I'm usually too impatient to make a good pie crust, so a crisp is my favorite alternative. You can vary the fruits you use or even add some juicy pears to this mixture. (In the summertime, nectarine/plum is my absolute favorite.) Serve it with vanilla ice cream or a big dollop of whipped cream and you’ve got the perfect dessert for a crowd! Also, the topping freezes really well so you can make a double batch and sprinkle some on whenever you need a great dessert.
6 tbsp butter, cut into 1/2" chunks
3/4 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
2/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
1/4 tsp salt
2 tsp cinnamon
2 1/2 lbs apples, peeled, cored and thinly sliced
1 tsp lemon zest
1 tbsp lemon juice, freshly squeezed
2 tbsp granulated sugar
vanilla ice cream, such as Haagen-Dazs
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Butter a 2 to 2 ½-quart baking dish.
To make the topping, using your fingers or the paddle attachment of a mixer, work the butter with the brown sugar, flour, rolled oats (or chopped nuts, if you prefer), salt, and 1 teaspoon of the cinnamon so that each piece is coated and you have a coarse, crumbly mixture.
Toss the apples with the additional 1 teaspoon of cinnamon, the lemon zest, lemon juice, and 2 tablespoons of sugar. Pour the fruit mixture into the buttered baking dish and cover with the topping. Set the dish on a sheet pan to catch any drips and bake until the juices from the fruit are bubbling and the topping is brown, about 1 hour. (Start checking it after 45 minutes in case it cooks faster.)
Allow the crisp to cool for at least 10-15 minutes before serving.
Amanda Haas is a cookbook author and founder of the website One Family One Meal, which provides free recipes, menu plans, and shopping lists to parents who want to cook healthy meals their entire family will love. Her recipes and kitchen wisdom are currently also being showcased by Pottery Barn Kids. Cooking in Everyday English, her latest cookbook writing project, will be released in October of 2011 (pre-order at Amazon).
The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of, and should not be attributed to, POPSUGAR.