Apple and Blackberry Crumble {gluten-free}

Apple and Blackberry Crumble is a delightful example of a gluten-free crumble. A crisp biscuity topping is the perfect contrast to the ooey gooey sweet and tangy fruit jumble beneath.

A bowl of apple and blackberry crumble with a scoop of vanilla ice cream in a bowl

If you are following me on Insta Stories you’ll know that I’ve been studiously working on a gluten-free crumble recipe for a couple of weeks. Cole received the Gruffalo Crumble and Other Recipes Cookbook for his birthday earlier this month and immediately set me forth to make the titular recipe.

Well I made the recipe from the cookbook as instructed but switched things around a bit to make a gluten-free version. Cole was happy enough with it. I was not. It definitely needed tweaking. So I set forth to embark on my next obsession. How to make a dazzling gluten-free crumble (gruffalos substituted for apples and blackberries on this occasion).

How to make a great gluten-free crumble topping

A gluten-free crumble topping is quite forgiving. I have made so many crumbles over the years as it’s my number one Sunday night dessert and they nearly always turn out delicious.

However lately I have settled on a method that gives a perfect crumble topping every time.

The secret… oats and almonds

Have you ever experienced a gluten-free crumble that has melted into your fruit base upon baking? Gluten-free flours tend to absorb too much liquid (especially if they are rice flour based). However, by tossing in some jumbo rolled oats and ground almonds they create a perfectly robust structure to the crumble topping.

The addition of oats and almonds not only has the added benefit of extra flavour but also provides the perfect crunch to your crumble.

However, if you are looking for an oat-free crumble try this Strawberry Gooseberry Crumble.

Baker’s Tip

If you don’t have any ground almonds you can grind your own from whole almonds. Place the whole almonds in the food processor with the brown sugar. The sugar will prevent the almonds from becoming almond butter and instead will give them a nice even grind.

a bowl of gluten-free crumble

Gluten-Free Flours

What I have found is that with the inclusion of the oats and ground almonds you can be a little bit laissez-faire with which gluten-free flour you choose to use. I wouldn’t even decry you for choosing a plain gluten-free flour which you can pick up at any supermarket. Although do avoid single origin starchy flours, especially white rice flour as it just absorbs too much liquid.

Sorghum Flour

Here we use sorghum flour. It’s one of my favourite alternative flours. It has an earthy yet slightly sweet quality which pairs so beautifully with the apples and blackberries. The touch of cinnamon included in the crumble topping really takes it into the sublime.

Alternative Version: Buckwheat Hazelnut Crumble Topping

You could switch out the sorghum flour for buckwheat flour which has an intense robust flavour. However if you were going to go in that direction then I would also dare you to swap the ground almonds for ground hazelnuts. A taste sensation indeed. Amazing with the apples and blackberries.

Quick and Easy Crumble

The assembly of the crumble topping is child’s play and in fact Cole often helps me with this job.

  1. Whisk the sorghum flour with the oats, ground almonds, sugar and cinnamon.
  2. Rub the butter into the dry ingredients to form a chunky rubble mixture, aka. crumble.

Now that the gluten-free crumble has been sorted, next on the agenda is the perfect apple and blackberry fruity base.

How to prepare apples for a crumble

Most recipes for apple and blackberry crumble will have you just peel and core the apples and just toss them in with the blackberries as they fall at the bottom of the baking dish.

However I’m going to let you in on a little secret on how you achieve the best texture in an apple blackberry crumble. No fruit swimming in a watery juice. No apples that are crunchy at best and raw at worst.

The best tip for a soft gooey perfectly sweetened fruit base which contrasts with the crisp crumble topping is…

The apples need to be pre-cooked.

pureed apples in a saucepan

When you pre-cook the apples the puree provides a saucy bed for the blackberries to absorb their excess juice and the two fruits jumble together so much better.

The apple prep is easy enough:

  1. Place the peeled apple chunks in a small saucepan.
  2. Add 1 tablespoon water and 1 tablespoon caster sugar.
  3. Place the lid on and cook for 15-20 minutes until the apples have completely broken down into a pulp.

Luckily you don’t need to do anything to the blackberries save place them on top of the apples.

Can you freeze Apple and Blackberry Crumble?

Yes, you can freeze this apple and blackberry crumble. After the final dish has been baked, leave to cool then double wrap well in cling film as well as tin foil to prevent freezer-burn. You can freeze the crumble for up to three months. To defrost simply remove the dish from the freezer the night before. Once completely defrosted you can re-heat the crumble for 20 minutes at 180°C/160°C fan/gas mark 4.

Can crumble be made in advance?

Yes, you can make the crumble a day or two in advance. I recommend assembling the crumble to the stage where it’s ready to be baked in the oven. When you want to serve it then follow the instructions for baking stated below.

Can you make Apple and Blackberry Crumble with frozen fruit?

Yes. I will often have scores of apple puree and wild blackberries in my freezer in late August/September leftover from our adventures in foraging. The apple puree will need to be defrosted before adding into the crumble. However, the good news is that the frozen blackberries can just be tossed in straight from the freezer with no amendment on the original cooking time.

If you are looking for more gluten-free desserts that make the most of summer produce why not try:

Plum Nectarine Cornbread Cobbler
Blackberry Lemon Pudding
Coconut Cherry Clafoutis
Blueberry Ricotta Coconut Crisp

If you make this Apple and Blackberry Crumble then please leave a comment below and/or give the recipe a rating. If you then go on to use this recipe as a launch pad for your own baking creation then I’d also love it if you’d share it and tag me on Instagram. It is so lovely for me to see your versions and variations of my recipes.

Apple and Blackberry Crumble

Gluten-Free Apple and Blackberry Crumble boasts a crisp biscuity topping. The perfect contrast to the ooey gooey sweet and tangy fruit jumble beneath.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time30 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: British
Servings: 6 people
Calories: 338kcal

Equipment

  • 30cm x 20cm Baking Dish

Ingredients

  • 3 dessert apples peeled cored and cut into chunks
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 1 tablespoon caster sugar
  • 300 g blackberries

Crumble

  • 100 g sorghum flour
  • 50 g gluten-free rolled oats
  • 50 g ground almonds
  • 50 g soft light brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 75 g unsalted butter room temperature, cubed

Instructions

  • Pre-heat oven to 180°C/160°C fan/gas mark 4
  • Place the apple chunks in a medium sized saucepan along with the water and caster sugar.
  • Turn the heat on low-medium and place a lid on. Give the apples a stir occasionally but only remove from the heat once the apples have broken down into a pulp. Maybe 15-20 minutes.
  • Place the apple pulp into a 30cm x 20cm baking dish and tumble the blackberries evenly over the top.
  • Prepare the crumble topping by placing the sorghum flour, oats, almonds, sugar and cinnamon into a large mixing bowl.
  • Rub the butter into the dry ingredients until a chunky rubble has formed.
  • Scatter the crumble topping over the fruit and bake for 30 minutes until the crumble has turned golden.
  • Serve immediately with vanilla ice cream or in cooler months hot vanilla custard.

Notes

  • Apples - I like to use pink lady apples or braeburns.
  • Frozen Fruit - You can use frozen blackberries straight from the freezer without any alteration on the cooking time.
  • Sorghum Flour - You can replace the sorghum flour with gluten-free plain flour.
  • Make Ahead – The crumble can be assembled a day or two in advance and baked on the day of serving.
  • Freeze – The crumble can be frozen after baking for up to 3 months. Defrost thoroughly before re-heating.

Nutrition

Calories: 338kcal | Carbohydrates: 48g | Protein: 5g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 27mg | Sodium: 6mg | Potassium: 271mg | Fiber: 8g | Sugar: 23g | Vitamin A: 470IU | Vitamin C: 14.7mg | Calcium: 57mg | Iron: 1.6mg

SHOP THE RECIPE

This post is not sponsored but some of the links within the post are affiliate links which means if you decide you want to use these link to make your purchases then Amazon gives me a small commission at no cost to you whatsoever. I will only recommend products I use in my kitchen and love. To learn more about how the data processing works when using these Amazon affiliate links then please visit my privacy policy page.

PIN THIS POST FOR LATER!

A bowl of apple and blackberry crumble with a scoop of ice cream in a bowl with text overlay

Apple Cheddar Thyme Crumble Cake {gluten-free}

Crammed with apples, subtly fragrant with thyme and blanketed with a cheddar crumble this gluten-free Apple Cheddar Thyme Crumble Cake is the perfect comforting Autumnal cake.

Apple Cheddar Thyme Crumble Cake

It would be remiss of me not to explain the absence of a blog post last week. If you follow me on Instagram then you’ll know, since I have spoken about it in my last few posts, that my father passed away very suddenly last weekend. I have written before that my father and I had a difficult relationship at times and with that comes an absurd arrange of emotions about his death. Childhood stuff that I have long since moved past now disturb my sleep anew. However I try to take comfort that in the last few years we had reached a more comfortable place. We would speak every few weeks and connect on our love of food and kitchen adventures and I would give him the latest on the children. A photograph that I took of Dad, Cole and Beau on our last visit was such a treasure to him and I just feel incredibly sad that he won’t get to see them grow up.

Apple Cheddar Thyme Crumble Cake

Cake always goes hand in hand for me with any significant life event. Luke took Cole and Beau out for a couple of hours to soft play the day after he died so I could have some peace with my thoughts and freedom to cry. I stepped straight into the kitchen and grabbed the flour, sugar and butter to seek solace. I feel guilty that this cake will be mired in the melancholy that surrounds this post but it’s almost fitting as a slice of this cake is a huge comfort.

Apple Cheddar Thyme Crumble Cake

The sour cream sponge is densely crammed with apples and fragrant with thyme. A soft cheddar crumble blankets the surface to add a delicious mature nuttiness. I have chosen the earthy flavour of sorghum flour to compliment the cake, sweet rice flour to bind and give texture and potato flour to add fluffiness which works because of its hydroscopic nature.

Apple Cheddar Thyme Crumble Cake

I have had this cake on the cake stall many times and I am often asked what gave me inspiration for this slightly unusual combination. I have always loved apple pie with a cheese pastry crust, the smooth balance of a fine crumbly cheddar and sweet crisp autumn apples is never a taste I tire of. And cheese cake is a thing right?

Dad didn’t have a sweet tooth, he preferred the cheese board after a meal. I think this Apple Cheddar and Thyme Crumble Cake then is a fitting tribute.

Apple Cheddar Thyme Crumble Cake

I urge you to give this Apple Cheddar and Thyme Crumble Cake a try and if you do then please leave a comment below and/or give the recipe a rating. I’d also love it if you’d share your version and tag me on instagram. It is so lovely for me to see your creations and variations of my recipes.

Apple Cheddar Thyme Crumble Cake {gluten-free}

This gluten-free Apple Cheddar Thyme Crumble Cake is the perfect comforting Autumnal cake, crammed with apples with a delicious cheddar crumble topping.
Prep Time25 mins
Cook Time50 mins
Total Time2 hrs 15 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: British
Servings: 16 servings
Calories: 610kcal

Ingredients

For the cheddar crumble top:

  • 140 g caster sugar
  • 150 g unsalted butter
  • 80 g sweet rice flour
  • 70 g sorghum flour
  • 20 g potato flour
  • 100 g cheddar grated

For the cake:

  • 215 g sweet rice flour
  • 200 g sorghum flour
  • 40 g potato flour
  • 3 teaspoons thyme leaves
  • teaspoons baking powder
  • teaspoons bicarbonate of soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 340 g unsalted butter
  • 340 g caster sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 300 g sour cream
  • 4 granny smiths peeled, cored and cubed

For the glaze:

  • 140 g icing sugar
  • 1-2 tablespoons whole milk

Instructions

  • Pre-heat oven to 170°C/160°C (fan oven)/gas mark 4 and line and grease a 9x13” rectangular cake tin.
  • First make the crumble topping by rubbing together all the ingredients except the cheddar. Then stir in the cheddar cheese. Spread out onto a baking sheet and place in the freezer whilst you prepare the rest of the cake.
  • In a large bowl sift the flours together with the baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, salt, thyme leaves and set aside.
  • Cream the butter and sugar in a food mixer for 10 minutes until light and fluffy.
  • Add the eggs, beating in one by one then add the vanilla extract.
  • Spoon in 1/3 of the flour mix, beat into the batter then add 1/2 of the sour cream and beat in. Repeat again and then add the last 1/3 of flour mix, beating until the batter is smooth.
  • Pour half of the cake mixture into the cake tin, then tumble in half of the chopped apples. Pour the rest of the cake mixture over, smooth and then scatter the rest of the apples over the top.
  • Finally sprinkle over the crumble topping so all the apples are covered.
  • Bake in the oven for 50 minutes, check after 25 minutes and if you think the cheese is browning too much then place a loose sheet of tin foil over the top of the cake tin for the rest of the bake.
  • Remove the cake from the oven, leave to rest for 5 minutes then carefully remove from the tin.
  • Let the cake cool completely on a wire rack until you decorate with the glaze.
  • To make the glaze mixing the icing sugar with the milk until thick but pourable. Drizzle over the cake and then leave to set for at least an hour before cutting into squares.

Nutrition

Calories: 610kcal | Carbohydrates: 77g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 32g | Saturated Fat: 19g | Cholesterol: 112mg | Sodium: 248mg | Potassium: 244mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 44g | Vitamin A: 1030IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 104mg | Iron: 1mg

SHOP THE RECIPE

The cake tin I use for all my tray bakes and sheet cakes is the KitchenCraft Chicago Metallic Professional Non-Stick Baking and Roasting Tin, 33 x 23 cm (13″ x 9″) which I love because it’s robust and easy to clean.

It’s not easy to buy certified gluten-free sweet rice flour in the UK, for some reason Bob’s Red Mill is astronomically expensive. However I have finally found a brand which is 100% certified gluten-free and it’s fantastic. The brand is yourhealthstore Premium Gluten Free Sweet Rice Flour (glutinous) 1kg

This is the sorghum flour I’ve been using recently and I’ve been really loving it.yourhealthstore Premium Whole Grain Gluten Free Sorghum Flour 1kg (sweet white) It’s earthy, nutty and compliments the apples, thyme and cheddar in this cake perfectly.

You want to use potato flour and not potato starch in this cake, they are different ingredients and do different things so make sure you are using the right one. I use Wholefood Earth Organic Potato Flour, 1 kg which is a lovely fine flour.

This post is not sponsored but the images above are affiliate links which means if you decide you want to use these link to make your purchases then Amazon gives me a small commission at no cost to you whatsoever. I will only recommend products I use in my kitchen and love. To learn more about how the data processing works when using these Amazon affiliate links then please visit my privacy policy page.

If you like this recipe then you may like…

Green Tomato and Stem Ginger Cake with Streusel Topping {gluten-free}

overhead shot of Green Tomato and Stem Ginger Cake with Streusel Topping {gluten-free} on a plate with green tomatoes next to it

Sweet Potato Cinnamon Swirl Cake {gluten-free}

overhead shot of slices of Sweet Potato Cinnamon Swirl Cake on a plate with a sifter and sweet potatoes

Blackcurrant White Chocolate and Thyme Muffins {gluten-free}

overhead of Blackcurrant White Chocolate and Thyme Muffins on a wooden table

Apple Cheddar Thyme Crumble Cake

Baked Apple Butter

Baked Apple Butter is the perfect hybrid between a jam and a chutney. The apples are stewed in cider, brandy, honey and spices then smoothed and baked slowly in a low oven for the most intensely thick and rich apple sauce that is the ultimate Autumn preserve.

Baked Apple Butter

I have mentioned before but Billy Buddy isn’t always impressed when we hijack his morning walk for a spot of foraging, but this time Cole was also not so impressed. Our method of plucking the apples from the top of the tree is to vigorously shake the branches leading to golf ball sized apples showering on our heads. It was my job to pull Billy and Cole out of the way as these mini meteors rained down from the sky. Very frustrating for a 15 month old who does not like being told no he can’t have that, no he can’t go there and yes by doing it his own way he will put his little life in danger again, for the tenth time that morning.

Baked Apple Butter is the perfect hybrid between a jam and a chutney. The apples are stewed in cider, brandy, honey and spices then smoothed and baked slowly in a low oven for the most intensely thick and rich apple sauce that is the ultimate Autumn preserve.

However, for twenty minutes work at 6.30am with the ground crunchy from the first frost we were inundated with 2.5kg of the most delicious red eating apples, and thanks to the crab apple tree next door, a few of those little princes were added to imbue a little bit of tartness to the recipe I had planned.

Baked Apple Butter is the perfect hybrid between a jam and a chutney. The apples are stewed in cider, brandy, honey and spices then smoothed and baked slowly in a low oven for the most intensely thick and rich apple sauce that is the ultimate Autumn preserve.

Baked Apple Butter is the perfect choice for a glut of apples. It is best working with a large amount of the fruit as thanks to the slow baking the sauce is reduced quite a bit so you want to make sure all your efforts yield a good amount.

Baked Apple Butter is the perfect hybrid between a jam and a chutney. The apples are stewed in cider, brandy, honey and spices then smoothed and baked slowly in a low oven for the most intensely thick and rich apple sauce that is the ultimate Autumn preserve.

I sell my Baked Apple Butter at my market stall and it’s not a very ubiquitous preserve in the UK so I am always asked lots of questions about it. It is an ideal preserve if you are not sure whether to get a jam or a chutney as it does a little of both jobs and can be eaten with both sweet and savoury.

Baked Apple Butter is the perfect hybrid between a jam and a chutney. The apples are stewed in cider, brandy, honey and spices then smoothed and baked slowly in a low oven for the most intensely thick and rich apple sauce that is the ultimate Autumn preserve.

Different ways to use Apple Butter:

  • On hot buttered crumpets
  • As the filling in a Victoria Sandwich
  • Swirled into yoghurt, porridge, rice pudding
  • Served with roast pork and crackling
  • Spread generously within a cheese toastie
  • Eaten directly from the jar on your fingertip

But Baked Apple Butter is also a wonderful baking ingredient. It’s what I use in these Toffee Apple Cupcakes but you can also use it instead of the pear butter in this Spiced Pear Butter and Hazelnut Praline Cake for an apple version.

Baked Apple Butter

And gosh if you were to beat 250g unsalted butter with 250g icing sugar for 5 minutes then add 150g Baked Apple Butter then you have the world’s most divine buttercream for your vanilla cupcakes.

It’s definitely an ingredient worth experimenting with but if you really can’t be bothered then as I said, a fingertip and the jar is really all you need.

Baked Apple Butter

Baked Apple Butter

Baked Apple Butter is an intensely thick and richly spiced apple sauce that is the ultimate Autumn preserve.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Chill2 hrs
Total Time2 hrs 40 mins
Course: Condiment
Cuisine: British
Servings: 64 servings
Calories: 43kcal

Ingredients

  • 2.5 kg apples
  • 500 ml apple cider
  • 175 g dark brown soft sugar
  • 125 g honey
  • 75 ml brandy
  • teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground allspice
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • ¼ teaspoon salt

Instructions

  • Peel, core and dice the apples* then place the diced apples in a saucepan with the rest of the ingredients and bring to a low boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook until the apples have softened.
  • Leave to cool slightly before you blend. At this point I usually leave it overnight before I blend.
  • Place the blended apple puree into roasting dishes, so the puree is about 2 inches thick and bake in a 150°C oven for two hours until extremely thick. Stir every 30 minutes.
  • Blend the thickened apple butter again to smooth out the final result then decant into sterilised jars.
  • You can either keep the apple butter in the fridge for a couple of weeks or you might like to increase the life of the Baked Apple Butter by processing the jars in a water bath which means they can be kept for at least 6 months somewhere dark and cool.

Notes

  • For more information on canning and water baths see here.
  • *If you have a food mill then follow the following method in place of Step 1: Halve the apples, core and peel intact an place them in a saucepan with a splash of water and simmer until the apples have softened. Remove the apples and pass through a food mill. Place the apple puree back into the saucepan with the rest of the ingredients and bring to a boil. Turn off the heat.
Yield 8 200g jars

Nutrition

Calories: 43kcal | Carbohydrates: 11g | Protein: 1g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 11mg | Potassium: 54mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 20IU | Vitamin C: 1.9mg | Calcium: 6mg | Iron: 0.1mg

SHOP THE RECIPE

A food mill makes really light work of pureeing a lot of apples. This OXO Good Grips Food Mill is the one I use and I absolutely love it.

This post is not sponsored but the links above is an affiliate link which means if you decide you want to click through to buy then Amazon gives me a small commission at no cost to you whatsoever. To learn more about how the data processing works when using these Amazon affiliate links then please visit my privacy policy page.

If you like this recipe then you may like…

Damson Orange Cinnamon Jam

Damson Orange Cinnamon Jam

Piccalilli

Piccalilli is a must-have addition for any festive table. A beautiful trio of purple cauliflower, romescu and white cauliflower preserved with autumn vegetables in delicious curried spices.

Honey Apple Spice Scones

Honey Apple Spice Scones {gluten-free}

Bramley Apple and Mincemeat Pudding

Bramley Apple Mincemeat Pudding is a must at this time of year. It’s an excellent way of using up all your excess mincemeat or makes a lighter alternative to Christmas Pudding at the end of your festive feast. Both the regular flour and gluten-free recipes are listed below.

Bramley Apple and Mincemeat Pudding

If you are looking for ways to use up that jar of leftover mincemeat then look no further than this recipe.

I am a mincemeat fiend. Making the mincemeat is one of my very favourite cooking jobs to do. It fills my kitchen with the heady scent of brandy, plump fruits and warming spices.

It’s pretty telling that I have several mincemeat recipes on this blog and each one I try to make every year:

So it perhaps comes as no surprise that I usually have a lot knocking around my kitchen throughout the season. It’s an incredibly versatile festive ingredient though so don’t worry if you’ve made too much. I’ve got your covered.

I have to say though this Bramley Apple and Mincemeat Pudding is just about my favourite way to use mincemeat. The tartness of the Bramleys give a lovely contrast to the sweetness of the mincemeat. Plus, it’s:

  • Light
  • Fruity
  • Easy
  • Festive

Some Christmas desserts have the propensity to be a bit of a faff but this pudding takes moments to mix up and bake, perfect for cold nights in front of the fire.

Plus it works with every single mincemeat I’ve ever tried: shop bought or homemade, suet or suet-free.

Other recipes to use up leftover mincemeat

Alternative to Christmas Pudding

However this Bramley Apple and Mincemeat Pudding is not just the means to the end of a jar of mincemeat though. It can be an excellent dessert choice for the big day itself.

If you know you have some Christmas Pud haters at your festive feast this year then this pudding is guaranteed to be a people pleaser.

Do you need more alternatives to the traditional Christmas Pudding?

Lemon Raspberry Trifle
Chocolate Chip Clementine Christmas Pudding with Cointreau Sauce
Steamed Chocolate Pudding with Chocolate Custard
Sticky Toffee Baileys Pudding

How to Make Bramley Apple Mincemeat Pudding

1. Mix diced bramley apples with sugar, lemon zest and juice. Pour into a buttered baking dish and set aside.

2. Cream the butter and sugar.
3. Add the eggs.
4. Stir in the vanilla extract and mincemeat.
5. Sift the flour with the baking powder and salt and mix with the rest of the ingredients.
6. Stir in the milk.

7. Pour the batter on top of the apples.

8. Bake for 45 minutes in an oven pre-heated to 170°C
9. Sprinkle over caster sugar. Serve warm with custard.

Baker’s Tips

  • If you can’t get hold of Bramley Apples then any tart cooking apple will do the job.
  • Cream the butter and sugar until creamy and light which will help the sponge to lift.
  • Use medium eggs.
  • Use really good vanilla extract and the best mincemeat you can find. Homemade is especially good.
  • Place the pudding to bake in the centre of the oven to ensure even baking.

FAQ’s

  • What Size Baking Dish? 25 x 19 x 6cm
  • Make Ahead – If you want to make ahead of time to avoid the bother on Christmas Day then I recommend baking it a day or two before. Cover with foil then re-heat in the oven for 20-30 minutes just before serving.
  • How to Freeze – This pudding freezes really well too. Cool in the baking dish then double wrap well in both cling film and tin foil before freezing. Defrost thoroughly the night before then re-heat in the oven for 20-30 minutes, covered loosely with foil.

How to Make Gluten-Free Bramley Apple and Mincemeat Pudding

This recipe was developed before I became gluten-free but since I couldn’t bear to live without it once I made my lifestyle switch I quickly came up with a gluten-free version.

The recipe is exactly the same but instead of 150g plain flour, whisk up the following blend of flours:

  • 55g sweet rice flour
  • 40g oat flour
  • 30g millet flour
  • 25g almond flour

The result is amazing and just as fluffy and deeply delicious as the original recipe.

How to serve Bramley Apple and Mincemeat Pudding

  • Lashings of Custard
  • Single Cream
  • Brandy Cream
  • Ice Cream

If you make this Bramley Apple and Mincemeat Pudding then please leave a comment below and/or give the recipe a rating. If you then go on to use this recipe as a launch pad for your own baking creation then I’d also love it if you’d share it and tag me on Instagram. It is so lovely for me to see your versions and variations of my recipes.

My parting words: Be adventurous with your mincemeat!!

Bramley Apple and Mincemeat Pudding

Bramley Apple Mincemeat Pudding is an excellent way of using up all your excess mincemeat or makes a lighter alternative to Christmas Pudding.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time45 mins
Total Time1 hr 5 mins
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: British
Servings: 6 people
Calories: 513kcal

Ingredients

  • 2 bramley apples peeled and diced
  • 2 tablespoons soft light brown sugar
  • grated zest and juice of ½ lemon
  • 150 g butter
  • 150 g caster sugar
  • 3 eggs medium
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 6 tablespoons mincemeat
  • 150 g plain flour *for gluten-free version see notes
  • teaspoons baking powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon caster sugar to sprinkle

Instructions

  • Pre-heat the oven to 170°C.
  • In a large bowl mix the bramley apples with the sugar and lemon zest and juice. Pour into a buttered baking dish and set aside
  • Cream the butter and sugar for a few minutes until light and fluffy.
  • Add the eggs one at a time, mixing until thoroughly incorporated.
  • Stir in the vanilla extract and then the mincemeat.
  • Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt then mix into the rest of the ingredients until just combined.
  • Finally stir in the milk.
  • Pour the batter on top of the apples then bake in the oven for around 45 minutes until the sponge has browned on top and an inserted toothpicks comes out clean.
  • Sprinkle over the teaspoon of caster sugar and serve with lashings of custard.

Notes

  • Bramley Apples - If you can’t get hold of Bramley Apples then any tart cooking apple will do the job.
  • Mincemeat - you can use any mincemeat but homemade tastes the most delicious
  • Baking Dish 25 x 19 x 6cm
  • Make Ahead - Bake the pudding a day or two before. Keep in the fridge. Cover loosely with foil then re-heat in the oven for 20-30 minutes just before serving.
  • How to Freeze - Cool in the baking dish then double wrap well in both cling film and tin foil before freezing. Defrost thoroughly the night before then re-heat in the oven for 20-30 minutes, covered loosely with foil.
  • Gluten-Free Version - The recipe is totally the same except instead of plain flour I use the following flours all whisked together:
    55g sweet rice flour
    40g oat flour
    30g millet flour
    25g almond flour
    The result is amazing and just as fluffy and deeply delicious as the original recipe.

Nutrition

Calories: 513kcal | Carbohydrates: 73g | Protein: 6g | Fat: 23g | Saturated Fat: 14g | Cholesterol: 136mg | Sodium: 423mg | Potassium: 229mg | Fiber: 3g | Sugar: 50g | Vitamin A: 775IU | Vitamin C: 2.8mg | Calcium: 75mg | Iron: 1.7mg

Update Notes: This post was originally published in December 2014, but was republished with clearer instructions and tips in July 2019.

Apple and Stem Ginger Chutney

Apple and Stem Ginger Chutney is a sweet spicy chutney perfect with cheese.

I have been making chutneys and jams for my friends and family for Christmas presents as long as I can remember. It’s perhaps my annual ritual that I treasure the most. It signifies making the most of the autumnal farmers’ market or foraging treasures and is one of the first steps I take each year when starting to plan for the festive season.

There was a time when I rotated the chutneys I made, perhaps an apple, pear and hazelnut chutney, often a piccalilli or even a traditional dowerhouse chutney. However since I developed this particular Apple and Stem Ginger Chutney a couple of years ago there has been absolutely no looking back. It has been one of my favourite kitchen creations and now I make it every single year to pass onto my loved ones, and of course to scoff myself with a mountain of cheese.

I rather like it as it’s not one of those chunky chutneys that makes your sandwich all lumpy, or a chutney that is stuffed with little pops of sultanas making the whole affair too fruity. No, this chutney has the perfect balance of texture from the soft apples, of sweetness from the stem ginger and a warmth of spice from the root ginger, chipotle chilli powder, nutmeg and cinnamon.

Apple & Stem Ginger Chutney

This chutney is perfect on your festive cheeseboard as it goes with pretty much any cheese. It’s also incredibly addictive so don’t be surprised if you find you are balancing more chutney on your cracker instead of cheese. This recipe makes a good few jars but it’s perfect to give away as presents or to hoard yourself so you can keep your supplies well on the go until next year’s batch.

Apple & Stem Ginger Chutney

If you like this recipe then maybe you will like these ones:

Homemade Stem Ginger in Syrup
Homemade Crystallised Ginger
Homemade Boxing Day Ale Chutney

If you make this Apple and Stem Ginger Chutney then please leave a comment below and/or give the recipe a rating. If you then go on to use this recipe as a launch pad for your own baking creation then I’d also love it if you’d share it and tag me on Instagram. It is so lovely for me to see your versions and variations of my recipes.

Apple and Stem Ginger Chutney

A sweet spicy chutney perfect with cheese
Prep Time40 mins
Cook Time2 hrs 30 mins
Course: Condiment
Cuisine: British
Servings: 12 200ml jars
Calories: 345kcal

Ingredients

For the spice bag:

  • 50 g root ginger
  • 2 teaspoons black peppercorns
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seeds

Chutney

  • 1.5 kg Bramley apples peeled, cored and diced
  • 1.5 kg Cox Pippin apples peeled, cored and diced
  • 1 kg white onions diced
  • 4 balls stem ginger about 80g, finely chopped
  • 500 g soft light brown sugar
  • 600 ml cider vinegar
  • ¾ teaspoon chipotle chilli powder
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon of sea salt

Instructions

  • Place the spice bag ingredients into a muslin bag and then put into a large preserving pan with the rest of the ingredients.
  • Bring slowly to the boil, then simmer for 2.5 hours.
  • Remove the spice bag then decant the chutney into sterilised jars.
  • Keep in a cool dark place for 2-3 months before eating.

Nutrition

Serving: 25g | Calories: 345kcal | Carbohydrates: 87g | Protein: 2g | Fat: 1g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Sodium: 217mg | Potassium: 508mg | Fiber: 8g | Sugar: 72g | Vitamin A: 170IU | Vitamin C: 17.9mg | Calcium: 78mg | Iron: 1mg

Bramley Apple and Cranberry Oat Bars

Bramley Apple and Cranberry Oat Bars

At 7.26pm a familiar crinkle of keys in the lock rouses puppy from his slumber in the corner of the kitchen.  His tail begins to wag furiously as he hurls himself up and scurries into the hall.  My husband opens the door with grandour and bends down to scuffle puppy’s wriggling little body.  Standing back up he loosens his tie and heads with long strides towards the kitchen.  I watch him as he stands before the fridge, reaching up to a round tin which is perched on the top.  He lifts it down giving a puzzled look, then shakes the tin which utters only hollow silence.  His face crumples, “No cake?”

I know, it’s crazy but true, since the beginning of January there has been no cake in this house and not surprisingly its absence is felt as keenly as a lost limb.  Even though if at the end of December it felt like I would swear off cake, biscuits and chocolate for good, having indulged in Christmas excess.  But like the sugar junkie I am I have been yanked off the wagon and thrown to the wolves.  And I blame TV.

Just before hubby came home I was drifting across the food channels, avoiding anything with loud shouty men and I came across the cookery show of one of my favourite food bloggers.  Now, this will come to no surprise to those who know me but I secretly like to think I’m a bit of a cowgirl.  So what if I live 5000 miles away from the nearest cattle ranch, riding horses makes my bum hurt and I can’t at any time be more than 15 mins away from the nearest Vietnamese restaurant. I strut down Stroud Green Road in my cowboy boots with pride.  So when I started reading The Pioneer Woman’s blog a few years ago, I fell in love.  At the moment she has a cookery show and I love watching those vast landscapes and clear skies, imagining myself herding cattle at dawn followed by downtime in the lodge frying steaks as big as my head and whipping up peach cobblers.  Ree Drummond always seems so happy and unflustered as she effortlessly fronts her own TV show, writes her blog, homeschools her children and still manages to reign supreme in her kitchen.

Now this blogger struggles to toilet train one puppy, barely manages a mediocre run round the block, never does her homework for writing class, always forgets at least two vitally important things from the shopping list and is constantly frustrated by the lack of workspace in my tiny North London kitchen.  I might be the epitomy of fluster.

There is always one thing that calms me down though and that’s getting involved in a new recipe.  And these oat bars which Ree was making on her cookery programme just made me want to run into the kitchen and start mixing up a batch, mainly since I immediately foresaw them with a fluffy tart apple filling.  I am on a bit of bramley apple kick at the moment, my current snack being unsweetened bramley apple sauce stirred up with a tablespoon of coconut milk for mid-afternoon fixes.  It’s addictive.

Bramley Apple and Cranberry Oat Bars

I also remembered about some leftover cranberries buried in the freezer which I am keen to use up before they become seasonally irrelevant.  So I added some of those into a saucepan with the bramleys and stewed them up with just a touch of sugar.  The oaty mixture encasing the fruit is packed with sweetness so balances out the slight sourness of the soft middle.

So, now my cake tin is happy.   And so are the other members of the household.

Bramley Apple and Cranberry Oat Bars

Adapted from The Pioneer Woman on the Food Network

2 medium bramley apples, about 450g, peeled, cored and diced
150g cranberries
1½ tbsp caster sugar
1 tbsp water
200g butter, at room temperature
185g plain flour
135g rolled oats
200g soft light brown sugar, sifted
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt

  1. Put the apples and cranberries in a medium saucepan with the caster sugar and water. Put the lid on and stew on a low heat for 20-30 mins, stirring occasionally until they have broken down and softened. Leave to cool.
  2. Pre-heat the oven to 170°C and grease a rectangular baking tin 9” x 13”.
  3. In a large mixing bowl add the rest of the ingredients and rub together with your hands until everything has come together to form a light dough.
  4. Press ½ the dough into the base of the baking tin to form an even layer.
  5. Spread the cooled fruit on top.
  6. Crumble the rest of the dough on the top and press down lightly into the fruit, don’t worry too much about it spreading out evenly.
  7. Bake in the oven for 20-30 mins until the top is golden brown and the fruit bubbling up.
  8. Remove from the oven and leave to cool in the oven for an hour or so before removing from the tin and cutting into bars.