I also made a crumble while Bear was visiting. He likes things to be fairly tart so I used a mix of gooseberries from the garden and granny smith apples for the filling. I always vary my recipe for crumble with differing results but this one was especially nice so I record it for posterity:
Oven to 170°c.
Mix in a suitable deep dish for 4-5 people:
- 500g gooseberry + chopped apples
- 40g caster sugar
- 1 spoon of cornflour
Rub together into breadcrumbs:
- 175g plain flour
- 85g salted butter, chilled (I used Vitalite as Bear is vegan; any spread suited to baking will work, but not a low fat spread)
Stir into the flour mix:
- 75g soft dark sugar (break up so not too clumped)
- A handful of slivered almonds
Pour topping onto the filling, making an even layer but without pressing down. Bake for 45 minutes. You can grill the topping further if you want it to be toasty golden but I didn't bother.
It was the hottest day of the year so we ate it at room temperature with soy-based vanilla ice cream. Very delicious.
I found the Vitalite easier to rub in than dairy butter, so might use this in future instead. You also get much better texture in cakes with margarine than butter so maybe I should stop being a snob about it (although butter has a much better flavour in a yellow cake I guess).
We all agreed the topping worked because it's not homogenous. The sugar sits as crystals among the slivered almonds within the topping, giving a lot of crunch and texture, almost like a granola. This is the polar opposite of my sister-in-law's method where the topping is made on the stove and everything cooked together. This is exactly the end of that spectrum I was aiming for.