October is National Dessert Month in the United States--in fact, there are lots and lots of sweet days for October. Today, October 5th, is National Apple Betty Day!
In honor of this special day, I present to you this lovely individual Apple Brown Betty, complete with a melting scoop of vanilla ice cream. I won't lie to you, my friends. This was goooood.
Apple Brown Betty is sister to Apple Crisp, and a kissing-cousin of that scoundrel, Apple Cobbler. Born of Pioneer Days, these desserts all use seasonal ingredients to make similar, though very different, desserts just right for autumn's apple harvest.
The Brown Betty is made from bread (crumbs or cubes), butter, apples, sugar and cinnamon. Variations abound: brown sugar, a touch of nutmeg or cardamom, wheat bread or even various cake crumbs instead of white bread. However you make this little darling, plan a moment alone to enjoy it while your eyes roll back in your head in dessert bliss.
A note for diabetics: Obviously you can always replace sugar with sugar substitute, as I did in this recipe, but remember that when using ingredients like bread or crackers there's not a whole lot you can do to skinny this up. Eat in moderation.
This is a by-eye recipe, but I've made an attempt to explain how it's made. Once you know the process you can make adjustments as desired.
Apple Brown Betty
one apple per person
butter club-style crackers, crushed
sugar or brown sugar (or substitute)
freshly grated nutmeg
Place peeled, sliced (or chopped) apples in a bowl. Sprinkle generously with sugar, then lightly with ground cinnamon and nutmeg. Add a squeeze of lemon juice and toss well with hands.
Generously butter individual oven-safe custard cups, tart dishes or ramekins. Sprinkle with cracker crumbs. Add a thin layer of the apple mixture. Top with more crumbs. Then more apples. End with crumbs.
If your apples are very juicy or it's early in the apple season, you may not need as much water; if the apples seem a little on the dry side, use a bit more. I used about 2 tablespoons of water per serving.
Dot the very top with butter--oh, about a tablespoon per serving--and pop in a preheated 350*F oven for about 15-20 minutes, or until lightly browned on top and filling is hot. Cool about 10 minutes.
Serve warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
Reminder: If you're a blogger, don't forget to write about the view from your computer and show us your link! If you don't have a blog you can still play along--email me your photo and I'll add it to my post.