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As I write this post, I am fresh into my third trimester of my first pregnancy. I have been enjoying and cherishing this time, nourishing my body in every which way, and also anxiously awaiting the moment I get to finally hold and kiss her. It’s wild that one moment she will still be inside of me, protected and with everything she needs, and the next she will be in our arms! My mother bear instinct took over pretty early on, and I have been incredibly intentional about what I put in my body. Well, the first trimester was a bust because I could barely keep anything down, but since then I’ve been ensuring all three meals contain an abundance of leafy greens and other vegetables as well as a variety of protein with a large focus on seafood for all those brain-making omega 3s!
Needless to say, there haven’t been many sweets on my plate since those first rough 13 weeks, and I’ve been only feeding her the foods for optimal development. I have been hit by a bit of a sweet tooth lately though, and I have found seasonal fruit to be my closest ally in these times. Fruit is full of fiber and nutrients and often disregarded in Paleo communities as a valuable part of our diets. Yes, it’s high in naturally occurring sugars (some more than others), but it’s also a delicious way to get a variety of vitamins and minerals into our diets while providing a healthy source of carbohydrates in the context of balanced meals. I created this Pear and Plum Cranberry Crumble completely sweetener-free for this reason!
The pears are the perfect amount of sweet on their own while the plums and lemon add a bit of tartness and acidity to brighten up this one-skillet crumble. While you can easily skip the crumble and just make cooked fruit, it does add a lovely texture and is very simple to make if you have a food processor. You can source sweet plantain chips that are AIP-compliant from the following companies: Trader Joe’s, Inka Plantain Chips, and Artisan Tropic. You can also replace the sweet plantain chips with crunchy dried apple chips (that’s how I made the Skillet Apple Crumble topping in The Healing Kitchen). I recommend using a cast iron skillet for this recipe for the even heating and resulting caramelization and avoiding a stainless steel skillet which will likely result in sticking. We eat the crumble as-is in our household, but feel free to top yours with a scoop of coconut whipped cream or homemade coconut milk ice cream for a real springtime treat!
- 2 tbsp coconut oil or lard
- 2 large D’anjou pears, cored and sliced into ⅓-inch slices
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 5 ripe black plums, pitted and sliced into ½-inch slices
- ½ tsp cinnamon
- ¼ tsp fine sea salt
- 1 cup dried unsweetened cranberries
- 3 tbsp coconut flour
- 2 tbsp melted coconut oil
- ½ tsp lemon zest
- Pinch sea salt
- 1 ¾ cups sweet plantain chips
- Preheat the oven to a 400 degree F broil. Ensure the top rack is at least 6 inches from the heating element.
- In a 10- or 12-inch cast iron skillet, heat the coconut oil or lard over medium heat.
- Add the sliced pears to the skillet and toss with the lemon juice. Cook until medium-soft, about 5 minutes, stirring every couple of minutes.
- Add the plums, cinnamon and sea salt to the skillet. Cook for 10 more minutes, continuing to stir every couple of minutes, until the fruit is softened and has released thick juices.
- Meanwhile, make the crumble. In a food processor, combine the cranberries, coconut flour, and coconut oil for 15 seconds until the cranberries are sticky and have a medium-coarse texture. Add the lemon zest, sea salt and plantain chips and process for an additional 10 to 15 seconds until the chips are finely crumbled and combined with the cranberries.
- Sprinkle the crumble topping into an even layer on the fruit. Broil for 60 to 90 seconds until the crumble is golden being cautious not to burn it.
- Remove from the oven and let cool 5 to 10 minutes before serving in individual dishes with a scoop of coconut whipped cream or ice cream, if desired.