Rewards for Doing Everything Right in Your Vegetable Garden

23 Jul

When you’ve done everything right in your vegetable garden, and when the stars and the moon are in the right position, and the weather has cooperated, and you’ve been lucky to boot, you can sometimes end up with too many vegetables! What? Too many? Yes, it’s happened to me. Let me tell you about it.

I had a surplus of tomatoes one summer. Here’s what I did with them and with other notorious over-producers in the vegetable garden. Click here to learn more.

I am not fortunate enough to be growing fruit in my backyard but boy, I am so itching to do so. Here is a recipe I made with store-bought fruit of which I had an over-abundance. This recipe has a terrible name: Raspberry Grunt. The name comes from the New England states as I understand it. They call it a Slump in Rhode Island and a Grunt in Massachusetts. I think it should be called a Plump.

I purchased a small box of raspberries at my local Meijer because they looked so fresh and plump and the price was right. I had no idea what I was going to make with them. I did what I usually do, checked my cookbooks, looked online, etc. I found the Raspberry Grunt on Martha Stewart’s website. Well, I didn’t have enough raspberries and her recipe also called for blackberries. I didn’t have any of those. But I did have some nectarines and some plums on hand so that is what I used.

The reason I was drawn to this particular recipe is because I didn’t have to turn on the oven. It cooks on the stove top. We’re probably going to hit 100 degrees again today and I don’t want to make my air conditioner run anymore than it has to!

First, I tasted one of the raspberries. Wow! Talk about tart! I would have rather bitten into a lemon. So, I made sure I added more sugar than the recipe called for. That is the opposite of what I usually do in a recipe. Here is what the fruit looked like when everything was rinsed, peeled, and cut into slices.

My Recipe

1Β  1/4 Cup sugar

1/4 teasp. plus pinch cinnamon

3/4 Cup all-purpose flour

3/4 teasp. ground ginger

1/3 Cup milk, room temperature

3 Tablesp. unsalted butter, melted

2 Cups raspberries

2 nectarines, pitted and peeled

2 plums, pitted and peeled

2 Tablesp. lemon juice or orange marmalade

3/4 teasp. baking powder



Mix 2 Tablsp. sugar and 1/4 teasp. cinnamon and set aside. Wisk flour, 2 Tablesp. of the sugar, baking powder, pinch salt, and ginger in a bowl and set aside.Β  Stir milk and melted butter in small bowl. Mix the milk/butter into the flour mixture and set aside.

Put the fruit into a skillet and add 2 Tablsp water. Add the remaining pinch of cinnamon. Add the lemon juice or marmalade and the remaining sugar. Cover and bring to a boil over medium-high heat stirring occasionally.

Drop 8 large dollops of batter on top of the fruit mixture. Using two spoons to do this helps. Space them evenly apart. Sprinkle the cinnamon/sugar mixture over the top of the batter dumplings. Cover and reduce the heat to medium or lower depending on your stove. Cook until the dumplings are cooked through and the juices are bubbling, about 12-15 minutes. You can serve it warm as is or with cream drizzled on top or ice cream.Β  I also like it served cold.

Here is a photo of the results.

My take on the taste and texture.

Even though I added 1/4 cup more sugar than the original Martha Stewart recipe, my fruit was still too tart. I didn’t add lemon juice as was required in the original recipe either; I used my homemade orange marmalade instead which was very sweet. Yet I still wanted to pucker because it was tart! True, I didn’t drizzle cream or serve it with ice cream which would have helped a lot. So, if you use berries, especially raspberries in your recipe, you may want to add more sugar, especially if you don’t serve it with cream or ice cream.

The dumplings. Now this is what made it worthwhile. These dumplings were out of this world. They were fluffy, big, tender, and delicious. I ate two but I wanted to eat four. This was my breakfast today. I’m going to have some for dessert after dinner too! It may not taste as tart when it’s cold.

Extra Tip. The other thing I did differently was that I used powdered milk. So, I mixed 1/3 cup water with 3 tablespoons powdered milk. The box directions say use 5 tablespoons powdered milk to an 8 oz glass of water to get 8 oz of milk. I added a lot more than was needed. Why? We need our calcium for good health. I add powdered milk to a lot of recipes. You can’t tell the difference.

I will definitely make this again using different fruits. I might even use frozen fruit to make it easier and quicker.



8 Responses to “Rewards for Doing Everything Right in Your Vegetable Garden”

  1. Candy July 26, 2012 at 2:50 am #

    Hi, Thanks for visiting my blog πŸ™‚ This recipe looks right up my street -quick, no-bake and fruity, our blueberriers are just coming out so will be a good recipe for me!


    • Marcella Rousseau July 28, 2012 at 7:09 pm #

      I took your advice, Garden Walk Garden Talk. I just made it again tonight with peaches. The peaches were very sweet and even though I cut back on the sugar, it turned out a little bit too sweet! (But ummm, so good.) I bet blueberries would be good too, Candy. Plus you wouldn’t have to peel off the skins. I’m wondering if I could add an egg to the batter just to make the dish more nutritious. I might try that next time.


    • Marcella Rousseau August 2, 2012 at 6:18 pm #

      Have you tried it with blueberries yet? I bought some organic blueberries today and I’m going to make the Grunt again. (What an awful name.)


      • Candy August 4, 2012 at 10:57 am #

        Not yet, our blueberriers aren’t blue yet 😦 Should be ready in about a weeks time.


  2. silverbells2012 July 24, 2012 at 5:28 pm #

    I’d never thought of doing dumplings with fruit before but I’ve got some rhubarb to use up so looks this with your dumpling recipe is going to be on the menu in the next day or so πŸ™‚


    • Marcella Rousseau July 24, 2012 at 5:32 pm #

      Let me know how it turns out.


    • Marcella Rousseau August 12, 2012 at 9:58 pm #

      Have you tried it with the rhubarb? I’m going to try it with apples next. I think I will probably like apples the best. (I love apple pie.)


  3. Garden Walk Garden Talk July 24, 2012 at 7:48 am #

    This sounds really good, and like you, I am drawn to not baking in the summer. I would have added peaches, rather than nectarines, because our area grows really good peaches.


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