Apple Cranberry Crisp

~ Apple and Cranberry Crisp with Calvados Cream ~

If it’s not broken, then don’t fix it. Sage advice in life and the kitchen, and very relevant to this fruit crisp. A good fruit crisp (or crumble – I go both ways) should contain seasonal fruit at it’s peak in flavor, subtley enhanced with a dusting of sugar and spice. The topping should be crisp and crumbly (see why I go both ways?) without being cloyingly over-sweet, allowing the fruit to shine through. I like to serve crisps with whipped cream, ever so lightly sweetened and fortified with a nip of spirits dictated by the fruit of choice. Everything works together, and when you have a recipe that encourages this, don’t mess with it. I love this crisp, and I think you will too.

Apple Cranberry Crisp

I used walnuts for this crisp, but feel free to switch them for hazelnuts, almonds or pecans, depending on the fruit you use. For this crisp I used apples given to me from a friend’s tree – my guess is they are Honeycrisp – and Granny Smith which I like for baking. Serves 8.

For the topping:
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup unsalted butter, chilled, cut in pieces
1/2 cup chopped toasted walnuts

For the filling:
8 large baking apples, peeled, quartered, cut in 3/4 inch chunks
1/2 cup dried cranberries or 1 cup fresh cranberries
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

Preheat oven to 375 F. (190 C.) Combine flour, sugars, cinnamon and salt in bowl of a food processor. Briefly pulse to combine. Add butter and pulse until topping resembles coarse meal. Transfer to a bowl and stir in walnuts. (Topping may be made up to one day in advance. Cover and refrigerate until use).

Combine apples and cranberries in a large bowl. Add remaining ingredients; toss to combine. Transfer fruit to a 9-by-13 inch baking pan, gratin dish or individual ramekins.  Cover evenly with the topping. Bake in oven until topping is golden brown and fruit is bubbling, about 50 minutes. (If using individual ramekins, the baking time will be shortened to about 40 minutes). Remove from oven and cool slightly before serving. Serve warm or at room temperature with Calvados Cream.

Calvados Cream

2 cups heavy cream
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 tablespoons Calvados Brandy

Beat cream in bowl of electric mixer until whisk traces are visible in the cream. Add sugar and Calvados. Continue to beat until soft peaks form.

24 thoughts on “Apple Cranberry Crisp

  1. Nothing says Fall like this recipe. I love the light in your photographs. We are going pumpkin picking tomorrow, then I think we should have this for dessert. Now I have to get my hands on some Calvados!

  2. These look great! I love a good crumble and the whole idea of an autumn crispy warm dessert makes me smile. I know it is spring here now, but the weather has turned for this long weekend with nothing in sight but grey skies, rain and wind…

  3. Perfect timing! My daughter and I were watching the old cartoon Pinocchio when I saw this famous wooden boy carrying a red apple, I remember I still have a few (more than a few, perhaps!) apples that are waiting to be turned into a perfect masterpiece…Now I just need to go out to get cranberries…
    Thanks!

  4. My philosophy with crisps is just the same. I have a topping that works well (similar to yours, with pecans instead of walnuts) and I pair it with whatever fruit is fresh and seasonal. Yours looks LOVELY.

  5. I would love to try the calvados cream. That sounds delicious. The crisp looks very inviting. I love the blue ramekins.
    I love to bake and have baked an apple, cranberry and pear crisp (Barefoot Contessa recipe). It’s so perfect for this time of the year.

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