Crisp, crumble, cobbler, grate, bandodi or pie brown—there are plenty of terms for baked fruit with flour, sugar, and butter. While they are all a great way to bring out the beauty of fully ripe fruits, they all have unique characteristics.
A cobbler is a fruit base with a sourdough or cookie-like dough scattered over it, like pebbles. When the cobbler is baked, the top of the dough becomes crunchy, the inside is tender, and the bottom is infused with delicious sweet fruit juices.
With its lumpy texture, buckle teeters on the edge of the coffee cake category, but it typically contains more fruit. When the mixture rises in the oven, it twists around the fruit, hence the name. It’s a delicious dessert that will also be a great breakfast.
A pandowdy is similar to a pancake, with the filling on the bottom and the pancake topping the crust. But in this case, the crust breaks down into an untidy or “ramshackle” appearance.
Petit replaces your typical dough, batter, or streusel with breadcrumbs or cubes mixed with brown sugar and butter, making it an easy-to-prepare dish and a perfect way to make use of stale bread.
Both chips and crumbs have a streusel topping and are so similar that when you read descriptions of the two in cookbooks, they are often interchangeable. If differentiation is necessary, crumbs tend to have a denser layer often containing nuts, while brittles usually contain looser crumbs which may include oats.
Cinnamon is often a flavor, but don’t limit yourself to this option. In this week’s dish, ginger provides a great backdrop for the apple flavor, both in the filling and on top, as gingerbread cookies are crumbled and mixed with flour, sugar, and butter before being sprinkled on top and baked.
All of these options work with just about any type of fruit, but this time of year, why not celebrate Minnesota’s pride and joy, the apple. And what’s a celebration without ice cream? This is how I suggest serving any of these desserts: Warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top.
Ginger Snap Pecan Apple Crumble
Note: Gingersnap cookies and fresh ginger give a subtle background note to the generous amount of apple in this fall-inspired dessert. From Meredith Deeds.
to fill in:
• 7 delicious honeycrisp or golden apples, peeled, cored, and cut into 3/4-inch pieces. pieces (about 2 lbs.)
• 1/3 c. granulated sugar
• 2 tbsp. flour
• 1 tbsp. Lemon juice
• 1 tbsp. fresh grated ginger
• 1/4 tsp. salt
To take first place:
• 3/4 c. Crushed ginger biscuits (about 15 cookies)
• 3/4 c. chopped pecans
• 1/2 c. brown sugar envelope
• 1/2 c. flour
• 1/4 tsp. salt
• 1/2 c. (1 stick) melted butter
• Vanilla ice cream, optional
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
To prepare the filling: Combine apples, granulated sugar, flour, lemon juice, ginger, and ¼ teaspoon salt in a large bowl. Transfer to a 2-quart baking dish and press into an even layer. Cover the pan tightly with aluminum foil and place it on a folded baking sheet. Transfer the tray to the oven and bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until the apples are tender.
To prepare the topping: In a small bowl, mix the crushed biscuits, walnuts, brown sugar, flour, and salt. Stir in butter until it crumbles. Sprinkle the filling. Bake, uncovered, for 25 to 30 minutes, or until apples are soft and toppings are brown. Cover loosely with aluminum foil if the top layer turns brown too quickly. Leave to cool on the rack for 30 minutes. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream, if desired.
Meredith Deeds is a Edina cookbook author and food writer. You can reach her at [email protected] Follow her on Instagram at @meredithdeeds.