Jess Zalph/Food Editor

Word to the wise [freshman]: You have a kitchen. Use it! It is a valuable resource that helps you fend for yourself in a cold, cruel, hungry world.

While in a couple of weeks you may feel ready to embark on an elaborate cooking journey, at the moment you probably have limited supplies, ingredients, and time. I tried to push these boundaries early last year and ended up spending most of my meal points on spices to make aloo gobi. I then had to devote half an hour to opening a can without a can opener, and washed all of my dishes with hand soap from the bathroom. The whole ordeal took about two and a half hours longer than it should have. I nearly missed a class in the process.

The problem is, most dishes that require a minimal investment of resources call for packaged mixes or feature microwaving as step five in the directions. While, realistically, everyone might use a microwave or a baking mix from time to time, I would feel shameful promoting such scandalous behavior.

Crustless apple pie, which is essentially just the filling for apple pie, is a perfect first college recipe. It requires approximately 15 minutes of effort, one pan, and relatively few ingredients. The ingredients it calls for can be easily and cheaply purchased on campus. It can be served in plastic cups with plastic forks, satisfying many hungry potential-friends and leaving you with an easy clean up.

Crustless Apple Pie

(Adapted from


1 tbsp. unsalted butter
4 apples (preferably Granny Smith or Golden Delicious, but any will do)
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. allspice
1 3/4 tbsp. brown sugar
1 orange, juiced
Splash of lemon juice (optional)


1. Peel and core the apples, then cut them into small, even slices. Each apple should make approximately 16 slices.

2. Heat a shallow pan, and then add the butter and let it melt slightly. Add the apple slices to the butter, making sure that they are coated.

3. Cook the apples for approximately three minutes; then add the cinnamon, allspice, brown sugar, orange juice, and lemon juice (if desired). Stir gently.

4. Let the apples caramelize in the sugar and juice for five minutes, or until the apples are soft.

5. Serve warm with ice cream, or chilled with some mint leaves and (high quality) whipped cream.

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