Bake a sweet taste of fall with this ap­ple crisp

Cecil Whig - - JUMPSTART - By Re Becca Bent

This dessert is ideal for colder weather and won­der­ful served with ice cream — my daugh­ters ac­tu­ally like to eat it for break­fast with a mug of hot ap­ple cider. Go fig­ure.

Any­way, I’d sug­gest you start by pick­ing up the best cook­ing ap­ples you can find from your lo­cal farmer’s mar­ket. This dessert con­cept will also work with other firm fruit. If you want to use berries, you will only need to bake them with the crisp top­ping (and not alone, as they are al­ready so soft). I also in­cluded a tip for adding a lit­tle kick to the ap­ples, which is below. Fall Ap­ple Crisp à la Mode Makes 4 small dessert serv­ings (dou­ble if you love dessert and want

left­overs) For the ap­ples: 5 to 6 big cook­ing ap­ples (I love Em­pire ap­ples, though Granny Smiths are quite nice too); cored and chopped into bite size pieces 1 ta­ble­spoon un­salted but­ter 1 tea­spoon ground cin­na­mon For the crisp top­ping: 1 cup al­mond flour (pur­chased in most gro­cery stores) 1 tea­spoon cin­na­mon pinch of nut­meg (or just use ap­ple or pump­kin pie sea­son­ing)

zest from one big lemon (I like to fur­ther chop mine up with a chef’s knife) 1/4 cup all-pur­pose flour 1/2 cup brown sugar optional 1/4 cup white sugar (if you like your desserts super sweet) 1 ta­ble­spoon vanilla ex­tract 4 ta­ble­spoons un­salted melted but­ter (you could add an ad­di­tional 4 ta­ble­spoons, see note in cook­ing in­struc­tions) Pre­heat the oven to 350 de­grees. Place the chopped ap­ples on a sheet pan and driz­zle them with but­ter and cin­na­mon. Mix as best you can on the tray. Place them in the oven to bake for 20 min­utes. When a knife passes through them eas­ily, they are done. It’s im­por­tant not to over­cook the ap­ples now, be­cause they will be baked again.

While the ap­ples are cook­ing, pre­pare the crisp top­ping by com­bin­ing the al­mond flour, cin­na­mon, pinch of nut­meg, lemon zest, flour, brown sugar and optional white sugar into a medium bowl and toss un­til ev­ery­thing is well-com­bined. Now add in the vanilla and melted but­ter (if you want to use olive oil or an­other type of but­ter sub­sti­tute, feel free!) and with a fork, mix again un­til the but­ter is dis­trib­uted. The mix­ture will be moist but not overly so. The the­ory is that the more but­ter you use, the more this top­ping will crisp up when you bake it. So tech­ni­cally you could dou­ble the but­ter if you wanted to.

When the ap­ples are done cook­ing, place them in a pie pan and cover them with the crisp top­ping mix­ture. Place the pan in the oven to bake for an­other 20 min­utes or un­til the crisp top­ping is crisp’ed to your lik­ing. Serve warm with a scoop of ice cream. Grown-up note: If you want to add a lit­tle kick to the ap­ples, when they come out of the oven for the se­cond time, driz­zle them with a tiny bit of Cal­va­dos or an ap­ple liqueur. Don’t overdo it — mod­er­a­tion is tasti­est.

Cook­ing at Home is a weekly col­umn that al­ter­nates be­tween Re­becca Bent and Chad Stringfel­low. They dish on what they’ve been mak­ing.

PHOTO COUR­TESY OF RE­BECCA BENT

This week, Re­becca brings us the how-to for a perfect fall treat.

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