Apple Crisp with Ginger Ice Cream

First I must apologize for the lack of posting these days! I have had quite a month... including swine flu (yes, really--they even swabbed my nose for it!), missing being a maid of honor because of said swine flu (congrats again, Jen + Jordan!), and hours upon hours of basement lab torture (of both the experimenters and the experimentees). On the upside, I had a wonderful Thanksgiving with friends, actually my first without any family members present. I wanted to share the recipe that some would say was the hit of the night, haha. First I wanted to make a pie, but alas, the lab prevented something so time-consuming. So I thought, what's easy and fast? Immediately I thought of apple crisp, since I've made it in the past and as desserts go, it doesn't take very long to put together.

I found this recipe by Ina Garten that I altered a little, threw in some homemade ginger ice cream, and the results were fabulous! I really enjoyed the combination of the two, and it was interesting to see people's reactions--some favored the crisp more, others were fascinated by the ginger ice cream. Ginger seemed like a natural choice, since its spiciness would go well with the sweetness of the apples, as well as complementing the spices already flavoring the apples, cinnamon and nutmeg.

Apple Crisp with Ginger Ice Cream

For the apple crisp
6 medium to large Braeburn apples, peeled and cut into wedges
1/2 c sugar
1 1/2 Tbsp lemon juice
Zest of 1 lemon
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground nutmeg

1 1/2 c all-purpose flour
1 c rolled whole grain medley (oats, wheat, barley + flax seed)
3/4 c sugar
3/4 c brown sugar, packed
1/2 t kosher salt
1/2 lb cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch sized pieces
  1. In a large bowl, combine apples, sugar, lemon juice, zest, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Mix until apples are evenly coated with juice and spices.
  2. Preheat oven to 350°. Combine flour, whole grains, sugars, and salt in a smaller bowl. Add cold pieces of butter and massage with hands until mixture becomes crumb-like and largest pieces are about centimeter sized.
  3. Arrange apples in casserole dish or ramekins, then generously sprinkle crisp topping over apples. Bake for about an hour, or until apples are bubbly and soft, but not overcooked.
For the ice cream
1 1/2 c heavy cream
1/2 c whole milk
4 egg yolks
Thumb-sized piece of ginger, grated
5 Tbsp sugar
Pinch of salt
  1. Combine cream and milk in saucepan with grated ginger and bring to a simmer. Meanwhile, whisk egg yolks and sugar until they turn pale yellow and fluff a bit.
  2. When mixture is simmering, turn off heat and pour 1 c very slowly into the yolks, making sure to keep whisking so the eggs do not scramble. Then add back to saucepan and turn on medium-low heat.
  3. Keep stirring over heat until custard thickens and coats the back of a spoon. Then take off heat, strain into a bowl, cover and refrigerate overnight.
  4. Freeze in your ice cream maker.
One thing to note, I had some trouble with the ginger ice cream. The first time I tried to make it, the ginger actually reacted with the milk and cream, causing them to curdle. So I acted quicker the second time and tried not to over-simmer, and it worked better, but didn't thicken to the extent prior custards have. Also I noticed when I strained the custard, there were some bits of cooked yolk that caught in the strainer, oops. But when I froze the ice cream, it came out less creamy than I would have liked, but overall not bad.

Also notice that in the picture, I used a ramekin, but that was only one of two that I put remainder apples and topping into. Don't think I was crazy and brought tens of little individual ramekins to my Thanksgiving potluck dinner! I had one of those large rectangular foil pans with high sides, and reheated the whole thing in the oven before serving it with the ice cream. If you do choose to use ramekins, make sure to cut the apples in smaller pieces like cubes, not wedges.

Next up: Not sure yet!
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  1. Hello,

    We bumped into your blog and we really liked it - great recipes YUM YUM.
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  2. yum - combination sounds great!

  3. Hi Vincent, Thanks for the invitation, I would love to check out the website!

    LOE, I wish I thought of it last year so you could have tried some!