Cardamom Oat Crumble

Happyolks | Cardamom Oat Crumble Happyolks | Cardamom Oat Crumble

We spent Saturday evening in the garage. Shaun turned on the propane heat lamp and Caroline and I watched the boys build a spice shelf for Corbyn and her newlywed digs.  Drinking beer from the can and sitting next to a woman I admire and respect more than she’ll ever know, I felt my pulse physically slow for the first time in months. I’ve missed this. Quiet, thoughtful moments without pressing emails to respond to, where tense decisions and terse dialogue are not on the regular, when the pendulum between fight and flight rests heavy.

Sunday continued at the same easy, tender pace. We went for a long run and treated ourselves to waffles and the NYTimes, laundry to Olympics coverage, and an afternoon bike ride to pick up frozen berries to satiate a brief craving for summertime. I love how Denver rewards us with a splattering of perfect days like these in the deep of winter. I swear they always show up at the right time as if to say, STOP! LOOK! The day is beautiful and you are here and very much alive to take in this moment and remember how to enjoy the miracle that is your life.

The fact that the weekend felt so precious is an indicator to me that the cards need shuffling around here. These weekends need to feel more ritual than they do unusual and surprising. I’ve quietly dedicated my time over the past six months to a local project that has called me to stretch, push, break down, pick up, and humble myself before a dizzying array of interpersonal dynamics in ways I do not yet have words to describe. I’m feeling a bit numb right now — to the success and failure, to what the work gave and what it took away. Regardless, I’m certain the impact of “it all” is positively permanent, and that the excruciating and thrilling days are teaching me something. For now I’m just feeling in the moment, and the moment isn’t good or bad… the moment just is.

Happyolks | Cardamom Oat CrumbleHappyolks | Cardamom Oat Crumble

“We think that the point is to pass the test or overcome the problem, but the truth is that things don’t really get solved. They come together and they fall apart. Then they come together again and fall apart again. It’s just like that. The healing comes from letting there be room for all of this to happen: room for grief, for relief, for misery, for joy.”

― Pema Chödrön

Happyolks | Cardamom Oat CrumbleHappyolks | Cardamom Oat CrumbleHappyolks | Cardamom Oat Crumble

Cardamom Oat Crumble

Adapted from Bon Appetit

Don’t sell yourself short and try to use fresh fruit for this recipe in the wintertime! Ya’ll know I love Chile, but berries picked before they’re ripe and shipped by boat from the Southern Hemisphere taste like cardboard. Frozen fruit is dandy in the off-season and I’d encourage you not to poo-poo it. I tend to prefer darker berries with cardamom, but feel free to substitute as you feel inspired.

  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 1/2 quick cooking oats
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup candied ginger, chopped
  • 1 heaping tsp cardamom
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 12 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
  • ———
  • 4 cups frozen cherries
  • 2 cups frozen strawberries
  • 1 cup frozen blackberries
  • 1 cup frozen blueberries
  • 1 apple, sliced
  • zest and juice of 1/2 orange
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 4 tbsp cornstarch (or) xantham gum


Happyolks | Cardamom Oat CrumbleHappyolks | Cardamom Oat Crumble

Mix flour, oats, sugar, brown sugar, candied ginger, cinnamon, salt, and cardamom in a large bowl. Add melted butter and stir together. Set aside.

Preheat oven to 375’. Butter 9″ deep cast iron pan. Add fruit to just below the fill line. Mix together with orange zest, juice, starch, and sugar. Pour and spread oat topping to cover the fruit completely. Bake for 45-50 minutes until the fruit is bubbling, thick, and the topping is beginning to brown. Let cool for 30 minutes to set before serving with ice cream or creme fraiche.

Happyolks | Cardamom Oat Crumble

  1. Marissa

    Ah yes, ‘the moment’, so hard to remain there. The Pema Chödrön quote is one to remember. It reminds me of one I keep close from Aldous Huxley, ““Actual happiness always looks pretty squalid in comparison with the overcompensations for misery. And, of course, stability isn’t nearly so spectacular as instability. And being contented has none of the glamour of a good fight against misfortune, none of the picturesqueness of a struggle with temptation, or a fatal overthrow by passion or doubt. Happiness is never grand.”

    This crisp looks so delicious. My ears perk up whenever I hear the word cardamom – a very nice addition.


  2. ileana

    This looks wonderful. I love oats and berries together. Happy weekend-ing to you!


  3. Annie

    Beautiful post and beautiful recipe! That quote is so true – life simply carries on, things change and they don’t.
    I am always looking for new ways to use cardamom, thank you!


  4. dixya

    cardamom is my favorite spice and it pairs so well with oats.. the quote you shared above is soo true.


  5. shelly@ohshellsbells

    trader joes has a lovely frozen berry mix, with cherries blackberries and blueberries that i highly recommend. and oh my, how i love cardamom. always happy to find another use for it.


  6. sara forte

    obsessed with that quote. I feel a bit taken by moments that just are lately too. Would give anything to sit on the couch in stretchy pants and share warm berry crumble with you. Ps. the photos are gorgeous and romantic, nice work, you two.


  7. Alanna

    Oh my goodness yes – berries and cardamom and crumble in a skillet! This is definitely the time of year I start getting antsy for summer produce and turn to frozen fruit. It felt rather thrilling to put frozen peaches in my smoothie this morning. Thank you for sticking up for it.

    I’m so glad you had such a sweet weekend. Dreamy days like the one you describe are exactly what the Tao of Bojon is all about! (I didn’t make up the word, a friend of mine did, and it always really resonated, hence my blog’s name: Wishing you many more Bojon days in the near future. :)


  8. Sarah

    Balance is a precarious thing – we tend to forget that down time is just as important to our mental health as work is. This crumble looks delicious too I love the addition of candied ginger with the cardamom – and luckily as it is summer in Australia I will get to use fresh berries!


  9. Grace

    This looks so good. I love those moments where life grabs your attention and tells you to just look around, be present and take it all in. It’s like stepping outside of yourself for a moment and getting to see how truly amazing that moment is, just to be there in it.


  10. Jamie Lee

    I’ve been thinking of creating a similar oat crumble, but with rhubarb. This is definitely the inspiration I’ve been looking for! And the visuals… the light and movement is so soft. Absolutely lovely.


  11. jennifer prod

    ah, this cardamom oat crumble is almost as beautiful as your writing — i’m listening to TED talks and responding to emails and wishing i could sneak out to the market to make something similar.


  12. Kezia

    Frozen berries are a must have in winter – we always have a couple of bags in the freezer. I hope you enjoy many more good weekends in the future!


  13. Lily (A Rhubarb Rhapsody)

    I can almost feel the comfort and the warmth of this crumble from here. Fantastic photos too!


  14. Ale

    Wow beautiful photos! and i love very much this recipe!


  15. Aeron

    Oh, yes… This feels like a burst of sun on a cloudy day. We’re having this tonight! Thank you…


  16. Skye

    These photos are absolutely stunning. The colour of those berries is truly spectacular.


  17. Sarah

    This looks wonderful. I love anything with cardamon in it!


  18. thefolia

    At first I thought that was a persimmon your were grating…it would be interesting non? Happy Nesting!


  19. Trista

    I don’t think you could describe your current state, with a crumble any better. You have a way with your words that make me feel, like I’m experiencing “it all” with you. LOVE every post that you create! I will be trying this, but in a Gluten free form, I’m sure it will still taste delish.


  20. Coco in the Kitchen

    Love all the fruit, fresh orange zest, cast iron skillet and cardamom.
    A winner. Going to serve this for breakfast this w/end!


  21. Caitlin

    i can definitely relate to the feeling of surprising relaxation and happiness and wondering why it doesn’t make its way into my life more often. i loved the quote- definitely something to keep in mind.


  22. Mallory

    Lovely and just what is needed this time of year…thank heavens for frozen fruit! May you have more weekends like the past and may spring be early this year!


  23. Kathryn

    You have a knack of posting just when I need to read your words and lose myself in Shaun’s images. Thank you, as ever, for the inspiration.


  24. Colleen

    Your talk of the impact of your adventures with the local project being “positively permanent” reminds me of a conversation I had during a tough and interesting time of growth. During this conversation my partner described difficult challenges as something that won’t always be pleasant but will definitely be positive and that has always stuck with me during challenging times.


  25. Chloe

    That quote by Pema is filled with so much truth and faith. It’s a reminder for when we forget that there’s no urgency, because there doesn’t need to be a solution. We don’t have to “figure it out”. We just have to be here and love. Thank you, Kelsey, as always for your words and your presence. I am so happy for you and excited for all there is to come. Lots of love.


  26. Ashley

    So beautiful. The moment just is. I love that and would love to be more okay with that. Lovely everything.


  27. Abby

    I’ve been trying to fit in more of those quiet moments lately too. I think sitting down with a plate of this would help :)


  28. Juliette

    Oh goodness, so good!


  29. Alex

    I love oat’s, they’re so versatile – plenty of different recipes you can make. Those oat crumbles look divine, I would love try some!…thanks for sharing this recipe :)


  30. Jade

    Mmmhhh.. so beautiful, and comforting to read! A sweet and warm reminder. We all need these rituals of slowing down, taking in more, enjoying life and each other. Look forward to hearing more about this project of yours.


  31. theWanderingFoot

    I made this last night….it was fantastic! I doubled the recipe, hoping to share some with my folks, but it was all gone in a sitting (there are 10 of us). This will stay in my recipes for sure. Thanks for sharing!


  32. Danielle @ TheCharmItSpot

    Omg this looks so good! Your pictures are absolutely beautiful! I love how tasty this all looks! Thanks for sharing!


  33. Angy

    I can feel the dawn
    I can feel the Earth
    I can feel the living all around
    Round round round
    All around, round round round

    I could choose a path
    I could choose the word
    I can start the healing
    Bring it now, now now now
    Bring it now, now now now

    Whispered songs inside the wind
    Breathing in forgiveness
    Like vibrations with no end
    Hear the planet humming
    What is clear far from the noise
    Get swallowed whole

    I could feel the sun
    I can see the sound
    I could set myself right here and drown,
    Drown drown drown
    Drown drown drown

    I can feel the rush
    I could clear the clouds
    I could set the needle, spin it loud
    Loud loud loud loud
    Loud loud loud loud

    I can here the crash
    I can fee the pound
    I can feel the current pulling down
    Down down down
    Down down down down

    Whispered songs inside the wind
    Breathing in forgiveness
    Like vibrations with no end
    Feel the planet humming
    What is clear far from the noise
    Gets swallowed whole

    With no quiet to be found
    Spirit lifted off the ground
    And what lies beyond the grave
    Might be welcome change
    Time will come, come what may
    With now rest in peace
    Until that day

    I could choose a path
    I could choose the word
    I can start the healing, bring it now
    Now now now
    Now now now now

    I could be the sun
    I can be the sound
    I could set myself right here and drown
    Drown drown drown
    Drown drown drown drown

    Whispered songs inside the wind
    Breathing in forgiveness
    And the chapter I’ve not read
    Turn the page…

    Eddie Vedder


  34. cynthia

    Beautiful words and beautiful photos — thank you so much for sharing. (And love the endorsement of frozen berries in the winter! I’m gearing up to use some frozen blueberries soon!)


  35. Thursday Things | The Wheatless Kitchen

    […] This cardamom oat crumble looks deeelicious. Kelsey’s writing is always so […]

  36. Lindsey

    Just perfect, Kelsey. I love this line, in particular: “when the pendulum between fight and flight rests heavy.” Enjoy this moment.


  37. Irina @ wandercrush

    This reminds me much of your camp cobbler post that caused me to wholly fall in love with your blog and your perspective. Thanks again for inspiring so much thoughtful cooking and, well, thoughtful thinking!


  38. Charlotte au chocolat

    Oh god, what a beautiful quote. Wishing you many calm, restorative weekends, and lots of easing into the moment.


  39. francesca

    These pictures are gorgeous and look delish!! Nice work :) -xo-


  40. The Gilded Sprout

    Beautiful post and stunning photos. I also love a crumble as it makes me feel like home. Thank you for sharing it!


  41. Morgan

    So yummy ! Served it with whipped coconut cream and it was a hit. Thanks!


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  43. Carolyn

    I made this recipe for a large group gathering–instead I cooked the fruit in my crockpot overnight (limited oven space!), added some oats in to the fruit instead of the cornstarch to soak up some of the juices (not evaporated when you cook in crock pot) and baked the crumble separately before adding it on. An adjusted recipe, but DELICIOUS.

    On a side note, your photos, writing, recipes and videos really give me a sense of peace and an appreciation for life. Thank you!


  44. Jessica

    This its totally swoon worthy! Thanks as always for the amazing inspiration. x


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  46. Jennifer

    Amazing, looks delicious + very healthy. And the photos are also really amazing :) Great work :)


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  48. Michael

    I’ve actually tried this once but I didn’t add strawberries and cherries. Will try it again sometime, thanks!


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