An apple crumble is one of those dishes that feels like a warm hug on a cold day. Since summer has started bidding adieu and most parts of India are experiencing massive rainfall, I thought, why not share my recipe for the warmest, most delectable apple crumble.
Apple crumble also goes by apple crisp or apple cobbler, depending on the region. I’ve noticed it’s not a very common dish in India, and I’d never had it until I made it myself. See, that’s the thing about food from a place far away, sometimes you might not be able to travel there, but you can recreate the dish to the dot as much as you can.
An apple crumble, or any crumble contains two components that are in the name itself: the fruit and the crumble. Savory versions of a crumble exist, but the sweet version seems to be the more popular one. The crumble base is soft stewed fruit and is generally topped with a crumble — a mixture of flour, sugar, and butter.
The apple crumble is one of the easiest, most simple desserts out there. Virtually it calls for no equipment, except for maybe an oven, and it is unbelievably easy to make.
I’ve tried keeping my version of the apple crumble as close as possible to the traditional version, but there are a few changes here and there.
This apple crumble looks mouthwatering, it tastes just as good, and literally, anyone can make it.
What’s in the apple crumble?
As said earlier, the apple crumble consists of two components. You have the apples, and then you have the crumble.
I’ve used regular red apples, and I’ve sliced them thinly. I toss the apples in some cinnamon, brown sugar, and lemon juice. Some recipes will ask you to pre-cook the apples before adding the crumble, but I wanted to make this recipe as accessible and non-complicated as possible, which is why I cook both components together. Either way, you’re going to end up with melt in the mouth apples.
Brown sugar and cinnamon are one of those flavor pairings that are classic, and you can never go wrong with it. Add the apples to them, and it’s a match made in heaven. Whereas the lemon juice prevents the apples from browning and also adds a slightly acidic flavor to the apple crumble.
Now, let’s move on to the crumble. The crumble is crumbly, just as the name suggests. Typically it calls for only three ingredients: flour, sugar, and butter.
I add some oats and walnuts as well for added texture and crunch. I also use whole wheat flour because it gives a more vibrant color and a more complex flavor.
My crumble calls for white caster sugar, but you’re free to use brown sugar if you want to. I ran out of brown sugar, so I had to use white. As for the butter, I used room temperature butter, which I cut into cubes while still cold. Some recipes ask for melted butter, but I find it easier to work with room temperature butter. Moreover, I like the texture better too.
How to eat and what to eat with the apple crumble?
The apple crumble is best eaten warm, a few minutes after it’s out of the oven. As I said, it’s one of those desserts that feels like a warm hug, so you know, you’ve got to eat it warm.
As for what you want to serve it with, the most popular choice is some classic vanilla ice cream. The coldness of the ice cream plays a contradictory role with the warm apple crumble. I top mine with some fresh whipped cream. Another great partner for the apple crumble is some custard.
The only real equipment you need to make an apple crumble is the oven. You can also use an OTG, or even your microwave’s convection mode to make the apple crumble.
Apart from an oven, all you need is two mixing bowls and a knife to slice the apples.
I like using my (clean) hands to toss the apples in the brown sugar-cinnamon mixture as well as to make the crumble. Feeling the crumble while you make it is essential; knowing the texture of your components firsthand is necessary. I also top the apples with the crumble using my hands, making sure they’re clean. I find it easier to distribute the crumble by hand. But you can use a spoon or a spatula if you want to, no one can stop you.
Lastly, I use a metal baking dish for baking the apple crumble in. You can also use a glass or a ceramic baking tray. I line my baking tray with parchment paper, it’s optional, but I recommend using it if you’re baking with a metal pan to avoid scorching the bottom and having your apples stuck to the pan.
With that, here’s everything you need to make an apple crumble:
Two mixing bowls
8x8 inch square baking dish
A chopping board
The Recipe For The Most Delectable Apple Crumble
Time: 1 hour 20 minutes
Yields: 7-8 servings
300 grams (3 medium-sized) red apples, peeled and sliced
35 grams (2 ¾ tablespoons) brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon powder
30 grams (2 tablespoons) lemon juice
80 grams (1 cup) oats
27 grams (3 tablespoons) whole wheat flour
30 grams (5-6) whole walnuts
130 grams (1 cup) caster sugar
135 grams (½ cup + 1 ½ tablespoon) room temperature butter, cubed
Preheat the oven to 180°C.
Generously grease an 8x8 inch square baking tray with butter and line it with parchment paper. Grease the top of the parchment paper as well.
In a mixing bowl, toss the sliced apples, cinnamon powder, brown sugar, and lemon juice.
Chop the walnuts into small chunks.
In a separate mixing bowl, add the oats, whole wheat flour, chopped walnuts, and caster sugar. Mix everything.
Now, add the cubed room temperature butter and incorporate it into the dry ingredients. The crumble should resemble the texture of cookie dough.
Place all the apple slices in the prepared baking tray and then place lumps of the crumble on top of the apples. Even out the crumble, so it covers the entire surface area.
Bake the apple crumble at 180°C for 40-50 minutes.
Serve it warm with the topping of your choice.
You can also divide the apple crumble into smaller individual portions by baking them in ceramic ramekins. Follow the recipe exactly, but the only thing I’d suggest looking out for is the baking time. Since these are smaller, the apple crumble will bake quicker than a single large portion. Check-in around 25-30 minutes, and if it seems browned on top, take them out.