Sunday, October 31, 2010

Apple-Blackberry Crisp

This past summer, my mum and I stopped at an Amish farm stand and bought some gorgeous blackberries. We waited for quite some time for someone to come out and help us and this little girl was sitting on their porch quietly the entire time just looking at us and barely making a noise.  She couldn't have been more than a year old and I was surprised to find her out there on her own. She has the sweetest face and looked so cute in her little Amish outfit.  I almost thought she was a baby doll!

Their farm was immaculate and the wheat fields were bright gold and swaying in the wind making the most calm de-stressing sound. I could've taken a nap laying in that field after eating our blackberries!

 We brought the blackberries home and my mum was reminiscing about how her grandmother used to make apple blackberry pie. Well, we didn't make it then as it wasn't apple season.  But, it is now!  I have tons of honey crisp apples left from our last trip to the orchard...the ones that Audrey is munching on in this photo we recently had taken up at the family farm. I also found blackberries on sale at the local market and thought I'd make an apple-blackberry creation as my mum was coming over to visit. 

I didn't feel like making a traditional pie, so I went with a crisp. I cooked the apples slices first with butter, brown sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg to cook them down.  It's nice to just throw everything in together to bake, but if you do that with the blackberries, I suppose they would be complete mush.  The apples cooking on the stove top smelled amazing!  And, they looked so pretty when you tossed them in with the blackberries.

The blackberries cooked down and bubbled up making an amazing blackberry apple jam with soft chunks of fruit and a crispy oatmeal crust on top.  It was amazing served warm with vanilla bean ice cream in the company of my wonderful family. Mum really enjoyed it too!  I still have some of the blackberries left and may have to come up with another treat to make as mum is visiting me this week.

Recipe for Apple-Blackberry Crisp
(Adapted from Williams-Sonoma recipe for Apple-Blackberry Cobbler)


Fruit mixture:
  • 2-3 lbs. peeled and cored apples cut into slices (I used honey crisp)
  • 1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
  • 3 Tbs. cornstarch
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 2 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
  • 2 pints blackberries
  • 1 cup rolled oats (regular or quick cooking)
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter (room temperature)
In a large stock pot, stir together the apples, brown sugar, granulated sugar, cinnamon, salt, nutmeg, cornstarch, lemon zest and lemon juice. Transfer to stove, cover and set over medium heat. Cook the apples, stirring occasionally, until almost tender. Fold in the blackberries and transfer to an oven safe baking dish.
Preheat an oven to 350°F.
For the crisp topping, combine the oats, brown sugar, flour and cinnamon in a medium bowl. Cut in the butter until it resembles coarse crumbs. Sprinkle crisp topping over fruit filling until covered completely.
Bake the cobbler, uncovered, until the topping is golden brown and crisp, about 35-45 minutes. Let cool for at least 15 minutes before serving.  Serve with vanilla ice cream!

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