictive.
THE TWO SECRET INGREDIENTS FOR MY STRAWBERRY RHUBARB CRISP
They are apple cider vinegar for the filling and cornmeal for the topping. What a difference they make!
I never knew what rhubarb was until I was an adult. I thought it was a beautiful weed not knowing it was a deliciously tart vegetable. The leaves contain oxalic acid making them poisonous, but the stalks are used to make jams, sauces, and desserts like this crisp we're about to make here.
The first time I tried rhubarb was in Maine. My husband ordered a slice of strawberry rhubarb pie and I asked for a bite. He winced and reluctantly gave me a bite. Why reluctantly? Because every time I ask for a bite it turns into many bites. Sometimes he orders dessert and asks for only one spoon then looks at me and says he's not sharing and to get my own (lovingly, of course).
“I don't want my own. I just want a bite.”
“Every time I get dessert I get one bite and you eat most of it.”
“That won't happen this time. I don't know what rhubarb is and I just want a bite.”
I took a bite which turned into a few more bites. The pie is gone. My husband shook his head and ordered another slice. In my mind, I technically didn't order dessert which makes me feel a bit better about myself.
Rhubarb stalks were in season and available at the market. I decided to try my hand at making a crisp since it was easier than a pie.
I used cornstarch as the thickener. Cornstarch will make the sauce a bit opaque but I'm ok with that. It doesn't impact the composition of the crisp.
I use two pounds of each fruit to make this crisp. I figure make it substantial or go home.
Cut the strawberries in half and place in bowl. Slice the rhubarb into ½" pieces and place in bowl along with strawberries. Add the apple cider vinegar and give it a stir.
Sprinkle in cornstarch, sugar and salt and stir to combine. Three tablespoons of cornstarch makes it thick enough to slightly gel and still leave it juicy enough to spoon over ice cream.
Using ½ cup of sugar makes it sweet enough to combat the tartness of the rhubarb but only if your strawberries are ripe and sweet. Try a strawberry before adding the sugar, if it's sweet enough for you add ½ cup sugar, otherwise use ¾ cup.
The topping is a combination of flour, oats, and cornmeal. The cornmeal gives it a surprising crunch. Why be ordinary when you can be extraordinary? Combine the flour, cornmeal, and oats in a bowl. Toss in the cubed butter.
TO MELT OR NOT TO MELT
For this particular recipe, I do not melt the butter when mixing with the dry ingredients. Why? Well if you melt the butter and mix the flour/corn/oat mixture, it will adhere to the dry ingredients better, but it will stay on top of the crisp.
Because the fruit in this crisp create a lot of juice, I want the topping to stay loose allowing it to seep into the crisp to absorb some of that delicious, flavorful juice from the strawberries and rhubarb.
Add the strawberry rhubarb mixture into a baking dish. Sprinkle the topping over the fruit covering it completely.
Before baking, place on top of a lined baking sheet just in case to catch any drippings. I have not had any problems, but why not be preventative? The last thing I want to do is clean the oven!
THIS STRAWBERRY RHUBARB CRISP RECIPE CAN EASILY BE HALVED
This recipe can be halved. Use an 8x8 or a 2 quart baking dish. A 9x13 baking dish works perfectly for full recipe.
I have to say, thank goodness I took the pictures right away because this crisp did not last. The cornmeal made a huge difference. It was delicious - really delicious.
If you share, be forewarned, they might eat the whole thing leaving you with an empty plate. Don’t you just hate that? 🙂
Life is too short for mediocre food.
Strawberry Rhubarb CrispPRINT PIN SAVESaved!
- Preheat oven 350 degrees.
- In a large bowl, combine filling ingredients and pour into a 9x13 baking dish or 8x8 baking dish if halving recipe.
- For the topping, combine the topping ingredients in a bowl. Using a fork, a pastry cutter, or your fingers, mash the butter into the flour until it is mostly incorporated.
- Sprinkle the topping evenly over the fruit covering it completely. Bake in middle rack of oven for 1 hour. The top should be golden brown and the fruit should be bubbling around the edges.
- Remove from oven and let rest for at least 15 minutes.
- Serve with vanilla ice cream, whipped cream, or simply as is.
I don't post the nutritional value because I don't trust the accuracy of the nutritional apps. I’m not a nutritionist and don't want to post misinformation.