Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Easier than Apple Pie

Some nights, I find that I’ve read several pages of this textbook or that without comprehending a thing. Usually I attribute this to being preoccupied by a post-dinner craving for something sweet. As I haven’t had the energy or time for any baking and my stock of fall break goodies has long since been depleted, my go-to dessert has become Nutella on whole wheat toast.

Some nights, though, even that magical chocolate hazelnut spread doesn’t seem like quite enough. That’s where my super-simplified apple crisp comes in. Requiring less than five minutes of preparation, it nevertheless provides a tasty (and healthy – bonus points!) evening snack.

While I love the apples from the Farmer Market (the giant honeycrisps are heavenly), I just use cheap apples from FroGro for this recipe. Once they’re baked, it no longer matters whether they were really crisp and fresh to start. Nevertheless, some types of apples do work better than others. Golden Delicious and Granny Smith apples bake well, but any apple you have on hand should be fine. Just be aware that apples not generally intended for baking will get mushy more quickly, so you probably won’t want to cook them for as long.

Anyway, once I’ve plucked an apple from the fridge, I peel it, slice it (into 12ths or so), and toss it into an oven-proof pan. Next, I sprinkle a spoonful of brown sugar over the top, add a few generous shakes of cinnamon, mix it all together, and pop it in the oven at 400 degrees.

Before long, our kitchen smells delicious, and after about fifteen to twenty minutes, the apple slices are ready to eat. Still, it never hurts to test them at this point to see if they’re your desired level of softness. Then come a couple more choices. The apples slices are great as they are, but you can also sprinkle some granola or nuts on top to make your dessert more like an apple crisp.

Yum, the taste of fall! Snow steer clear; I’m definitely not ready for winter yet.

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