Apple crumble has always been one of my favourite comfort foods, and if you have ever had the real homemade deal you’ll know why. Crumbles and tarts are a great way to use up the inevitable autumn abundance, and since it can be prepared so quickly it’s a great dish to have up your sleeve to welcome guests with on a rainy afternoon. It’s too good to be kept just for visitors though, and makes a great fruity family treat anytime during the week!
750g cooking apples
Golden caster sugar
85g butter, cubed
175g plain flour, sifted
Pinch of cinnamon (optional)
1) Preheat your oven to 200C/400F/Gas Mark 6.
2) Peel, core and slice the apples. Layer them in an ovenproof dish with 150-225g sugar, depending on how sweet a tooth you have!
3) Pour over the water. You want it to come about two-thirds of the way up the apple layers.
4) Rub the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs (I find it fastest in a food processor); stir in 50g sugar, and the cinnamon if you’re using it.
5) Sprinkle the mixture on top of the fruit. Bake for 30-40 minutes.
6) Serve with custard, cream or ice-cream.
*For a more grown-up dessert, you can whisk some icing sugar and brandy through your cream before serving it with the crumble.
**This method works pretty well with most fruits, and can be varied to suit whatever is in season. Just remember that sweet juicy berries like strawberries need less water(about half the amount), and less sugar, than cooking apples do.