Sunday, July 27, 2008

Frozen Fruit Rules

I know you're probably all getting your panties in a knot already at the thought of frozen fruit at the height of summer. BUT. When you have a toddler whose palate preferences change as frequently as the wind, it's so much more convenient to have fruit you can store for more than two or three days than have to worry it will sit in the fridge and rot if it isn't eaten immediately.

We made pancakes this morning with frozen blueberries, and they were great. My husband made a quick compote of blueberries and strawberries simply by heating and slightly mashing them, and adding the barest sprinkling of sugar. The other day, I took a small handful of frozen strawberries and put them in a Ziploc bag in the baby's lunch sac. By the time she wanted them, they were thawed and soft. She gobbled them down without a second thought. Perfect!

Plus, if you feel like a super-quick dessert, you can thaw one 12 or 16 ounce package of berries in the microwave (or in the fridge overnight), throw them in an oven-proof pan and top with a basic crumble mixture:

1/3 cup softened butter
1/2 cup flour
2/3 cup rolled oats
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
2/3 cup brown sugar
2/3 cup crushed nuts (pecans, macadamias, walnuts, almonds, etc)

Mix all these ingredients with a fork, and sprinkle evenly over the berries. Bake in a 350 oven for about 25-30 minutes. Easy-peasy.

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