My Favorite Apple Crisp

Apple crisps have always had my number.  And there are a zillion and one recipes out there for them, I’m well aware.  But I honestly can’t recall a single apple crisp that I didn’t like.

My husband’s a different story, however.

We were married in September, so apple season was in high gear during our first month together.  So I set up to do what I knew best with apples.  Make my favorite apple crisp, of course.  As I was peeling apples, I asked Blake if he liked apple crisp.  It was small talk, really.  Because I was just asking a question I was sure I knew the answer to.  I mean, who doesn’t like warm homemade apple crisp with a scoop of vanilla ice cream?!  But his exact words were, “I’ve never been a fan.”

Hmmmm…who was this man I just married, I wondered.

But there was no turning back, in both marriage and apple crisp.  So I just peeled more apples for my favorite apple crisp.  I knew deep down that I could eat the whole thing by myself if that’s what it came down to.

Lucky for my waistline, that time never came.  Because I had company at the apple crisp pan.  He likey!  And it wasn’t just a polite newlywed reaction.  If you know Blake at all, he says what he means, and means what he says.  I knew his approval of my favorite apple crisp was for real.

If you’re wondering what is so persuasive about this particular apple crisp, it’s all about the topping.  It’s just plain heftier and crunchier than most.  There’s a nice ratio of ingredients that includes a bit of baking powder to add a little bulk, plus a lightened texture.  No flimsy oats topping here.

So what can I say?  That day, my husband became a fan of my favorite apple crisp.

My Favorite Apple Crisp

Yield: 12-15 servings

Ingredients:

for the apple filling:

  • 2 T. all-purpose flour
  • 3 T. sugar
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 8 c. peeled and sliced apples – I like Haralson apples, sliced about 1/2" thick

for the topping:

  • 3/4 c. all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 c. rolled oats (not quick cooking oats)
  • 3/4 c. brown sugar
  • 1-1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/2 c. butter, softened to room temperature (do not melt)

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375°.

In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar and cinnamon with the sliced apples. Place in a 9'' x 13'' pan. In a medium bowl, whisk together the first five topping ingredients. Add butter and cut in with a fork or pastry cutter until you have large pea-size crumbs. Sprinkle over the apples. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until the topping is nicely browned and some of the apple juices are bubbling through the topping. This is best on the day it is made, especially when it is still a bit warm. Serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

Adapted slightly from “Cooking Cousins, A Treasury of Recipes from Braun-German Tradition”, recipe from Marlene Le Clair Brandenburger.

Braun-German cookbook (printed 1984)

This is one big family cookbook!  And this is where I’m from.  My dad was born of a long line of Braun-German descendants.  That line is longer than long, really.  To give you a little perspective of my generation of this line, when our family celebrated my Great Grandpa Braun’s 90th birthday in 1985, he had 97 great grandchildren. Isn’t that fantastic?!  And mind boggling?!  Wahooooooo!!

Grandma Klein, Dad, Great Grandpa & Grandma Braun, 1985