My husband and I found ourselves scrumping apples from a pub garden the other day. It is not quite as naughty as it may sound; we did have full permission from both the owner and the chef who had so many apples he did not know what to do with them and these were the ones he could not cope with.
The apples themselves were eaters but very sharp and by caramelising them they softened and sweetened. Added to them I had other fruit needing using up so it became a full on fruit mixture.
Apples – peeled, cored and sliced
Pears – peeled, cored and sliced
Seeds – I used Vanilla flavoured pumpkin and sunflower
Melt the butter and add the fruit depending on what you are using. I cooked the apples first with sugar.
When they had softened and the sugar dissolved into a dark liquid coating the apples I added the remaining fruit which did not require as long.
I cooked this stirring regularly allowing the blueberries to split and the differing tastes harmonise amongst themselves. Then I transferred to the serving dish.
With a crumble top I do like to use measured ingredients, this is what I use for the family of 5 or 6 but double for more people. 175g of plain flour with 75g of butter which you rub together until it resembles the texture of breadcrumbs.
Then I add the same amount of brown sugar (75g). Mix it through thoroughly and then scatter over the fruit. It should cover the fruit liberally. I had ready mixed seeds in the cupboard but any neutral seeds or oats could be sprinkled at this point. It gives an added crunch to the crumble.
Cook in a pre-heated oven until you can see the fruit bubbling round the edges and the top has turned a deep golden brown. Top with ice-cream, clotted cream, regular double cream or warm custard. I can guarantee this will go down a treat.
Crumble is a wonderful winter’s pudding but I try to utilise what fruit is available. Blackberries are another great free fruit that has its abundance in the autumn, with sugar added to these they do not necessarily need the pre-cooking.
I also serve my family a wonderful spicy plum crumble when the plums are falling and in abundance. Cut lots of plums in half and remove the stones, add to a pan of melted butter. Add a star anise, freshly grated nutmeg and a couple of cinnamon sticks. Cover this with red wine, golden syrup and some sugar (not too much by now) and allow the fruit to break down and marry the flavours before transferring to the dish. This particular crumble is great if you have visitors, it tastes exquisite and looks professional.
Fruit puddings are a fabulous way of getting fruit into children and mine love the different combinations which work well with each other.
Have you any different combinations that surprisingly work well, share them with me and my other readers.
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This is another of my sneaky ways of getting fruit into the children and even better I got Mini Son to help me make them. They were very popular and just because they have cereal in them does not mean they have to be kept for breakfast.
The sugar, butter content probably negates the fibre from the fruit but it is better than a lot of the snacks you can buy over the counter and the children love these.
100g or so of dried fruit – I used a premixed supermarket pack
100g of mixed seeds (these were included in my pack)
280g of oats – i used a mix of jumbo and porridge
50g of multi-grain hoop cereal
200g of butter
200g sugar – light muscavado
200g golden syrup
Mix the oats, fruit, seeds and cereal together in a bowl
Using a large heavy based pan melt the butter, add the sugar and then the golden syrup gently stirring until the sugar has completely melted.
Once melted remove from the heat and add the dry ingredients stirring well
Pour out into the baking tray and even out. I tend to use the pampered chef bar pan which I still line with greaseproof paper with but this is more to lift out than prevent sticking. If you use a standard baking tray make sure you grease it well.
Bake at a low heat 160C/gas 3 for about 20 minutes until they are golden brown then remove and leave to cool completely. I score the bars when they come out of the oven and again when they are cool to make it easier to cut them.
In theory these could last 3 days in an airtight tin in practice I cannot get them to last more than a day. No matter where I hide the tin it is found and all I get are a few fruit crumbs.
Enjoy these and get the children to help which will make them even more tempting. You could coat the top in melted chocolate or dip each bar half way in once they are cool enough. Mine don’t last that long. I think they are very similar to flapjack but my children prefer these.
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I was at a friends house and we had this flapjack. One piece led to another with us all commenting how delicious it was. She was eventually persuaded to divulge the family recipe and although mine was slightly different it went down as well and did not last long in our house.
1lb Oats mixture with nuts and sultanas (I used a mix of 70% jumbo and porridge oats; with dried cranberries and apricots rather than nuts)
1/2lb butter or margarine
1/2lb Muscovado Sugar (I actually used a bit less as I am not keen on very sweet things)
4 tablespoons Golden Syrup
2 heaped teaspoons of Baking Powder
2 heaped teaspoons of Dry Ground Ginger
Melt the butter gently, adding the golden syrup and sugar allow to cool slightly
Mix all the dry ingredient together.
Add the dry mix to the butter and mix well so that all the oats and fruit are well coated.
Lay the mix in a buttered tin or on grease proof paper and put in a pre-heated oven at
for 25 minutes
When the flapjack turns a golden brown but is still soft to the touch (beware sugar content is really hot) take it from the oven and allow to cool. It will harden once cooled. Score the portion sizes out and once cooled leave in the fridge before cutting it up.
We like our flapjack gooey and soft but if you cook it slightly longer it will cool much harder.
Enjoy and there are so many variations to this let me know what your family love best.
This really is too good! So simple to make and yet so delicious. It is not something the doctor would recommend on a regular basis due to the extreme amounts of everything bad for you but occasionally you just have to go with it.
Most people have their own version of this and it can be called all sorts of different things; chocolate crunch, fridge cake, polish cake, add some marshmallows and you have my version of rocky road.
We call it delicious.
2 pkt chocolate digestives or I use chocolate covered oaties
6 dessert spoons of drinking chocolate
2 tablespoons Golden Syrup
large handful or two of sultanas
Melt the butter in a pan over a low heat until all melted.
Take off the heat and add the chocolate and syrup.
Crush the biscuits into smallish pieces but not crumbs and stir them into the butter mix, followed by the sultanas.
Spread out onto a piece of greaseproof paper into a large dish. I only use the paper to make it easier to lift out and cut into portions. Score the portion sizes before it goes into the fridge and becomes too solid.
The longer you can leave it in the fridge the better, so overnight at the very least.
Remove fronm the fridge and re-cut the portions.
Serve as a treat at tea-time, or add cream for a truly sensational pudding. This is not a treat to be left lying around as it seems to disappear into thin air in our house if left anywhere visible.
Let me know your version of this or how you might make it different.
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