I don’t know about y’all, but fruit picking is one of my absolute favorite hobbies! Some of my best memories are of picking strawberries, blueberries, and peaches with my family. We always had good laughs, full bellies, and way too much fruit to handle – Mulholland’s don’t do food in moderate!
Since moving to San Diego, Jimmy and I have made it a tradition to visit Carlsbad Strawberry Company each Spring. And last weekend with my sister in town, we picked organic apples and pears from Apple Starr Orchard in Julian, CA. We’ve been snacking on the fruits of our labor (pun intended!) all week and with the remaining fruit I am testing a new recipe as I type. I hope to share the fall-themed recipe (if successful) with you all soon.
But that got me thinking, I never told you all about my epic berry picking adventure with my parents in May. Nor the delicious dessert we made from our yield – recipe details below. A visit to Green Truck Farms in Markham, Virginia is a must if you live in the area. The selection was amazing (red raspberries, black raspberries, sour cherries, and blueberries), the price reasonable ($4/pint and no picking fee), and the staff was super friendly.
Many of these berries were enjoyed in their natural state. With rest, my mom and I got creative in the kitchen. I follow a vegan diet and she follows a gluten-free diet. Thus the Vegan, Gluten-Free Fruit Crisp was born, satisfying both of our needs and sweet tooths. Dad gave his stamp approval too!
- 4 1/2 cups fresh fruit – I used 3 cups peaches and 1/2 cup each of blueberries, black raspberries, and red raspberries
- 3 Tbsp maple syrup (or other sweetener)
- 1 cup gluten-free rolled oats
- 1/2 cup gluten-free baking mix
- 1/2 cup chopped pecans
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- pinch of sea salt
- 4 Tbsp cold vegan butter, such as Earth Balance
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
- Grease 8×8 baking dish, add fruit, and then toss with maple syrup
- Add remaining ingredients to a bowl, mix until the butter is evenly distributed, and then spread evenly over fruit
- Bake for 45-55 minutes or until the fruit is bubbling and the top is crisp and golden brown.
We topped ours with banana-raspberry ice cream. For basic banana ice cream: add 2 large or 3 small frozen bananas, 1/2 cup frozen berries, and a few splashes of soy or almond milk to a food processor. Blend until smooth. This creates a quick and delicious whole food, plant-based ice cream!
Give this recipe a try and let me know what you think. The topping is versatile and pairs well with just about any fruit.
P.S. For my San Diego vegans, Apple Alley Bakery in Julian, CA has several vegan pies, including their original apple pie (not crumb topping).