Friday, 2 December 2011

Autumn Fruit and Marzipan Crumble and a Few Mistakes


Hello. Happy December. I hope you're wearing your Christmas jumper and have located some socks that sing jingle bells. Today I have a crumble for you...the perfectly simple, perfectly delicious British pud. Yet I'm afraid this particular one isn't perfect, in fact I wasn't going to tell you about it at all. I was rather disappointed about how it turned out.


But the more of it I ate (because however disappointing disappointing baking is, throwing away baking is a squillion times worse), the more I realised that really, the reason it was not as scrumptious as I was hoping it would be was just that I had made a few little mistakes in my method, and nothing to do with the actual concept.  


Mistake #1. Too much ginger- and I like ginger. Mistake #2. Too much marzipan- and I like marzipan. Mistake #3. Not enough body and bite to the crumble mixture- because I like crumble. Rather nonsensical I'm afraid, but with every mouthful I lamented these errors, and have done enough musing and reconsidering to be sure that my mistake of a crumble has left me equipped with enough insight to be able to tweak the recipe for you so that your crumble can be a greeeat success. Hurrah.


So I hope my silly mistakes don't put you off having a go; I know marzipan in a crumble sounds a bit zany and won't be everyone's cup of tea, but if you're a fan, go for it...and let me know how it goes, maybe you can give me some tips. With Love and Cake.


Autumn Fruits and Marzipan Crumble.
A few notes:
  • Of course you absolutely do not have to include the marzipan, by all means leave it out and you'll have a lovely basic crumble.
  • You could also leave out the spices if your fruit is particularly lovely tasting and you want a fresher taste.
  • As usual I whizzed my crumble ingredients together in a food processor but you could just as easily rub the fat in with your fingertips.
  • I've left the measurements for the fruits fairly vague because I think it should be the sort of crumble that you adapt to what's best, or even just what you have on hand, so feel free to experiment.
Makes a family sized crumble
You will need

a medium oven-proof dish

1 handful blackberries
2 small eating apple, roughly chopped to bite size pieces
1 small cooking apple, peeled and roughly chopped
1 pear, roughly chopped to bite size pieces
1 tbsp soft brown sugar
juice 1 lemon
1 pinch ground ginger
1/2 tsp cinnamon
100g marzipan

100g plain flour
1.5 tsp baking powder
50g butter
3 tbsp demerara sugar
3 tbsp rolled oats

  • Preheat you oven to 200°c.
  • Mix your fruit together in a bowl and gently stir through the sugar, lemon juice and spices.
  • Transfer the mixture to your oven-proof dish and dot over bite sized pieces of your marzipan.
  • Now time to get the crumble topping together by first pulsing the flour and baking powder together in your processor.
  • Then whiz in the butter until it has the texture of coarse breadcrumbs, then tip it into a clean bowl and stir through the sugar and oats.
  • Spoon the lovely crumble mixture over the fruit, it might look like a bit too much but you can't have too much crumble in my book, so pile high.
  • Bake, with the dish on a baking sheet in case of any messy bubbling over of fruity juices, for 25-30minutes when the crumble should be golden and crunchy looking.
  • I ate mine with a dollop of sharp creme fraiche but vanilla ice cream would also be wonderful, oooo or clotted cream. mmmmmmmmm









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