Desserts have been a bit of a feature this past few weeks. In an effort to be good, I have managed to get into the habit of making the dessert a weekend treat. But with the summer fruit almost coming to an end, I've made it a great excuse to indulge a little.
Crumbles are now officially a British classic. The French spent years ribbing us on our supposed only offers to the culinary world of roast beef and a crumble. Now crumbles have been spotted on the menus of top French restaurants, and a book was even written by a French lady called Camille le Foll on our favourite British dessert. Happy days indeed.
Of course we need no introduction to the splendours of a good old crumble over here. A crumbly buttery topping, giving way to hot syrupy fruit, it is the perfect no fuss dessert which can be knocked up in no time and feed the five thousand in one sitting. It is also the perfect dessert for doing a bit of experimenting. So experiment with this, take a little glance up at whoever you are eating it with and ask them - is this the best dessert in the whole world? Oui mon ami, bien sûr c'est !
Peach and Strawberry Almond Crumble
Serves 4-6 people
For the crumble
150g plain flour
150g ground almonds
150g brown sugar
200g butter, cubed
5 amaretti biscuits, crumbled (optional)
For the filling
500g strawberries, halved
3 peaches, skinned, stoned and cut into eighths
50g brown sugar
1 vanilla pod, seeded
1 tbsp amaretto
1. Preheat the oven to 180C, GM 4.
2. Place the flour, ground almonds and sugar in a large bowl. Rub the butter in until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Sprinkle in the crushed amaretti biscuits and mix in.
3. Place the fruit into a saucepan and sprinkle in the sugar and vanilla seeds. Bring to the boil then simmer for 10 minutes.
4. Butter a 24cm ovenproof dish, then pour the fruit in, followed by the crumble mixture on top. Shake to level it.
5. Bake in the oven for 40-45 minutes until golden and the fruit is starting to bubble over the edge. Serve with cream, custard or yoghurt.