apple crumble

Rhubarb and apple crumble

Rhubarb and Apple Crumble

I love any fruit crumble and I love rhubarb, so this recipe was a must. The crumble topping is a little different from what I am used to, but works well. The ground cassia is not an essential ingredient but does add a nice spice to the mix.

Because the rhubarb will collapse in the middle when taken out of the oven, it is important to have it well covered with crumble.

8 stalks rhubarb
4 granny smith apples
50g unsalted butter
2 tablespoons caster sugar

360g plain flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cassia
180g caster sugar
250g chilled unsalted butter
1 teaspoon vanilla bean

To make the crumble, sift the flour, baking powder and ground cassia into a bowl and add the caster sugar. Dice the butter, then rub it and the vanilla extract into the flour using your fingertips until the mixture is crumbly and lumpy.

Wash the rhubarb, discard the leaves and chop the stalks into 3cm lengths. Core, peel and cut the apple into similar sized chunks.

Butter a medium-sized baking dish with most of the softened butter, leaving a little to dot over the fruit. Mix the rhubarb and apple into the dish, then dot with the remaining butter and sprinkle with the caster sugar.

Preheat the oven to 200C. Generously pile the crumble over the fruit. Bake for 45 – 60 minutes, or until the crumble is golden brown and the juice from the fruit is bubbling around the edges.

Serve with thick cream.

Many thanks to Nadine from Feast Photography for the photo.

French apple tart

This recipe has saved me on several occasions when a dessert is needed at short notice. Use bought short-crust pastry shells if you are really short of time, or make your own and bake blind before adding the filling. Both keep well in the freezer and are useful in emergencies. This tart is quite delicious and if you don’t let your guests see the foil container the bought case came in, they will never know the difference!

1 x 15cm sweet short-crust pastry (pate sucre) shell, baked blind

1½ – 2 Granny Smith apples
2½ tablespoons brown sugar (not the very dark variety)
1 – 1½ tablespoons plain flour
1 level teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 level teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon slivered almonds (optional)
½ – 1 cup pure cream

Peel, core and slice the apples, and place in a bowl. Add the sugar, flour, nutmeg, cinnamon and slivered almonds (if using) and toss together gently until well blended. Tip into the pastry shell and even mixture out.

Add as much cream as needed to cover the apple mixture without over-filling the shell.

Preheat the oven to 190C and bake for approximately 40 minutes.

Serve hot with cream or crème fraiche.