FOOD: I Approve this Use of Cheddar aka A Perfect Storm of Ingredients

In the spirit of the upcoming election…I will say nothing more about it because I’m sick of the damn thing and want it to be over.

Anyway – I’ve had a serious craving for cheddar cheese lately, the sharper the better.  I can’t get enough and one of my favorite ways to eat it is on hot apple pie (which I don’t usually have just laying around).  And in semi-related news yesterday, my husband advised me that I better find a recipe online for the 6 pounds of pears I had in the fridge (come on, $1 for a 3 pound bag, limit of 2, how could I pass up that coupon?).    So I found a pear pie recipe, decided I was too lazy to make a pie crust, and the best part of this now pear crisp is that the crumbly topping INCLUDES CHEDDAR CHEESE.

Go kids – go preheat your oven to 400 degrees.  You can thank me later.  And get three mixing bowls while you’re at it.  Butter an 8×8 pan as well.

Crumbly Top Ingredients:

  • 1/2 Cup all purpose flour
  • 1/2 Cup brown sugar (I used 1 cup unpressed)
  • 1/2 Cup shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 Cup butter, sliced up not melted

These all get mixed in a bowl, preferably with one of those dangerous looking pastry cutter things to cut the butter into the ingredients.  You want to cut the butter in until you have coarse crumbs.   This will take a few minutes of cutting, mixing and hard work so don’t give up!  So worth it.  If you don’t have a cutter tool, two knives work.

I forgot to take a picture of this while I was making it because I was too excited and also in a hurry because I have some glass cutting to finish up from yesterday’s adventure.  If you are ever in the south Charlotte, NC area and want some great authentic German food, go to the Waldhorn.  They are on my Awesome List for not only having great food, but the waitress (Stefanie) was willing to look for empty wine bottles for me.  Then she told me where the glass bin was out back and said I could have at it.  Andy was mortified.  So here’s a picture of what I’m working on today besides baking:

One of five projects I have going on at once today.

But I digress.  You’ve made the crumbly top and now you have to peel and chunk up @6 cups of pears (or apples if that’s what you’re into).  For me that was 5-6 pears and I used a carrot peeler instead of a knife – much faster.  I’m sure you could have used more if you had produce overload in the fridge.  I threw the chunks into a bowl and stirred a little lemon juice in there.  I think lemon juice is pretty optional though – I mean, people do it so the fruit doesn’t brown but you’re cooking it soon anyway so who cares?

Third Bowl Ingredients:

  • 1/2 Cup brown sugar (again, I used @ 1 cup unpressed)
  • 3 Tablespoons cornstarch (this helps keep your crisp from being too runny when cooked I think – I highly recommend it but it’s not a deal breaker I guess)
  • 3/4 Tablespoon ground cinnamon

Mix these and throw them in the pear bowl and mix all of that together.  Pour it all in your buttered pan and then evenly sprinkle your crumble mixture over it.  Bake for 45 minutes.  When done, it might look like this:

The edges will be awesomely chewy from the brown sugar and butter.

It makes the house smell fantastic.  You’ll want to eat it immediately and you should have it while warm, but wait at least 30 minutes so you don’t burn your mouth with hot fruit.  Seriously.  Don’t let my tongue burns be for naught.

Still too hot!

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