Apple and Raspberry Hazelnut Crumble
Over the weekend I was appointed a little baking task. My good friend Soph decided to throw a food orientated social gathering in honour of her departure to the French Alps next week for another skiing adventure. What better way to socialise with friends than by surrounding oneself with delicious food and drink?!? The menu: pumpkin soup followed (rather impressively) with stuffed pork loin, potato gratin, and mixed vegetables. Soph’s mum, Andrea (a cooking legend herself), made chocolate brownie cake for dessert, but then Soph handed over the reins and elected me to make the final pudding option for the evening. Of course I adopted the role with excitement, dreaming of delicious, crowd pleasing puds…
My natural baking instincts always seem to drift towards cakey recipes- I am a sucker for cake!!- but with the chocolate brownie pudding already made I opted for something a little fruitier. I thought about pavlova, trifle, fresh fruit cheesecake, but eventually went with a classic. Crumble. Everyone loves crumble! Not only is it great for large groups of people, but its also seasonal, simple and downright satisfying. I wanted to go with the popular ‘Apple and Blackberry’ combo, but sadly Tesco let me down in the fruit department, and my mother claimed that the freezer was clear of foraged berries. How false she was…I only found a box of bloody brambles this morning! Never mind. The apple and raspberry amalgamation worked an absolute treat, so I shall keep the brambles for a rainy day. To jazz up the recipe my boss recommended the addition of chopped nuts for the crumble, which was a genius idea- it made the topping into a delightful granola-like mixture; in fact, I found myself eating cold crumble for breakfast when I was disgracefully hung over on Sunday morning. Who knew it would make such a delicious breakfast snack?!?!
(serves approx. 12 people)
- 300g of self raising flour
- 200g of oats
- 250g of dark brown sugar
- 250g of butter, softened
- 200g of hazelnuts, roughly chopped
- 1 tsp of ground cinnamon
- 1 tsp of mixed spice
- 1.5kg of apples, peeled and chopped
- 300g fresh or frozen raspberries
- 3 tbsp of water
- 4 tbsp of caster sugar (or to taste)
- extra sugar for sprinkling
- 1 large oven proof dish
- Preheat the oven at 180.
- Begin by making the crumble mixture; place the flour, spices, oats, sugar, and softened butter into a bowl. Using your fingertips combine the ingredients so that the mixture forms into a crumb-like texture. Lastly add the roughly chopped nuts and combine.
- Line a large baking tray with parchment and pour in the crumble. Bake in the oven for half an hour or until golden and crunchy. Pre-baking the crumble prevents the mixture from going soggy when coating the wet fruit.
- While the crumble is baking place the chopped apple into a large pan with the water and sugar. You may adjust the sugar here in accordance to personal taste. Cook the apples until softened. Make sure the apples retain there shape as the fruit will be baked again in the oven. You don’t want it to end up like apple sauce. Take the apple of the heat and then stir in the raspberries. Pour the mixture into the oven proof dish.
- Once the crumble is golden remove from the oven and leave to cool slightly. When cool break up the crumble and scatter over the fruit in an even layer. Bring some of the hazelnuts to the surface and sprinkle over a final dusting of brown sugar to caramelise the top.
- You can leave the crumble covered until needed; in which case, whack it in the preheated oven for 30 minutes, or until the fruit is hot.
- Enjoy with cream, custard or ice-cream. Or enjoy cold for breakfast…