Columbus Day seems to be the day my family has traditionally chosen to go pumpkin picking. Some years the weather was cold—well by Effie standards anyway and other years it’s been warm. This year it was close to 80 degrees and I’m not complaining. For several years we tried to go pumpkin and apple picking in the same day. After discovering that the only apples left by October were the ones that either fell off the trees or that were discarded by the people who picked them in September, we knew we had to change our plan. So in Mid-September we went out East with our little niece and nephew and picked the most beautiful apples. 36 pounds later, I had to create something—a lot of something. Needless to say, the next few blogs will be dedicated to apples. On Halloween and Thanksgiving I make a tray of apple crisp. Last year I discovered I can freeze it and heat it after defrosting and the result is the same. This makes me sooo happy! It takes one project off me in the days leading to Thanksgiving. I made three trays of Apple crisp. The extra is for my neighbor, Richie, who waits every year for “apple crisp” season. But then, I got a brilliant idea! I’ve been collecting these little clay pots that Kalypso Greek yogurt is packaged in. I thought it would make a nice presentation to plate my apple crisp in individual servings for my Thanksgiving table. I did make other apple recipes with the 36 pounds of apples. You will have to wait and see what they are. In the meantime enjoy this easy-to-make apple crisp.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
2 ½ tablespoons flour
1 teaspoon cinnamon
8 cups of peeled, cored and coarsely sliced granny smith apples
Juice and zest of 1 lemon
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
½ teaspoon vanilla
1½ cups flour
1 ½ cups old-fashioned rolled oats
¾ cup packed brown sugar
¾ cup chopped walnuts or pecans
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 sticks unsalted butter, melted
When I am doing anything with apples I am conscious of them turning brown. For this reason I prep as much as possible ahead of time and leave the peeling of the apples for last. Make the topping first and set it aside. Simply mix all the topping ingredients together and mix well.
For the filling – In a large bowl, stir together the brown sugar, flour, and cinnamon. Melt the butter, juice and zest the lemon. As I peel a few apples I toss with the lemon juice. I keep adding apples and lemon juice as I keep peeling to coat well. The lemon juice keeps the apples from turning brown. After the apples are peeled, add the melted butter, the brown sugar mixture and the vanilla, tossing well to coat.
In a greased baking dish, spread the filling evenly. Bake for 25 minutes. (15 minutes for the individual crocks)
Press the topping evenly over the filling and bake for another 25 minutes. (10-15 minutes for individuals)
If you are planning to freeze, I suggest reducing the cooking time by 10 to 15 minutes. Let the apple crisp completely cool before storing in the freezer.
Serving suggestion- Spoon vanilla ice cream or Greek yogurt over the warm apple crisp.