Apple Brown Betty

Apple Brown BettyPosition a rack in the lower third of the oven.  Preheat the oven to 350° F. Have ready an unbuttered 8×8-inch baking dish, a 9-inch pie pan, or a 10×6-inch oblong glass baking dish.

Peel core and slice:

  • 3 medium apples (about 1 pound)

Stir together with a fork in a small bowl:

  • 1 1/2 cups dry unseasoned breadcrumbs
  • 6 Tbsp (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, melted

Sift if lumpy; otherwise, whisk together thoroughly in another bowl:

  • 1 1/4 cups backed dark brown sugar
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves

Spread one-third of the crumb mixture evenly in the bottom of teh baking dish. Distribute half of the apples in the dish. Sprinkle with half of the sugar mixture and then with:

  • 1 1/2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice

Cover with another third of the crumb mixture, the remaining apples, the remaining sugar mixture, and:

  • 1 1/2 Tbsp fresh lemon juice

Cover with the remain crumb mixture.  Cover the dish with aluminum foil, and bake until the apples are nearly tender when pierced with a skewer, about 40 minutes. Uncover the dish. Increase the oven temperature to 400º F and bake until the betty is browned, about 15 minutes.  Serve warm in bowls with vanilla ice cream.

Joy of CookingYield: 6 servings

From: The All New All Purpose Joy of Cooking

Gray: I thought this was tasty, and it was easy to make.  That being said, it wasn’t my favorite thing ever.  I think I prefer apple crisp or pie to this.  It is a good way to use up old, dry bread.  Then again, so are croutons – and I like them better.   In any case Katie hated this for some reason, so we probably won’t be making it again.  Feel free to weigh in with your thoughts on the apple pie vs. betty vs. cobbler vs. crisp debate. (I’m a crisp man myself!)

Katie: Well, Gray already said it; I hated this recipe. I thought it was bland, which the apples were not. My aunt brought me a box of apples from the tree in the yard in the mountains of North Carolina. They are nice, flavorful apples! The brown betty also had weird textures in it that I did not like. There were chewy places, really crisp parts, and then the apples that were exposed got very dry and leathery. I can think of many things to make with any of these ingredients that I would like to eat. As far as apple desserts go, I think my favorite is a fried apple pie! We used to make these each year for the church booth at the local fair.

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4 Responses to Apple Brown Betty

  1. Me says:

    One of my favorite fall dishes… I’ll have to try your recipe!

  2. hinsone says:

    You lost me at the breadcrumbs… Not what I was expecting for a dessert recipe. Usually that top crust can be made with only the sugar and butter and no grains at all, or sometimes with a whole grain like oats. I recently had a fruit dessert (they called it cobbler but it was not like we used to make) that had whole oats in it and it was very good.

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