Dorie’s Apple Squares

Sometimes, it truly is the little things in life that make you happy.

For example, I spent the better part of Monday spring cleaning. I tore apart my closet and made room for almost all of my warm-weather clothes that have been packed away for the winter. Kinda like coming out of hibernation, I suppose.

The clothes, not me…

However, in more exciting news, I have a new oven to try out today! Can I get a “hoooo-rah”? The owners of the rental home we are in decided that since they had to replace the dishwasher (which conked out 2 weeks ago on its own), they decided to also replace the old, outdated range as well. The old oven and I were not on the best of terms – I couldn’t understand it, as the broiler element was on the bottom. Nothing cooked evenly, and I really had a hard time adjusting to it.

But not anymore! I can’t wait to try out the new one today – I have a few errands to run and then if you need me, I’ll be in the kitchen :)


Dorie’s Apple Squares – adapted from Dorie Greenspan

  • medium apples (juicy, sweet)
  • 1/2cup flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • eggs
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 6 tbs. whole milk
  • 2 tbs. unsalted butter, melted and cooled (but still liquid)
  • Confectioners’ sugar (optional)

Heat the oven to 400° F. Butter an 8-inch square baking pan and line the bottom with parchment paper.

Peel the apples. If you have a mandoline, slice the apples thinly, turning when you reach the core. (The slices should be thin but not transparent.) If you don’t have a mandoline, simply core and slice as thinly as you manage. In a bowl, whisk together the flour and baking powder.

In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs and sugar for a couple of minutes, or until the sugar dissolves and the eggs become pale. Whisk in the vanilla, then the milk and the melted butter. Add the flour and whisk until smooth. With a spatula, gently fold in the apples until each slice is coated. Scrape the batter into the pan and roughly even out the top.

Bake the cake for 40 to 50 minutes or until golden and uniformly puffed. A skewer in the middle will come out clean. Transfer to a rack to cool, then slice and dust with the optional confectioners’ sugar.

Apple Pear Crisp

In the last two months, I’ve heard the words “Megan, you’re 100% right” several times. Quite frankly, that doesn’t happen very often, so I will unabashedly admit that I get a little thrill every time I hear it.

More to the point though, being “right” about something generally means that you have had experience in any particular situation, and therefore can (or did) predict the outcome.


I don’t want to say having that experience is a sign of getting older (gulp!), but I have a sneaky suspicion that it is. Which makes me, once again, 100% right.

Case closed.

Apple Pear Crisp – adapted from Ina Garten

2 pounds ripe Bosc pears (4 pears)
2 pounds firm Macoun apples (6 apples)
1 tsp grated orange zest
1 tsp grated lemon zest
2 tbs. freshly squeezed orange juice
2 tbs. freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

For the topping:
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
1 cup old-fashioned oatmeal
1/2 pound (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, diced

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Peel, core, and cut the pears and apples into large chunks. Place the fruit in a large bowl and add the zests, juices, sugar, flour, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Pour into a 9 by 12 by 2-inch oval baking dish.

For the topping:
Combine the flour, sugars and oatmeal, and butter in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Mix on low speed for 1 minute, until the mixture is in large crumbles. Sprinkle evenly over the fruit, covering the fruit completely.

Place the baking dish on a sheet pan and bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour, until the top is brown and the fruit is bubbly. Serve warm.

Cranberry Apple Crisp

Fall is in the air….I can feel it. The days are getting shorter, the nights are getting colder, and EVERYWHERE you go there is Pumpkin Spice something-or-other..

But seriously, can you believe we’re halfway through October? The month is flying by and soon it will be Thanksgiving/Christmas/New Years.

I just freaked myself out.


One year ago: Ultimate Cinnamon Rolls

Cranberry Apple Crisp – adapted from Dorie Greenspan

1 cup all purpose flour
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 cup oatmeal
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
4 oz. butter, melted


4 medium apples, peeled, cored and cut into ¼ inch chunks
1 cup fresh or frozen cranberries (if frozen, don’t thaw)
2/3 cup sugar ( I only used 1/3 cup)
1 tbs. all-purpose flour

Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 375°F. Lightly butter a large souffle/gratin dish and set aside.

In a large bowl, combine the flour, brown sugar, oatmeal, ginger and cinnamon. Pour in the melted butter and toss with a fork until large clumps form. Set aside while you prepare the filling.

Toss all the filling ingredients together in a large bowl. Pour the fruit into the dish, then sprinkle the topping over the fruit. Bake the crisp for 40-45 minutes or until the topping is golden and the fruit juices are bubbling up around it. Transfer the dish to a rack and let rest for at least 10 minutes before serving.

Cherry Breakfast Crumble

Every now and then, after you try a new recipe,  you say to yourself (and hopefully it’s not in your outside voice), why didn’t I think of this before?

Truly, the simplicity here is sheer brilliance.

Fruit baked with a homemade granola. Simple. Yet…….brilliant.

For breakfast, you could dress it up with yogurt. For dessert, a shot of whipped cream would be apropos.


Me? I skipped both of those suggestions and ate a big bowlful sans accompaniment après workout.

I felt very virtuous afterwards.

Oh, make no mistake…..the nachos, hot wings and cookies I ate while watching football on Sunday clearly negated any health benefits I may have reaped from said bowlful.

Cherry Breakfast Crumble – adapted from serious eats

3 cups pitted cherries
1/4 cup granulated sugar (next time I’ll use brown sugar)
1 1/4 cups old fashioned oats
1/2 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, diced, plus more for greasing baking dish.
Adjust oven rack to middle position and preheat oven to 375°F. Butter a 9-inch baking dish. Pour cherries into prepared baking dish.
In a large bowl, combine sugar, oats and flour. Use your fingers to rub butter into the mixture until it has the texture of wet sand. Spread oat mixture over top of cherries. Bake until golden, about 60 minutes. Let cool slightly and serve warm. Add a garnish of Greek yogurt, if desired.

Blueberry Cheesecake Crumble

I am thoroughly convinced that if a vanilla cheesecake and a blueberry crumble got together and engaged in a little hanky-panky, this is what the end result would be:


Seriously, this was outstanding – whether you eat it warm from the oven or chilled after an overnight stint in the fridge. It’s like a cheesecake in reverse – filling on the bottom and the crust on top. Hey, wait a minute –  if I flipped it out the pan, then it would be in the correct order, right?

I think my OCD is out of control. 

One year ago: Homemade Twix Bars 

Blueberry Cheesecake Crumble – adapted from Bake or Break

For the cheesecake layer:

8 ounces cream cheese, softened
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the topping:

3 cups blueberries
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 tbs. lemon juice
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

To make the cheesecake layer:

Preheat oven to 325°. Grease an 11″ x 7″, 8″ x 8″, or 9″ round pan.

Using an electric mixer on medium speed, beat cream cheese, sugar, and flour until well-blended and smooth. Add egg and vanilla, and mix until combined.

Spread mixture evenly into the bottom of prepared pan. Bake 6 minutes, or just until set. Set pan aside while you prepare the topping.

To make the topping:

Increase the oven temperature to 375°.

Place blueberries in a medium bowl, and add granulated sugar and lemon juice, and toss to coat. Set aside.

In a separate bowl, mix flour, brown sugar, and cinnamon. Add butter and mix with a pastry blender or fork until combined. Dough will be crumbly. Pour blueberry mixture over cream cheese layer, then sprinkle crumb mixture evenly over blueberries.

Bake 22 to 25 minutes, or until the top is lightly browned and the blueberries are bubbly.

Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp

Question of the day:

What do you do when your parents bring home two full flats of strawberries – and you realize that they are perilously close to expiring?

Wait – I am referring to the berries expiring……. not my parents……

I ruminated the fact that I could either make a pie, or go into a baking realm I’ve never visited before and make this:


To the untrained eye, it appears to be a mess on a plate – to your taste buds, however, it is a delicious conglomeration of rhubarb, strawberries, brown sugar and oatmeal.


Rhubarb seems to be one of those food items that people tend to be squarely divided into one of two camps: they either love, or hate it. I happen to love it – it has such a sweet/tart flavor, and complements the berries perfectly. This was an outstanding recipe, as evidenced by the fact that I ate two servings the first night….and another the next morning …….


Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp – adapted from

2 pounds rhubarb stalks, sliced 1/2 inch thick
3/4 cup sugar
1 pound strawberries, hulled and quartered
3 tbs. cornstarch
2 tsp. fresh lemon juice
1 tsp. vanilla extract


1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 cups light brown sugar
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/4 cups quick-cooking rolled oats
3 tablespoons canola oil
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon

Preheat the oven to 375°. In a large bowl, combine the rhubarb and strawberries. In another bowl, whisk together the sugar, cornstarch, lemon juice and vanilla – pour the mixture over the fruit and toss gently to combine. Transfer the mixture to a 9-by-13-inch glass baking dish.

Combine all of the topping ingredients in a medium bowl. Using a pastry blender or your fingers, mix the ingredients together until large crumbs form. Sprinkle the topping evenly over the filling and bake for 30 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 325° and continue baking for about 30 minutes longer, until the fruit filling is bubbling and the topping is nicely browned. Let the crisp rest for 10 to 20 minutes before serving.

Blackberry Apple Cobbler

In the midst of cleaning out the freezer the other day, I found a bag of blackberries.

Odd? Well, not really, considering my inability to control myself at Costco……I mean, I’m making orange marmalade right now with all the oranges I found in the fruit bowl.

strange, yet it happened….

Anyway, I didn’t think too much more about the berries until I saw this recipe in the new issue of Bon Appetit. My Dad (and Mom!) love a good cobbler and/or crisp, so I figured this was perfect to make for dessert when they came over for dinner the other night.


Next time I make this (and make no mistake, there will be a next time) I will cut the apples smaller, and use less cornstarch – it was a bit too chalky for my taste. Otherwise, I really liked it and it is infinitely adaptable based on whatever mass quantities of fruit I come home with….

Blackberry Apple Cobbler – adapted from Bon Appetit

3 pounds baking apples – peeled, cored, cut into 1/4″ wedges
1 10-ounce package frozen blackberries (about 2 cups), thawed
1/3 cup sugar
3 tbs. cornstarch
3 tbs. honey
2 tbs. unsalted butter, cut into 1/2″ pieces
2 tbs. fresh lemon juice

Biscuit topping and assembly:
1/2 cup cornmeal
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup sugar plus more for sprinkling
6 tbs. (3/4 stick) chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1/2″ pieces
1 to 1 1/4 cups buttermilk

For filling:
Preheat oven to 375°F. Combine apples, blackberries, sugar, cornstarch, honey, butter, and lemon juice in a large bowl and toss to evenly distribute. Transfer mixture to a greased shallow 3-quart baking dish and set aside.

For biscuit topping and assembly:
Combine cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda, 1 1/2 cups flour, and 1/4 cup sugar in a food processor; pulse to blend. Add butter and pulse until pea-size lumps form. Transfer flour mixture to a large bowl and form a well in the center. Add 1 cup buttermilk to well and mix with a spoon or spatula until a shaggy dough forms. Add more buttermilk if the mixture is too dry.

Drop dough over fruit mixture and sprinkle evenly with sugar.Bake cobbler until filling is bubbling around edges and biscuits are golden brown, 40-50 minutes.