Saskatoon Slump

A delicious saskatoon dessert recipe reminiscent of old fashioned fruit cobblers.

saskatoon slump, saskatoon dessert recipe

No, that title does not describe how you feel at about three o’clock in the afternoon after picking saskatoons in the heat for the whole day.

It describes a lovely saskatoon berry dessert – sweet, flavourful saskatoons combined with melting morsels of ripe peach or nectarine, all topped off with a dense, cakey, almost-chewy batter that makes each mouthful a comforting taste of sweet saskatoon summer.

saskatoon slump, saskatoon dessert recipe

Yes, I know. Another saskatoon recipe! There’s been the ice cream and the juice already. But when the season for this unique berry is so short, we have to make the most of it. Saskatoon berries only grow in a select part of the world, and we here in the northern Alberta prairie region are lucky to be at the center of it. It’s hard to describe the flavour of saskatoons – people compare them to blueberries because they look somewhat alike, but that is the only thing they have in common. Saskatoon berries taste nothing like blueberries.

saskatoon slump, saskatoon dessert recipe

Saskatoons are much sweeter and seedier than blueberries and have a flavour that combines hints of vanilla, almonds and cherries. They really are a unique berry. The native First Nations People pounded them with meat and fat and dried the mixture to make pemmican, an important food staple. Early pioneers picked the wild berries, filled with antioxidants, to preserve for the long harsh prairie winters. Today, the berries are being cultivated and are an important new crop for the prairies, used in wines, jams, jellies and many delicious desserts.

saskatoon slump, saskatoon dessert recipe

We’re at the tail end of the saskatoon season here in northern Alberta, but I know that in higher altitudes and colder climates than ours, the saskatoon season is still in its prime, so I quickly wanted to pass on this recipe. I’ve been making it almost daily for the past week, and it disappears by evening. Saskatoon-Slump-Snitchers have been emptying the pan when I’m not looking.

A slump falls in the category of crisps, cobblers, betties and pandowdies, and though usually cooked on the stovetop rather than baked, I just had to use the term for this dessert because it had great alliteration with the word saskatoon. Plus it so aptly describes the way the batter sinks between the berries. Normal slumps have a biscuit batter on top, but this batter, with its ground flax instead of eggs, and small amount of baking powder, has a delightfully ‘gooey’ texture, more reminiscent of a clafoutis, which we love.

* * * * *

Kitchen Frau Notes: This Saskatoon Slump also works wonderfully with frozen saskatoon berries if the saskatoon harvest is finished where you live. Use heaping cupfuls of berries, since frozen ones take more space.

Also, you could substitute the diced peach or nectarine for any other tangy fresh or frozen fruit – use a heaped cupful, also. Possibilities are fresh or frozen raspberries, rhubarb, apples, apricots, plums, etc.

*Remember to store your ground flax seed in the freezer. Whole flax seeds keep for a year or more without being frozen, but once ground it turns rancid within a few weeks at room temperature.

saskatoon slump, saskatoon dessert recipe

Saskatoon Slump

gluten free, grain free, dairy free, egg free

  • ¼ cup ground golden flax seeds
  • ½ cup plus 1 tablespoon warm water
  • 3 cups saskatoon berries
  • 1 large nectarine or peach
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • ¼ cup + 3 tablespoons natural evaporated cane sugar
  • 2/3 cup almond flour (ground blanched almonds)
  • 1/3 cup + 2 tablespoons tapioca starch
  • 1/3 cup soft (or melted) coconut oil or butter
  • ¼ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon pure almond extract
  • pinch of salt

Preheat the oven to 350°F.

In a mixing bowl, combine the ground flax seeds and the warm water. Leave to gel for 5 minutes.

While the flax is resting, prepare the fruit base. Grease a 10 inch (25cm) pie dish or 9 inch square baking dish by greasing it well with coconut oil or butter. Spread the saskatoons in the bottom. Dice the nectarine or peach and arrange on top. Sprinkle with the lemon juice and 2 tablespoons of the sugar.

saskatoons and nectarine ready for saskatoon slump

To the jelled flax seed mixture, add the almond flour, tapioca starch, coconut oil or butter, ¼ cup of the sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, almond extract and salt. Mix well with a mixer or wooden spoon until all ingredients are smoothly incorporated.

Plop the batter over the fruit in the pan. Using a spatula, spread it around to even it out somewhat, but don’t worry about covering all the fruit completely. Sprinkle with the remaining tablespoon sugar.

saskatoon slump ready for the oven

Bake for 45 to 50 minutes, until the fruit is bubbling up around the edges of the pan and the slump mixture is golden.

baked saskatoon slump, saskatoon dessert recipe

Let cool slightly and serve warm with vanilla ice cream or, to intensify the flavour, saskatoon ice cream.

Also tastes mighty fine with a plop of yogurt for breakfast (if it lasts that long in your house)!

Serves 6.

 Guten Appetit!

You might also like:

How to Can Saskatoons (and Saskatoon Peach Preserve)

How to Freeze Saskatoons (and Saskatoon Cobbler)

How to Clean Saskatoons (and Saskatoon Juice)

Saskatoon Ice Cream

Pork Chops with Saskatoon and Green Apple Chutney

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4 Responses to Saskatoon Slump

  1. Dale Abendroth says:

    Margaret,
    This looks divine. Are the Saskatoon berries anything like huckleberries? Look forward to making a slump soon.

    • Margaret says:

      Thanks so much, Dale. Saskatoons taste quite different than huckleberries, though they sometimes grow in the same parts of the country. Huckleberries are more juicy and tangy, like blueberries, whereas saskatoons have this unique flavour that is so hard to describe – not like any other berry I know. When cooked, saskatoons get smaller, but still totally retain their shape due to the seed structure. They are also sweeter, so need less sugar when being prepared. I don’t know, I guess that still doesn’t really help. Do any saskatoons grow in your area?

      • Dale Abendroth says:

        Margaret,
        I had not heard of saskatoons until seeing your recipes. Will have to scout them out on our next trip north.

        • Margaret says:

          They’re usually ripe some time in July up here, but I think they’re earlier a little farther south. One of their other common names is Juneberry, so I’m guessing that’s when they ripen in some places. Hope you get a chance to try them sometime!

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