Monday, 24 February 2014

Plum & Apple Crumble (with Amaretto)

I have previously expressed my great love for the humble crumble, so for fear of becoming repetitive, I shall merely say that this was very much a dish that I threw together with ingredients that I had hanging around my kitchen.

I had a few plums and a couple of cooking apples and I wanted something warm and comforting to serve on what was a miserable, rainy day (is Spring EVER going to come??) and this is what I decided to make… And very tasty it was too!

Almonds seem to have a natural affinity with many stone fruits so I decided to use some ground almonds in the crumble mix, but I also added a good glug of Amaretto to the fruit mixture. Somehow the almond flavoured liqueur made the plums taste even more of plums. That sounds a little daft, but try out this recipe and you will see what I mean. I was particularly pleased that I decided to strew a few flaked almonds over the top of the crumble, because these became slightly toasted whilst the crumble was baking and added a very pleasing crunch and a lovely contrast to the softness of the baked fruit.

I could pretend that great thought and planning went into this dish – but it didn’t. It really was made up of ingredients that I had hanging around and was made because I had a hankering for something nice to eat; - something that wouldn’t require complex processes and could be produced fairly quickly and easily. But this is what cooking in the home should be about… really delicious tasting food made with love and care from simple ingredients.


8 plums, stoned and cut into quarters
2 large cooking apples, peeled core and cut into small chunks
50g caster sugar
½ tsp cinnamon
50ml Amaretto
50ml water
250g plain flour
140g butter, cubed
140g Demerara sugar
30g ground almonds
A large handful of flaked almonds


1. Preheat the oven to 180C/Fan Oven 160C/ Gas Mark 4.
2. Mix the plums, apples, sugar and cinnamon together and place into a 20cm x 28cm x 6cm deep (approximately) oven-proof dish. Sprinkle over the Amaretto and water and set aside while you make the crumble.
3. Put the flour into a large mixing bowl and rub in the butter. You do not have to be too fussy about rubbing in every bit of butter as a few flakes remaining actually create a better, lighter crumble. Mix through the sugar and ground almonds so that they are well distributed. Pile this mixture evenly on top of the fruit mixture and sprinkle the flaked almonds on top of the crumble.
4. Bake in the pre-heated oven for 35-45 minutes, until the crumble is golden brown and the fruit juices are bubbling around the side of the dish.
5. Remove from the oven, allow to cool slightly, but serve whilst still warm with lightly whipped cream, custard or whatever takes your fancy.

Serves 6.