I know it won’t last, but I’m wearing long pants and a long-sleeved shirt today, and declaring it fall. I’m combining two fall flavors that I love in this dessert—apples and gingerbread—but not going in the typical direction of muffins or nut bread. Why not put them together in a cobbler, where both the apples and the gingerbread shine on their own, but work even better together?
I’m using Annie Somerville’s “Gingerbread” from her Fields of Greens (1993) cookbook, with two changes. I’m using agave syrup instead of corn syrup and sour cream instead of buttermilk. I like this recipe because the focus is on the fresh ginger. There is only a small 1/4 cup of molasses, a little brown sugar, but no other spices. No cinnamon, no cloves, no nutmeg. Just lots of grated ginger—1/2 cup! With all that ginger and only a little molasses, the batter is much lighter in color than a traditional gingerbread. I did add a half teaspoon of cinnamon to the apple mixture, but that was a small amount for five apples.
Apple-Walnut Gingerbread Cobbler
Preheat oven to 350°; butter a 9 inch square or round baking dish with at least a 2 inch depth.
5 medium-large apples, pared and cut in chunks or slices
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup white sugar
4 tablespoons butter, melted
1/2 cup walnuts, roughly chopped
Optional: 1 tablespoon flour, if your apples are very juicy
Adapted from Annie Somerville’s “Gingerbread,” Fields of Greens (1993).
1 stick (8 tablespoons) butter, room temperature
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup molasses
1/4 cup agave syrup
1/2 cup sour cream
1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup grated fresh ginger
- Pare and chop apples. Keep apples in bowl of acidulated water while making batter. Roughly chop walnuts and set aside with the rest of the filling ingredients.
- Beat butter and brown sugar until fluffy in the bowl of a stand mixer.
- Beat egg, molasses, and agave syrup. Add to creamed butter and brown sugar, beating well.
- Beat in sour cream.
- Mix dry ingredients and slowly mix into batter.
- Lastly, mix in the 1/2 cup of grated ginger.
- Strain apples, then mix with melted butter, nuts, cinnamon, salt, and sugar (and flour, if using).
- Pour apple mixture into prepared dish.
- Pour batter over apples, lightly spreading almost to edges of dish. It will spread out more as it bakes, and will be less likely to burn on the edges if you don’t spread it all the way.
- Bake until the gingerbread is browned and cracked and the apples are bubbling around the edges. That took about 45 minutes in my oven. Unlike baking gingerbread in a baking pan where it touches the pan all around, the bottom of the gingerbread cooks with the apples, so it takes a little longer.
Do try some warm with whipped cream.