The Country Cook: Easy Apple Crisp

Monday, November 3, 2014

Easy Apple Crisp

I used to dream that I was an effortless cook and baker. In that dream I always wore an apron, I was organized and had all my ingredients ready and out on the counter before I started to make anything. I had all the appropriate baking utensils and everything came off without a hitch. Yeah, that was the dream I had in my younger days but these days, I've come to terms that I am typically a "fly by the seat of my pants" baker. I'm not that organized before baking and cooking. I usually have all the ingredients and when I don't, I try to figure out something else. I always forget to put on an apron (or remember too late!) and end up with splatters of food on my clothes. There is usually a cat or kid running around in my kitchen begging for food and constantly threatening to trip me up as I do my cooking dance. Flour always ends up on the floor, in every nook and cranny and almost always up my nose. And it seems my food knows this about me because it does it's best to contribute to the fun. Juices and gravy bubble up out of baking dishes and splatter on the bottom of my oven. Bacon splatters as I fry it into delicious crispiness. Sauce bubbles up out of a pot. What can I say? I've been around long enough to learn a whole host of tips and tricks to avoid certain messes or cool little kitchen tools that can be used. I mean, I have a Pinterest board dedicated to those tips and tricks. But like many things on Pinterest, it's me dreaming that I am perfectly together and organized. A girl can dream, right?
But in my real world, messes happen. I cook and bake and have a good time with it. And it's not just me. My whole family is pretty darn good in the mess department too. Don't get me started on the grease that pops all over the place when my husband makes his favorite fried baloney sandwiches. It happens. So instead of losing my mind fussing over every little mess or trying to prevent every little mess...I just let it go. {Cue the song from 'Frozen' now}
This "letting go" is especially helpful during the holidays. Food, people, and dishes errywhere! Messes are just part of the experience in my way of thinking. Plus, I like to think one of my strengths is putting folks to work to clean up. You eat. You clean. That's how we roll. And it helps me enjoy the holidays because I'm not sweating the small stuff. I have a can of Easy-Off Oven Cleaner on hand and then put my hubby (and anyone else within reaching distance) to work. Bless him.
One of my messy (BUT CRAZY GOOD) and favorite recipes to make during this time of year is Apple Crisp. I love it with a passion, y'all! This one is a bit different from your usual apple crisp. There is no oatmeal in this one. Mainly because my husband isn't a fan of the brown sugar/oatmeal topping so I had to figure something else out. And you know what? I ended up loving it better this way! And it is so easy to remember the ingredients.
But crisps sometimes have a tendency to occasionally bubble over and splat to the bottom of my oven. It's totally worth it though. Don't fear the cleanup! Seriously. Once your oven is cool, spray the Easy-Off Fume Free onto the oven mess (my favorite is the Fume Free kind because it can be used for everyday cleaning and smells lemon-y clean) and boom!, cleanup is done with a quickness! For really tough stains, just spray it on, close the door and leave it on overnight then wipe it down in the morning.
Now let's get to this Apple Crisp and I'll share with you my messiness! I can make this dessert without a recipe now. It can be made with just about any pie filling.
2 cans apple pie filling
1-2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1 stick (1/2 cup) cold butter, cubed
1/2 cup chopped pecans
Preheat oven to 400F degrees.
Pour both cans of apple pie filling into an 8x8 baking dish.
Sprinkle ground cinnamon on top of apple filling.
In a medium bowl, combine flour, sugar and cubed butter. Using a fork or pastry cutter, mix all ingredients until combined well. Making sure to "cut" the butter into the mixture.
Honestly, sometimes this is just easiest to use your hands. Get in there and smoosh the butter together with the flour/sugar mixture until it is crumbly.
It should look like little butter pebbles when it's ready.
Stir in pecans.
Spread the topping mixture over the apple pie filling.
Put in the middle rack of the oven and bake for about 25-30 minutes. It should be light golden brown and bubbly.
As you can see, my bubbly got a little too bubbly...and it dripped over the side and into the bottom of the oven. Remember, don't fear the cleanup - you got this!
Spoon onto plates or into bowls and top with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream or caramel or all three! I won't judge. I like it best when it's warm!
So now - the cleanup. Truly, no biggie.
I let the oven cool completely. Before I went to bed, I sprayed Easy Off onto the spill and onto all the other stains in my oven.
Then I closed the oven door and just let it marinate overnight.
And in the morning, I just took a wet sponge and wiped it clean. Boom! Easy Peasy. I would just keep rinsing the sponge and wiping until it was all clean. I keep that sponge just for cleaning the oven. Keep it away from your dish washing sponges so you don't have any confusion.
What I love about this Easy Off is it just leaves a clean lemon scent. I hate turning on the self-clean option on for my oven because it stinks up my house so bad and we all pretty much have to clear out because it is almost unbearable. So I get a clean oven without the fuss and the stink. For super, heavy duty stains, make sure to use the Heavy Duty Easy Off. This works on those oven racks too!

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Easy Off. The opinions and text are all mine.

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