April 8, 2009 in Food

Anthony’s brings slump down in size for home cook

By The Spokesman-Review
 

Bev Varcoe of Spokane wrote a few weeks back about the Huckleberry Slump served at Anthony’s at Spokane Falls.

On a recent visit there, she asked a helpful waiter if he would get the recipe for her, and he obliged by hand-copying the ingredients. Unfortunately, that made enough dessert to feed 24 people. Varcoe asked for our help.

First, a note on terminology. A slump is like a grunt, which is like a crisp, which is like a cobbler. All of these desserts are essentially fruit and some kind of topping that is steamed or baked. In the case of a slump, the fruit is topped by a simple dough and baked until golden brown.

A call to Anthony’s corporate headquarters in Seattle got the ball rolling. The slump recipe isn’t one that the restaurant has shared in the past, said spokeswoman Lane Hoss. So she turned to the company’s food consultant, cookbook author Sharon Kramis, for help turning restaurant-size portions into something doable at home.

The result? A simple and delicious dish that almost beats my grandmother’s huckleberry cheese squares as my favorite huckleberry dessert. Almost.

If using frozen berries, don’t thaw them completely before using them, or they’ll lose all their juice. Even partially frozen berries give up a lot of liquid.

To get around that, one could bake individual portions of slump in smaller oven-safe dishes. Or, if you bake it all in one dish, just plan on having lots of liquid to drizzle over the top.

When I tested the recipe at home, the edges of the dough turned golden brown before the center was done baking, so be sure to tap the center to test for doneness.

Not that the underbaked dough is a bad thing; it is, after all, just flour, sugar, butter and cream. I gave some slump to a friend to taste and she thought that little bit of gooeyness in the middle was the best part. So I’ll leave it up to you.

Anthony’s Huckleberry Slump

Adapted by Anthony’s food consultant, Sharon Kramis, author of “Berries: A Country Garden Cookbook.”

Berry filling:

4 cups huckleberries (see note)

3/4 cup granulated sugar

1 tablespoon cornstarch

Topping:

1 cup self-rising flour (see note)

2/3 cup sugar

5 tablespoons cold unsalted butter

1 cup whipping cream

Optional:

1 pint vanilla ice cream

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix huckleberries with sugar and cornstarch, and pour into an 8-inch-square baking pan. Set aside.

Mix flour with sugar. Cut butter into small pieces and mix in with flour mixture, until mixture is grainy. Slowly add whipping cream to flour mixture.

Spread topping evenly over huckleberries. Bake for 50 minutes or until golden brown. Serve warm topped with vanilla ice cream.

Yield: 6 to 8 servings.

Note: Slump may be made with 4 cups blueberries if huckleberries are not available. If self-rising flour is not available, use 1 cup all-purpose flour mixed with 1 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder and 1/2 teaspoon of salt.

Looking for a recipe? Have a food question? Carolyn Lamberson would like to hear from you. Write to Cook’s Notebook, Features Department, The Spokesman-Review, P.O. Box 2160, Spokane, WA 99210, or e-mail to cooksnotebook@ spokesman.com. Please include your full name and city of residence. As many letters as possible will be answered in this column; sorry, no individual replies.


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