Sometimes nostalgic thoughts wash over me like a warm bath. Such was the case last Sunday when I prepared a fruit and cheese tray to enjoy during one of the many football games that
grace the Sunday lineup. I was thinking of just how well apples complement
cheese, cheddar in particular, when I was suddenly back in my mother’s kitchen sneaking bits of topping from a warm apple crisp.
Like James Bond on a mission, I set out to find that recipe. It wasn’t easy. Dad wasn’t sure where it would be, my aunt and cousin hadn’t a clue, and I had looked through her recipe box to no avail. In desperation, I pulled out the recipe box again, and carefully went one-by-one through every recipe, unfolding those that had been folded in half or in quarters, and examined each carefully. There in the “Pork” section was the recipe.
So today, I decided to make it. Oh, how I wish my mother had been here to tell me the type of apples she used (Jonathon were her favorites, so I have to presume those), and just how thinly the apples should have been sliced.
Mine was good, but it wasn’t like my mom used to make. The topping was wonderful, so I was pleased with that, but the apples I’d sliced too thickly and they just didn’t have the same sweet, chewy, caramelisation that hers always did. I used her deep dish pie plate that probably wasn’t the best choice, but, really, who has a 6” x 10” pan? I didn’t even know they made those; as I recall, she made hers in an 8” x 8” pan. Clearly this will be a work in progress, and I’ll munch on the topping while pondering just what to do to improve the taste and texture of the apples. Stay with me, this isn’t over! In the meantime, if you cannot read my mother’s handwriting, here is the recipe if you'd like to give it a try.
Mom’s Apple Crisp
4 cups sliced apples
½ cup sugar
1/3 cup sifted flour
½ cup brown sugar
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup grated sharp cheddar cheese
1/3 cup melted butter
1 cup rolled oats, uncooked
Preheat oven to 375ºF. Place apples in greased 6” x 10” pan. Sprinkle with sugar.
For topping combine all ingredients, blend thoroughly, mixing until crumbly. Sprinkle on top of the apple mixture. Bake for 30 minutes.
Serve warm or cold with ice cream.
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