Have you ever made something ‘just because’ and then it turns out to be one of your favourite things ever?
This is one of them for me.
I was heading back home to my mother’s house for the day. The sun was burning hot and not only did I want to grease up like a rotisserie chicken and sunbathe, I also wanted to let the dog run rampant so I wouldn’t have to pay him much attention while I sun soak. My mother has a really big back garden with big, puffy sun loungers.
My decision was made.
Led on the sun loungers and eating weather appropriate ham sandwiches, I realised how badly I wanted some dessert which is NOT like me. Seldom do I opt for a sweet treat, however under the burning hot sun I need something fruity and light but buttery and crunchy.
It had to be a crumble.
Not wanting to make an ACTUAL crumble topping, I decided to create something that emulated the texture of a crumble without actually being one.
Putting hot fruit under a delicious crust is what us Brits were born to do. I thank God every day for being British (ahem… Welsh…) because it is my birth right to make and consume crumbles at any given moment. Sure the Brit crumble started with apples and a flour/butter crust but I like to switch things up sometimes despite my British foundation. And I don’t see why this right should only be afford to the British, a crumble should be Universally appreciated.
I know we’re in the middle of Brexit where it seems as though we want to alienate ourselves from the world and keep everything within the borders (this country really is in shambles at the minute, isn’t it? Isolation is the last thing we need) but a crumble I feel should be popular worldwide.
I know the crumble appears in many incarnations across the world and I’m sure even Brits would like at my recipe and recoil at my flourless/butterless crust concoction, but I promise you this is good.
There’s ginger biscuits in the crumble for God’s sake, which just gives this super welcome hint of warmth and spice to each mouthful. It’s insane.
My mother ate two portions AND kept some back in Tupperware. Make of that what you will.
The fruit here is a gorgeous mix of sweetly acidic oranges tangled up in the bittersweet blackberries, meaning you get a real punchy treat however everything is treacle’d up with brown sugar giving you just a hint of caramel.
It’s your right to enjoy a crumble.
Preheat the oven to 200c.
In a ziplock bag, combine 80g of jumbo porridge oats with a handful of pumpkin seeds. Throw in a generous handful of flaked almonds and about 7 or 8 ginger biscuits. Add a little salt and then grate in the zest of one orange.
Close the bag (remember to close it for God’s sake) and bash everything to a nubbly, sandy rubble. Leave this to one side.
Grab another orange and zest it into a plate for later. It’s easier to zest an orange before it’s peeled and you need the zest later. Peel both oranges and chop up the segments into chunks.
Now in a big pan, throw in 800g of frozen blackberries with a small splash of water. Turn this on to a medium heat and fry until they begin to defrost and soften. Now throw in the orange pieces, add a teaspoon of cinnamon, quarter of a teaspoon of ginger, the orange zest and a little salt.
Cook these down until the blackberries and oranges are bursting into a thick combination. Don’t boil it down too much otherwise it’ll just turn to jam, you want some of the blackberries still large and charge.
Pour this into a roasting pan.
Now take the crumble mix and pour into a bowl. Melt bout a tablespoon or so of butter in a saucepan (this will take minutes!) and then pour into the bowl of crumble.
Stir this together so everything is glossily coated. Scatter this over the blackberry and orange mix, covering everything as much as you can.
Slip in the oven for about 20 – 25 minutes until the top is golden brown.
Serve. Exult your right as a citizen of the world to enjoy.