Apple crisp is the perfect summer-into-fall dessert. It makes your house smell heavenly!
6-8 medium, firm apples (2 1/2-3 pounds, depending on how apple-y you like your crisp!)
3/4 cup all purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
8 T (1 stick) unsalted butter (cold)
Vanilla ice cream or whipped cream (optional)
You’ll also need a medium bowl, 8×8 pan and pastry blender or food processor. Preheat the oven to 375, with a rack in the lower third of the oven.
First is the worst part in my opinion, and why I don’t bake with apples terribly often!
Peel: (peeling’s not so bad with this gadget, especially since I have two helpers who love to
play with use it. No, I don’t let my 2-year old do this, the other “helper” is my hubby. Hee-hee.)
Core: (above gadget is supposed to core as well, but we’ve had the thing for 8 or 9 years and couldn’t get it to work the first time we tried, so we gave up.)
Then slice or halve and cut into 1 inch chunks.
Shew. Apples are in the 8×8 pan (pan doesn’t need to be greased), now it’s time to make the topping (which is actually the easy part!)
Mix the flour, sugar, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg in a medium bowl.
Cut the cold butter into small pieces, sprinkle over the topping mixture, and cut in with a pastry blender.
You can also do this in a food processor, just be careful to use the pulse setting and don’t overprocess. I’ve never used the processor for this because I lived without one for so long, I’m always forgetting I can use it for things other than chopping vegetables!
When you’re finished, the topping should look like coarse breadcrumbs, with a few larger pieces throughout. You don’t want it to look greasy or clumpy.
Sprinkle the topping over the apples and tap the pan on the counter a couple times, to help the topping settle in between the apples.
Bake at 375 (in the lower third of the oven) for 50-55 minutes, until the apples are tender (carefully poke them with a fork to check), juices are bubbling, and the topping is golden brown (mine usually takes a little longer than this.)
OK I lied, I think this is the hardest part of apple crisp, not peeling apples; waiting for it to cool!
I like it when it’s warm (but not too hot) and the topping is really crispy.
My husband likes it warm with ice cream, but cold if we don’t have any ice cream. Unfortunately for him, there’s not usually enough left to let any get cold.
It’s fantastic plain, with vanilla ice cream, or with a dollop of freshly whipped cream (1 cup heavy cream, beat until slightly thickened, add 2T sugar and 1 tsp vanilla extract, beat until thick-stop before it gets grainy or gathers around the beaters.)
I think this is best with firm, more tart apples, like Braeburn apples. However, at $2.49/lb, that can get expensive! Use whatever apples you like, discarding any mushy or brown parts. I’ve even made this with the little apples from our trees (though it took forever to peel them and work around the funky parts where bugs nibbled them before they formed!) If you buy your apples and butter on sale, you can make this for $4-5 or less.
According to ingredient nutritional information found on Nutrition Data, 1/8 of the recipe contains approximately 275 calories, so it’s not a terrible treat (assuming you can stop at one little portion!) Even 550 calories for 1/4 of the pan isn’t terrible for such a filling, delicious dessert. Plus it’s fruit, so it’s practically health food, right? (Just kidding of course.)