Happy Friday, happy June, and a very happy rhubarb season to you. Is there anything better than the flavor combination of strawberries and rhubarb? Nothing I’d put in a recipe post, anyway. We woke up in Princeton this morning for our 20th — 20th! — college reunion, which will occupy every moment and corner of memory and ounce of social energy from now until Sunday. But earlier in the week I was smart enough to dig up this strawberry rhubarb crisp recipe from very early on in the Umami Girl archives and make it for dessert plus breakfasts. It’s pretty much this recipe’s 10th college reunion right now. Doesn’t it look great?
(Psst…maybe check out our other crisps and crumbles, too.)
To my mind, the best strawberry rhubarb recipe adds just enough sweetness to balance rhubarb’s extreme briskness without drowning out its complexity. It adds a little bit of crunch, but not too much. And otherwise it just leaves well enough alone. Why mess with success?
This recipe comes together quickly and then just has to bake bake bake for a while. It’s easy, but anyway, here are a few tips that you can apply equally to any crisp you make this summer.
Protips for Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp (or really any fruit crisp)
Measurements don’t have to be super-precise for this kind of baking, but for strawberry and rhubarb an approximate 1 to 1 ratio results in a great, larger than life flavor. The amount of sugar in this recipe is calibrated for that ratio. If you use more rhubarb, you’ll need more sugar.
Depending on your oven, you’ll probably find that the topping is perfectly browned by about halfway through baking. Drape a piece of foil over the pie plate at this point to prevent further browning. You don’t even need to tuck it in.
Serve with vanilla ice cream for dessert or with Greek yogurt as an excuse to eat dessert for breakfast.
Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp
Is there anything better than strawberry and rhubarb together? This easy recipe gently amplifies that ideal flavor combination without getting in its way. It fits perfectly into a deep-dish pie plate. I've used an older version of this one for years. Don't neglect to bake this on a rimmed cookie sheet -- it will bubble up and over a little bit toward the end of baking.
For the filling
- 1 1/4 pounds rhubarb (about 4 large stalks)
- 1 1/4 pounds strawberries
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
For the topping
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup old fashioned rolled oats
- 2/3 cup light brown sugar, packed
- 8 tablespoons cold butter, diced
- Pinch of salt
Preheat the oven to 375°F with a rack in the center.
Make the filling: Trim the rhubarb stalks and cut them crosswise into ½-inch pieces. Place in a large mixing bowl. Trim the strawberries and cut them in half or in quarters if large. (The pieces of fruit should all be roughly the same size for even cooking.) Add the strawberries to the bowl. Add the ½ cup sugar, the cornstarch and the lemon juice to the bowl and mix thoroughly.
Pour the fruit mixture into the pie plate.
Make the topping: Combine the flour, oats, brown sugar, butter and salt in a medium bowl. Blend the mixture together using your fingers and thumbs until there is no loose flour at the bottom of the bowl and much of the mixture is in pea-sized pieces.
Distribute the topping over the fruit. Bake on a rimmed baking sheet to catch any drips for about 45 minutes, until browned on top, bubbly and completely cooked through. Start checking after about 20 minutes to see whether the topping looks browned enough. When it does, place a sheet of foil loosely overtop for the remainder of baking. You don't even need to tuck it in.
Cool for at least 10 minutes before serving with vanilla ice cream for dessert, or with Greek yogurt for breakfast.