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Author Notes: Those who know me well know that I'm a real sucker for sweets. In fact, the first thing I ever remember cooking was dessert and it was, in fact, a crisp. Perhaps that's why it will always be my go-to dessert to cure late-night boredom (I bake when I'm bored... it's kind of a problem!). What I like about this sweet treat most of all, though, is that it really lets seasonal fruit take center stage.
This crisp is as easy to make as any ol' crisp, but it has some unusual ingredients to give it a unique twist. I used almond flour, pine nuts and almond extract to give the topping a wonderful marzipan-like flavor, with the wintry spices of apple cider to enhance the Fall fruits. The ratio of pears to apples is just what I happened to have in the fridge at the time - you can do half and half or even make an all-apple or all-pear crisp if you like. I used Jonathan apples because their tart flavor pairs nicely with the rich sweetness of the pears and honey. You can use any variety of apple and you like and there's no need to peel the fruit - the skin gives the dessert a lovely color. —the preservery.
- 1 cup sliced pears (about 1 medium pear)
- 5 cups sliced apples (about 4 medium apples)
- 1/2 lemon, juice
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1 teaspoon cornstarch
- 2/3 cup pinenuts
- 1/2 cup rolled oats
- 3/4 cup almond flour
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 6 tablespoons cold butter, cut into cubes
- 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg, freshly grated
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a 9-inch square pan, combine sliced fruit, lemon juice, honey and cornstarch and toss well to combine.
- Add remaining ingredients to a food processor and pulse until mixture is coarse and crumbly. Spread topping evenly across the apples and pat down, lightly. Bake until golden brown on top, about 35 to 40 minutes. Allow to cool at least 10 minutes before serving.