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Easy Thanksgiving Dessert: Not Pie, but a Grape Apple Crisp

For a real gorgeous dessert for your next fall dinner party or for your Thanksgiving feast, you should serve up this very easy and lovely apple grape apple crisp.

Apple Grape Crisp by FamilySpice.com

The calendar tells me Thanksgiving is fast approaching, but that doesn’t mean that I believe it. Luckily for me, my mom is hosting the big meal. This is definitely a big plus for my parents’ big move from Texas to California.

Thanksgiving dinner and babysitting, of course! I am not totally off the hook. She’s putting me down for dessert. And I’m all about easy desserts.

I do not like fiddling with the piping tube when I make a cake. Pie crusts frustrate me – unless it’s my olive oil pie crust! But even still, pies are time consuming to make and assemble. So all hail the Fruit Crisp!

Making Apple Grape Crisp by FamilySpice.com

The difference between a crisp and a cobbler

My favorite desserts really are fruit desserts. It’s probably the Persian side in me as middle easterners serve fresh fruit as a dessert all the time, something lost on my Western counterparts. 

Fruit desserts are not only delicious, but they are rather beautiful with their bright colors. A fruit crisp is one of the easiest desserts to throw together. But do you really know the difference between a crisp, a cobbler and a crumble?!

So many choices people! Here’s a quick review on some of America’s favorite fruit desserts:

Betty: Made with layers of fruit and buttered bread pieces (or crumbs) and baked together.

Buckle: A cake like batter baked in a pan with fruit placed on top. As the cake bakes, the fruit sinks down and bakes in the center. Doesn’t this brown butter blueberry buckle look incredible?!

Cobbler: Baked in a casserole dish with fruit on the bottom and sweet biscuit dough pieces on top. (Check out my recipe for peach blueberry cobbler)

Crisp: Baked in a casserole dish with fruit on the bottom and a crispy topping over it. Similar to a crumble, except that the topping contains oats and nuts.

Crumble: Fruit baked on the bottom with a crumbly streusel topping made from sugar, flour and butter.

Grunt: Similar to a cobbler, but made in a skillet on the stove top. Also called a slump. (Here’s a great recipe for a cherry berry grunt)

Pandowdy: Fruit baked on the bottom with rolled pastry on top. Once out of the oven, the pastry is then broken into pieces to absorb the sweet fruit juices. Hello blueberry peach pandowdy!

Pie: Pastry crust on the bottom with fruit in the middle and sometimes more pastry on top. (Check out my recipe for homemade peach blueberry pie!)

Apple Grape Crisp by FamilySpice.com

You can bake with grapes?!

Grapes not only make excellent snacks just as they are, but did you know you can also bake with them? They taste even sweeter when baked and are perfect in so many different ways.

You can make a beautiful grape upside down cake or black grape galettes or bake up some incredible savory grape bread. I even roasted grapes for this delicious roasted grape lemonade. The skin keeps the grapes shape while baking while the juicy center softens and sweetens.

For the best grape crisp, choose a sweet grape. This means forgoing the more tart green grapes. I chose these black California grapes, but also look for Muscato, Concord or Jupiter varieites

A large bunch of black grapes in a metal bowl by FamilySpice.com
Holiday Dessert 

Crisps are perfect for the holiday months because they are super easy to assemble and they are hard to destroy, even for the absent-minded baker. And that would be me. You can use most any seasonal fruit (another reason why I love crisps) and for fall, that means apples!

But this is not any ordinary apple crisp. I also mixed in some black grapes with my apples, since I’ve been baking with grapes this month. Bet you didn’t know that grapes are a fall fruit!

The result? I’m so glad I added grapes! The apple grape crisp became a dramatic, deep purple crisp. Almond slices and oatmeal are the core to the crispy top. A real stunning dessert to wow your guests.

This is my new favorite dessert for the fall. Glamorous enough for your Thanksgiving table, or whenever you have a hankering for a crisp.

What is your go-to dessert during these stressful entertaining months?

Apple Grape Crisp by FamilySpice.com

Yield: serves 6

Grape Apple Crisp

Apple Grape Crisp by FamilySpice.com

For a real gorgeous dessert for your next fall dinner party or for your Thanksgiving feast, you should serve up this very easy and lovely apple grape apple crisp.

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 hour 15 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 lb apples, like Granny Smith or Pink Lady
  • 1/4 cup plus 3 TBS granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 TBS all-purpose flour
  • 1 TBS lemon juice
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 tsp ground cardamom
  • 1/2 lb black grapes
  • 1/2 cup old-fashion oatmeal
  • 1/4 cup almond slices
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 6 TBS unsalted butter, chopped

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350ºF.
  2. Peel and core apples, then cut into thin slices and place in a large bowl.
  3. Stir in 3 TBS granulated sugar, 2 TBS flour, lemon juice, lemon zest, cinnamon and cardamom with the apples.
  4. Clean grapes and remove from stems. Cut the larger grapes in half and add all the grapes in with the apples.
  5. Transfer fruit mixture into a 9-inch baking dish.
  6. In a small bowl, mix together 1/2 cup flour, oatmeal, almond slices, 1/4 cup sugar, brown sugar and salt.
  7. Using your fingers, squeeze butter into the flour mixture until it resembles pebbles.
  8. Sprinkle the topping evenly over the fruit and bake until browned and bubbly, about 1 hour.
  9. Serve warm or cool to room temperature.

Notes

Serving Suggestions: Serve alone, with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream. Also substitute almond slices with walnuts, pistachios or pecans.

Cooking Tips: Green and red grapes can also be used, but will not give you the deep purple hue like black grapes do.

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Nutrition Information:

Yield:

6

Serving Size:

1 bowl

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 326Total Fat: 14.5gSaturated Fat: 7.6gCholesterol: 31mgSodium: 182mgCarbohydrates: 48.1gFiber: 2.7gSugar: 32.1gProtein: 3.6g