I’ve notice that my last few entries have been a bit long. I guess it’s no secret that I can be a little long winded. I
promise that I’ll try to keep this one short.
Friday was the last day of school. My daughter’s last day of being a second grader. I promised myself I wouldn’t cry but as I watched her walk in the building a second grader knowing that when she came out again she’d be a third grader, I got a little bit teary eyed. These kinds of moments are always bittersweet. I am so in trouble when she graduates.
To celebrate the end of the school year and the beginning of summer, I asked my daughter what she wanted for dinner.
Let me tell you a little bit about her. She loves food. She doesn’t just like to eat. She loves food. She’s a huge fan of the Food Network (and is eagerly awaiting the premiere of “The Next Food Network Star” tonight). She loves watching the Challenge shows, particularly the cake ones. She likes the show “Chopped”. She’s a big help in the kitchen and can even help cut up soft things. Her favorite food is shrimp. She is probably the only 7-year-old I know who knows what cilantro is. Knowing all this, I was pretty sure we weren’t going to have hot dogs and mac ‘n cheese.
And I was right. She wanted steak, potatoes, and green beans with Apple Crisp for dessert. She has impeccible taste.
Apple crisp is not in my usual repoitre so I had to look it up. The first one I found was from “Baking From My Home to Yours” by Dorie Greenspan. It was actually a cran-apple crisp but it was easy enough to throw together with ingredients that I had mostly on hand. I left out the cranberries and just stuck with the apples. I also added peanuts to the topping.
The recipe was straight foward: peel and slice the apples, mix with sugar and flour, stick all the topping ingredients into a food processor and pulse. Easy peasy!
I stuck it in the oven and soon, despite it being early June, the scent of October wafted through my house. I may not be into fruit as dessert but the scent of cooked apples is just heavenly.
The crisp finished cooking shortly after we sat down to dinner. By the time we were ready for dessert it had cooled off enough for it to be pleasantly warm. My husband and I usually eat our dessert after the girls go to bed in order to get maximum enjoyment our of it but as per our daughter’s request, we ate with the girls.
I took a bite and thought, “Well…this isn’t bad.”
I took another bite and thought, “Hmmm…this is pretty good.”
I took another bite and said aloud, “Hey…this is really good!”
My husband looked and me and said, “You sound surprised.”
The truth is, I was. I wasn’t expecting it to taste so satisfying and comforting, and just plain delicious (especially since I got distracted and forgot to add the cinnamon and ginger to the topping). I used 2 granny smith apples, 1 fuji, and 1 golden delicious. This was a really nice combination of flavors and textures. It wasn’t too sweet and the consistency of the thickened juice was just right. The topping was equally nice. It had a nice crunch to it but wasn’t so overwhelming that it took over the apples. The peanuts, while not doing much for flavor, added a nice bit of texture here and there. Since I forgot to add the cinnamon and ginger to the topping when I made it, I sprinkled just a little cinnamon on top. To be honest, I really didn’t think it needed anything else. There was just a faint hint of the cinnamon so it wasn’t overpowering at all.
All in all, I have to say that this was a success. I definately have to add it to my list of acceptable fruit dessert — please see “Pineapple Upside Down Cake” to see the short, but complete list.
based on the recipe for Cran-Apple Crisp from “Baking From My Home to Yours” by Dorie Greenspan
4 medium apples (I used 2 granny smith, 1 fuji, and 1 golden delicious), peeled, cored, and sliced
1/2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup oats
1/2 cup shredded sweetened coconut
1/2 cup peanuts
1 stick cold, unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces.
Cinnamon, for sprinkling on top
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
The original recipe calls for buttering 8 ovenproof 1-cup bowls but I used one big, stone baking dish.
Toss together apples, sugar, and flour. Pour into your baking dish(es).
Pul all of the topping ingredients into a food processor and pulse until the mixture forms big curds. (This can be prepared 3 days ahead of time and refrigerated in an airtight bag.) Sprinkle topping over the apples. You will have extra of the topping. Since I left out the cranberries, there wasn’t as much filling as in the original recipe but I didn’t adjust the amounts in the topping to this. Next time I would.
Bake the crisp for about 40-45 minutes or until the top is golden brown and the filing is bubbling away. Let rest for a few minutes (at least 10 for individual crisps and 15 for one big one) before serving.