This is a recipe that I use a lot from by Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall’s cookbook. I hope you like it as much as I do!
Described as a close cousin of the crumble, this is a delicious, simple pudding to make at the weekend. Blackberries are plentiful in the
hedgerows at the moment but damsons or plums work equally well.
1 kilo of Bramley apples
Small knob of butter
100ml milk slightly warmed with 1 tsp lemon juice and set aside
100g plain flour
1 tblsp baking powder
50g caster sugar
Flaked almonds (optional)
Peel, core and slice the apples and place in a saucepan with about 100g sugar, a small knob of butter and a couple of tablespoons of water. Heat very gently until the juices begin to run. Cook the apples at a very gentle simmer for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until you have a smooth compote. Then stir in the blackberries and pile the mixture into an ovenproof dish.
Now make the cobbler topping. Sift the flour with the baking powder into a bowl and rub in the butter until you have fine crumbs. Stir in the ground almonds and 50g caster sugar. Then mix in the milk to give a soft dough. This can all be done in a food processor, pulsing first the flour, baking powder and butter, then the almonds and sugar and then the milk.
Pile generous dessertspoons of the mixture (each one a ‘cobbler’ not quite touching it’s neighbour) over the surface of the fruit in the dish. Aim for 6 -8 cobblers in all. Scatter over 1 table spoon of flaked almonds if you like.
Place the dish in the centre of a moderate oven (180 degrees C/ Gas mark 4) and bake for about 30 minutes until the cobblers are puffed and golden, like crusty scones. Leave to cool for 15 minutes or so ( otherwise it will be scalding hot when you serve it) Serve with cream, custard or ice-cream.
If you want to part make the pudding a few hours in advance, prepare the fruit compote and mix the cobbler ingredients up to the point where you add the milk. Then about 45 minutes before you want to eat whisk in the warm milk, make the cobblers and put it in the oven.
Blackberries are a rich source of vitamin C, fibre, manganese and vitamin K. They also contain a flavonoid called anthocyanidin which gives them their rich purple colour and is a powerful antioxidant. Our Flavonoid intake is now considered to be linked to our risk in developing coronary artery disease and cancer.
By Nicky Seabrook
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