two skinny jenkins

090921 – Fall Fruit Crumble
090921, 2:12 pm
Filed under: DESSERT | Tags: , , , ,

Crumble Elevation

This is an adaptation of the ‘Fall Fruit Crumble’ recipe featured recently on  I almost made this last week, but made a pear tart instead.  Compared to that – this felt like a break!


I used the four fall fruits that I had around the kitchen and were on the verge of expiration.  The tart apples nicely countered the sweetness of the figs and plums.  I think i could have used just 1 t lemon juice.

Fruit Filling:

  • 3 tart apples, peeled, cored, and cut into 1/2″ pieces
  • 5 Italian plums, pitted and cut into 1/2″ pieces
  • 6 black figs, quartered
  • 1 Bosc pear (leftover from my pear tart experiment), peeled, cored, and cut into 1/2″ pieces
  • 1/2 C sugar
  • 1 1/2 T cornstarch
  • 3/4 t vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 t lemon juice


  • 1 C rolled oats
  • 1/2 C all purpose flour
  • 1/2 C sugar
  • 4 T butter, softened
  • pinch of salt
  • pinch of cinnamon
  1. Preheat oven to 425F and mix together cut fruits, 1/2 C sugar, vanilla, and cornstarch in a baking dish.
  2. In a small bowl, combine all the dry topping ingredients, then use your fingers to blend in the butter until the mixture resembles a coarse meal.
  3. Bake for 20-30 min (depending on your oven – mine took closer to 30), or until fruit is bubbling and topping turning golden brown.

090917 – Pear Tart
090918, 10:29 pm
Filed under: DESSERT | Tags:

Pear Tart

Or should i call it, ‘Pain in the Tush Pear Tart’?

This was without a doubt the most involved recipe i have ever made – thank you ‘New Basics’ cookbook.   As part of my continuing quest to actually use the cookbooks we own,  I spent hours in the kitchen yesterday.


I decided it would be a festive fall thing to do/ make and a good way to use up the uneaten pears i bought at the market last week.  What I got was just desserts!  sorry.

MY pear tart

Pear Sauce Tart


  • 2/3 C all purpose flour
  • 1/3 C ground walnuts (or hazelnuts)
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 4 T butter (chilled and chopped up)
  • 1/4 t lemon juice
  • 1 T cold water
  • 1 T sugar

Pear Sauce:

  • 6 Bosc pears, slightly under-ripe, peeled, cored, and quartered
  • 2 T lemon juice
  • 1 C sugar
  • 2 T Poire Williams (pear liqueur – i substituted butterscotch schnapps)

Pears + Topping:

  • 1 slice fresh ginger, peeled
  • 2 C champagne (i used white wine)
  • 1 1/2 C water
  • 1/4 C lemon juice
  • 1 C sugar
  • 1/3 C applesauce
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 4 whole cloves
  • 4 ripe but firm Bosc Pears
  • 1 T white vinegar
  • 2 T Poire Williams (or butterscotch schnapps =)
  1. Prepare the pastry shell: Combine flour, walnuts, and salt in a food processor and process for 15-20 sec.  Add butter and lemon and process for 15 addt’l sec.  Gradually add cold water through feeder tube, 1/2 t at a time – ONLY ADDING ENOUGH FOR THE DOUGH TO COME TOGETHER.  Gather the dough into a ball, flatten, wrap in plastic, and refrigerate for 30 min.
  2. Preheat oven to 425F.  Butter a 9″ tart pan.  After the dough is chilled, roll it out into an ~11″ circle on a lightly floured counter.  Transfer to the buttered pan
    and crimp the edges.  Prick the bottom of the pastry with a fork, cover with aluminum foil (shiny side down) and bake for 15 min.  Remove foil and bake addt’l 8-10 min. or until golden brown.  Set aside to cool.
  3. Prepare the sauce (start while pastry is chillin): Combine half the pear quarters and 1 T lemon juice in the food processor and process for ~30 sec.  Transfer the mixture to a heavy saucepan and then repeat with remaining pears.
  4. Stir the sugar and Poire Williams into the pot and cook over low heart until the mixture begins to turn color ~30 min.  Then increase to medium low heat and simmer for 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally until it becomes the consistency of applesauce.  Set it aside to cool.
  5. To make the topping, first prepare the poaching liquid: Cut the ginger into 1/8″ julienne strips and combine with champagne, water, lemon juice, sugar, applesauce, cinnamon sticks, and cloves in a medium sized saucepan.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer for 15 minutes.  Set aside.
  6. Peel the pears, reserving the peel, and cut them in half longways.  Core them as neatly as possible with a knife or melon baller.  Place them in a large bowl and water to cover.  Add the vinegar to prevent discoloring.
  7. Combine the peeled pears, remaining 1/2 C water, remaining 1/2 C sugar, and Poire Williams in a saucepan.  Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes.  Strain and set the liquid aside. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the pears to the poaching liquid, add pear peel liquid, bring to a boil, simmer for 8 minutes, then remove from heat and let cool in the liquid.
  8. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the pears to a shallow dish.  Bring poaching liquid to a boil and reduce to 1 1/2 C (about 15 minutes).
  9. Pour reduced poaching liquid over pears and refrigerate till completely cooled – about 4 hours.
  10. Assemble the tart:  Spread sauce into the prepared pie crust.  Slice cooled pear halves crosswise into half moons and arrange to cover the whole surface.
  11. Preheat the broiler on high with a rack at the top shelf.
  12. Cover the edge of the crust with aluminum foil (really – do this) and place the tart under the broiler until the pears turn golden brown – about 5 minutes.  Serve hot or at room temperature with a dusting of powdered sugar.  I thought it was even better cold the next day.