Wednesday, December 2, 2009


It seems like everyone has already blogged about Thanksgiving, and even though I've only been back in town for two days, I'm already late to the party. We had our newly-traditional two Thanksgivings this year, one with the extended family (over 30 people) at my great-Aunt's and one at home with just a few people. It's always a weekend full of food (what Thanksgiving isn't?), and family and friends. All the important F's. It's nice to reconnect with the extended family that we don't see often enough, and it's nice to spend time at home with the smaller group of us as well. It's been a really rough year for my family, and I'm grateful that through whatever hardships we face, we still have each other. With the end of 2009 (thankfully) coming up, and the holidays now suddenly upon us, I am choosing to believe that the new year will bring us new hope with new beginnings. We are scrappy folks, and with the support of the family, I know we can pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off, and keep moving forward. Maybe it's our Jewish heritage that teaches us perseverance (it certainly sounds very Fiddler on the Roof), maybe it's just who we are.

Anyway, to make up for my delayed Thanksgiving post, and because I just feel like giving right now, I'm going to share a little secret recipe with you. It will change your life. Or maybe it won't. But it will be delicious.

Cranberry Pear Crumble
Serves 8. Or so the recipe says. We have found that there is never enough.

1 pack (12 oz.) fresh cranberries
2 large, unpeeled pears, cored and sliced thin
1 cup (or slightly less) granulated sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 cup flour (to be divided - I don't measure it out at the beginning; it's easier to just dole out the tablespoons as the recipe calls for it. I guess just make sure you have 1/4 cup on hand.)
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup butter
3/4 cup regular oats
3/4 cup chopped pecans (the original recipe calls for walnuts, but my dad is allergic so we've always used pecans)

This recipe is very easily doubled. I highly recommend doubling it. You will want leftovers. And there may not be any. This dish is delicious served hot, along with your Thanksgiving meal, or cold, right out of the fridge the next morning.

What You Do (with pictures):
In a lightly greased 1 1/2 quart shallow baking dish (like an 8x8 brownie pan - use a 13x9 if you're doubling the recipe), mix well the cranberries, pears, granulated sugar, cinnamon, and 1 tbsp flour. Set aside. You can try using a spoon to mix - I always do - but you will end up using your hands - I always do. It's more fun, and honestly, it's easier.

cranberries, pears, just feels festive

all the sugar has been dumped on. looks like snow.

mixed well!

closeup on the well-mixed fruit. so delicious.

In a medium bowl, mix remaining 3 tbs flour with brown sugar. With a pastry blender (or your fingers), cut in the butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. It's ok if the butter is melty first - makes it easier to "cut in." Stir in oats and nuts. Sprinkle evenly over fruit mixture. Again, I always start out with a spoon and end up with my fingers.

ready for the oven

you cannot resist my crumble!

Bake in pre-heated oven at 375 degrees for 40 minutes or until lightly browned. Let stand for 10 minutes. If you can. It's better to let it stand...I suggest leaving the room so you are not tempted.

baked crumbly goodness.

Thank goodness my aunt snapped this picture of the finished product (though it's from the batch she brought over on Thanksgiving #2, not the batch that I made the next night - this gets made repeatedly around this time of year). I ate mine too fast to get a picture.

our table for Thanksgiving #2, just for fun


  1. What a whole cranberry-pear posting and not more of a mention than "aunt snapped this photo"! What...What...
    Oh my what will become of my reputation??!! LOL

  2. Haha, I did say that you made the first batch!

    Let it be known, however, that Auntie Nancy is the whole reason I make this recipe year after year...month after month...mmmmm. She has been making it for as long as I can remember, and I am glad that she lets me make it too :-)

  3. That looks like the most delicious thing in the world. I may even attempt to make it one day. I also LOVE the bookshelf full of books in the background because...well....I don't have to explain myself to you.

  4. When do you arrive in the city of angels?

  5. Thank you for sharing that wonderful recipe!!

    Also? Those dishes? They're vintage, right? Because we use the same ones at holidays in my family. They belonged to a great-grand-someone. I think an aunt. Maybe a grandmother. My mom would know.

    Weird.... weird.... weird.

  6. They are! My mom inherited them...I think from a great-aunt or something. I always forget who.