“One must ask children and birds how cherries and strawberries taste.”
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
There’s something about this season, and it’s certainly not the heat & dust which spells the North Indian summer. It’s the cherries, plums, peaches and apricots that make life oh-so-worthwhile! Stone fruit in season spells INSPIRATION! Peaches are beginning to appear but are yet to reach their blushing best. The cherries on the other hand are juicy enough to paint the town red, pleasantly more sweeter than expected. I had 3 not so sweet peaches and a box of fabulous cherries on hand, and I headed for the bookmarked folder with Smitten Kitchen in mind. SK is a great place for fuss free and delicious comfort food; bars, cookies, cakes all celebrated at Deb’s beautiful place.These Granola Bars from her blog are a favourite. This time I had peach shortbread in mind as the recipe sounded quite flexible. I contemplated sneaking in some more colour into them, and thus were born Cherry & Peach Oat Crumb Bars. 3 cups of flour sounded a bit more refined than what my comfort zone allows. I took a chance and substituted a cup of plain flour with rolled oats, both basic kitchen pantry cabinet items, and always found in my larder. Didn’t get a smooth, very crisp shortbread look like Debs, but the oats fitted in quite well. Do you like to bake with stone fruit? Whats your favourite? I love doing the crumbles, crisps and buckles, but often it isn’t enough to feed the blog, if you know what I mean. These bars are wonderful to make if you are on limited time. You can easily halve the recipe too. Do remember though that if you have a light porous stone in the kitchen, cherries will mark your space forever! Use vinyl tablecloths that are easy to wipe clean as pitting cherries is one of the messiest jobs, yet the rewards are the sweetest!I wasn’t too sure what I would do with such a large number of crumb bars as I got carried away and made the whole recipe. Would they freeze well? Hmmm … with these thoughts I ran the squares past the kids when they came in from school, hungry as ever. If kids sitting on the kitchen chair cushions hungrily devouring four squares at a go was anything to go by, I needn’t have worried.Plain flour might have made these firmer; oats made them slightly chewy soft. The bars were loved … and are all gone! I think this is a great way to use stone fruit in a bake. Fruit and oats offer a great make ahead snack for summer, served chilled out of the fridge! These also make an indulgent dessert served with a scoop of vanilla ice cream/whipped cream and a stone fruit compote. YUM!!BTW, here’s an update on the kittens. They’re growing, are almost 2 weeks old and are getting quite adventurous! They’ve been gone since yesterday. Man Friday says that the mother will take them to seven different places before they learn to fend for themselves. Mumcat picks all three in her mouth, jumps over the wall and disappears! Then in a few days they are back again!!
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