20 October 2015

The Best Apple Crumble I've Ever Made!


homegrown apple


Our tiny weeny apple tree bore fruit – 5 of our very own Bramleys, my favourite cooking apples. 

Obviously being cooking apples they had to be cooked.  When it comes to apple desserts (as with most food!) my real man and I are in disagreement – he prefers an apple sponge and I always prefer a crumble.

Due to my inherent loveliness I usually make sponge when dealing with cooked fruit desserts but suddenly I had an inspiration which I needed to try out … 



Toffee Apple Crumble – for 3 or 4


4 medium cooking apples – preferably Bramleys
1 tablespoon caster sugar
240g plain flour
pinch salt
160g butter
120g soft light brown sugar
3 tablespoons more caster sugar

~   Preheat the oven to 180ºC/350°F/160ºC fan/gas 4.
~   Peel and slice the apples into an ovenproof dish.
~   Put the 1 tablespoon of caster sugar into a small saucepan together with ½ tablespoon of water AND set a container of about 40ml water beside the stove.
~  
Over low heat stir together the sugar and the water till the sugar is dissolved and then bring to a boil.  Don’t stir once it boils but swirl about a bit when it begins turning colour.
~   Boil to a deep golden brown watching carefully.
~   Immediately it reaches this colour …

correct-colour-for-caramel

… pour in the water you have set beside the stove. It will boil up like crazy and the caramel will solidify and go all interesting. Stir over the heat till the caramel melts into the water.
~   Pour this over the apples and stir together.
~   Rub the butter into the flour together with the pinch of salt then stir in the soft brown sugar.
~   Loosely pile this on top of the apples, level the surface, make a pattern if you feel like it and bake for about 30-40 minutes till the apples have collapsed and are tender and the top is golden brown.

Now the best bit! …

~   As with the caramel above put the rest of the caster sugar into a clean saucepan together with ½ tablespoon of water just to get it started.
~   Over low heat stir together the sugar and the water till the sugar is dissolved and then bring to a boil.  Don’t stir once it boils but swirl about a bit when it begins turning colour.
~   Boil to a deep golden brown watching carefully.
~   When it has assumed a lovely caramel colour immediately and very carefully drizzle it over the top of the cooked apple crumble.
~   It will cool and go hard very quickly.





Important and Helpful Guidelines for Making Caramel


~   Use a wooden spoon so that it neither gets too hot nor melts.
~   If possible don’t use a non-stick pan as they are too dark to see the colour of the caramel.
~   Equip yourself with a good heatproof cloth.
~   Put any additions immediately to hand beside the stove.
~   Never touch hot caramel with anything human or animal.


Heartbreakingly we didn’t have any clotted cream so had custard when hot and double cream when cold but I am so pleased with it I wish I had come up with the idea when I was still cheffing. I would have adapted it to make individual Crème Brulée / Apple Crumble hybrids, maybe caramelising the top with sugar and a blow torch instead of the method above.
.
In Other News …

~   For lots of other apple recipe, particularly good for Bramleys, see here – A Glut of Apples.
~   Remember I made sourdough bread for the first time last week?   Well I’ve kept my mother going and today made a black pepper sourdough bread because I figured I put black pepper on almost everything so why not?



homemade sourdough bread





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3 comments:

Charlotte Oates said...

Apple cumble v apple cake? It's a tough one - I think crumble edges it but I'd happily eat either. I love the addition of the caramel drizzled over the top (I'd drizzle caramel over everything!) and that coffee tip sounds delicious I'll have to give that a try sometime.

Thanks for joining #FoodYearLinkup x

Sue said...

Crumble wins over cake any day!!

Vohn's Vittles said...

I agree crumble every time and I love the sound of this one - definitely going to make it when autumn rolls around again. LOVE your top tip of using the caramel-pan-cleaning-water to make coffee! Genius!