Spring might be on the way, but the air is still chilly and winter seems to be lingering like an unwelcome guest in some parts of the country. This dessert is welcome in the fall, winter, or on cool spring days, and great for using up apples that are softer now than in October.
Apple crisps are often served with ice cream, but a Custard Sauce, also known as Crème Anglaise, is mellow with vanilla and can be served warm or cold. I like it warm. Pools of mellow vanilla sauce, soft apples, and a crisp topping meld together for a dessert that is warm and comforting.
I'm linking this to Penny's Tasty Tuesday, at her blog The Comforts of Home. There are lots of yummy recipes shared each week. Check it out!
4 cups sliced pared apples
2/3 - 3/4 cup brown sugar, packed (I use the lesser amount)
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup oats
3/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg (freshly grated is best)
1/3 cup butter, softened
Heat oven to 375 degrees. Place apple slices in 8 inch square pan (or use individual dishes). Mix remaining ingredients with fingers, until mixture is crumbly, with the butter evenly distributed. Sprinkle over the apples.
Bake 30 minutes or until apples are tender and topping is golden brown. Serve warm with custard sauce.
Crème Anglaise aka Custard Sauce
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup heavy cream (whipping cream) (or use 1 cup of light cream in place of the milk and heavy cream)
2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
2 egg yolks
1 tsp vanilla extract
Heat the milk and cream in a small saucepan until just hot. (Steam should rise from the milk, but it shouldn't boil.) Whisk together the egg yolks and sugar with the salt. Add a small amount of the hot milk to the eggs, then whisk the yolk mixture back into the saucepan with the rest of the milk. Cook, stirring constantly until the sauce thickens slightly - about 175 degrees. The mixture should not boil. Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla. Strain mixture into a glass or metal bowl. Press a piece of plastic wrap or waxed paper onto the top of the sauce to prevent a skin forming. Chill. (Will keep up to 3 days.)