I love fruit, all kinds, I don't discriminate. I love fruit fall, winter, spring and most definitly summer! That being said it's not surpirsing that I try to combine fresh fruit into dessert as often as I can, they bring vibrancy, lightness and the right amounts of sweet and sour flavors to complete an otherwise heavy dessert. It's important to have that balance of flavors, it leaves you satisfied!
My Mom and I were actually talking about rhubarb the other day and without hesitation I decided that day was going to be all about rhubarb and making something delicious with it. I was at the store not too long afterwards picking up my beautiful fresh rhubarb. Orgininally I had intended on making a rhubarb-strawberry crisp (which I'm sure would be equally fabulous) but when I got home I checked my strawberries and they had all gone bad. Wrench > Orginal Plan = Plan B. I remembered I had organic frozen sweet black cherries in the freezer (I have an addiction to those!), Plan B has taken shape, awesome. I was really happy that had happened actually because this has been my favorite crisp I've ever had.
Now to make it vegan. Usually when I'm taking an otherwise non-vegan dish (especially desserts) it takes a couple of trys to perfect it but with this recipe it was already 90% there and swapping out the butter for a vegan alternative was quite easy and successful, sweet(pun intended).
This is such a basic recipe, you have total freedom to change the fruits and spices around too and have fun with it!
Rhubarb & Black Cherry Crisp (vegan)
Pre-Prep: Preheat oven to 350.
4 cups rhubarb, chopped
2 cups fresh or frozen black cherries, pitted (if not already), thawed if frozen
1/4 – 1/2 cup agave nectar, depending on how sweet your berries are
1/2-1 tsp vanilla extract (depending on how much you like in your desserts)
1/2 cup organic all purpose flour
1/2 cup organic rolled oats
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp allspice
1/3 cup vegan buttery spread (I use Earth Balance Organic)
For the fruit:
Mix together fruits with agave and vanilla until well combined and fruit looks thoroughly coated. I like to add some extra cinnamon in here sometimes but totally a personal preference.
For the topping:
Mix until mixture is crumbly and vegan butter is well distributed throughout in small pea-sized pieces, sprinkle over fruit mixture evenly. Bake at 350° for 40 to 50 minutes, until golden. Once out of the oven, allow it to cool down a bit. Enjoy and maybe get crazy and top it with your favorite non-dairy (n)ice cream or coconut whipped cream (that will have to be a whole different post!)