“I’ve never seen such a bunch of apple-eaters.”
― J.D. Salinger, Nine Stories
We’re totally a bunch of apple eaters.
Not quite in the way J.D. meant, but that’s beside the point. I love buying up all the different varieties of apples at the farmer’s market each week; I love finding the most perfectly-perfect apples to pick off the trees; I love eating apples. Apples with caramel. Apples with cheese and crackers. Apples all by themselves.
And apple crisp. Holy carp do I love me some apple crisp.
Apple crisp is the best way to quickly and happily eat your way through an apple picking excursion gone loco. It’s not as healthy as eating your apple straight or maybe cooked into some turkey sausage, but frankly apple season is only here for a few glorious weeks of the year so eat ’em if you got ’em, you know?
It’s also not terribly fussy like a pie or a tart— no crust to assemble— and with a pair or two of helping hands the prep goes crazy fast. Like usual, I kind of play it fast and loose with the recipe here, it depends on what size pans I have clean.
It’s not beautiful.
It’s a great way to use those imperfect apples.
It’ll melt your heart served warm with some vanilla ice cream.
Homemade Apple Crisp
- Apples. Firm, tart apples like Granny Smiths or Stayman are best so the crisp doesn’t seem overly sweet, but those are some of our favorite eating apples, so we tend to use Galas and Fuji and the like and pull back on the sugar a bit. The number will depend entirely on the size of your apples.
- 1/2 cup flour (I use 1/4 cup unbleached white, 1/4 wheat. Sometimes I throw some oats in there too)
- 1/2 cup sugar (less if you’re not using tart apples)
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- dash of nutmeg
- bit of salt
- 6 tablespoons butter (3/4 stick)
- Throw your butter in the freezer. Preheat oven to 350°.
- Peel skin off apples and cut into chunks. Now, we have one of those apple spiral things where it peels the skin and then you can keep on going and have one big apple ribbon. This makes it easier, especially for kid helpers, but I think you get the best texture with chunks about 1/2 inch thick.
- Dump all your apple chunks into a buttered glass dish (go ahead & use one end of the stick to butter the dish, you’re going to wind up using it all anyway.) The ingredients listed above are appropriate for about a 8 x 8 x 2 dish; I usually make a double (15 x 12) and scale the crisp accordingly.
- In a bowl, mix together your flour, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt. Take your cold stick of butter and slice small pieces off (like whittling a stick) with a sharp knife over the bowl holding your dry materials. Stir every once in a while so the butter pieces are covered with dry, but don’t overdo it. You want them to stay intact and separated from each other.
- Dump dry-mix-containing-small-bits-of-butter over top of the apples and bump on the counter once or twice so it settles in.
- Bake at 350° until the top is golden and apples are soft, about half an hour. The perfect texture here is up to you. I prefer the top to be a bit more on the caramelized side and the apples softer. If you like your cooked apples toothy start checking on them sooner.
- Take baked crisp out of oven. Smack hands of children who attempt to serve themselves while it’s still blazing hot and not yet photographed. (Seriously, it took 3 crisps to get a pic because they kept eating it before I could take a photo of the full pan.)
- Allow to cool about 10min, then serve warm with vanilla ice cream. Bonus points for french vanilla.
Reheats great in the microwave. Maybe for breakfast, I don’t judge. It’s got apples in it. Apples are good for you.
We’re only a few weeks into apple season, so I’m guessing we’ve got at least another two pick-yer-own trips left in us this fall.
More apples recipes to use up your bounty to follow 🙂
YOUR fave apple recipe? Hit me in the comments.