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{Recipe} Cardamom Apple Crisp

My husband and I have a long-standing disagreement when it comes to the relative merits of pie vs. crisp. He has always maintained a strong preference for crisp. While I appreciate its ease of preparation, I have always ranked it below pie in my dessert preference hierarchy (yes, I have a dessert preference hierarchy, so what?). Pie is prettier. I like to decorate the crust with fancy little cut-outs, and crimp the edges just so. Crisp just doesn’t have the same visual appeal. And the taste? Well, I have always thought of it as a darn close second to pie – but always second. That was until I tried this crisp. The crisp to rule all crisps. It is absolutely, positively perfect in every way. In fact, it is so mind-bogglingly delicious you won’t even care that it doesn’t come wrapped in a pretty crust. I never thought I’d say this, but I like this crisp better than any pie I have ever tasted in my entire life. I am a convert. All hail the mighty crisp.

Cardamom Apple Crisp with Almond Crumb Topping


{Recipe} Cardamom Apple Crisp

Servings: 6 – 8,  Time: 1 hour 45 mins. (1 hour hands-on)



  • 6 cups Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, and chopped
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons brandy
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream


  • 1/2 cup old-fashioned oats
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped almonds
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon cardamom
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Peel, core, and chop apples. I typically cut each apple into quarters and then cut each quarter into 9 pieces by making two lengthwise cuts followed by two crosswise cuts.
  2. Combine sugar, cardamom, and cinnamon in a small bowl.
  3. Melt butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add apples, sugar mixture, and vanilla. Cook, stirring frequently, until apples are tender, approximately 10 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, make the topping by combining the oats, brown sugar, flour, chopped almonds, and spices in a medium bowl. Add butter and mix with your fingers until well combined.
  5. Remove from heat and add brandy. Return to the stove. Add cream. Continue to cook, stirring frequently until the mixture begins to thicken and caramelize.
  6. Transfer apple mixture to a baking dish. Spread topping evenly over the apples. Bake for 40 to 50 minutes, or until the top is golden brown and the filling has begun to bubble around the edges. Rotate halfway through cooking time, covering loosely with foil if the topping is becoming overly brown.
  7. Serve warm, topped with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream.[/recipe]

Cardamom Apple Crisp with Almond Crumb Topping (aka. World's Best Crisp)

This recipe was inspired by a couple of different sources. The topping is an adaptation of this recipe from Bon Appétit Magazine via Epicurious. The filling is an adaptation of this recipe from Martha Stewart.

How do you weigh in on the pie vs. crisp debate? Either way, I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as I do. If you do give it a try, be sure to drop me a line and let me know what you think!


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0 Responses to {Recipe} Cardamom Apple Crisp

  1. Jen H. April 8, 2014 at 6:01 pm #

    I’m an equal-opportunity crisp and pie lover! This looks delish.

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