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The Blonde Baker: Pear and Apple Crisp

What smells more like fall than freshly baked pears and apples laced with sweet hints of cinnamon? This crisp is a family favorite, and perfect for the cozy fall season. I adopted this recipe from the fabulous Barefoot Contessa, Ina Garten. The most important step in this recipe is selecting your apples. It is important to use a good apple for this crisp because it truly makes the dish. Any apple that is firm works perfectly. The crumble is delicious, and this crisp pairs beautifully with vanilla bean ice cream. I hope you enjoy this as much as I do!


4 ripe pears (Bosc or Barlett)

6 large firm apples (Honeycrip, Granny smith, Braeburn, or McIntosh)

1 teaspoon grated orange zest

1 teaspoon grated lemon zest

2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

½ cup granulated sugar plus a spoonful

¼ cup all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

½ teaspoon ground nutmeg


For the crumble:

1 ½ cups all-purpose flour

¾ cup granulated sugar

¾ cup brown sugar, lightly packed

1 cup old-fashioned oatmeal

2 sticks cold butter, diced

pinch of salt



Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Peel, core, and cut the pears and apples into thin slices. Place the fruit in a large bowl and add the zests, lemon juice, sugar, flour, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Pour into a 9 by 12 by 2-inch oval baking dish. You can use a pie pan or whatever casserole-like dish you have on hand.

For the topping:

Combine the flour, sugars, salt, 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 with vanilla ice cream near a warm fire. 

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