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Humble Apple Crumble 10/19/10

Return to basics with an old favourite - apple crumble.

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There is something about finding food for free that is very appealing. I’m not talking about left-over pizza in the boardroom but edibles that are proffered up in the outdoor world around us. Like roadside bushes filled with juicy bramble berries, or perhaps avocados hanging
provocatively over someone’s fence.

My awesome discovery on a family walk yesterday was an apple tree literally dripping with pale green orbs straight from the Garden of Eden (or in this case the roadside of Sutton Scotney, I’m on holiday for a month in the UK).

Because of the abundance of free apples, we couldn’t bear to waste even one and after stuffing our pockets full of fruity treasure we walked home plotting what to make.

This plotting resulted in my niece chasing after my nephew with a rather gross looking apple, and after tossing it at his head (and missing) she tripped and stood up with awesome road-rash on her hands and knees. But what better way to stop an upwelling of tears than to promise she could be head chef?

One of the easiest things to make from a glut of apples, but one that often gets forgotten, is the wholesome apple crumble. Every ingredient is usually already in your cupboard, and when you’re feeling guilty for ignoring your ‘one a day keeps the doctor away’ routine, this is how to make up for it.

Ingredients *serves 6 – 8

6 Big Fat Apples (any kind will do, but if they’re tart in taste you’ll need to add sugar, conversely if they are very sweet add the juice of a lemon)
Two teaspoons cinnamon
Two tablespoons raisins or cranberries (if you like)


100g Flour
50g Butter
50g Sugar
Optional: Raw oats, handful of nuts, honey, cinnamon…


Pre-heat oven to 180̊ C.

Wash and slice up your apples, make sure you get rid of all the seeds.
Throw them in a pot with a small amount of water, just enough to cover the bottom of the pot. Add the cinnamon, and if the apples are sweet this is when you should squeeze in the lemon.

Cook the apples on a medium heat until soft and the liquid has become a sticky brown syrup. Once off the heat, stir in the raisins or cranberries. Spoon the apple mixture into a baking dish.

Now, measure the flour into a deep sided mixing bowl. Grate in the butter, and using your fingers rub the flour and butter together until they form crumbs.

Add in the sugar (brown or white can be used, but I prefer brown for the texture), using your fingers to spread it evenly through the crumbs.
At this point you can mix in a shake of raw oats, perhaps some nuts or the last dregs in the muesli jar. This is good for taste and texture, proving a crispy crunch to contrast against the soft apples.

Spoon the crumbles over the apple mixture and place in the oven.

Cook for 25 minutes or until golden brown. Traditionally this is served with ice-cream, cream or custard but I like to spoon a good dollop of plain yoghurt on top to cut the sweet nature of this humble pie.

Text & images by Kath Fourie

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