Thursday, February 20, 2014

Pick an Apple, Bake an Apple

I meant to post this recipe back in the fall, but since I'm a bit backed up in my posting and it is currently winter (albeit rainy and almost 50 degrees in Chicago?!), I thought I'd share it with you because it is awesome. And who doesn't like some warm baked apples on a chilly day?

Andy and I went apple picking twice in the fall on back-to-back(!) weekends, which yielded an abundance of apples. I still have no concept of what exactly a "peck" of apples means, but I qualitatively know that it means eating an apple at every meal for about two months. Also, pies.

Om nom nom.

Now, I like pies, I really do, and while they are delicious, they are admittedly quite a bit of work. And then you have to WAIT while they cool, or it gets all soggy and weird. The solution? Apple crisps that come together in a fraction of the time!

The original recipe from Spoon Fork Bacon is made for four, but I halved the recipe since it is just the two of us. This recipe is quick and tasty, and if you squeeze as many apples into the ramekin as you can, it's almost like eating an apple cake or dumpling. Remember to cover it liberally in whipped cream or ice cream for the ultimate apple experience.

Individual Apple Crisps

Slightly Modified from Spoon Fork Bacon
Makes 2 servings

Streusel topping:
1/4 cup old fashioned oats
1/4 cup flour (I use half whole wheat and half AP flour)
3 tbsp light brown sugar
1/8 teaspoon cinnamon
3 tablespoons cold, unsalted butter, cut into tiny cubes

2 apples, peeled, cored, and thinly sliced (I use 1 granny smith or other tart apple and 1 sweeter apple like a gala)
2 tbsp light brown sugar
3/8 tsp pumpkin pie spice (or 1/4 tsp cinnamon + 1/8 tsp nutmeg)

ice cream or whipped cream for topping (optional, but let's be serious here, it's not really optional)

1. Preheat oven to 375°F. Lightly grease 2 individual sized ramekins with cooking spray or butter. Set aside.
2. For streusel: Place oats, flour, sugar, cinnamon, and brown sugar in a mixing bowl, and stir together.
3. Cut in butter until a coarse meal forms.
4. For filling: Combine all filling ingredients into a large mixing bowl, and toss together until apples are evenly coated. Divide filling mixture into prepared ramekins, compacting the mixture into the ramekins if necessary. It is okay of the filling is a little taller than the ramekin because it will shrink as it cooks down. Set aside.
5. Divide streusel between the ramekins, pushing down on the filling if necessary.
6. Place crisps onto a baking sheet, and bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until golden brown. Allow crisps to cool for 7 to 10 minutes before serving each with a dollop of whipped cream or scoop of ice cream on top.

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