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A Local Thanksgiving

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Jim Kent Jr., Locust Grove Fruit Farm  

Mary Ann White’s Apple Crisp

THE CHEF:
Michael White
(Convivio and Alto)
Michael White is known for his high-end Italian fare, but when it comes to Thanksgiving, he’s all-American. “I can still smell my mom’s apple crisp,” he says. The Mutsu apples he uses, he says, are almost too juicy for a pie.

THE FARMER:
Jim Kent Jr.
(Locust Grove Fruit Farm) Milton; 845-795-5194
Jim Kent Jr.’s seventh-generation Hudson Valley family was one of the founding farmers of the Greenmarket, in 1976. “It wasn’t especially nice, but it was better than selling the fruit off the back of a truck,” says Kent. Today, Locust Grove sells over 60 varieties of apples, including the popular Mutsu. “Mutsu apples were called crispins when they were first introduced in America in the forties,” says Kent. By any name, he adds, the variety stands out for its juiciness, sweetness, and ability to retain its shape when cooked.

THE RECIPE:
8 tablespoons butter, diced, plus extra for greasing dish
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
3 1/2 pounds Mutsu apples, peeled, cored, cut into eighths
1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup packed dark brown sugar

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Butter a 9-inch-square baking dish.

Combine the granulated sugar and 1 teaspoon cinnamon in a bowl. Add the apples and lemon juice, toss together, and transfer to the prepared baking dish.

Combine the flour and brown sugar and remaining cinnamon in a bowl. Cut the butter into the mixture until it resembles fine crumbs. Sprinkle the topping evenly over the fruit to cover (it will make a generous layer).

Bake in the oven for 15 minutes, reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees, and cook for 25–30 minutes more, or until the top is golden and fruit is bubbly. (If the topping browns too quickly, cover loosely with foil.) Cool the crisp on a wire rack for 15 minutes. Serve with vanilla ice cream or vanilla-flavored whipped cream.


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