Summery, crumbly fruit bars: I literally cannot stop. Please bear with me while I work through my latest ridiculous baking addiction. But seriously, try to argue that these aren't the best kind of summer dessert: easy, fast, unfussy, and exploding with juicy, ripe and prime in-season fruit. I dare you.
I have a few more ideas up my sleeve, but am trying as hard as I can to resist overwhelming this blog with crumble-covered fruit. That said, I make no promises. I strongly suggest we all continue to make and eat summery fruit crumbles in a valiant attempt to hold on to summer as long as humanly possible.
Next week, Bryan and I leave for a trip to South America (don't worry, you won't miss me. I have a few spectacular guest posts lined up while I'm gone), where it will be spring. So, not freezing, but certainly not summer. I am afraid of leaving summer, to go to spring, only to come back to fall. I'm afraid these are my last days of summer for this year, so I say we live it up.
I brought these to a dinner party and, even though we'd just had an incredible home-cooked meal (fresh, handmade spring rolls ZOMG), these were devoured nearly instantaneously. I guess I am not the only one who likes herb-y desserts.
What about you? Do you like herbs (and/or spices) in your desserts? What are your favorite flavor combinations?
Blueberry Boysenberry Squares with Rosemary Crust
For the crust:
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1 heaping Tablespoon freshly grated lemon zest (zest of approximately 1 large lemon)
2 Tablespoons fresh rosemary, finely chopped
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1 egg, lightly beaten
For the filling:
17.5 oz (1 large jar) boysenberry preserves
3 1/2 cups fresh blueberries
2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice
3 teaspoons cornstarch
Preheat the oven to 375F. Thoroughly coat a 9"x13" pan with nonstick cooking spray and set aside.
Start by preparing the crust and crumb. In a small bowl, combine the sugar, lemon zest and rosemary. Firmly rub the sugar, zest and rosemary between your fingers until it releases the oils and becomes aromatic and moist. Pour into a food processor along with the flour, baking soda, and salt. Pulse a few times to mix. Add the butter and egg and pulse a few times until the butter is the size of small peas. The mixture will be crumbly, but should hold together when pressed.
Turn half of the mixture into the prepared pan and firmly press into an even layer. Spread the preserves in an even layer over the base crust, but don't bring the preserves all the way to the edges of the crust (don't let the preserves touch the pan or the bars will be very difficult to get out).
In a large mixing bowl, gently stir together the blueberries, sugar, lemon juice and cornstarch until combined. Distribute the mixture in a layer on top of the preserves.
Finally, sprinkle the remaining crust/crumb mixture over the top of the bars, ensuring the larger clumps are distributed evenly across the pan.
Bake for 45-55 minutes until the crumb topping is golden brown and the fruit bubbles slightly along the edges.
Cool the bars completely at room temperature or in the fridge before slicing into bars.
Store in an airtight container at room temperature for about a week. These would also freeze nicely for up to three months.