*Note: I don’t usually consume much of the sweets I’ve made. Mostly, I bake for other people. This crisp, however, is so delicious… well… let’s just say that I won’t have to worry about distributing any at work in order for it all to get eaten. This is another recipe with the sugar cut back, but make sure you taste your apples – if they’re very bland, you may want to add a bit more sugar.
Today was our last farm share delivery of the season, and we got yet another harvest of apples. As I mentioned in this entry, autumn is a great time to take advantage of local harvests. I haven’t done any baking with apples lately, though, so ours were accumulating. I’d meant to make a crisp last week, and this week, I was low on energy after working and picking up the share, but, well, I’d thrown a pot of vegetable stock on to boil, and I had some free time on my hands. And thus, the Harvest Crisp is born.
I was really dying to stir in about a half cup of pumpkin puree with the apples, but I didn’t want to open a whole can when I only have the huge ones.
This recipe is kind of like stone soup. You can substitute what you have and adjust what you don’t. I’m going to throw in some suggestions, but feel free to improvise. I’ve bolded the choices that I made.
5-8 medium apples, preferably of mixed variety, peeled, cored, and sliced
2-3 pears, peeled, cored, and sliced (optional)
1/2 cup pumpkin puree
A handful of walnuts or almonds (optional)
A handful of fresh cranberries, dried currants, or raisins (optional)
A handful of sunflower seeds
And, everyone will need:
1/3 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
2 tablespoons natural sugar
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup quick cooking oats
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
a bit of lemon juice (to keep the apples from browning)
1 stick unsalted butter or soy butter, cut into chunks
Toss the fruit in the lemon juice, and, if using, the pumpkin puree.
Arrange the fruit in the bottom of an oven-safe casserole dish or 9×13 baking pan.
In a stand mixer, or, with a pastry blender, cut the cold butter into the dry ingredients (oats, cinnamon, nutmeg, flour, natural sugar, brown sugar, salt). Mix until large crumbs are formed and the mixture has an even texture.
Stir in any miscellaneous ingredients such as, in this case, the cranberries and walnuts. Spread the oat mixture over the fruit evenly so that the fruit is completely covered.
Bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for about 30 minutes or until the crisp is brown and the fruit is bubbling. Serve warm with whipped cream or ice cream.