9 Ingredients for Perfect Apple Crisp (in which I make the case that old cookbooks are better)

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This month, I’m participating in The Nester’s “31 Days of Change” project. The challenge: to write every day for 31 days! Click here to read more and to see what other listy-things I’ve been up to.




Truth: while Pinterest may have an edge over old cookbooks on food images and graphics and general hip-ness, there’s nothing like the classic recipes from old cookbooks.

Like this old Dutch cookbook that my mother-in-law uses titled “Eet Smakelijk.” Anyone want to translate? ;)


Luckily the interior was written in English…thanks to it being from Holland, Michigan #hometown. Oh, another perk about old cookbooks? You can easily tell what recipes are the best by how battered and warn the pages are. Kenny’s mom’s cookbook opens right to this apple crisp recipe without me even having to look it up.


Mrs. Donald G. Miller has the best, simplest recipe for apple crisp that I’ve found. If you can’t quite squint through the food markings on the recipe pictured above, here you go.

(Recipes count as lists, right?)

Old Fashioned Apple Crisp

5 1/2 cups cooking apples, peeled and sliced (I use this gadget)

1/4 cup water

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup light brown sugar, firmly packed

1/2 tsp. nutmeg

1/2 tsp. cinnamon

1/4 tsp. salt

3/4 cup flour

1/2 cup butter, softened

Annie’s directions: Spray a 9×9″ pan (or something around that size) and put the apples and water into the pan.


Mix everything else together until the “dough” is crumbly (and delicious…butter and sugar, mmm).


Crumble mixture on top of apples. Bake at 375 for 30 minutes covered and then 30 minutes uncovered.


Serve with vanilla ice cream, outdoors, around a fire pit, at sunset. Blankets and deciduous trees in various shades of green, yellow, orange, and red also help make this dessert taste extra delicious!


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