As you know, our whole-grain book GRAIN MAINS is all about main courses--no baking, no side dishes. No whole-grain flours, to be honest. (You can find it at amazon, barnes & noble, or from independent sellers.) But believe us: we still like our desserts--especially whole-grain ones! And it is apple time, after all. So it's high time to make an apple crisp, to get some whole grains after the meal, not just in it!
We made a double batch to carry to book group today, but the recipe here is for a singleton. If you've got a big paella pan as we do, then double up! Otherwise, here's the recipe.
Start by positioning the rack in the center of the oven and heating the oven to 350F (175C)
Continue on by peeling, coring, and thinly slicing 2 1/2 pounds (1.15 kilograms) of tart apples. Use varietals like Granny Smith, Pippin, Rome, Northern Spy, or Macoun. We peel them with a vegetable peeler, not a knife, for a quicker job. And we don't worry about making perfect slices. Close is good enough!
Place those slices in a bowl and mix in 1/3 cup (65 grams) granulated sugar, 1/3 cup (60 grams) packed dark brown sugar, 1 1/2 tablespoons (12 grams) all-purpose flour, 1 tablespoon quick-cooking tapioca, 1 teaspoon (5 ml) lemon juice, 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon grated nutmeg. Stir all that up and set aside for 10 minutes to let the tapioca soften.
Meanwhile, make the topping. In a second bowl, mix all this together: 1/2 cup (60 grams) all-purpose flour, 1/2 cup rolled oats (not quick-cooking or steel-cut), 6 tablespoons (70 grams) packed light brown sugar, 1/3 cup finely chopped walnuts, 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick or 60 grams) melted and cooled butter, 2 tablespoons (30 ml) maple syrup, 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. (If you use salted butter, omit the salt here.)
Pour the apple mixture into a 9-inch (23-cm) square baking dish or an 8-cup (1.4-liter) oval au gratin pan. Sprinkle the topping evenly and completely over the filling.
Bake until the filling is bubbling and the topping is moderately browned, about 40 minutes. Cool on a wire rack for at least 20 minutes before serving.
A dessert with whole-grain oats. Can't be better! Except for breakfast. If there's any leftover, you'll know why. (And by the way, if you want more of these crisp recipes, we have tons in our Ultimate Cook Book, a 900-recipe tome you can find here.)