My schoolgirl days are long passed, but I still imagine that I live on an academic calendar. When autumn arrives, I feel like buying notebooks and pencils, and starting something new. So welcome to my start-of-the-school-year autumn project, Galley Kitchen. I’ll be sharing my own recipes, trying others’ recipes, and learning to take decent food photos.
The weather in Minnesota has just begun to cool off, and the summer humidity is lifting. The air is crisp, the skies are blue and clear, and the Minnesota State Fair is finally ending. I live a few blocks from the Fair, and for 10 days each year it’s the bane of my existence. The annual neighborhood takeover of cars and pedestrians makes me want to use angry emoticons.
For my inaugural food blog post, I’m stepping entirely out of character and making something simple: a commercial recipe that I’ve made before. In honor of autumn’s impending arrival, I’m making Caramel Apple Crisp, recipe courtesy of Kraft. (Don’t judge.) They’re very sweet and gooey, with a crispy oatmeal crust and topping.
The butter I left out on the dining room table to soften had some suspicious imprints in it, so I got another stick from the fridge and melted it in the microwave. If I was just cooking for myself, I’d probably go ahead and use butter that my cat had licked, but this is a dish to share.
After I added the melted butter to the brown sugar I combined all the ingredients in the crust/topping, and squished it all together with my hands, until it was soft and crumbly.
I’m a little slow at the peeling and chopping, so I tossed the apple chunks in lemon juice as I chopped them to keep them from turning brown.
If Greg decides to go to the State Fair today, I’m going to be his Park-and-Ride to the fairgrounds. I’ll wrap up some apple crisp for him to snack on with Dusty in the middle of the night.
Recipe after the fold
Caramel Apple Crisp
Adapted, just barely, from Kraft
1 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/4 cup shortening
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups quick-cooking oats
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3 large Granny Smith apples, peeled and coarsely chopped
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 bag (14 ounces) caramels
Preheat the oven to 400⁰.
Combine brown sugar, butter, and shortening in a large bowl. Stir in 1 3/4 cups flour, the oats, salt, and baking soda. (I also added ¼ teaspoon cinnamon.) Reserve 2 cups of the oat mixture; press the rest of it in an ungreased 13×9-inch pan.
Toss the chopped apples with 3 tablespoons flour and spread them evenly over the oatmeal mixture in the pan.
Heat the caramels over low heat, stirring occasionally, until melted; pour evenly over the apples. Sprinkle the reserved oat mixture over the top and press lightly.
Bake 25 to 30 minutes or until the topping is golden brown and the apples are tender. Cut into bars while warm. Store covered in the refrigerator.