I’ve been wanting to make the mock apple pie ever since I saw it on Food: Fact or Fiction in the Great Depression episode. I love crackers, I love apple pie, what’s there not to like? Unfortunately, I hate making pie dough, and the store didn’t have any, so I decided to make a mock apple crisp, since we’re more of a crisp household than a pie household anyway.
This recipe makes one large, thin mock apple crisp. Feel free to use a smaller baking receptacle for a thicker layer of mock apple filling.
Ingredients for filling:
2 cups water
3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 tablespoon + 2 teaspoons lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 sleeve Ritz crackers (or 30 crackers similar to Ritz)
Ingredients for crumble:
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup quick oats
1/2 cup brown sugar (light or dark)
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup non-dairy butter (I used Country Crock Plant Butter made with Olive Oil)
- Preheat oven to 400*F
- Add all of the filling ingredients to a large pot, except for the crackers, and bring to a boil
- Mix every minute or so, so the sugar doesn’t stick to the pot
- When the liquid is boiling, add all the crackers whole, give it a mix to coat the crackers, and turn the heat all the way down to low
- Simmer for five minutes, untouched
- After the mixture has simmered, pour the filling into a greased baking dish
- Add all of the crumble ingredients to a large bowl, and with your hand/s, squish all of the ingredients together until it’s all crumbly (every ingredient should be coated with butter, no loose flour)
- Take a handful of crumble at a time, and distribute over the filling evenly, until you’ve used all the crumble
- Bake for fifteen minutes at 400*F, then turn the oven off, but leave the crisp in the oven for another fifteen minutes
- Take out of oven and cool for at least a half hour, then enjoy as is, or top with some non-dairy vanilla ice cream or whipped topping
I can’t even describe how happy I was with how this mock apple crisp turned out. I don’t know how or why, but the crackers really do look, taste and feel like apples while eating. It must be a combination of the acidic lemon juice and the spices. I even had a taste-tester, and I had them try it with their eyes closed to guess what it was. Their words exactly, “It definitely has apples in it.” I thought that was pretty cool.
All I can say is that the people who lived through the Great Depression really knew what they were doing with this mock apple pie idea.