The Sprouts: Berry Delicious Crisp

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Most of the children’s books at our library are organized in bins by author. It only took a few times of desperately flipping through the bins to no avail before I started reserving books. Most weeks I generally request a few books that relate to something currently in our lives. We’ve been eating up lots of berry books right now which was the inspiration for this Strawberry & Dried Cherry Crisp.

Toast and Jam for Francis by Russell Hoban
A childhood favorite of mine, and now highly requested by my kids

Jam and Honey by Melita Morales
As we were picking strawberries in the patch again last weekend, Skoogie jumped up when a bee flew by us. O reminded her that it just wants the nectar for honey and we want the berries for jam…remember Jam & Honey

The Little Mouse, the Red Ripe Strawberry, and the Big, Hungry Bear by Audrey & Don Wood
Little Mouse is desperately trying to save his strawberry from the Big, Hungry Bear, and outwits the bear by sharing it with the reader.

The Grey Lady and the Strawberry Snatcher by Molly Bang
This wordless book allows much for the imagination and encourages Narrative Skills, an important pre-reading skill. The author won a Caldecott honor for the illustrations, which have a surrealistic, almost spooky feel to them but stir lots of conversation.

Cook A Doodle Doo by Janet Stevens and Susan Stevens Crummel
Rooster remembers that his great-grandmother, the “Little Red Hen”, wrote a cookbook, and with the help of 3 friends he makes Strawberry Shortcake. The play on words is great for vocabulary and discussing the different meaning of words; when the recipe calls for flour, Iguana goes outside and picks a flower and when asked to beat an egg, Iguana pulls out his baseball bat. This humorous book and characters in their silly chef’s hats draws out your inner baker. Speaking of which…

Recently when having an impromptu dinner gathering, Skoogie pulled out her chef hat and apron, pushed up a chair and announced she was ready to help make this Berry Delicious Crisp! It was rather cute when she showed the place to hold your thumb on the pastry cutter to our friends.


Strawberry & Dried Cherry Crisp

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Filling:

1 quart strawberries, hulled and cut

1/3 c dried cherries

1/2 c sugar

1/4 c cornstarch

1 orange, zested and juiced

2 T balsamic vinegar

Combine all the ingredients in a bowl and then place in 9 x 13 glass pan.


Topping:

1 1/4 c your choice of flour

1/2 c oats

1 c brown sugar

1 1/4 sticks butter, cut into very small pieces

1 t vanilla

Pinch salt

1 to 2 T water

3-4 crystalized ginger cut into very small pieces

Mix together the flour, oats, and brown sugar. Then cut in the butter with a pastry cutter (you could use a food processor, pushing buttons is equally as fascinating to kids). Add 1-2 T water until mixture becomes crumbly.

Add the topping over the filling and then sprinkle the crystalized ginger evenly around. Bake for 25-30 minutes until bubbly. Serve with ice cream and enjoy!

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