Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Easy Apple Crisp

Living where we do, (high altitude with lots of snow and freezing temperatures all winter) it is a real challenge to grow things. Fruit trees are pretty much impossible. I have a hard time just getting plants that are hardy enough to last out a winter here. But, lucky for us, we live very close to the Okanagon, which is the fruit growing area in BC. We have easy access to peaches, cherries, and apricots, plus other fresh from the tree fruits. Well, during the summer anyways. In the winter though, we can still get our hands on apples. In a small town about an hour from us, we can grab a 20kg. bag of apples for $10! We picked up a couple of bags just last week. While eating them right off the core is great, we love them baked up in a crisp best!
The first one I made lasted 1/2 a day! Poor Zac went to the fridge the next morning thinking he would have some crisp with milk for breakfast. Nope! Trev had finished it off the night before. Needless to say, Mama whipped him up a fresh one. They are so easy to make and so delicious! We usually pour some milk over top when it's hot out of the oven, add some ice-cream for a dessert, and eat it cold for a snack. Anytime is crisp time!

To make this tasty treat you only need a few ingredients. Apples, (obviously!), flour, white and brown sugar, oatmeal, cinnamon and margarine. Here's my recipe.
Preheat your oven to 350F.
Peel your apples (any kind will do). The way I do it is I have my pan ready (I'm using a 9x13in.) beside the sink. I peel my apples into the sink and then slice the fruit off the core right into the pan. No need to core them then.  I fill the pan about 1/2 way full. We love the crisp topping, so I like to leave lots of room to heap it on. If your apples are on the drier side, you can add about 1/2 cup of hot water to the apples.

Next I sprinkle about 1/4 of a cup of flour over the apples, 1/4 cup of white sugar and shake some cinnamon over it. I use my hands to toss the apples a bit to distribute the dry ingredients. Now, if you are using a tarter variety of apple (ie. sour) you can add a bit more sugar here, unless you particularly like a sour crisp.

Now for the topping. My measurements are all 'about'. This isn't an exact thing. A bit of this, a bit of that...

This is for 9x13 inch pan, so 1/2 it for an 8x8.  Mix in a bowl about 1 cup of each-
all purpose or whole wheat flour, your choice,
white sugar,
brown sugar,

Get that all mixed together. Now I 'rub' in the margarine. I use the little 1/2 cup blocks. I used 1 1/2 cups in this batch, but in the last one, I used 1 cup. It depends on how you like your crust. The more margarine, the crispier the crust. Less means a drier, more crumbly crust. Both are good!
So, to 'rub' in the margarine, I take it right from the fridge and slice it into the mixture. Then, I use my hands to squish and crumble it all together.  It should be a fairly even consistency of crumble.

Once it's all mixed and ready to go, I dump  carefully spoon the dry crumb mix over the apples. It is fine if it piles higher than the edges of your pan, once it is baking it will settle somewhat as the margarine melts.

Now, into the oven it goes for about 30 minutes, (I check mine every 15 minutes). As it bakes the apples will begin to bubble under the crust.  I use a fork to poke the apples to see how soft they are. When they fall apart easily, it's done.  The crust should be slightly browned, the apples soft and bubbling in their juices.

It will be extremely hot when you the take it out of the oven, so wait a few minutes to try some. Delicious! Try it with a splash of milk. Whipped cream or whipped topping is good too! And, of course, for cream on top.  I'd love to hear if you try this recipe.  I also appreciate it when readers decide to follow my Little Shack blog on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest!

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