03 November 2010

Apple Crisp

Warm, crunchy, sweet, and comforting.  Apple crisp warms the soul and is truly a celebration of the season.  I wouldn't go as far to say I like apple crisp more than apple pie, but it is right up there in terms of culinary autumnal delights.

Apple crisp comes in so many different forms and just about every recipe I found for it is different, sometimes drastically.  From the amount of crisp topping, to whether or not to use a thickening agent in the apple mixture, the preferences vary greatly.  Such differences are what inspired me to come up with my own apple crisp recipe.

I prefer my apple crisp to have a thicker crisp topping, but not too much to overpower the apples.  The topping for my apple crisp is sweet and crunchy with just a little salt to enhance and bring all the flavors together.  I like to use regular rolled oats because I think they make the crisp look and taste better.

I add a thickening agent to the apples, in this case tapioca flour, because I don't like the apple juices to be runny.  The apples are seasoned in much the same was as the filling in Nonna's apple pie, with the addition of lemon juice and apple cider.  The apple cider adds a depth of flavor, and the lemon juice adds a bit of tartness that counters the sweetness of the topping nicely.

I've been tinkering with a recipe to call my own for the last couple apple seasons, and I am very happy with the end result.  This is truly my idea of what apple crisp should be.

Apple Crisp
Printable Recipe

4 pounds Jonathan apples (or your favorite baking apple)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons apple cider
1/3 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons tapioca flour
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground ginger

1 cup flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 cup rolled oats
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, diced and chilled

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Peel, core, and cut the apples into small wedges. Combine the apples with the lemon juice, cider, sugars, tapioca flour and spices. Pour into a 9 x 13 baking dish.

For the topping, combine the flour, sugars, salt, oatmeal, and cold butter in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on low speed until the mixture is crumbly.  (This can also be done by hand or with a fork).  Scatter the topping evenly over the apples.

Place the crisp on the middle oven rack and bake for 1 hour or until the top is lightly browned and the apples are bubbly.



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