Saturday, December 31, 2011

Cranberry Apple Crisp

Winter food might possibly be my favorite kind of food. First of all, during the winter time you are excused to eat anything and everything heavy, simply because it is winter and you need the warmth and layer of fat... even in so-cal (or so I tell myself). Savory dishes ladened with butter and cream, hearty soups, and sweet warm desserts. Things that I would eat year round given the option and a better metabolism. But it's not just the heavy foods and desserts that I love, it's the produce that is in season that I can use to make those heavy foods and desserts. Winter brings us sweet potatoes, kale, winter squash, parsnips, turnips, kumquats, beets, brussels sprouts, and one of my absolute favorites - cranberries.

This brings me to our Christmas dinner dessert. Cranberry Apple Crisp. It was the perfect dessert to cap off a heavy meal of meat and hearty side dishes. The cranberries are tart and pleasing and the whole thing is sweet but not overwhelmingly so.

Plus, it's packed with fruit and cranberries have a ton of antioxidants... so, this crisp is practically a health food! 

Cranberry Apple Crisp
Serves 8 - 12

For the filling:
2 small apples or one large apple - peeled, cored, and diced*
approx 4 cups cranberries - I used 1 and 1/2 - 12oz bags*
1 cup loosely packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 tablespoon orange zest
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
2 Tablespoons flour
2 oz orange juice (use the orange you zest)
butter for the pan

For the crisp topping:
1/2 cup walnut pieces
1/2 cup oats
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup or 1 stick butter - cut into small pieces

- Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees.
- Butter a 9x13 baking pan. Peel, core, and dice apples. Put the ingredients for the filling in the pan - apples, cranberries, brown sugar, vanilla, orange zest, cinnamon, flour and orange juice. 
- Mix well to coat the fruit with the other ingredients.

- In a bowl combine all the dry ingredients for the crisp topping. 
- Add the cut up butter and mix using your hands or a spoon. You want the topping to be chunky looking.
- Pour topping over fruit evenly.

- Bake in oven for 35 - 40 minutes. You want the topping to be golden brown.

Serve plain, with vanilla ice cream, or whip cream.

*If you don't have any use for a half open bag of cranberries or want a sweeter fruit crisp - use one 12 oz bag of cranberries and 2 medium to large apples. 

Peace, love, winter food, and happiness!

1 comment:

  1. I'm going to make it today, but it will not be as much fun without you! Love Mom


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