Almond Fennel Cherry Crumble
I am in the home stretch with merely weeks away - weeks away people!!! Yes, I am HUGE and uncomfortable, as you all have been annoyingly reminded of again and again, but I’m really really really getting ready to pop her out. She is keeping me on my toes though, not surprisingly. My son did the same with refusing to turn head down. She is most definitely in the same family (obviously!) but is testing me on other levels.
For one, she is head down (woooo hoooo!!). Now, this is a position my son never I mean never was interested in being in so I am hopeful she likes it down there but have learned to be not attached. However, being that she is head down, I am surprised by all the new discomforts I am experiencing for the first time. If I were to try and express the sensation in my pelvis, I would liken it to an elephant sitting on it. Test one.
Test two: Went to my OB last week for my weekly check up and she found that my blood pressure was elevated. Now, I am normally a person with low blood pressure so though this elevation isn’t high for others - for me it was. She sent me to the hospital to do some other tests to rule out any serious developments. Three hours later, thankfully all my labs as well as blood pressure were normal and baby is thriving in her amniotic cocoon. Still, she wants to be on the safe side, get monitored weekly at the hospital and also, most importantly, get more rest. I think I chuckled when I responded, “Rest more? What do you mean?”. I told her I’d been resting each day. Well, almost each day. When I can. Anywhere from 15mins to an hour. She smiled and said in a motherly tone, “You need to rest more and drink more water. I’ll see you next week”.
At first, I was bothered that I had a simple prescription to get more rest, drink more water and get weekly monitoring at the hospital. I know, ridiculous. Things could be a heck of a lot worse and the mere fact that I was annoyed, annoyed me even more. When when I got home, my husband sent me upstairs to be on bed rest, took care of the household chores, dogs, son and ordered take out.
I rested all day napping on and off and I must say, at the end of it I was even more exhausted then I’ve been feeling which always is a sign of how tired you actually are. So again, (test three) this little baby girl is keeping me in check and making sure I get some much needed rest cause let’s be honest - once she comes there ain’t gonna really be a lot of time for mama to get a lot of rest!
I am now looking at this time as a gift. Taking these last weeks as an opportunity to rest and rest and rest some more. Grateful I have nowhere to be and my focus can simply be on nourishing myself and baby. Must admit that being pregnant for all these months becomes such a normal way of existence that sometimes I simply forget the fact that I am feeling this way cause I’m growing a freaking human being!
Almond Fennel Cherry Crumble Crumbles are one of my favorite simple desserts to make in a jiffy. It’s also one of those dessert that you can easily adapt with pretty much any seasonal fruit. Apples, pears, summer stone fruit, fresh berries, other frozen berries or mix and match with your favorite combination. If I had a few pears or apples laying around, I would have added them to my frozen cherries but I didn't and wasn't about to go to the store so I settled for just the cherries. But I would encourage you to add them if you have some laying around. They not only add a lovely flavor but mouthful as well. You can absolutely use regular butter instead of coconut oil - pecans or walnuts for the almonds or leave the nuts out altogether. The fennel seed adds a subtle nuance without overwhelming the flavor but if you are not a fan, by all means, leave it out. Sub more cinnamon, pinch of nutmeg, ground ginger -play around. Crumbles seem to be very forgiving.
1 cup spelt flour 1/2 cup almond flour 1 cup rolled oats 2/3 cup coconut palm sugar 1/2 cup blanched slivered almonds 1 1/2 tsp fennel seeds, toasted and ground 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon 1/4 tsp fine sea salt 1/2 cup plus 4 TB coconut oil, melted ---- 4 cups frozen cherries (2 bags) zest and juice of 1 orange 3 TB coconut palm sugar 3 TB tapioca starch
In a medium bowl, whisk together flours, oats, sugar, ground fennel, cinnamon and salt. Mix in the melted coconut oil until everything is incorporated. Put into the refrigerator for 10 minutes or until ready to use.
Preheat oven to 375.
Add frozen cherries into the baking dish of choice. No need to de-frost. Mix together with orange zest, juice, tapioca starch and coconut sugar. Take the crumble topping out of the fridge and if topping is too firm, break into nice sized crumble chunks. Pour and spread the topping to evenly cover the fruit.
*You will have some topping leftover which is always great to use for another recipe. Just put it into a ziplock bag and keep it in the freezer. Lasts for awhile in there. Remember to label and date it though.
Cover baking dish with a sheet of parchment paper then a piece of aluminum foil. Bake for 40 minutes. Uncover and bake for another 15 to 20 minutes more. Until the topping is crisp to the touch, the color golden and the fruit bubbling. Let cool for 30 minutes to set before and serve with ice cream or creme fraiche.