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Best ever gooseberry crumble recipe

As promised, but will have to be quick, as late and have a busy day tomorrow. And have to wear a hat!

So, for a really good gooseberry crumble

  • first pick, top and tail the gooseberries and tip into an oven proof dish
  • drizzle fruit with freshly squeezed orange juice, or the wholesome boxed juice that has the 'bits left in' (not too much or the cooked fruit will be too wet)
  • sprinkle over 2 - 3 desert spoons of soft brown sugar (more or less depending on how sweet you like the fruit)
  • add finely chopped crystallised ginger, if liked
  • next, get a large bowl and tip in the dried ingredients for the topping - this is the complicated bit for me to explain, as after years of making crumble, I no longer weigh anything. You need equal amounts of 1. plain flour, porridge oats and a crumbled weetabix (roughly half flour to half oats and weetabix) and 2. white granulated sugar and demerara sugar (equal amounts) - so essentially, the flour mixture equals the sugar mixture. My basic rules are - guestimate (you can't go far wrong), and the bigger the dish the more mix you will need. You can also add a teaspoon of cinnamon at this stage, or ground ginger if you didn't put crystallised in with the fruit. Then it's time for the butter - melted. The aim is to coat the dried ingredients with butter - I shove the whole lot in the microwave and use a big spoon to mix it all together, but if you don't mind getting sticky, you can use your fingers. What you want is some lumpy bits and some 'breadcrumbs' so add the butter gradually until it looks right.
  • sprinkle the topping over the fruit, ideally so that you have a layer about an inch thick. Don't press it down!
  • place the dish in an oven at about 180 deg (bottom right oven of Aga) for about half an hour, check after 20mins that the top isn't burning and leave until golden brown and crunchy. The fruit might bubble through at the edges, but don't worry as this will be a lovely, caramelised, fruity rim to your crumble.
  • best served straight from the oven with good vanilla ice cream. Mmmmmmmmmm ... yummy!

Variations on a theme - try with apple; apple and bramble (my favourite); rhubarb; apple and apricot; summer berry mix (sharp! - needs extra sugar with fruit); and plum.

Time for bed. Magic, midnight fairy has jobs to do, dog to water, and must stop procrastinating before sleep.


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