On the last day of August, as we start to say goodbye to summer and welcome autumn’s charm, our thoughts and stomachs long for roast dinners and hearty puddings.
I took the opportunity to go foraging for blackberries this weekend as the weather has been lovely and mild. Even though a lot of blackberry bushes are past their prime at this time of year, my boyfriend and I went out to Walthamstow Marshes with our eagle eyes and were in luck as we picked a generous punnet’s worth.
To make the most of our efforts, we had a simple and scrumptious apple and blackberry crumble to follow a Sunday roast. The only ingredient I needed to buy that we didn’t already have at home was cooking apples which I got from my favourite grocers, the International Supermarket, on Walthamstow High Street.
My mum’s crumble recipe, which, as a child she allowed me to have without the fruit as I thought it was too sour (I think she empathised with my sweet tooth) worked a treat.
- 120g plain flour
- 60g butter, softened
- 40g sugar for the fruit
- 2 large cooking apples
- 300g blackberries
- 1 tbsp sugar to sprinkle on top
Preparation time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes
1. Turn the oven on to gas mark 5. Half-fill a medium saucepan with water and bring it to the boil.
2. Meanwhile, wash and peel the apples, and cut them into cubes (somewhere between 5 and 10cm). When the water starts to bubble, plop your chopped apples into the pan and cook on a medium to high heat for seven minutes. Use a knife to prod one of the apple cubes, and if their texture is soft, turn off the heat, drain them in a colander and set them aside.
3. Here comes the fun part! Tip the flour and butter into a medium sized bowl. Using your fingertips, blend the butter into the flour until it reaches the consistency of breadcrumbs.
4. Spread the apples out into a small to medium sized baking dish. Pour the blackberries on top and mix them in with the apples so they’re evenly distributed. Sprinkle the sugar over the fruit, making sure it gets in all the nooks and crannies. Scatter the crumble mixture to cover the fruit. Lastly, sprinkle the second helping of sugar on top.
5. Put the crumble in the oven for 20 minutes, or until it starts to look golden brown on top. When it’s ready, get it out of the oven and leave to cool for 10 minutes.
6. Serve with warm custard or some cream. Et voila.