Comfort In a Kugel

The word “comfort” carries a burdensome meaning for me. I hate the term “comfort zone,” most likely because I once dated a guy who accused me of never wanting to leave mine. I became incredibly defensive after his outrageous attack because, as with all things we get defensive about, he was right. I chose to blame him for not creating an environment that felt safe enough for me to break out of the zone, a theory I think has some merit but is obviously not the entire story behind my preference for adhering to, as my mother would say, “my little ways.” Also, when you are raised in an environment where anything that smacks of the easy way out is considered the lazy approach to life, you start to judge anything overly comfortable in a negative way. For example, you would never allow yourself to sit on a sofa and watch TV in the middle of a sunny, brisk Saturday afternoon. You’re supposed to be outside, riding a bike or going to a museum or, if you really need to be seated, reading a book. And not just any book. You would never read a bestseller or anything with Oprah’s seal of approval. You’re stretching your brain, challenging your vocabulary, taking yourself on a trip to another time or place. And if these activities make you a little UN-comfortable, whether mentally or physically, so much the better, it means you probably “grew” as a person. And everyone knows growing can hurt a little.

As much as I resent that part of me that won’t let me off the productive hook when I want to be a lazy sloth, I suppose I understand why my parents instilled this way of thinking. It’s true, if you’re on death’s door you’re never going to regret having read War and Peace instead of The Notebook. (I’ve read neither by the way.) And you won’t think, “Why did I bother standing in line to see the Mona Lisa when I could have been watching a dubbed episode of Will & Grace in my hotel room?”

But when it comes to mourning a death or, as during these Jewish High Holy days, marking the end of a day of reflection, repentance and fasting, comfort food is in order. You deserve comforting because you are either in the midst of emotional distress or are coming off putting your stomach through extreme discomfort. That’s why it has always made complete sense to me that the foods most often found on a shiva buffet are the same ones arranged around the table at a Yom Kippur break fast. They are all designed to nurture and restore you in a gentle and unprovocative way.

After the funeral for my mother’s step-mother several years ago, we went to my mother’s step-sister’s house where the table legs were shaking under the weight of more food than even this large, grieving crowd could ever have eaten. You’ve got to hand it to my people, we know how to over-feed. This side of our family wasn’t plagued with the discomfort-trumps-comfort ethos. When we were kids, each of my cousins had her own room furnished with a bedroom set, wall-to-wall carpeting and a television. I bet the summer they turned nine my aunt and uncle didn’t make them read Tom Sawyer and The Prince and The Pauper, in addition to the school’s reading list. I was so jealous. And all these years later they had a big, cozy sectional sofa in the den facing an enormous TV where the men had already started to watch a football game.
Anyway, aside from Passover and the stray box of Golden’s Cheese Blintzes in the back of the freezer, I was raised in a family that didn’t do a lot of culturally Jewish eating. I was very late in my discovery of the pleasures of smoked fish. But at Nanny’s shiva I piled my plate high with glistening orange, buttery salmon, scoops of creamy white fish salad, sliced tomatoes and a toasted bialy. Having eyed a fruit salad and a platter of rugelach, I knew to save room for dessert.
And then I approached a lasagna pan, cheeses and butter still bubbling, topped with what looked like corn flakes and swirled with apricot jam. It was a noodle pudding, or kugel, and I hadn’t seen one since I was a little girl hanging out in Gert’s kitchen next door. Back then I didn’t understand the appeal of baked egg noodles, cottage cheese, dried fruit and cinnamon. That’s because I was a moron. Kugel is one of the most delicious inventions. Imagine getting a warm, sweet hug from someone who adores you. That’s what kugel tastes like. It doesn’t judge, it doesn’t challenge. It just says, “Enjoy, bubbela.”

I made my aunt promise to send me the recipe but there was only one problem. When the handwritten instructions arrived various specifications that a cook might, I don’t know, find convenient to know were omitted. Like, what does “one jar of apricot preserves” mean? There are a variety of sizes: was it eight ounces, 12 ounces or 16 ounces? And there were other things that left me scratching my head. “Grease a Pyrex baking dish rectangular 12 inch.” How long was the other side supposed to be? “You can add corn flake crumbs or cinnamon to the top if desired.” Okay, but how much of each? This was way too vague for a rule-follower like me.

So I hit the books and found Joan Nathan’s recipe for “Noodle Kugel Served at the American Embassy in Rome” to be my favorite. Maybe I like the dash of pedigree applied to the very homey dish by way of its connection to the diplomatic service? Whatever the reason it is fantastic and results in my father saying, “This is your best kugel!” every year, as if he hadn’t had the exact same one the year before. I add a bit of orange zest because I like the citrusy contrast against the mellow creaminess. Serve it warm and allow yourself to be comforted and loved. War and Peace can wait till tomorrow.

Comfort In a Kugel
Adapted from Jewish Cooking in America, Joan Nathan 1998
Printer friendly version
1/2 pound (8 ounces) wide egg noodles
2 cups cottage cheese (one 16 ounce container)
2 cups milk
1/3 cup butter, melted
2 teaspoons cinnamon, divided
1 Tablespoon orange zest
1/2 cup plus 2 Tablespoons sugar, divided
3 large eggs
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup sour cream or yogurt
1/4 cup raisins or currants
1/4 cup chopped dried apricots
1/4 cup sliced, blanched almonds

Preheat oven to 350

Grease 9x13 baking dish and set aside.

Cook noodles as per package instructions, drain and set aside.
While noodles are cooking in a large bowl combine cottage cheese, milk, butter, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, orange zest, 1/2 cup sugar, eggs, salt, sour cream/yogurt, raisins and apricots.
Fold in noodles and pour entire mixture into prepared pan.
In a small dish combine the remaining teaspoon of cinnamon and 2 Tablespoons of sugar and sprinkle over top of kugel. Then cover the top with almonds.

Bake for 45 minutes to one hour until firm. Let cool a bit before serving.
Yield: Serves 10-12 as a side dish


Braving Baklava

It is very annoying when you want to rise to an occasion but no occasion to rise to presents itself. That’s how I’ve felt since the slight nip in the air has welcomed people back to school or back to work. New things are being learned and noses are to the grindstone. But when you are no longer a matriculated student, and don’t have someone expecting a certain output of weekly work in order to earn your weekly pay, it is up to you to create your own challenge to meet. When I find myself in a rut or I’ve reached a plateau (really kind of the same thing) I know it is time to stretch myself.
When I get in a mood like this the most natural thing for me to do in order to ignite the shake-it-up process is to bake something I have never baked. I don’t mean a new take on a chocolate chip cookie or a brownie, but something I have written off as best left to the professionals, basically because I am scared to tackle it on my own. By pushing myself I know I’ll learn something new, be completely present and have to concentrate. Sure, I’m risking the agony of defeat but maybe I’ll find the thrill of victory!

So I decided it was about time I tried to make baklava. It’s one of my favorite pastries and I don’t have it nearly enough. The kind I usually encounter can be found in the smeared display case of a coffee shop or gourmet deli, snug in a big foil tray looking like it was baked when the store was built. It sits there getting soggier and sadder while no one buys it. Such a pity since good baklava is, well, really good. And I know that I have resisted making it myself because of my Fear of Fillo.
Why should I be scared of anything made with flour, water and oil? I’ll tell you why. Because every time I read a recipe requiring the use of that paper thin dough it is filled with italicized warnings. “Keep the dough covered or it will dry out!” “Work quickly!” “Don’t let it tear!” And my favorite, “Be Patient!” How am I supposed to be patient when I feel like I was just yelled at? I’m a nervous wreck! I knew I’d need to shut out the fear and self-doubt and just give it a try. I had nothing to lose and potentially a wonderful treat to gain. Plus, I had enlisted my mother to help me, couching it as a mother-daughter experience. Wouldn’t it be fun?! We’ll bond! Plus, she loves spanakopita and baklava is kind of like a sweet, nutty cousin.

The day of the baklava bake started out with Mom cleaning her closet and playing on ebay. I, in the meantime, did some yoga, sat outside when it was still sunny and read Bossypants, telling myself that as soon as Mom was ready, we’d go to the store and buy some walnuts. And then I went back to my book. Then I made lunch, then I talked to my sister on the phone, then I helped my mother clean her closet and then I realized just how much procrastinating I was doing.
The day reminded me of the first time I had “Sunday Night Feeling.” When I was a kid my father took my sister and me to see a re-release of Oliver! I remember it was a freezing Sunday and, being children, we went to a mid-afternoon show. At some point while Oliver plaintively sang, “Where is love?” it happened. I remembered that I was sitting in a theater, the film would be over at some point, we’d get back on the bus to go home in the dark, and I had yet to finish my homework. For the rest of the movie I was completely preoccupied with the book of fractions I knew was waiting for me and the trouble I’d be in if I didn’t complete my assignment. Sunday Night Feeling is really all about Monday.
And that’s what the baklava bake had turned into: this thing I knew I had to do that was casting a shadow over everything else. Procrastination is the super highway to self-loathing and I knew I had to get myself off that road. Now, it might seem stupid that I was nuts about a project I had assigned myself. No one else was expecting anything. But that was just it. I would only have myself to blame for letting me down. Personally, I think that makes sense. So I announced to my mother that we needed to get things going.

Finally we got home from the store and while she went to deal with some closet or ebay related crisis, I decided that I could go it alone. She clearly was not a committed baklava partner and I didn’t need any dead weight in the, er, her kitchen. There was work to be done! I made the sugar syrup and put it to the side. I chopped my nuts and browned my butter, took the stack of the fearsome fillo, which I’d defrosted overnight in the fridge, covered it with two pieces of damp paper towel and then began the assembly. Yes, the first sheet I pulled off the stack tore into shreds but I was okay with it. I was able to sort of patch it together in the bottom of the pan and then I got into a groove, pulling sheet off the pile, laying it carefully over the other, brushing it with melted butter and so on. It was a totally calming and focused experience and when the sheets smoothed out perfectly, so satisfying too. I was more than a little bit proud.
All was great until it was time to cut the baklava before slipping it into the oven. Here is where my math homework rears its head. The recipe tells you to cut the baklava into 2 ½ -inch diamonds. This is something I am terrible at. I have butchered so many pans of bar cookies trying to cut them this way. So I panicked and cut very uneven diamond-esque shapes. (When I was in pastry school this job fell to whomever I was teamed up with that day. If it had been left to me, we would have failed the task.) So the next time I will cut my baklava into squares. And there will be a next time because I have conquered Fear of Fillo! And more importantly to you, this recipe is amazing. Of course it’s sweet, nutty and sticky, and the syrup is more delicate in flavor than some that are overwhelmingly honey-ish. In the future I may try pistachios instead of walnuts or maybe add some rose water. That’s something I’ve never used. And now that I’ve shaken things up a bit, I am vowing to challenge myself monthly. Look out yeast, you’re next!
NOTE: You will see in the photo that I placed a clove in the center of each piece, as per the recipe. Tasters felt it was unnecessary and a bit too much so I left them off of the ingredient list.

Braving Baklava

Adapted from Food from Many Greek Kitchens, Tessa Kiros, 2011 as excerpted in House Beautiful September, 2011
2 cups sugar
2 Tablespoons honey
Juice of 1/2 lemon
Strip of lemon peel
2-3 cinnamon sticks

1 cup almonds, chopped medium fine
1 cup walnuts, chopped medium fine
2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
22 sheets of fillo pastry (my brand had 20 sheets per sleeve and that was plenty)
1 1/2 sticks of unsalted butter, melted to golden brown

Put the sugar, honey, lemon juice, lemon peel and cinnamon in a saucepan with 1 cup of water and bring to a boil, stirring.
Simmer for 5-6 minutes, then take off heat and cool.
Preheat the oven to 350

Mix the almonds, walnuts, sugar and cinnamon together in a bowl.
Have the fillo sheets ready, covered by a damp dishcloth or paper towel to prevent them from drying out. Brush the bottom of a 9x13" baking pan with the melted butter.Lay one sheet of fillo on the bottom and brush with the melted butter.
Cover with another sheet, brush it with the butter, and continue in this way until you have a neat stack of 10 sheets lining the bottom of the pan.

Spread half the nut mixture over the fillo, patting down firmly and leveling the surface.
Cover with another two sheets of fillo, buttering each one. Scatter the rest of the nuts evenly and press down gently. Now lay down the remaining sheets of fillo, buttering each one and finishing with the last layer buttered.
Using a small sharp knife, trim any side of the fillo that is crawling up the sides. Cut diamonds on the diagonal of about 2 1/2 x 2 1/2 inches. If this seems to hard to figure out, cut the pan into small squares. Flick or mist a little cold water over the top to prevent the layers from curling up.
Bake for 25-30 minutes until just golden on top.
Place pan on a cooling rack and pour 1/2 of the syrup over the top. When it is absorbed then pour over the rest.
Let cool completely before serving (could take up to 3 hours but the longer it sits, the better it tastes.)
Yield: 24-28 pieces.
The baklava will keep 2 weeks at room temperature in an airtight container. It also freezes very well.


School Days Almond Butter and Apricot Jam Bars

Thank goodness I don’t own a firearm. When you live in the asphalt jungle, it’s not hard to feel pushed to the edge by the crowds, the noise and the general lack of consideration on the part of your fellow inhabitants. The concept of going postal doesn’t seem so far-fetched to me. But even without a gun I find ways of expressing my hostility that won’t sentence me to a life in a bright orange jumpsuit, a color I have a very hard time pulling off.
Take last night. My friend Marsha and I went to the Moth, an evening of storytelling that is always fun and funny. The theme was “food” and the line-up included among others, Adam Gopnik and Gail Simmons. They were both fantastic and told riotous and heartfelt stories involving their spouses and their own eating obsessions. During intermission the crowds were insane in the too small refreshment/bathroom area and this aggressive little woman and her meek husband were planted near the door to the auditorium. In my attempt to get back to my seat I said, “Excuse me” three times. When she simply didn’t move I kind of checked her with my shoulder bag and barreled through. Okay, I didn’t “kind of” anything. I pushed her using my bag and didn’t look back, even though I saw that she’d whipped her head around to see who shoved her. And I didn’t care.
I also realized that I’ve been using the bag-shove move since I’ve been carrying a bag. When I was eight I started a new school, the polar opposite of the kumbaya school where we went to the movies and sang “If I Had a Hammer” instead of learning how to add or write. (See my post from two weeks ago). I traded in my fringed suede vest and bell bottoms for my new school’s uniform, a blue and white striped jumper worn with a blue blazer and either a blue or white shirt. In fully embracing this new color scheme I chose to carry a blue and white color-blocked patent leather (except it was vinyl) soft brief case with a brass (except it wasn’t real brass) latch. What? You didn’t want to look like a mod junior executive in the third grade? Really, I was just excited for everything to match and remember grabbing it off the shelf excitedly when my mom took me book-bag shopping at Kress on 39th & Fifth.
I hadn’t owned the bag for more than a week when I discovered its potential as a weapon. I was coming home with my mother from dance class on a packed cross town bus during rush hour. The bus stopped at Central Park West where about 1/3 of the passengers were trying to get off. There was a woman standing blocking the back exit door who looked like the fancy old ladies on cartoons, all puffed out chest, gray hair in a French twist and a snooty up-turned nose. She wouldn’t move out of the way and I couldn’t get to the exit. My mother had been holding the pole on the opposite side of the door from me so we got separated and she had been swept through the exit onto the street while I was still trying to make my way off. Fear of winding up alone on a bus, and anger at the lady about to cause my abandonment nightmare to come true, lit a fire in my belly and I took my mod brief case and whacked the woman on the shins while pushing my way past her, through the door and safely next to my mother on 86th Street. I must have known that what I’d done wasn’t so nice because I remember looking discreetly over my shoulder and seeing the snotty lady leaning over to rub her leg. I believe I caused her pantyhose to run with my brass-like latch and I am still not sorry.

Unfortunately my love affair with my mod color blocked bag was short lived. As with all grade-school obsessions they are fleeting and, for parents, hard to keep up with. I decided I had to have a canvas back pack, for which I was told I’d have to wait until the next school year since the bag I had was “perfectly fine.” This was not good news for me because, being the “new girl” in the class, I was under a fair amount of scrutiny and was very concerned about being labeled “prissy” (aka “nerd/geek/loser” for those of you not around in 1973). As far as I was concerned, I had already suffered enough. I was nauseated with anxiety every day for the first two weeks of school and had a cafeteria door slam on my pinky finger on day one. (Thank the good lord no one witnessed that and I held back my tears of pain.) The cafeteria had been a huge adjustment since at my old school we brought food from home. How I yearned for the tuna or peanut butter and jelly sandwiches my mom used to pack in my Partridge Family lunch box. The new school had creepy things like Chicken a la King and Salisbury steak and I was so hungry.
My niece has just started 1st grade and I have been projecting all of my school cafeteria issues onto her tiny frame and she’s not even a “new girl.” I grilled her about how the lunch room worked. Does she hold her own tray? What does she eat? Drink? Who does she sit with? She answered all my questions as only a seasoned lunch room pro can, with a sigh and a roll of the eyes. “I carry my own tray. It’s green. The sandwiches are already made but you can tell what they are because the wrapping is see-through. I have peanut butter and jelly. Then I have a piece of challah bread which I smush with butter and then I have cranberries. Sometimes I have milk, sometimes apple juice. And I sit with Rosie.” She immediately put me at ease. Although I can’t imagine what that challah bread looks like since her knife skills are pretty sad, if age appropriate.

I’ve wanted to make the Barefoot Contessa’s peanut butter and jelly bars as a nod to everyone’s memories of Back-to-School since I first saw her make them on TV. But I’ve been finding myself more into almond than peanut butter these days so I did a little tinkering with her recipe and made it a bit more appealing to grownups while still keeping the childhood feelings alive. The crust is both buttery and kind of sandy in texture. Apricot and almond is a great combo but if you prefer a different jam, go for it. Using honey roasted almonds to sprinkle on top give a great sweet and salty crunch. These bars are thick so you’ll either want to cut them really small or use an even bigger pan so they are a bit thinner. There is plenty of dough to play with. In fact, after covering the top sufficiently I had some left over. Regardless, they are delicious and with a glass of milk you will feel like someone who loves you very much packed you a special treat in your lunch box. As for my mod brief case, a simple plea to my grandmother resulted in the canvas back pack I had coveted. Did you know if you fill your knapsack with enough books a simple twist of the shoulder can inflict a fair amount of pain to anyone who is standing in your way? Just saying.

School Days Almond Butter and Apricot Jam Bars
Adapted from Barefoot Contessa at Home, Ina Garten 2006
1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 extra-large eggs, at room temperature
2 cups (18 ounces) creamy salted almond butter
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 1/2 cups (18 ounces) apricot jam
2/3 cups honey roasted almonds, coarsely chopped

Directions Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Grease a 9 by 13 by 2-inch cake pan. Line it with parchment paper, then grease and flour the pan.

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar on medium speed until light yellow, about 2 minutes.
With the mixer on low speed, add the vanilla, eggs, and almond butter and mix until all ingredients are combined.

In a small bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. With the mixer on low speed, slowly add the flour mixture to the peanut butter mixture. Mix just until combined.
Spread 2/3 of the dough into the prepared cake pan and using your hands and the aid of piece of wax or parchment paper, press and spread over the bottom evenly.

Spread the jam evenly over the dough with an offset spatula or knife.

Drop small globs of the remaining dough evenly over the jam. Don't worry if all the jam isn't covered; it will spread in the oven. Sprinkle with chopped nuts and bake for 45 minutes, until golden brown.

Cool and cut into squares.


What Happened to Summer Fruit Cobbler

I feel like I’ve been stood up by summer and I’m not sure what I did to offend him. He’s my favorite season, I greet him with open arms every year and yet these last few months have been...meh. This week’s weather is such a rude awakening for those of us who refuse to let Labor Day signal THE END OF SUMMER. I was planning on squeezing every drop of warmth out of September but so far it’s been cold, rainy and grey. Fittingly, I just lost my sunglasses.
What happened? Memorial Day started off with a bang—beautiful weekend, good friends and food. But then things never really got off the ground. Maybe I didn’t honor the season properly and so Mother Nature is punishing me. I didn’t run outside enough. I only had a handful of al fresco meals, I didn’t walk the High Line at sunset or go to a concert in the park. And the worst offense? I never made it to the beach. What a slap in summer’s face! For that reason alone I feel responsible for Irene.
I’ve always billed myself as someone who hates change but I am rethinking that statement and changing it to “I hate transition.” That’s the really painful part for me, the feelings of letting go of something you aren’t ready to let go of, the anticipation of the unknown and the journey to that unknown. Yuck. But once I get to the other side I am fine. Does that make sense?

Like when I went away to college. The weeks leading up to my departure were totally fraught. I had to find the courage to admit to my parents that I’d mishandled my summer job earnings and would need to borrow money for my mauve Marimekko comforter and electric Olympia typewriter. There were dramatic farewell dinners with friends I would see again in a month. There was the packing up of my grandmother’s apartment for her permanent move to Florida. I was such an anxious wreck the night before my own departure my mother gave me two Valium. The second because I threw up the first.
But the point is that once I got to school I was completely at ease in two days. My response to transition is historically always the same, yet I forget it every time I am confronted with change. There was one summer that ended with me in the back seat of the station wagon for the drive back to the city, the cage of gerbils I’d been assigned to watch before the start of 2nd grade balanced on my lap and my feet resting on the portable TV wedged behind the driver’s seat. When my father came to my side of the car to shut the door he saw the most forlorn look on my face. To this day he brings it up whenever we talk about Labor Day. So my end of summer blues is nothing new and you’d think that I’d be able to comfort myself by saying, “Here you go again. Stay the course. You’ll be fine when you get to the other side.” But I don’t. Or I can’t.

And still I am not willing to give up on summer completely. I’m not starting school so I don’t have to draw such a thick line on the calendar after Labor Day. It won’t be grey and gloomy forever, there will be sunny morning runs left to take, meals to enjoy outside, sunsets to marvel over. Right? Wrong. It won’t be the same. The light is different in September from what it is in June, the leaves are more of a green-brown than a green-green and the evenings take on an eerie chill.
In June I was bemoaning not having a strawberry-rhubarb pie for my birthday dinner but eased my pain with the knowledge that at some point I would go to Briermere farms to pick one up. Actually, my sister and I ended up grabbing three pies and I saved the strawberry-rhubarb one for last. When I finally went to cut myself a slice last weekend it was too late. The top was covered entirely with a snowfall of white mold spores. How appropriate. And it was entirely my fault. I didn’t freeze the pie but just left it in the fridge, saving it for that moment when I was really craving it. And now it is too late. I could try to recreate it using frozen fruit but it wouldn’t be the same and I need to learn this lesson once and for all. You can’t put things off! I should have been seizing summer moments all along.
So I am giving up. Or rather, admitting to myself that I missed some opportunities these last few weeks. I am sure I am not alone in my feelings and felt somewhat validated last week when the Times food section did a piece on final bites of summer. I love a good cobbler and Sam Sifton’s blackberry version looked delicious and rustic baked in a cast iron pan—I could pretend I’d been to a cabin in the Adirondacks! I decided a trip to the farm stand was in order for the last of the gorgeous peaches and berries and it was worth it. Topped with a biscuit crust the cobbler is bright and very juicy, better to eat in a bowl with vanilla ice cream than on the plate I went with. If you are not a lemon fan, just use two teaspoons. It is the perfect comfort food to help ease the transition from summer to fall. I know I’ll be fine once I get there.
What Happened to Summer Fruit Cobbler
from the New York Times, August 31, 2011
5 cups of blackberries (OR I used a combo of blackberries, blueberries and sliced peaches)
1/2 cup plus 3 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
Zest of 1 lemon
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
Pinch salt
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold, cut into small pieces
1 egg
1/2 cup milk


Heat oven to 425 degrees. Butter a 9-inch cast-iron skillet or 8-by-8-inch baking dish. Place the fruit in a large bowl, and add 1/2 cup sugar and the lemon juice and zest. Gently mix until the sugar dissolves. Transfer to the skillet.

Sift together the flour, baking powder, salt and 1 tablespoon sugar. Add the butter and, using a fork, work it together with the dry ingredients until the mixture is coarse.

In a separate bowl, stir the egg and milk until combined. Pour over the flour and butter mixture and stir to combine into a smooth dough.
Using your fingers, place clumps the size of golf balls of dough on top of the fruit mixture, pressing down slightly to create a rough-textured, cobbled crust.
Sprinkle with 2 tablespoons sugar and bake until the top is golden brown, about 30 to 45 minutes. Allow to cool slightly before serving.
Yield: 8 servings.