Wednesday, 7 April 2010

Rhubarb, Apple, Ginger and Oatmeal crumble

Another recipe from Percy's, by Tina Bricknell Webb. But adapted by me. This is an excellent crumble. I used rhubarb and apple for this, even though the recipe just called for rhubarb because I had some cooking apples around - and it worked as well as rhubarb and apple crumble tends to.

This is the recipe as I did it, not as it is in the book, because I didn't want to make a crumble for 6-8 people. Giles doesn't eat puddings - and I shouldn't be, so making a giant one was really out of the question.

I usually take practice puddings round to my mum's house, because there are always so many people there, but it's got to a point where she's asked me not to because she's worried it's going to give my father diabetes.

So here we go - makes enough for 4. I'm sorry about the inexact measurements but, really, it's quite hard to get wrong. Just trust your instincts. The exact and original recipe can be found on p.162 of Percy's.

About three sticks of rhubarb, diced
1 large cooking apple, diced
some caster sugar
some soft brown sugar
a thumb-sized knob of ginger, grated
2 large handfuls of oats
about 50g flour
75g butter

1 Turn the oven on to 180 and butter your crumble dish
2 Put the diced rhubarb, apple and ginger into a mixing bowl and sprinkle over some sugar - about one heaped tablespoon. You don't want this oversweet, just to take the sting out of the rhubarb. Mix round with your hands
3 Put the butter, a large handful of soft brown sugar (about 3-4 oz), 50g flour and some salt if you fancy it, into a food processor and whizz until the mixture is a fine crumb. Add the handfuls of oats and pulse the processor just so the oats are smashed up a bit, not totally obliterated.
4 Put the fruit in the bottom of the crumble dish and then pack the crumble topping in really well. If you've got a bit too much, just press harder and ram it all in - the rammed-ness really makes it crisp up and go yummy and the topping is a bit like flapjack.
5 Put it in the oven for 1 hour. I know that sounds like a long time but that's how long it takes.

So divine that in the end even Giles ate a bit and said it was nice.

p.s. In light of Christy's comment about the crumble ending up too dry, I feel I ought to add Tina BW's exact proportions for the crumble topping, which are, for a base of 900g of rhubarb:

160g soft brown sugar
120g self-raising flour
5g ground ginger
100g oats
150g butter, chilled
5g ground cardamom


  1. ok..done all of that. how long do i cook it for? See I follow recipes completely slavishly so there is no real room for improvisation or guesswork, else I start to panic! Thanks

  2. Thanks so much for pointing that out, Christy -I've changed it. xxxx

  3. delicious bottom, so to speak. I think I maybe put too much of the "crumble" on the top and it rather soaked everything up. What was doubly annoying was that this proved my wife right who was tutting over my shoulder(helpfully...) the whole while saying things like 'that won't work".

  4. When you say "soaked everything up" - could you expand? Was the crumble actually dry?

  5. yes it was - a bit crusty. The fruit was great but I think I should have made more fruit and less crumble. The oats/crumble mixture seemed to form a relatively weatherproof topping.