Lately, I just can’t resist making fruit crisps. Galettes – so freeform, so easy – got me through summer, but now I want lots of crunchy goodness on top of my fruit, so crisps it is.
One of my earliest posts on this blog was titled “I say crisp; you say crumble,” but one thing I left out was how convenient it can be to make a double (or more) batch of your topping, and keep it in the fridge (a couple weeks is fine) to use on the spur of the moment when you find yourself with some fruit to use up. My father used to do something like this, so when I got around to making a gingersnap crisp topping a few weeks ago, I wisely doubled the recipe. That time I used pears, but a week or two later, I used the rest of the topping with plums, and it was just as wonderful. The recipe I used called for gingersnaps, but instead of buying plain ones, I used the excellent (and available year round) Triple Ginger Snaps from Trader Joe’s, and they were perfect for those of us who like a lot of ginger flavor.
I even combined the fruit with a little of the grated ginger I keep on hand, from The Ginger People, and that upped the “Ginger Factor” even more. I found the recipe below on the Taste of Home website, and you can adjust various parts of it to make it your own. If you don’t want to use butter, you can use Earth Balance, or another vegan spread, and seek out vegan gingersnaps to use.
I also have my eye on a Vegan Apple Crisp recipe on Food52.com, which uses coconut oil (I finally broke down and bought some, but haven’t used it yet), but will probably cut the amount of sugar they mix with the apples.
Gingersnap Pear Crisp
NOTE: I plant to try substituting the gingersnaps with crushed amaretti cookies sometime too, since I love that “toasted almond” flavor. F.B.
1 cup crushed gingersnap cookies (about 20 cookies)
1/2 cup old-fashioned oats
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup butter, softened
7 medium pears (about 2-1/2 pounds), peeled and thinly sliced
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
Vanilla ice cream, optional
In a small bowl, combine the first six ingredients. With clean hands, work butter into oat mixture until well combined. Refrigerate for 15 minutes.
Place pears in a small bowl; add flour and toss to coat. Transfer to a greased 8-in. square baking dish; sprinkle with oat mixture.
Bake, uncovered, at 350° for 35-40 minutes or until topping is golden brown and fruit is tender. Serve warm with ice cream if desired. (For some reason, I am not an “a la mode” person. Go figure.)