- Date: Thursday, June 21, 2012 -- 7pm
- Location: Saugatuck, MI
- Kitchen: Our Vacation Rental
- Dining Companions: Matty, Deniz, Brad, Karen H, Dave, Aylin, Dennis, and Tulin
- Recipe Rating: B
I made this summer dessert when we were on vacation with my special gentleman's family. The plums at the market weren't looking great, but the pluots were, so I made this with pluots instead (close enough!). I started by pitting the pluots, cutting them into wedges, and tossing them with blueberries, blackberries, and brown sugar. I put the fruit in a baking dish and baked it until the pluots softened a bit. I made a topping with oats, flour, brown sugar, butter, and salt and I sprinkled it over the fruit. Then I put it back into the oven and baked the dessert until the topping was crisp and golden. It's hard to go too wrong with this kind of thing, and indeed this dessert was pretty tasty. The topping was appropriately sweet with a good crispiness to it. The fruit tasted good with it, although I have to admit that this wasn't my favorite of fruit combinations. I enjoyed it, but it seemed to me that an all-berry crisp would have been even tastier than this plum-berry combination. That said, I made two huge dishes of this dessert and it all got eaten. It was pretty good!
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I am feeling, today, desperate for some time to reflect. In many ways I am not ready for the school year to start, and this week has certainly been a rough transition. But beyond wishing I had more time to prepare for my classes and get other work done, I wish I had more time so I could reflect back on this summer.
Typically at the end of the academic year I am exhausted -- desperate for a break from the grind of the semester. I welcome the flexible schedule of summer and increased time for research and hobbies with utter delight and glee. I dream of summer for months in advance, and its arrival is one of my favorite parts of the year. This year, however, was a little different. When May rolled around I was certainly ready for a break. But what I had ahead of me was not a relaxing summer with decreased responsibilities, but rather a summer packed full of travel and talks. I spoke at 5 different conferences this summer, plus a few other random seminar talks. In total I was traveling for 10 and a half weeks of the summer. At the beginning of the summer I felt unsure that I could even do it. A number of the things I had ahead of me were quite stressful. Truth be told, for the first time I was dreading the summer a little bit. But here I am, on the other side of it, and everything went fine. Sure, there are some things I would do differently if I could go back and do it again, but for the most part the talks, the organizing, the research, it all went quite well. And I have the rare feeling that I really accomplished something. I made it through a challenging summer successfully. I just wish I had a little time to reflect back on it. But instead the semester has started and I have a whole new set of challenges in front of me. I doubt there will be much time for reflection in the next 15 weeks!