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« Pumpkin Spiced Doughnuts | Main | Butternut Squash Biscuits »

Apple Crisp

Apple Crisp

I adore autumn weather for many reasons—the comfort foods, the colors of the trees, the days of nothing but drizzling rain—but ripe, fresh apples are what truly bring this season home for me. Apples are one of the few foods I keep continually stocked in my refrigerator. I eat apples like other people enjoy bread or drink milk, daily and sometimes more than once. A few years ago, I found myself with an unquenchable apple craving. One thousand apples later, it hasn't dissipated.

When fall rolls around, and the apples become crisp and sweet, this simple fruit becomes irresistible.

Apple Crisp

When the cold sets in for the year, I surround myself with apple recipes. My grandmother's applesauce recipe is on constant rotation, popping up several times a season. Slightly bruised apples, fallen from the tree, are often the stars of this dish. Once the soft parts are cut off, the apples are salvaged in such a simple, but beautiful manner. Likewise, this Apple Cinnamon Cake has never failed to grace my autumn table. More apple than cake, the ingredients vary to accommodate the ones already in the cupboard.

A few years ago, I branched out and made my own homemade apple cider. The final result was so fresh and delicious, my roommate and I were so afraid to drink it (lest it should disappear) that the cider nearly spent too long in the refrigerator.

Apple Crisp Apple Crisp

On a phone call with my mother, she told me about an apple crisp my sister had made for her when she last visited. As I eyed the freshly picked apples boxed on my counter top, the idea seemed like the perfect plan to enact with my own apples. When the weekend rolled around, I peeled and sliced nearly a dozen of the small apples, coating them with sugar, and baking them in the oven until tender. I had plans to share the apple crisp with my coworkers, but after two greedy forks kept stealing bitefuls while it was cooling, half of the apple crisp disappeared in a day.

It is safe to say that my coworkers never saw this dish. Sometimes, I've found, some foods are just too good to be shared.

Apple Crisp

This Apple Crisp is an autumn favorite, with enough variance in texture and flavor to call itself a classic. The apples are baked in a mixture of butter and brown sugar, with a hint of rum to round out the flavor. The crisp bakes on top, sweet and spiced, providing a crunchy contrast to the tender apples. Served cold with whipped cream or hot with ice cream, this apple crisp never fails to please. You may even find yourself scraping the sticky remains from the bottom of the pan, wishing for more.

One Year Ago: Caramel Apple Granola, Chewy Vanilla Bean Cinnamon Bars, and Chai Spiced Rice Pudding
Two Years Ago: Whole Wheat Irish Soda Bread, Pumpkin Granola, and Chocolate Cherry Bread
Three Years Ago: Chocolate Avocado Cupcakes with Avocado Buttercream, Butternut Squash Custard, and Pumpkin Bread Pudding with Caramel Rum Raisin Sauce

Apple Crisp

Yields 6 servings

Apple Filling
1/4 cup (50 grams) brown sugar, packed
3 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons dark rum, optional
About 3 pounds (1.4 kg) baking apples, peeled, cored, and diced
2 tablespoons granulated sugar

In a saucepan over medium heat, combine brown sugar and butter. Cook until the sugar dissolves and the mixture is uniform. Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla bean paste (or vanilla extract) and rum. Pour mixture over diced apples and stir until the apples are evenly coated. Spread evenly into a cast iron pan or 9-inch pie pan. Sprinkle on the granulated sugar.

Crumble Topping
1/4 cup (1/2 stick or 57 grams) butter, softened
1/3 cup (66 grams) brown sugar
1/3 cup (40 grams) all-purpose flour
1/2 cup (45 grams) old fashioned oats
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).

In a large bowl, beat together the butter and brown sugar. Mix in the flour, oats, spices, and salt. Break off the dough into small pieces and sprinkle crumble topping over the top of the apples.

Bake for 40-50 minutes, or until the apples are fork tender and the crumble topping is browned. If the topping browns before the apples are finished cooking, cover the pan in aluminum foil to prevent further browning and continue cooking.

Serve warm or cold, with a side of whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.

Reader Comments (17)

You described that apple craving perfectly. I feel like the exact same thing happened to me a few years ago. And the pictures so seem to capture the essence of fall.
11.4.2013 | Unregistered CommenterAmy
I love apple crisp. It is so simple but it's one of the best desserts, especially for fall. It never fails to make me happy.
I have apple cravings all year around, so I can so relate the apple obsession. These crisps look so good as comfort food.
Apple crisp is a definite favorite for me. It reminds me of all things fall & family, and brings the biggest smile to my face. Love this recipe!
I have been following your blog for a while now and I just love it. I especially love the quotes you add with your pictures-always inspiring and your food and photography is gorgeous.
11.4.2013 | Unregistered CommenterSandy
How did you know I've been craving apple crisp AND have more apples than I know what to do with thanks to generous co-workers with apple trees?
11.4.2013 | Unregistered CommenterRachael
che meraviglia, amo passare da te e le tue ricette sono sempre favolose....
11.4.2013 | Unregistered Commentersimo
Looks delicious!

xo Jennifer
11.4.2013 | Unregistered CommenterJennifer
I like that this recipe is so simple but in the end something delicious comes on our table. I love apples, I am a bit allergic but it could never stop me from eating them...
Autumn is my favorite season ever! And apples? Bring them on :) this apple crisp looks just divine and I love how you write about food! Thank you so much for sharing this :) xx Cici
11.5.2013 | Unregistered CommenterCici
I love your blog. Please do post more!
11.5.2013 | Unregistered CommenterN
Oh I love apple crisp! Your's looks so delicious. I'd take a bowl right now, with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top. <3
11.5.2013 | Unregistered CommenterAbbie
i adore apples too, but more especially apple crisp. i remember going to california pizza kitchen as a kid and i'd only order that. you slowly realize as your grow up that the best tasting things are homemade. i have a feeling this crisp would kick cpk's butt.
11.6.2013 | Unregistered Commenterjordan
I love the idea of baking the crumble in a cast iron pan. Looks so good.. wanna plop a dollop of ice cream on there!
11.8.2013 | Unregistered Commenterfrancesca
Love that you added a little rum in the filling - boozy crisp sounds like the perfect winter treat!
Looks great! I love the idea of putting nutmeg in sweet foods.
11.9.2013 | Unregistered CommenterElsa
Such great recipe!
I put some sour cherries beside the apples and they gave them a beautiful pink color!
03.24.2014 | Unregistered Commentersandokan

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