Good Food/Good Health
Week of July 28, 2008
Download 300 dpi photo
Contact: Sarah Wally, (202) 328-7744

Baked Summer Fruit

from the
American Institute for Cancer Research

This sweet, colorful cobbler captures the essence of summertime and makes a mouth-watering dessert or Sunday brunch dish. The recipe calls for a variety of fresh stone fruits (fruits containing a single seed or pit), but pitted frozen varieties can easily be substituted for cooks with limited time.

Cherries are among the stone fruits featured in this dish. Rich in antioxidants, cherries are a source of beta-carotene, vitamin C and fiber. They provide a broad range of phytochemicals, which may help prevent chronic diseases like cancer, and emerging research also points to their potential role in alleviating inflammation.

Cherries have a long growing season and are at their peak from June through August. When picking cherries at the local grocery store or farmer’s market, look for shiny plump fruit and avoid those with white spots, which indicates mold.

Golden-hued apricots, peaches and nectarines – three good sources of vitamin C, compliment the ruby red cherries in this week’s recipe. To speed ripening of these fruits, keep them at room temperature or place them in a paper bag with a banana or an apple. Once ripe, they should be stored in the refrigerator.

In China, peaches are synonymous with luck, abundance and protection. The Romans called them “Persian Apples,” named after the country that introduced them to Europe. Nectarines, which are closely related to peaches, have even been known to grow on the same tree as their cousin. As with peaches, some nectarines contain “freestone pits” which causes the pulp to separate easily from the seed. Others have clinging pits that are deeply embedded and more difficult to remove.

Baked Fruit 0500

Baked Summer Fruit

1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/8 tsp. salt
2 Tbsp. canola oil
2 Tbsp. honey
1 Tbsp. shredded coconut (optional)
Cooking spray
4 cups mixed stone fruit (plums, apricots, nectarines, peaches), peeled, pitted, and sliced*
1 pound cherries, pitted and halved*
4 Tbsp. whole-wheat flour, divided
4 Tbsp. brown sugar, divided
1/2 cup rolled oats
1/4 cup sliced almonds or chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray 9 inch square baking dish with cooking spray.

In mixing bowl combine sliced stone fruits with cherries. Sprinkle with 3 Tbsp. flour and 2 Tbsp. sugar and gently toss.

In another mixing bowl make topping by combining oats, almonds and remaining sugar and flour. Add nutmeg, cinnamon and salt. Gently whisk to mix. Stir in oil and honey and thoroughly blend.

Spread the fruit mixture in the baking dish. Pour the topping evenly over the fruit. Bake until the fruit is bubbly and topping is slightly browned, about 50 minutes. Remove from oven and sprinkle shredded coconut over top and let stand for 5 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.

*If desired, substitute with pitted frozen fruit that has been thawed and drained of excess juices.

Makes 8 servings.

Per serving: 180 calories, 6 g total fat (1 g saturated fat), 31 g carbohydrates,
3 g protein, 3 g dietary fiber, 40 mg sodium.

Our Mission: The American Institute for Cancer Research champions the latest and most authoritative scientific research from around the world on cancer prevention and survival through diet, weight and physical activity, so that we can help people make informed lifestyle choices to reduce their cancer risk.

We have contributed over $105 million for innovative research conducted at universities, hospitals and research centers across the country. Find evidence-based tools and information for lowering cancer risk, including AICR’s Recommendations for Cancer Prevention, at

All active news articles