Apple crumble was one of the first things I learned to make, both at home and in school cooking classes, and being a massive sweet tooth and a huge fan of getting the apples off the tree in the garden, it was one of my favourite experiences as a youngster.
This version of the classic British crumble came about a couple of years ago, with the recipe just finally being perfected; the topping especially has a gorgeous texture! This is a wonderful breakfast treat that tastes good enough to be dessert too!
(Makes 6-8 bars)
5-7 apples, peeled and cubed
1/2 – 1 cup water
2 cups wholewheat flour
2 cups rolled oats
1 tsp vanilla essence
300g pitted dates
3 tbsp water
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 cup almonds
2/3 macadamia / coconut oil
1 tablespoon brown sugar (optional)
Whizz the apples and 1/2 cup of water in a blender until you’ve got a thick apple sauce. You can pre-soak the apples in water if you like.
Set this aside
Whizz the dates, vanilla essence and 3 tbsp water in a food processor until you have a date paste – it should be lighter brown than the dates and quite smooth with a few lumps
Place the date paste into a bowl
Give the food processor a quick rinse and dry, then place the flour, oats and almonds inside. Pulse this combination a few times until the almonds have been very roughly chopped
Add the cinnamon and the oats mixture to the date paste and use the rubbing method to make the crumble: rub the date paste into the dry ingredients, letting it fall through your fingers as you rub, until it resembles a crumble topping. It will be quite dry at this point
Stir the ground almonds into the mixture
Add the brown sugar (if using) and the macadamia / coconut oil and rub again
Add more oil if necessary. The crumble stick together when pressed but should be mostly crumbly
Press half the mixture into an square tin (lined with baking parchment) and press down evenly
Top with the apple sauce
Top with the rest of the crumble mix, and set in the fridge for at least an hour
Cut into squares and enjoy!
Warning: these are super, super crumbly. This is a good thing. Press the crumble layers down as much as you can while it’s in the tin and cut with a sharp knife to make it stay together as much as possible. More crumble = more fun!
You can also heat them up for warm treats or serve 2 squares as a dessert.
The brown sugar added in at the end serves to improve the topping slightly by giving it an extra crunch, but it can easily be discarded if you prefer to keep them sugar-free.
Every single person who has tried these bars goes absolutely nuts for them – no pun intended! They’re a guilt-free treat with lots of energy; perfect, if you ask me!