Apple and Rhubarb Crumble

Ready for a rumble with some crumble?

Yes. Yes you are. 

I decided that since we Scarfies are near the end of our exams and there is apparently a snow storm on the way, that a nice big comforting heapful of my Mum’s crumble would go down a treat.

For some reason (snobbery, blatant favouritism and bias) I have never had a crumble better than Mummy Edmonds’ crumble. You know what, I actually think the only difference between hers and everyone else’s’ is that she throws in a few slivered almonds. I dunno, it just tastes great.

I still can't believe there is gonna be another snow storm. Man. I'll be all alone in my little cold flat. Slash i'll be slaving over reports that are due in the warm library. But still, snow storm days are good stay inside and snuggle with someone days. Snuggles, tea and crumble. Sounds ideal if you ask me. Haha but alas, #Foreveralone.

Even with crumble like this. 

This crumble must be served with custard and/or whipped cream and/or ice cream. 

You can make your own custard using egg yolks, sugar and milk, you could buy your custard or of course whip out the old Edmonds custard powder and do it that way. I really do not mind how you get your custard fix. The important thing is that there is custard.

For those of you wanting to venture into the land of homemade custard, I will show you the way. 

It is really quite easy. It uses a fair bit of milk though. But milk has protein. And calcium. It's basically a super food. 

Love how I justify custard?

Right, so this has to be the easiest dessert to make. So you have no excuses not to be bothered to make it. I ended up using two very large apples and one small granny smith plus two stalks of rhubarb for the filling. The thing with this is that you can alter your topping to filling ratio to suit your needs. Usually I only make a topping of three quarters what I list below but the baking dish I used was a little on the large side, and crumble topping I believe naught to be spread thinly.

You can also add whatever sort of almonds you like. You don’t even have to add them if you don’t want too. Chopped, slivered, flaked, you name it. Use them. You can also add up to a cup of the rolled oats and coconut. I like the texture of them in the topping. They also bulk out the topping nicely, making it go further for the same amount of butter.

Non-stick cake tins also work really well for this sort of thing. I have made one before in a 20cm sandwich tin and it worked a treat. Making mini ramekin crumbles would also be amazing! I would have done that here except I am lacking in the ramekin department.

Mummy Edmonds’ Apple and Rhubarb Crumble
Serves 4 (generously)

For the topping:
100g butter, softened, almost melted
¾ cup brown sugar
¾ to 1 cup rolled oats
¾ to 1 cup threaded coconut
¾ cup plain flour
½ packet (35g) slivered almonds (add more if you please)

For the filling:
3 large apples (any variety really)
2 long stalks of rhubarb (if you are a huge rhubarb fan feel free to add another)
¼ cup boiling water
1 tablespoon sugar
1 squeeze of lemon juice (totally optional, if you use granny smith apples you will not need the lemon juice as the acid in the apples counteract the sweet of the topping nicely)

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees on bake.

In a mixing bowl, rub together all the topping ingredients until all the butter lumps have been reduced to fine crumbs.

Peel and slice the apples into chunks. I sliced mine into wedges then halved those wedges. I find the apple pieces easier to eat with a spoon that way. Wash the rhubarb and then slice into 1cm thick pieces.

Place the apple and rhubarb in a 30x20cm baking dish. Pour over the boiling water and lemon juice and sprinkle over the sugar.

Sprinkle the crumble topping over the filling. I tend not to pack mine down as it allows the topping to be more on the crunchy side.

Once you’re happy with the distribution of your crumble topping, place the dish in the oven and bake for one hour. At 30 minutes I recommend placing a sheet of tin foil over the baking dish to prevent the topping from going too brown. Remove the tin foil five minutes before removing from the oven. Also, remember the smaller the dish the shorter the cooking time. Also, the cooking time may be longer if you decide to throw a bit more fruit into the filling.

When the crumble is halfway cooked, you can start making the custard.

Vanilla Custard
Makes 2 cups
500ml full fat milk (I used trim, it works but some people like the creamy custard flavour that the full provides)
2 whole eggs
2 egg yolks
1/4 cup castor sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla essence - vanilla bean paste works far better
3 tablespoons flour

In a medium sized sauce pan on a medium heat, warm up the milk to just below simmering.

Beat together the eggs, yolks, sugar and flour until thick and pale.

When the milk is just below simmering, gradually pour the milk into the mixing bowl, beating slowly until it is all combined. 

Return this mixture to the saucepan, and on a low heat and whisking constantly, heat until the custard thickens to your desired consistency. DO NOT BOIL! The milk will curdle and you will have a right gross mess on your hands.

Pour all over the crumble and devour with gusto!