I can't get enough nectarines during the summer. I was so sad when I went by my friends' orchard the other day and he said they were done. What do you mean done!!! I just moved back here and I planned on stuffing myself with them until I started to glow orange, "I bellowed."
I scurried home with the last few I could find and they were so ripe, I knew I would have to consume them faster than I had planned.
I don't know about you, but my summer was stolen away by moving and all the other life changes going on around here. I decided I needed to take advantage of the last few remaining weeks and plant myself in our newly renovated park downtown, sit there in my lawn chair and soak in the free summer concerts they have been having. But let's face it, you can't just sit there and relax completely without a little snack.
I happily parted with a few of my beloved nectarines to whip us up a little to dessert to enjoy with our music and I'm so glad I did, a sweet little summer dessert really did make the music sound that much sweeter.
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Make the crumb mixture. In a food processor combine:
1 cup old-fashioned oats
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup light brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 sticks cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2" pieces
Zest of 1 lemon
1 teaspoon fresh rosemary, minced (you can use 1/2 tsp. if you only want a hint of rosemary flavor)
Pulse until barely starting to stick together. You still want a crumb consistency.
If you don't have a food processor you can cut the butter into the other ingredients with a pastry cutter or two knives.
2. Spray a 7" x 11" baking pan with no-stick spray and place half of the crumb mixture in the pan and press down with your fingers.
3. Bake bottom crust for 17-20 minutes. You just want the crust to set up.
4. While your crust is baking prepare jam filling. Combine in a small saucepan the following:
2 pounds yellow nectarines, pits removed and diced in small pieces
Juice of 1 lemon
3-4 inch sprig of fresh rosemary
3/4 cup granulated sugar
6. Remove the crust from the oven and place the jam evenly over the crust. Sprinkle the rest of the crumb topping over the fruit and return to the oven for 25-30 minutes, until nicely browned.
7. Schlep your significant other, kids and friends to the park and park it for awhile, share some crumb bars and a bottle of wine, you will be shocked at how fast your stress disappears.
Don't let the "Queen" down - go enjoy the rest of summer, it will be gone almost as fast as these crumb bars were.