It was at an apple orchard in upstate New York. That it hit me. My children are growing up, and running away from me. See them in the picture? I … more
I know. You hardly can. Me either. On account of all the running away going on.
What is it they say – the days go slowly, but the years fly by? I don’t know. It might be the other way around. It all makes my brain hurt. Like turning the clocks here and turning the clocks there. Fall back. Spring ahead. What does it all mean? I do not know. I do not want to know. Just wake me up before you go-go.
I suddenly want to bind their feet. And leave out the most important ingredient in a few of my son’s favorite recipes so that his future wife can’t make it just-like-mom. And other stuff that is not a source of personal pride for me.
There’s only one reasonable thing to do. I shall bake for them. I shall bake early, and I shall bake often. It shall be fragrant, and comforting. Warm and cozy. Get-in-my-belly. Like apple desserts. Like Apple Crisp.
My children prefer what I cook and bake to almost anything else, almost every single time. Would it be wrong to delight in that? ‘Cause I totally don’t do that. Since I suspect it would be wrong. Except that I do. But I’ll deny it. Since it’s not right.
I took these 3 children of mine apple picking. With my husband. And my dear friend, and her two adorable & younger-than-mine children. So young are her children that they still smell like flowers. And honey. Flowers and honey. That’s what they smell like. Forget the apples, I’ll stick with the flowers and the honey. Then we came home, and I made pizza for everyone. And apple crisp. They ooooh’d and ahhhhh’d. They thank-you-mom’d. It was so soft and warm, and smelled like love.
If you want to live in your family’s hearts forever, I suggest apple crisp. It comes together in a flash, since it’s nearly as easy as making apple sauce, and the active time is even less.
Peel, core, and slice the apples, then toss them with cinnamon-sugar. Mix up the topping (no electric mixer needed at all), smooth it on top with wet hands, and bake it. That’s it.
This recipe for apple crisp was on the blog before quite a long time ago. It even made its way into the cookbook. But the picture on the blog recipe was terrible. And the recipe isn’t printer-friendly. I finally got around to taking some proper pictures, so I thought I’d share it again here.
- 5 to 6 apples, peeled, cored, and sliced thinly (Empire are my favorite, but any baking apple will work)
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, plus more for dusting
- 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar divided, plus more for dusting
- 2½ teaspoons pure vanilla extract, divided
- 1 stick plus 2 tablespoons (10 tablespoons) unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 extra-large egg, lightly beaten
- 1½ cups all-purpose gluten-free flour (I use Better Batter)
- ½ teaspoon xanthan gum (omit if using Better Batter)
- ½ cup gluten-free oats (can be replaced by an additional ¼ cup all-purpose gluten-free flour)
- 1 cup chopped pecans, walnuts, or slivered toasted almonds (optional)
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9-inch pie plate with unsalted butter and set it aside.
- To make the filling, combine the apples, 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 2 tablespoons sugar and ½ teaspoon vanilla in a medium-sized bowl, and stir the combine well. Place the apple mixture in the prepared pie plate, piled toward the middle of the plate.
- To make the topping, in a large bowl, blend the butter and 1 cup sugar until light and fluffy. Add the egg and 2 teaspoons vanilla and blend well. Add the flour, xanthan gum, and oats, and beat the batter well until it becomes thicker and a bit more elastic. Add the (optional) nuts, and stir to distribute them evenly through the dough. The mixture should be very thick. Cover the apples with the topping, spreading it evenly with wet hands. Cover the pie plate with foil, place it in the center of the preheated oven, and bake for 35 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for another 10 to 15 minutes, until the topping is lightly golden brown. Sprinkle with extra cinnamon and sugar while still hot from the oven.
- Cool at least 20 minutes before slicing into wedges and serving. Serve warm.
What is your favorite way to use apples during apple season?