Sometimes you just want what you had growing up, not something different or even something better–just what is familiar and comfortable. That was true of my husband and his memories of apple crisp. He didn’t want all of the healthy (rolled oats) or tasty (nuts) additions. He just wanted the silky, caramel apples and the crunchy sugar and butter topping of his youth. To bring his memory to life, we had to reach out to the wife of his best friend in England. She shared her recipe for apple crisp more than twenty years ago and it is made throughout the summer, fall and winter in our house. With both deep thanks and credit to Jane Price!
2 lbs. cooking apples (preferably Honeycrisp)
12 T. dark brown sugar (2 T. for apples and 10 T. for crisp)
4 T. water (or apple cider or apple juice if you happen to have it in the house)
1 cup all purpose flour
1 t. baking powder
6 T. butter at room temperature
1. Preheat over to 350 degrees F.
2. Peel, core and slice apples.
3. Place sliced apples, water (or cider/juice) and 2 T. of brown sugar into a medium saucepan and cook gently until apples are fluffy. Spoon apples into a pie plate or other oven safe dish. The shallower and wider the dish, the crisper the topping will be; the narrow and taller the dish, the more the topping will be soft underneath and crisp on top. It just depends on how you like it.
4. Place flour in a large mixing bowl, sprinkle in baking powder, then add the butter and rub it in to the flour lightly using your fingertips. When it looks crumbly, add the remaining brown sugar and mix.
5. Sprinkle the topping over the apples, spreading it out with a fork.
6. Place crisp on a high shelf in the oven (place on a baking pan if the container is very full and may spill over) and bake for 25 to 30 minutes, until topping is crunchy and juice from the apples is bubbling up around the edges.
7. Serve warm or at room temperature, with whipped cream, ice cream or plain.