When summer blackberries and blueberries arrive in the mountains, well, it’s a signal that summer is really here. If you didn’t know from the heat and the lines in front of the Creamery, you surely know summer is here when berries come into season.
Berries used to grow wild in vacant lots and along fences, and you had to brave the chiggers to wander into those weeds to pluck wild blackberries. You can still find them, but most of the berries we are eating here in the Smokies are grown by local farmers.
A great way to use them is this easy pie called a crisp. No crust is needed. You just pile the fruit and sugar into a baking dish or iron skillet, and then top with a crumbly mixture of oats, flour, sugar, and butter. It bakes up into a heavenly rite of summer passage – something to enjoy with vanilla ice cream.
- 1 teaspoon soft butter for greasing the skillet
- 4 cups fresh blackberries
- 3 cups sliced fresh peaches
- ⅓ cup sugar
- 1½ cups light brown sugar
- 1½ cups flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- 12 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into tablespoons
- 1 cup Old Mill Thick Table Rolled Oats
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
- Rub a 12-inch cast iron skillet with the butter. Toss the fruit with the sugar to combine, and turn the fruit into the skillet. Set aside.
- Make the topping: Place the brown sugar, flour, salt, and cinnamon in a mixing bowl and stir. Scatter the butter over the top and cut into the dry ingredients with two dinner
knifesuntil it forms coarse crumbs. Fold in the oats. With your hands, crumble this mixture over the top of the fruit. Place the pan in the oven.
- Bake until the topping is golden brown, and the fruit mixture is
about 40 to 45 minutes. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream. bubbly,