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robie

Can I make and refrigerate a crisp topping

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Apologies if this was previously asked.  :hangshead:

 

I will be making a rhubarb/strawberry crisp for Easter.  I have done with apple previously but not rhubarb.  I want to make a small crisp first (specifically, I'm not sure whether I need to pre-cook the fruit).

 

If I made a double recipe of topping (structually, it's butter, almonds, sugar, a little flour) and used 1/4 of that for the test, do you think I can store the rest in the refrigerator or freezer for 3-5 days prior to thawing, topping the "real" crisp, and baking?

 

I would think so but seek the expertise of the eGulleteer peeps.

 

Thanks so much!

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Just now, robie said:

Apologies if this was previously asked.  :hangshead:

 

I will be making a rhubarb/strawberry crisp for Easter.  I have done with apple previously but not rhubarb.  I want to make a small crisp first (specifically, I'm not sure whether I need to pre-cook the fruit).

 

If I made a double recipe of topping (structually, it's butter, almonds, sugar, a little flour) and used 1/4 of that for the test, do you think I can store the rest in the refrigerator or freezer for 3-5 days prior to thawing, topping the "real" crisp, and baking?

 

I would think so but seek the expertise of the eGulleteer peeps.

 

Thanks so much!

 I have often made extra topping and stored it in the freezer with no ill effects. 

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Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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Same here with crumble, which isn't a dissimilar recipe.

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Thanks Anna...that was fast!  If it makes a difference, I just looked at the recipe.  7 Tbs butter, 1/2 c slivered almonds,  and 1 1/4 c flour.  Those are the real structural components

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Thanks All!

 

Let me ask the provacative question:  Pre-cook the fruit or not?  I hate semi-raw fruit and am willing to risk overcooked crisp/pie fruit.

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21 minutes ago, AlaMoi said:

freezer, yes.

refrigerator, no.  soggy soggy maker

Why would butter, sugar, flour and almonds become soggy in the refrigerator?  Just curious.

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Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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16 minutes ago, Anna N said:

Why would butter, sugar, flour and almonds become soggy in the refrigerator?  Just curious.


It wouldn't. If anything, it firms up. The flour hydrates a bit from the moisture in the butter, everything gets cold and you basically have a cookie dough that you can crumble over the fruit and bake.

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It's kinda like wrestling a gorilla... you don't stop when you're tired, you stop when the gorilla is tired.

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19 minutes ago, Anna N said:

Why would butter, sugar, flour and almonds become soggy in the refrigerator?  Just curious.

 

flour and the sugar absorb moisture/humidity.

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I often freeze crumble topping. Makes it easy when fruit needs to be used up.


MelissaH

Oswego, NY

Chemist, writer, hired gun

Say this five times fast: "A big blue bucket of blue blueberries."

foodblog1 | kitchen reno | foodblog2

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2 hours ago, AlaMoi said:

 

flour and the sugar absorb moisture/humidity.


I'm not a food scientist and won't pretend to be but I've stored crisp topping in the fridge for a few days many times. Cookie doughs too. I've never had any of it go soggy. Generally, if anything, they come out of the fridge feeling more dry than they went in. The sugars and flours absorb some of the moisture already present in the mixture and that's pretty much it. If it pulls any out of the airspace in the storage container, it makes no noticeable difference. Maybe eventually it will go soggy but I'm betting by that point it's for reasons other than the hydroscopic properties of the ingredients.


It's kinda like wrestling a gorilla... you don't stop when you're tired, you stop when the gorilla is tired.

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refrigerators are very low humidity as a general rule, iirc. eg. when you leave your block of cheese uncovered, it dries out.


Edited by keychris (log)

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7 hours ago, AlaMoi said:

 

flour and the sugar absorb moisture/humidity.

 

...and then you bake it. The butter has far more water in it than any amount that butter-coated flour is going to absorb in the fridge. I bet in a side-by-side test the two are indistinguishable. Anyone want to have a go?

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Chris Hennes
Director of Operations
chennes@egullet.org

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I do this every single week - make my crisp toppings ahead, bag them, toss them in the fridge.  And I make a topping that's got substantially more grain in it than you're talking about.  No sogginess, perfect results every time, and so much more convenient than having to make it right then.

 

This was made with a topping that had been in the fridge for more than 14 days.  It was perfectly crisped and lightly crunchy.  And this is over peaches, which are notorious for sogging out the topping.

Crisp-finished.jpg.c2c52104bd375831a8718

 

As Chris Hennes points out - even if the flour and grains take up moisture from the butter, at the end of the week you're going to bake it.  At that point, ciao extra moisture.


Edited by Panaderia Canadiense (log)
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Elizabeth Campbell, baking 10,000 feet up at 1° South latitude.

My eG Food Blog (2011)My eG Foodblog (2012)

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Thanks all.  After my oven thermometer arrives tomorrow, I will try the mini-version.  I do plan to pre-cook the fruit.

 

Any thoughts about pre-cooking rhubarb?  I always pre-cook apple.  I don't like crunchy apples in a pie/crisp.

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4 minutes ago, robie said:

Thanks all.  After my oven thermometer arrives tomorrow, I will try the mini-version.  I do plan to pre-cook the fruit.

 

Any thoughts about pre-cooking rhubarb?  I always pre-cook apple.  I don't like crunchy apples in a pie/crisp.

 I can only tell you I have never pre-cooked the apples for apple crisp nor do I ever find them crunchy.  I cooked mine at 400°F for about 30 minutes or until the topping is nicely browned and the filling is bubbling up.  


Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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12 minutes ago, Anna N said:

 I can only tell you I have never pre-cooked the apples for apple crisp nor do I ever find them crunchy.  I cooked mine at 400°F for about 30 minutes or until the topping is nicely browned and the filling is bubbling up.  

This is what is so confusing to me.  A lot of great cooks say to slice apples thin and cook seasoned but raw.  I have only ended up with crunchy apples and cooked dough.  :huh:

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1 minute ago, robie said:

This is what is so confusing to me.  A lot of great cooks say to slice apples thin and cook seasoned but raw.  I have only ended up with crunchy apples and cooked dough.  :huh:

 Let's see what others have to say when they chime in. I am neither a great cook nor an expert on fruit crisps but I've always considered them a very simple dessert that one can toss together quickly and not fuss with. 


Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog

My 2004 eG Blog

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Interesting. I have never pre-cooked apples for a crisp, and they've never come out crunchy. (I usually throw in walnuts if I want some crunch.) And I don't slice the apples so thin, either. I guess there are a lot of variables here. Type of apple would be a biggie. Liquid in the recipe? Covered or uncovered? Cooking temp? Etc.

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I do an apple crisp often and have for a long time.

 

I use one of those very old fashioned mechanical apple peelers, that you rotate.  I leave the peel on

 

then set aside the core and shop up the long peel of apple 

 

I add dried cranberries, a little maple syrup and the spice mixture with is the usual  cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg  etc

 

top with the crumble  ( rolled oats, butter, brown sugar  more spice mixture )

 

sprinkle on top and bake  why the top is nicely browned the apples are cooked with good texture but not crunchy

 

maybe been lucky   alway with some vanilla ice cream

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Hijacking my own thread:

 

I can't find rhubarb in my area yet (Atlanta).  I'm thinking of a strawberry tart (shortbread with pastry cream and strawberries with currant jelly glaze).

 

I would prefer not to have the sogged out crust that you get many times with a fruit tart.

 

Do y'all think it is worthwhile to make shortbread cookies and assemble a la minute?


Edited by robie (log)

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in my experience   the soggy-ness comes from chilling a crisp  after its cooked.

 

I microwave left over just a little then put the crust under a broiler briefly which helps w that sort of sogginess.

 

but its never the same re-heated.   ice cream helps.


Edited by rotuts (log)
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So, in Atlanta, it is too early for rhubarb so I will have to go apple.  I'm curious, is rhubarb available in your neck of the woods?

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We have fresh local rhubarb for sale here in North Yorkshire, not really useful for you Robie I accept!!!  In the garden our's is just poking its first leaves through the soil.

 

i don't know what a 'crisp' is, the pictures seem similar to a crumble but posts above indicate it is something different? 

 

In in respect of cooking, or not, apples that will go in a pie or crumble, I think it depends very much on the type of apple you use. Here if I use Bramleys or Reinettes I wouldn't need to precook, they soften well enough in the time it takes to bake a pie or crumble. If I'm making a pie with both top and bottom crusts I would probably pre-cook the fruit to control moisture content and stop the base becoming too saturated with cooking juices to hold together when sliced.

 

Personally Rhubarb crumble is my favourite, the rhubarb cooked under a thick layer of crumble mix brings about a sort of three layered dessert, at the bottom the stewed fruit, next, a layer of crumble drenched with rhubarb juice and then, at the top, the crispy crumble.  As I'm sure I've said many times my life is lived part in England and part in France. The French have an entirely different interpretation of 'crumble': basically a mix of flour, butter, sugar, baked on its own on a tray and then sprinkled over the top of any random dessert. Rowley Leigh wrote a great article some time ago (FT food writer) on why the French approach is so wrong. He is French trained and certainly not against their cuisine. As I write this a sense of deja vu mounts. My apologies if I've already written something similar.  If not and anyone is interested I will try to find the link.

 

Good luck with your baking Robie, uncooked pies keep fine in fridge or freezer, would think the same would apply to your recipe since ingredients are similar.

 

Rotuts

I also have, and love to use, my old style turn the handle apple cutter/peeler/corer.  As you say, no need to peel if you just want the other functions. This also works great for potatoes, resulting spirals can be arranged in a dish with slices of garlic, shallots, butter etc between each ring. We love these as an alternative to chips; add cream and you get an alternative style gratin dauphinois.  Sorry, this is drifting away from the topic, plus I should be working! 

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