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Rhubarb Crumble Recipe
Although we've given the recipe for rhubarb, the same crumble topping can be put on top of many other fruits (see Apple Crumble q.v.) or a well-considered mixture, in the same manner. Rhubarb tends to collapse, so you need more than you might think.
Custard's always a popular companion, if served on the side. But you don't want lose the crispness of the crumble topping.
The dish is best made with naturally-grown (unforced) rhubarb, as it's both cheaper and has more flavour. This is at its best from late April until well into the summer months.
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For 4-6 helpings:
2 lbs 4oz/1.2 kilo Rhubarb - trimmed of its leaves
2 oz/60mg Caster Sugar (this quantity gives a pleasantly sharp taste, add an extra 1oz/30mg sugar if you have a sweeter tooth
8 oz/240gr Plain Flour
4 oz/120gr Butter (cut into small pieces)
2 oz/60gr Caster Sugar
1 oz/30gr Demerara Sugar (optional)
Equipment needed: an ovenproof dish able to hold about 3 pints/1.7 litres. A baking tray to catch any overflow stickiness.
1. Peel the rhubarb of its skin, which should come off easily in long strands. If it doesn’t, leave it on, as you probably have forced rhubarb – in which case the peel/skin can be left on. Cut each rhubarb strands into shorter pieces.
2. Put them in the oven-proof dish, and sprinkle them with the first ounce of sugar and about 4 fl.oz/100ml water.
3. To make the crumble topping – sift the flour into a mixing bowl, the ‘rub-in’ the butter pieces with the tips of your fingers – until it resembles breadcrumbs.
4. Mix in the 2 ounces of caster sugar, evenly.
5. Spread this mixture over the apples, and press it down slightly.
6. Sprinkle with the Demerara sugar, if using (this largely depends on the sweetness of your tooth)
7. Place the dish on a baking tray, so any filling that bubbles over doesn’t make a mess of your oven.
8. Bake in the centre of a pre-heated oven (400ºF/200ºC) for 50 minutes.