There are so many senses that bring back memories: sights, smells, tastes. Seasons bring back memories for me too. When the weather gets warm I immeditately think back to the summers of my childhood on Martha’s Vineyard.
Unfortunately, I have to work during the summer now and I don’t have long sunny days filled with going to the beach, running around outside, and farmer’s markets. But even so, as soon as I walk out of the office and the warm breeze hits my face, it brings me that feeling of calm and happiness that I used to feel back in my carefree Vineyard days.
There were certain recipes that, for some reason, we only made during these summers. Maybe it’s because they’re warm weather foods, but maybe it’s because we wanted them to be forever associated with our wonderful summers.
So as soon as the temperatures reach the 70s and the air gets sticky and hot, I bring out my mom’s recipe boxes and pull out our usual summer rotation of recipes: Brad’s Salsa, Michigan Blueberry Pie (I’ll have to make that soon and post it!), and especially her Rhubarb Strawberry Crisp- the epitome of a summer dessert.
This dessert is best served with a hefty scoop of vanilla ice cream that melts into it. There’s really no better way to end a warm weather meal! When I take a bit of this and close my eyes, I’m instantly transported to our deck in Martha’s Vineyard, bathing suit still damp, covered in sand, sleepy from a long day in the sun and a belly full my mom’s best summer recipes.
Rhubarb Strawberry Crisp
4 cups sliced rhubarb
4 cups whole, stemmed strawberries
1 cup sugar
1 1/3 cups flour, separated
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup regular oats
3/4 cup chopped nuts (any kind)
8 Tbsp unsalted butter, cold, in small pieces
Preheat oven to 275. Butter a baking/casserole dish (9×13 is fine).
Combine fruits, sugar, 1/3 cup flour, cinnamon. Put in dish.
Combine 1 cup flour and rest of ingredients with fingers until crumbs form. Sprinkle over fruit.
Bake 35-45 minutes.