Garam Masala Walnut Apple Crisp

Paleo Garam Masala Walnut Apple Crisp Recipe via Worthy Pause

I have been dreaming about making this paleo Indian-spiced apple crisp for months now. 

I don't make a lot of desserts at home, but my favorite paleo-friendly desserts are fruit crisps and crumbles because they taste just like the real thing (sometimes better, honestly). This recipe is partially based on my go-to Paleo Blueberry Almond Crisp, which is the ultimate in throw-together, single-serving desserts (despite the really, really bad photos I took of it in 2013).

I thought this new crisp, however, needed to be big enough to share.

This dessert is quite balanced — not too sweet, not too tart, not too spicy. And the flavor comes mostly from the apples, so choose wisely. I prefer a mix of sweet (Honeycrisp) and just a bit of tartness (Granny Smith), but just use what you like best.

Paleo Garam Masala Walnut Apple Crisp Recipe via Worthy Pause
Paleo Garam Masala Walnut Apple Crisp Recipe via Worthy Pause
Paleo Garam Masala Walnut Apple Crisp Recipe via Worthy Pause

What is garam masala?

Garam masala is a common Indian blend of spices that usually includes peppercorns, cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamom, bay leaves and cumin. It's almost like somewhere in between your average curry powder and Chinese five-spice powder. I use garam masala a lot because I am constantly making keema, but this is the first time I've used it in a dessert (!).

You can make your own garam masala, of course, but I usually just buy it at the grocery store. They even sell it at standard grocery stores now, but you can find it at any Indian market or online.

Paleo Garam Masala Walnut Apple Crisp Recipe via Worthy Pause
Paleo Garam Masala Walnut Apple Crisp Recipe via Worthy Pause

Garam Masala Walnut Apple Crisp

paleo, vegan, vegetarian & gluten-free recipe | serves 6

Filling Ingredients

  • 6 apples, peeled and sliced or diced (mix of Golden Delicious, Honeycrisp, Braeburn, Granny Smith)
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp garam masala
  • 2 T lemon juice
  • pinch of salt

Crumble Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup coconut oil (or butter)
  • 1.5 cups almond flour
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 tsp garam masala
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 cup walnuts, pieces and whole
 

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F. Grease a baking dish or pie pan with coconut oil (or butter).
  2. In a small bowl, toss the apple slices with lemon juice, garam masala and a pinch of salt to coat evenly. Transfer the mixture to the baking dish.
  3. In another small bowl, mix the crumble-streusel topping. Using a fork, mash up the coconut oil or butter with the almond flour, maple syrup, garam masala and salt. It's okay if it's crumbly (it is crumble, after all). Once it's combined, stir in the walnuts.
  4. Bake for about 35 minutes, or until the apples are tender and the crumble is golden brown on top.
  5. Serve warm (on its own, with whipped coconut cream or with ice cream, duh).

Tips

  • Make sure to watch this carefully towards the end to make sure your crumble doesn't get tooooo toasty (you can probably see in the photos that some of my walnuts got a little darker than I'd hoped). I'd start checking at 30 minutes.
  • Don't overfill your baking dish or you risk the apple lava bubbling over. Put a cookie sheet under the dish if you need to.
  • To reheat, just throw it back in the oven to warm it up.
  • Do not make this in a cast iron skillet. The citrus and the metal are not friends. I made this mistake once (and it's documented with these pictures), but I will not make it again.