Marge Perry Newsday columnist Marge Perry

Marge Perry, Newsday's weekly 3 Simple columnist, also writes, broadcasts, teaches and speaks about cooking, food and nutrition.

NECTARINE GRAPE CRISP

5 nectarines, cut in thin slices

3 cups red grapes

2 tablespoons cornstarch

1/2 cup sugar

3/4 cup flour

1/4 teaspoon salt

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1/2 cup brown sugar

2/3 cup oats

1/3 cup almonds, chopped

6 tablespoons butter, cut in bits

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Coat an 8-by-8-inch baking dish with cooking spray.

2. Combine the nectarines, grapes, cornstarch and sugar in a bowl and toss thoroughly. Transfer to the baking dish.

3. Combine the flour, salt, brown sugar, oats and almonds in another bowl; toss to combine. Add the butter and work it in with your fingertips or a pastry fork until evenly combined. (There should be no lumps of butter.) Sprinkle evenly on top of the fruit.

4. Bake until the fruit bubbles up on the sides, about 45 minutes. Allow to cool before serving. Makes 8 servings.

Nutritional analysis for each serving: 348 calories, 5 g protein, 58 g carbohydrates, 4 g fiber, 13 g fat, 6 g saturated fat, 78 mg sodium

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BLUEBERRY COBBLER

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1 cup sugar, divided

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/8 teaspoon salt

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8 tablespoons butter, cut in bits

1 large egg, lightly beaten

6 cups blueberries

1 tablespoon cornstarch

1/8 teaspoon cinnamon

1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Coat an 8-by-8-inch baking dish with cooking spray.

2. Combine the flour, 1/2 cup of the sugar, baking powder and salt with a mixer or in a food processor and pulse to combine. Add the butter and mix until it is just blended. Add the egg and mix as briefly as possible until the batter is just combined. (Do not overwork the dough.)

3. Combine the blueberries, remaining 1/2 cup of sugar, cornstarch and cinnamon in a bowl; transfer to the baking dish. Use spoon to drop the batter in dollops over the fruit. (The batter will spread as it cooks.)

4. Bake until the top is golden and the fruit bubbling, about 40 minutes. Allow to cool before serving. Makes 6 servings.

Nutritional analysis for each serving: 394 calories, 2 g protein, 64 g carbohydrates, 4 g fiber, 16 g fat, 10 g saturated fat, 142 mg sodium

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SKILLET COBBLER

1 pint blueberries

1 pint strawberries, hulled and quartered

1 cup sugar, divided

3/4 cup flour, divided

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

3/4 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup low-fat milk

4 tablespoons butter, cut in bits

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place a 10-inch cast iron skillet in oven.

2. Combine blueberries, strawberries, 1/2 cup of the sugar, 1/4 cup of the flour, and nutmeg and toss well.

3. Combine the remaining 1/2 cup sugar, 1/2 cup flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl; stir in the milk until it is just combined. (It is all right if the batter still has some lumps.)

4. Remove skillet from oven, and melt the butter in it. When it just begins to brown and foam, pour in the batter, and immediately spoon the fruit over the batter. Return the skillet to the oven and bake until golden, about 30 minutes. Makes 6 servings.

Nutritional analysis for each serving: 309 calories, 3 g protein, 58 g carbohydrates, 3 g fiber, 9 g fat, 5 g saturated fat, 170 mg sodium

TIP: Be sure to taste the fruit to determine how much sugar is needed. These amounts are for moderately sweet fruit; adjust accordingly.