If there’s any reason to turn your oven on this summer, it’s to bake gorgeous summer fruits into show-stopping desserts. Buttery, flaky and crispy, there is nothing better than a crumble or galette fresh from the oven and dripping with sweet fruit juices. Whatever fruit you have in abundance – be it stone fruits or berries – they will all work with these 7 versatile recipes.
We’ve all heard of pies, crisps and cobblers, but have you ever tried a pandowdy? This incredibly easy dessert has all of the elements of a fruit pie—juicy filling, golden-brown pastry crust—but it requires a fraction of the effort. It’s a beautifully rustic dessert with bits of pastry that are crispy on top and soaked in fruit juices on the bottom.
This nutty cake from the adorable blog Desserts for Breakfast is all about the peaches. The cake, which is super-moist and flecked with freshly grated ginger, acts as an alter for a layer of sliced juicy stone fruit. Make the cake and frosting in advance, then right before it’s time to serve, slice up your most beautiful peaches and serve.
I love this twist on a classic blueberry pie from Food & Wine. The traditional filling is baked into a crust that is a blend of all-purpose and rye flours. The rye adds a touch of savory nuttiness that plays nicely with the sweet berry. Make this pie with local, peak-season blueberries for best results.
What is a more iconic summer dessert than strawberry shortcake? This classic recipe from Bon Appetit has a clever tip for the most tender shortcakes: add finely-grated cooked egg yolks. The egg yolks prevent the glutens from over-developing, while also providing extra fat. The result is a light, crumbly and super-tender baked good that is the perfect vehicle for deep red strawberries and a generous serving of whipped cream.
If you want to indulge in a summer dessert, but are also trying to keep it light, try this whole grain crisp from Martha Stewart Living. The fruit filling relies on the natural juices of the fruit for most of its sweetness and the crunchy topping is just oats, shredded coconut and whole wheat flour. For a final dollop of creaminess, opt for Greek yogurt instead of whipped cream.
The more rustic cousin of a pie, a galette involves layering fruit on a round of pie dough and decoratively folding up the edges so the fruit is nice and snug. This version plays on the classic French flavor pairing of apricots and almonds (with cherries added for contrasting tartness). This dessert gets a triple-dose of almond flavor from almond extract, slivered almonds and a sprinkling of ground almonds under the fruit filling. If your apricots aren’t perfect, don’t worry – the sliced fruit will cook down until it’s sweet and juicy.
On a busy weeknight when I am still craving something homemade and decadent, a cobbler is my go-to. The crisp biscuit-topping doesn’t require any kneading, folding or cutting. Simply toss your fruit in some sugar and mix up this easy batter, then dollop the mixture over top before baking. This all-purpose recipe from Rachael Ray Magazine also adds a touch of herbal thyme and bright lemon zest.