I love, love, LOVE how apple crumble never goes out of culinary fashion! It’s one of those ever faithful, comforting puds that’s been around for such a long time and when done well, is pure food joy in a bowl!
And it appears after a recent lunch out with friends, that I’m not on my own when it comes to being a fan of this yummy pud! After enjoying our main meal, my friend, Carol asked to see the pudding menu, but after giving it the once over, she disappointedly pushed it to one side and said, “I just want something like apple crumble and custard”.
So yes, whilst restaurants may feel they have to go all out with fancy puds, I urge cooks and chefs to continue honouring our traditional puds. Things like good old fashioned fruit crumbles. The simple delicious treats we’ve grown up loving, and still crave to this day. As they’re the ones that we are SO eager to see jotted down on the pudding menu. And of course, joyfully, apple crumble is something that can be easily made completely gluten free. Happy days!
Just in case your gluten free crumble cravings can’t be satisfied whilst you’re out and about, I’ve noted down a quick and easy recipe for you to make your own.
I must confess, in the past I’ve winged it a little when it came to making a fruit crumble. However, after rustling up a few rather soggy topped crumbles, I turned to my trusty hardback kitchen companion; The Dairy Book of Home Cookery, in order to track down a great legit recipe that I could share with you. And here it is, transformed into wonderful gluten free format, in all its crunchy topped, deliciously sweet, apple glory!
Ingredients (Serves 4… or 3 hungry people)
For the fruit filling
3 large Bramley apples, peeled, cored and cut into chunks (should you wish to use another fruit, roughly work on needing 450g (1lb) of prepared fruit)
2 tablespoons caster or granulated sugar
For the crumble topping
175g (6oz) gluten free plain/all purpose flour
75g (3oz) cold butter, cubed (salted or unsalted)
50g (2oz) caster sugar
Demerara sugar to sprinkle over the top
Place the prepared apples into a large pan, and after giving them a rinse, add about an egg cup full of cold water and 2 tablespoons of sugar and place the pan onto the heat. Allow the water in the pan to boil and then reduce the heat to a simmer.
Once the apples ‘fall’, and you’re happy with how they look, remove the pan from the heat. Check the apples for sweetness and add more sugar if you feel they need it.
Transfer the stewed apples into a deep ovenproof dish. Approximately 1.1 litre (2pt) capacity and set aside to cool.
Preheat the oven to 190C/375F/Gas 5/170C Fan.
Whilst the apples are cooling, you can crack on with preparing the crumble topping. Put the gluten free flour into a large mixing bowl, add the cubed butter and gently rub in until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Stir in the the caster sugar.
Pop the crumble mixture into the fridge if the apples still feel a little warm.
Once the apples have cooled enough, sprinkle the crumble mixture evenly over the top. Finish with a flurry of Demerara sugar before sliding the crumble into the oven.
Bake for 5 minutes then reduce the temperature to 170C/350F/Gas 4/160C Fan and bake for a further 45-50 minutes or until the crumble is golden brown and fully baked.
Remove from the oven. Enjoy!
Recipe notes and suggestions:
Cooling the fruit before sprinkling over the crumble mix will prevent the crumble going soggy before it’s had chance to bake.
As I mentioned in this video I shared on my YouTube channel, crumble mixture and stewed apple both freeze really well. Which makes a crumble the ideal pudding to prepare in advance. I like to pop the crumble mixture into a sturdy freezer bag; I double bag if the the bag feels a bit flimsy. You can of course store it in a freezer proof container instead. I store the stewed apple in freezer proof tubs in the appropriate size portions that I’m likely to use, as it’s then handy to just take out the amount I need at the time. Popping a date and description label onto the crumble mixture and stewed apple before slipping them into the freezer is a must.
Stewed apple is simply delicious with roast pork. So should you have a couple of spoonfuls going spare, either freeze it or pop it into the fridge, where it will be fine for up to 3 days, in readiness for your roast!
Bramley apples, in my humble opinion, really do make the best apple crumble, but I appreciate they’re not available in some countries. The closest alternative apple to use instead, would be a Granny Smith. Whilst they won’t fall the same as a Bramley, they are similar in flavour.
I love custard with my apple crumble. I use Birds custard powder for quickness and because I like it. It’s also what my mum used. And of course it’s gluten free. Other custard brands would need to be checked to ensure suitable for individual dietary needs. Fresh cream and a great gluten free vanilla ice cream, would also be truly magnificent with this gorgeous pudding!
Thanks for checking out this recipe. Any questions don’t hesitate to get in touch.
P.S. Sorry for the lack of photos. The written recipe came after I made the video for my YouTube channel, so I had limited stills to share with you. I will update when I can.