Today I am sharing one of my favorite autumn apple recipes, chock full of delicious and nutritious, immune-boosting ingredients...
While I am grateful for the warm and sun-drenched life here in Southern California and how we never lack for idyllic days, one of the main things I miss about living on the East Coast is fall. I miss fall with a deep, empty ache in my gut. I crave the crisp September air that displaces the brutal, heavy heat of summer with a laughable swiftness. I miss simply needing to wear a scarf and sweater occasionally.
Each of the five Elements in Chinese medicine ~ Fire, Earth, Metal, Water, and Wood ~ is associated with a season. For us Metal types, we resonate most directly with autumn. So it gives me some consolation that my longing for crackly autumn leaves and drizzly skies is rooted in my constitution. It’s not that I don’t appreciate the sunshine, but I am wired for clouds and apple season. Sorry, beaches, it’s not you…it’s me.
In order to simulate a little bit of fall in my LA kitchen, I recently made this delicious and nutritious fruit crisp. There are lots of reasons that I love this recipe. It is immune boosting for sure, and inspires cozy feelings with its cinnamon-y smells. It is flexible ingredient-wise and can thusly fit any number of dietary persuasions or restrictions. It is equally edible as a vegan treat or made with butter, sweetened with maple syrup or deriving its sweetness purely from the fruit. I used organic apples and pears because that is what I had in the house, but raspberries or blueberries are a welcome addition.
The acupuncturist in me loves this crisp because its flavor profile is balanced, and highlights ingredients like apples and pears that strengthen the organ that is most taxed during the fall and winter cold season, the Lung. Warming cinnamon and ginger harmonize the digestive system (the root of all immunity, see this post), and pair perfectly with the tart and cooling lemon juice. Lemon harmonizes the Liver, the organ that mitigates the impact of daily stressors on our body and immune reserves.
Awesome Autumn Apple-Pear Crisp
Ingredients for the Fruit Filling:
3-4 organic apples
3-4 organic pears
Juice of 1-3 lemons (to taste)
1 tsp vanilla
1 tbsp honey
1 tbsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground ginger
Ingredients for the Oat Topping:
1.5 c oats
1.5 c whole wheat flour (can substitute gluten free flour, like almond or coconut)
1/4 tsp salt
1 tbsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp ginger
1/3 c coconut oil, melted (can substitute butter)
1/3 c maple syrup
Cut up apples and pears into slices of equal-ish thickness (keep the peels on to retain fiber and nutrients). Arrange in an even layer in baking pan.
Drizzle the lemon juice, honey, and vanilla over the fruit. Next add the cinnamon and ginger. Stir to distribute evenly.
Mix oats, flour, salt, cinnamon, ginger, melted coconut oil, and maple syrup in a large bowl.
Evenly cover the apples and pears with the oat topping.
Bake at 325 degrees for approximately 30-40 minutes, or until the fruit has softened to your liking.
Enjoy as dessert, breakfast, or a mid-day snack. Store leftovers in the fridge. It is great hot or cold/room temp. Yum!