KITCH 121: Apple Pear Crisp


             I made this dessert for my Thanksgiving dinner last week and it was certainly a hit. It is great as a lighter dessert, especially after a heavy dinner.

            When baking, you always want to use unsalted butter. Baking recipes will still usually have salt in them, because the salt accentuates the other flavors. However, you want to be able to control exactly how much salt you add, which is why you do not want to start with salted butter.

            Also, all ovens are not created equal: unless you put a thermometer in your oven, you cannot know for sure how much it varies from the temperature you set it at, so get to know your oven. For example, if it runs hot, then you should consider setting it a little lower than a recipe calls for. And be sure to start checking whatever you are baking before the suggested amount of time to make sure it doesn’t over-bake.


For the FILLING:

4 medium-sized apples (I used Cortland)

4 medium-sized pears (I used a mix of Bosc and Anjou. You can use unripe pears, but they won’t have as much taste as ripe ones would.)

1 lemon

1/4 cup of sugar

1/4 tsp of ginger

1/4 tsp of cinnamon

A pinch of salt


For the TOPPING:

3/4 cup of all-purpose flour

1/2 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar

1/2 cup of rolled oats

1/2 tsp of salt

1/2 tsp of baking powder

1/4 tsp of baking soda

1/4 tsp of cinnamon

6 tbsp of unsalted butter (3/4 of a stick), cut into 1-inch pieces


1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

2. Core and cut the apples and pears into large chunks. It is your choice whether or not to peel them first. I personally like the skin on because I think it makes it more colorful and prevents the fruit from getting as soft, giving the fruit more texture.

3. Put the fruit into a 9-by-13 inch glass baking dish. Juice the orange and the lemon and pour the juice over the fruit. Add in the sugar, ginger, cinnamon and salt, and toss.

4. In a separate bowl, mix the flour, brown sugar, oats, salt, baking powder, baking soda and cinnamon. Add in the small pieces of butter until the mixture forms loose crumbs.

5. Sprinkle the crumbs evenly over the fruit.

6. Bake at 350 for 45 minutes to an hour, until the topping has browned and the fruit is bubbling.