Makes six 6-inch crostatas (6-12 servings)

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For the crumb topping:

1 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 cup packed light brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Pinch of kosher salt

Pinch of baking powder

8 tablespoons unsalted butter, cool but not cold

1/3 cup chopped pecans (optional)

For the filling:

4 tablespoons unsalted butter

1/2 cup packed light brown sugar

1 vanilla bean, split, seeds scraped out and reserved

1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest

1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

2 pounds tart apples, such as Granny Smith

Large pinch of kosher salt

11/2 pounds crostata dough (see recipe) rolled into 6 rounds and chilled

2 large egg yolks beaten with 2 tablespoons heavy cream for egg wash

1 tablespoon sugar

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1. To make the crumb topping: In a medium bowl, combine the flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, salt, and baking powder. Using a pastry cutter or a fork, cut in the butter until the mixture forms coarse crumbs. Toss in the pecans, if using. Cover with plastic wrap and chill until ready to use. (Can be made up to 2 days in advance.)

2. To make the filling: In a large skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the brown sugar, vanilla seeds, lemon zest, and juice. Stir in the apples and cook until the apples are tender but not mushy and the juices have thickened slightly, 7 to 10 minutes. Transfer to a bowl to cool then toss with salt.

3. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spoon about 1/2 cup of the filling onto the center of each dough round, leaving a 1-inch border of dough all around. Mound about 2 heaping tablespoons of the crumb mixture on top of each portion of apples. Fold the edges of the dough up around the filling to partially cover it. Chill the crostatas for 15 minutes. Brush the crust of each crostata with the egg wash. Sprinkle with the sugar.

4. Bake, rotating the pan halfway through the baking, until the crust is golden brown and the fruit is bubbling, 40 to 50 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool slightly and serve warm, or let cool completely and serve at room temperature. The crostatas can be rewarmed in a 350-degree oven for about 10 minutes before serving.

- From Franny's Simple Seasonal Italian (Artisan)

Per serving (based on 12): 476 calories; 5 grams protein; 52 grams carbohydrates; 21 grams sugar; 29 grams fat; 109 milligrams cholesterol; 388 milligrams sodium; 3 grams dietary fiber.

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