Crostatas are usually made with pastry or pie dough. But we rather like biscuit dough because it doesn't need to chill before baking, and we just find it a little quicker and easier overall. (Plus we practically have our recipe memorized.) We also like the tender, thicker quality of a biscuit dough; when underneath ripe fruit it traps the juices and soaks them up. It's a preference, of course — you may find pie dough much easier than biscuit. After we've whipped up a batch of biscuit dough, we just pat it out into a rustic round on a piece of parchment, laid on a cookie sheet, and top it with slices of fresh fruit. Peaches and apricots are favorites, but we also love prune plums and peeled, thinly shaved apples. We hardly sweeten anything at all — we usually sprinkle peaches or plums with a pinch of raw brown sugar and a dusting of cinnamon or nutmeg. That's it. Slide into the oven and bake for 40 minutes. You can do this whole thing from scratch to finish in less than 10 minutes; you can even make the dough in your food processor. The nicest thing is that you don't need to worry about how the dough looks or crimp it into a dish. Just pat it out and call it rustic, cracks and all.
Here's a full recipe for a biscuit crostata, although any biscuit recipe (and any stone fruit) will do. • Recipe: Apricot and Biscuit Crostata Are you making any easy desserts with summer fruit? Any tips to share? Related: Recipe: Italian Jam Crostata (Images: Faith Durand)