Every where I look at the moment there are full fruit trees and blackberry bushes tempting me to make a crumble with them! As you can see I gave in and recreated my favourite apple and berry crumble with a nutty, oat topping.
The twist in this recipe is that instead of adding sugar to the fruit I used apple and elderflower juice to sweeten up to cooking apples. The berries bring a nice sharpness to balance it out.
Compared to other British recipes I have shared the history of this dish doesn’t go back much further than the Second World War. During these times of food rations (which meant shortage of flour, butter and sugar) making a traditional pastry fruit pie became difficult so instead stewed fruit was topped with a mixture of oats, crumbs, flour, margarine and any other cereals etc they had.
I much prefer a crumble to a pie because you can vary the flavours in the toppings and create loads of different textures.
I used cooking/ Bramley apples which I think hold better in a crumble :) also make sure you use gluten free oats for the topping!
Vegan and gluten free
3 Bramley apples
3 tspn diced stem ginger
200ml apple and elderflower juice
150g mixed berries (blackberries, raspberries, black currants etc)
Large handful gluten free oats, gluten free oat bran, walnuts, dried fruits (enough to cover the top of your baking dish)
1 tblspn sugar
1 tspn cinnamon
3 tblspn vegan butter.
Peel, core and slice the apples into bite size chunks then put in a saucepan with the ginger and juice and cook for approx 15 minutes until the apple has softened. Add the berries to the pan and cook for a further 5 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 180c.
Pour the fruit into a baking dish. Make your crumble by mixing together your chosen oats, bran, nuts and dried fruits with the sugar and cinnamon then rub in some vegan butter. Don’t worry if some parts are clumpy and some is dry, it’s all going to be a rustic crunchy delicious topping!
Spread your crumble topping over the fruit and bake in the oven for 25 minutes until the fruit is bubbling away and the topping is golden brown.