I love crumbles. They’re quite literally the best desserts in the world. But what’s the difference between a crumble, a crisp and a cobbler?
According to The Kitchn, a cobbler has a strictly biscuit topping, whilst both crisps and crumbles have a streusel-like topping but only crisps traditionally contained oats.
I’ve called this dish a “crisp” as it’s got a more crispy topping than I would normally expect of a crumble, thanks to the pistachios and the pecans, and it most definitely contains oats. It’s also a little heartier of a topping, as I used half wholewheat flour and half white flour. However, if you want to call it a crumble, that’s alright with me.
I’ve become a rhubarb fan of late, mainly due to the fact that I’ve only really started eating it in the last few months. Rhubarb and apple is a classic crumble/crisp filling in the UK, as both ingredients are abundant here and the sweetness of the apple contrasts with the tartness of the rhubarb, giving a slightly more mature sort of a dessert.
Rhubarb and pistachio is a somewhat unlikely but absolutely fantastic flavour pairing that’s showcased well all over the web, as in Martha Stewart’s Rhubarb and Pistachio Pavlova
and in the many lightly-flavoured cakes that add a fruit such as blood oranges or a hint of rosewater into the mix. Cardamom has always got on well with rhubarb too, as it has with apples, so it was a bit of a no-brainer to add some into the mix.
Though I’m eating this in the height of summer, this is a taste of autumn through and through.
A couple of large rhubarb stalks (about 250g)
4 medium sized sweet apples (you can use less sugar this way)
1 tablespoon coconut oil
4 cardamom pods, insides scraped out and crushed
3 tablespoons Demerara sugar
pinch of salt
1 cup oats
1/2 cup pecans or almonds, roughly chopped
1/2 cup pistachios, roughly chopped
1/4 cup Demerara sugar
1/2 cup wholemeal flour
1/2 cup plain white flour
1/4 cup coconut or almond oil
pinch of salt
Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius
Chop the rhubarb and slice the apples, leaving the skins on the apples
In a large saucepan, heat the coconut oil and add in the cardamom, stirring well
Add in the rhubarb, apples, sugar and pinch of salt, stirring to coat, then set over a low heat with the lid on for 15 minutes
Place the oats, pecans/almonds, pistachios, sugar, salt and flours into a bowl
Stir to mix then add in the oil, rubbing it in with your hands until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs
Spoon the rhubarb mixture into a baking dish and top it evenly with the oat mixture
Bake for 30 mins, placing it under the grill for a few minutes at the end if you want to crisp up the top even more – but be careful not to burn it!
Some of you will want to coat this in custard, or slather it in cream. It’s okay, I won’t judge. For me, it’s perfect just the way it is, maybe served at the end of the garden on a chilly autumn evening with a glass of good wine.