Saturday, October 22, 2011

Foodie Friday - Apple Crumble

This week, along with every other student in NZ, I will be in 'head down, bum up' exam-prep mode. It's pretty intense. I'm not allowed to leave my office except to eat, sleep (what's that?) and .. use the facilities. It's full study lockdown over here. How is it at your place, fellow student(s)?

As promised, Foodie Friday went ahead, but I needed an uncomplicated recipe. No time to babysit melting chocolate chips this week!

Apple Crumble

Fruit crumbles are my go-to dessert for any time I'm in a hurry, or invited to a 'bring a plate' event at the very last second (anyone that knows us will confirm that my family has the collective middle name of 'oops, did I forget to tell you??').  Everything in the mix is standard kitchen stuff and the recipe can be made with canned fruit if fresh supplies are depleted.

My recipe is based on the Jamie Oliver one but I've jazzed it up significantly, on account of his tasting too much like healthfood and not enough like dessert. I'm all for healthy desserts, but not to the degree that you'd might as well eat a bowl of oats.


Makes 12 servings

The fruity bit:
850g chopped apple
tsp cinnamon
1/4 cup raisins

The crumble:
200g rolled oats
100g flour (I used rice, you could use any type)
110g granular sugar (e.g. demerara)
150g butter (cubed)
tsp vanilla essence
1/2 tsp salt


To peel or not to peel?  I never peel my apples because, as mentioned, I'm usually rushing when I make this dish. However, you get a quite nice 'apple saucy' result if you do. Do it your way.

Cut the apples into smallish cubes and boil them in a just a little water. You are aiming to steam them to 'soft but firm'. You don't need a lot of water as the apples will release some as they cook.  

While the apples are steaming, prepare the crumble. I used a food processor but you could make it by hand, rubbing the butter in as you would with a scone mix.

Put the rolled oats, flour and sugar into the food processor and mix them.

Add the vanilla and salt, then add cubes of butter while running the processor. 

Keep going until all ingredients are thoroughly combined.

Once the apples are ready:

Tip the apples into a large, rectangular baking dish (or whatever you have!). The level of wetness you want is up to you. I tend to tip out most of the excess water, but it's ok to leave it there.

Sprinkle the cinnamon and raisins over the apples.

Spread the crumble topping over the apples/cinnamon/raisins.

Bake for 20 minutes on a moderate heat and serve hot. It's very nice with Greek Yogurt, or with 'other things' you might have lying around... (see what we did after the pic). The recipe keeps quite well in the fridge and can be eaten as a type of soft slice the next day or reheated. I have not tried freezing it. I've also crunched the nutritional stats for it and uploaded them here, for those so interested.

What we did:

Well, firstly, as a matter of postly balance, let's look at something supremely healthy and nutritious for minute (1, 2, 3 ... 60):

My garden is greening up the world at the moment.  I'm so impressed, and at $6 a bag for salad greens, we are saving a bucketload by foraging in the back yard boxes.

Nice, green, healthy stuff. Just keep looking at that for a moment before I corrupt you.


We soaked our crumble in Grappa.

It's really hard to remember who exactly came up with this idea, but it was a genius, inspired plan. I bought this bottle of Grappa for The Programmer when I was in Verbania, from an amazing little shop that was packed to the rafters (literally) with all types of local product.

If you are unfamilar with Grappa, I will tell you that it is the most awful alcoholic substance in existence. However, finding myself unable to resist the urgings of the shopkeeper in Pallanza, I came home with two bottles. This one, with honey in it, worked rather too well when poured all over the crumble. From that point the evening got a bit.. fuzzy around the edges. :D I'm sure you can imagine.

I have amusing memories of buying this potent little bottle of glow because, for probably the only time in my life, I had the linguistic advantage over Miss J, and it drove her crazy. She was listening intently, and realising that the shopkeeper could understand neither English nor German, began butting into the conversation with 'what did he say?', 'what does that mean?' and 'Aunty Sara, what are you talking about???!'  It was so cute and funny. Of course, after that she probably took up some online study for 6-year olds and mastered Italian in four lessons..


  1. Good luck with your exams girl... up here it's TV ON... looking forward to the GAME OF THE YEAR! I keep thinking it's tonight for some reason... DOH!
    Your apple crumble sound so yum!

  2. Grrr... wonder what happened to me first comment?
    Oh well...

    Good luck with our exams Chick.
    Up here we are all in 'waiting' mode... for the GAME OF THE YEAR!
    I keep thinking it's already sunday night! DOH.

    I love apple crumble! Your's looks darn yum too.

  3. you are getting three comments! Clearly I am confused. It's the 'WAITING'..... and lusting after friggin apple crumble.

  4. Are you stalking me? ;)

  5. Hehehe, I thought the game was on tonight too. .. isn't it?

    I think you need to go make some crumble to get you through. It's not fattening. It's got FRUIT in it.

  6. I love me a crumble. I'm totally making this one! Probably without the grappa, although in Melbourne it isn't hard to find. Just ask an old Italian bloke - he's guaranteed to have some. Probably home made and quite possibly toxic....

  7. Yum, love a good crumble. Your vege garden looks great, I'm hoping to get one cranking once we move house in a few months. I find gardening so relaxing, kinda like an earthy therapy! I'm originally a Christchurch girl - nice to stumble across a Kiwi blog :)


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