Oh hi. Fancy meeting you here. Yes, it’s been a while, I know. I’ll cut a long story short by saying that being busy is a completely overused excuse, so I won’t even go there.
Study and procrastination have been true companions along the way, although I’d be lying if I didn’t say that out of the two, the latter was definitely given more time, love and attention. Yes I do have favourites.
However, I am not sorry to say that this apple crumble, or crisp, this heaven on a spoon, was part of the collaboration. You will love it. Nay, worship it.
I’m not the first and certainly won’t be the last to tell you how beautifully nutty and irresistible browned butter is, and how it will change your life, and that you should go and make some right now. Here it adds another dimension to the already delicious tango of caramelized apple goodness.
Adapted from this pretty place.
The Best Apple Crisp
For the topping:
1 cup / 150g plain flour
1 cup / 80g quick oats
1 cup / 220g dark brown sugar
½ cup / 80g chopped almonds
1 tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp salt
For the filling:
2 tsp vanilla essence
6 medium-sized Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, and very thinly sliced
1/2 cup / 110g dark brown sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
Lets start with the browned butter, shall we? You’ll need to prepare it a little in advance because you want it to firm up again for the crumble. Place butter in a medium saucepan, and turn heat on medium. After a couple of minutes the butter will begin to crackle and foam—make sure you whisk consistently during this process. After a couple of minutes you’ll notice the butter turning a slight brown (caramel) color on the bottom of the saucepan; continue to whisk and remove from heat as soon as the butter begins to give off a nutty aroma. Immediately transfer the butter to a bowl to prevent it from burning. Very carefully pour into a container and let it cool. Because I’m impatient, I let it have a go in freezer to firm up. Once the butter’s firm, divide it into two equal halves.
Preheat oven to 180°C and grease a 25x25cm baking pan.
To make the topping combine the flour, oats, brown sugar and almonds in a large bowl. Cut half of the butter into pieces and using your hands, squeeze and rub into the oat mixture until it becomes crumbly and resembles wet sand. Keep it in the fridge while you get on with the rest.
Now, too make the filling, place the sliced apples, the brown sugar, and cinnamon in a large bowl. Gently reheat the brown butter and stir into the apple mixture. Take a heaping ½ cup of the topping mixture and toss with the apple mixture. Spread the apple mixture into the prepared pan and sprinkle evenly with the topping. It will seem like a lot of topping, but the apples will cook down and the topping will turn beautifully crunchy, and really, there is no such thing as too much topping anyway.
Bake the crumble on a baking sheet – in case the filling bubbles over – for 55-60 minutes, or until the topping is golden brown and the filling is bubbling. Remove from the oven and cool 10 minutes if you can wait that long. Serve warm with sour cream, yoghurt or vanilla ice cream.