Last week was a glorious week. I turned in the written portion of those tests I’ve been moaning about, and then one of my best friends and my sister ended up in town for work. We went on an eating bender, of course, because that’s what I do whenever there’s out-of-towners to take the blame. Among the highlights: black pepper broth and tofu skins at cramped, hipster-filled Mission Chinese (oh, and we ran into Martha Stewart on our way out the door, which felt like a very misplaced celebrity siting — her aura of handcrafted holiday wreaths clashed with the gritty Mission), a winter squash and parsnip soup at Outerlands, vegan charcuterie at Gather, and a tea leaf salad at Burma Superstar (I need to learn how to cook Burmese food…I am so in love…).
You might think that would be the end of it, but my sister and I decided that there should also be dessert. Of course! So, on Monday night, after the restaurant tour was winding down, we made a baked apple with a crisp topping. Warm, sweet apples almost make me glad it’s getting cold out.
Teel and I tried out a bunch of different apples after being inspired by a recent Saveur test on baked apples. We used a Macintosh, Granny Smith, Golden Delicious and a Braeburn. Like Saveur, we found that the Macintosh (not pictured) and Granny Smith apples split open/exploded. The Braeburn looked the best, but it wasn’t juicy enough. The Golden Delicious turned out to be our favorite, which was surprising since neither of us love them raw.
Even though Teel and I made three apples/six halves, this recipe is for one apple/two halves. I think it’s a good weeknight, I-don’t-want-to-get-many-dishes-dirty, no fuss sort of dessert. Make one for yourself. Share half if you’re generous. Top it with vanilla ice cream if you’re smarter than I am and keep some around your freezer.
Baked apple crisp
Inspired by Joy the Baker’s Peach cobbler for one
Makes 2 baked apple halves (serves 1-2)
- 2 T butter, melted
- 1/4 t vanilla extract
- 2 T white whole wheat flour
- 2 T rolled oats
- 1 T brown sugar
- 2 dashes cinnamon
- 2 dashes ginger
- 1 dash cloves
- 1 pinch fine sea salt
- 1 apple, halved and cored
Preheat the oven to 350.
In a small bowl (a cereal bowl is fine) combine the melted butter with the vanilla and dry ingredients.
Divide filling between two apple halves. Use he back of a fork or small spoon to pack the filling into the core and smooth across the top.
Place in the oven in a baking dish for 30 minutes, or until apple is soft.