It’s the first day of summer and because of recent events, we are ready to get outside and start our summer in earnest.
Well, we have filled the little 10 ft. pool in the backyard and hung the outdoor lights and are ready to do some movie nights and do some outdoor dinners and eat some delicious summer foods. And by summer foods, I mean fruit.
Do you associate ripe fruit with summer like I do?
I’m delighted that my friends at Melissa’s Produce recently sent me a box of seasonal summer fruits and vegetables, which included both peaches and apricots. Which only left the burning questions: “Do I make a peach cobbler? Or an apricot crumble?”
I’m happy to report that we have decided on the best of both worlds. And by “we” I mean my daughter, Amy who has been excited to make a fruit grunt.
You read that right. A grunt. But let me tell you why…
The grunt was an early adaptation of an English steamed pudding. The New England colonists had limited cooking equipment and their dumpling-like pudding using local fruit was cooked on the stove top. And they called it grunt.
Cooked on the stove top, people!
That was the big selling point. No need to turn on the hot oven in the summer to cook up some fruit pudding deliciousness. Also, GRUNT! How fun is that?!
Without further ado, I present our version of Peach and Apricot Grunt! You’re welcome.
Peach & Apricot Grunt
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 4 tablespoons (½ stick) unsalted butter – cut into small cubes and chilled
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 4 cups ripe apricots & peaches – About 8-10 (or one pack of Melissa’s) apricots cut in ½” bite sized pieces and 2 peaches – you can either cut them into ½” bite sized pieces too or into ½” slices
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon lemon zest
- 1/3 cup water
1. In a large bowl whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, baking soda, and sugar. Use your hands to work the pieces of butter into the flour mixture until about half of the fat disappears and the rest is left in pea-size pieces (it should resemble a coarse meal).
2. Make a well in the center and add the buttermilk. Mix together with a wooden spoon or spatula just until the dough comes together.
3. Turn the mixture out onto a piece of parchment or waxed paper that has been lightly dusted with flour, shape into a ball (it should be rather shaggy), wrap, and store in the refrigerator while you prepare the filling.
NOTE: Do not knead or over work it or the dumplings will be tough.
1. Place the apricots and peaches, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, lemon juice, lemon zest, and water into a large mixing bowl and mix together until all fruit is nicely coated.
2. Pour the mixture into a big flat pan or medium saucepan and place over medium heat. When the fruit mixture begins to simmer, decrease the heat to medium low and continue to cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
NOTE: When the liquid is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon you’re ready to move on to the next step.
3. Retrieve the dough from the refrigerator and gently drop it on the fruit mixture using an ice cream scoop or large spoon, evenly distributing it over the top of the fruit, starting from the outside and working your way into the center.
Optional: Sprinkle the dumplings with cinnamon sugar.
4. Cover the pan*, lower the heat to maintain a low simmer, and cook for 25 minutes. The dumplings should be puffed and firm to the touch.
*Alternatively, you can bake in the oven, uncovered, at 400 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes (or until the top is just starting to brown). Once you remove from the oven, allow the grunt to cool for 15 to 30 minutes before serving.
5. Let cool, uncovered, for about 20 minutes before serving.
NOTE: Do not uncover the pan to peek at the dumplings while cooking! The dumplings need the steady steam and pressure from being covered to cook properly so they are light and fluffy.
They taste best warm, but please refrigerate after they’re cooled.
Thanks again to Melissa’s Produce for the wonderful inspiration!
Here’s to a happy and fruitful summer. (<– see what I did there?)
For some more inspiring summer fruit recipes, try some of these from some of my favorite bloggers: