Posts Tagged 'apple'

i hate….apple & rhubarb cobbler

cobblers are bad. and no one told me. no one bothered to tell me. and for some years now i have yearned to construct and consume the cobbler. because my brain was washed. and i thought that what id be getting is some kind of fruity-crumbly-buttery-cakey melange. but no sir. i will tell you this now – because no one ever told me and if i dont say it you will never know. the cakey looking thing on top of a cobbler is, in essence, a scone. and i do not like scones. not even with jam. i like them in theory of course. who doesnt. but when cake comes to scone – i dont like them. they taste like damper. and my increasingly sweet teeth dont care for it. it didnt achieve any kind of oneness with the fruit, and it seemed to be a stand alone scone, ruinously atop some perfectly good fruit. why, i asked myself, why would anyone want a cobbler? i suppose, the answer is, people like scones. and fruit. and the two together. so i post this for those of you who have a penchant for floury, undersweetened, overrated, (ill grant you fluffy) scone-like biscuit cakes. and i done some more tilt-shifting so i guess there’s something here for everyone.

ingredients (for 4-6 ramekins…you wouldnt want much more. me, i wanted less)

3 apples chopped/cubed

rhubarb cut into cm bits – or same size as the apple

tbsp sugar

for the dough:

1 1/2 cups flour

pinch salt

1 1/2tbsp sugar

2 1/4tsp baking powder

3/4 cup cream

6tbsp unsalted butter

first combine fruit with the sugar and stir to combine. i gave it a massive hit of vanilla. up to you really. put into respective baking dish(es?).

preheat the oven to 190 degrees. then make the dough. put all the dry ingredients into a bowl and with fingertips mix in the butter until it looks like coarse bread crumbs. then add the cream and mix until all its just wet. spoon lumps of the dough onto the fruit.

oven for 30-40 minutes. depending on an infinite number of things.


apple and raspberry crumble

i cant come up with anything really coherent to say – about this crumble (which i felt to be disturbingly good and completely inspired) or anything else for that matter. i got broken by an unfortunate train of abuses, principally among them, physical exertion to the point of paralysis and because of, or perhaps as a result of that, intellectual stasis which has left me entirely unable to finish this sentence. so i will give to you this recipe which i made up – and i love love love it. and if my brain hadn’t melted i would tell you why. but as it is, i cannot and so i suggest you make it for yourself and see.


2 apples

1 punnet of raspberries

1/2 cup flour

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp baking powder

pinch of salt

tsp vanilla extract

60g melted butter

100g chocolate chopped (either white – if youre using raspberries because obviously. or dark – dark with raspberries would also be a delight)

preheat oven to 190 degrees. melt the butter in a saucepan and set aside.

mix together the flour, salt, sugar, baking soda and baking powder in a bowl. add some cinnamon if you choose. i chose no.

pour over the melted butter. the original recipe had 85g melted butter but it was too much and it started to get too wet. i then had to add more flour. so i say 60g and i think thats probably right. but just check its consistency. should be like wet sand. not a wet mixture though.

then add chopped up chocolate.

put raspberries and apples into ramekins and fill to nearly the top.

crumble over the crumble.

bake for 20-30 minutes.

radicchio, pear and walnut salad

boring and derivative are such ugly words. classic is perhaps a more gentle term of opprobrium. by way of introduction i should probably make clear that this will be one of the last dinner proper posts. i have, after much consideration but mainly eating, come to the world shattering realisation that pastry is the only natural and logical consequence of my existence. yes, in spite of a request (on the heels of a tart boom) for more catholicity (or perhaps perversely because of), this blog is now solely and wholly dedicated to pastries, fancies, subtleties, cakes and all things which rest on the fundamental, inalienable law of butter and sugar. so what better way to bid farewell to bid farewell to dinner proper than with a salad as lovely, as autumnal, and as classic as this. enjoy.


2 radicchio

2 pear – peeled, quartered and very finely sliced

2 apples – peeled, quartered and very finely sliced

150g parmesan shavings

100g walnuts lightly toasted.

3 tbsp olive oil

1 tbsp balsamic vinegar

salt and pepper

first toast your walnuts – just lightly. then cut up your apples and pears and lay them out on your new, beautiful, photogenic chopping board for photographing if you want to fetishise food in such a way. i would never.

cut up your radicchio – roughly, however you see fit. combine all ingredients together into a bowl. pour over the olive oil, balsamic and season with salt and pepper.

simple. and so so very beautiful. even from up above.

carrot, apple and walnut muffins

The muffins herewith are drawn, scavenger-like, from a number of muffins and muffin-related experiences of which I have been the fortunate (and, once in Agadir, not so fortunate) subject. In a secondary inspirational role is a small suite of muffin-centred dreams, dreams of muffins great and muffins good. Once upon an aimless day (are there other sorts of days? if so, where may I enquire further about them?) i happened upon a unique genre of muffin at baker d. chirico. In retrospect, I’m quite certain Fitzroy st cleft itself in twain beneath my feat that day. Revelation always strikes when you least expect it, and often when suffering from a particularly bad case of gout . Loaded though this muffin was with its constituent bits (carrot, apple, walnuts) it seemed out of place in a humble st. kildan bakehouse. But who am I to question the universe when it reaches out and taps me on the shoulder with a crumbly top and a moist centre like a whisper?
One day I’ll tell you about the Agadir-muffin debacle of 92. Till then, enjoy these.


300g plain flour

2tsp baking powder

2tsp ground cinnamon

pinch salt

4 free range eggs

160ml sunflower/vegetable oil (i used 100ml oil and 60ml orange juice. because i can)

200g brown sugar

80g caster sugar

vanilla (vast amounts)

220g peeled grated carrot

200g granny smith

100g grated zucchini

100g walnuts

100g saltanas

preheat oven to 170 degrees. grease a muffin tray. but first get all your ingredients together, and realise you dont actually have said muffin tray and do swearing, see your life and your failures flash before your eyes and then run for your sad little life back to the shop from whence you came for a new fresh muffin tray. then, back to the grating task at hand.

sift the flour, baking powder, cinnamon and salt and mix. then whisk eggs, oil, sugars and vanillas with the grated apple, carrot and zucchini. fold in the walnuts and sultanas and finally the sifted flour mix.

spoon mix into the greased tins and bake for 25 minutes.

this post was adapted by spoon after spoon and is a dedicae for snow who is possibly the greatest muffin lover and maker i know.

apple and almond cake.

…apple almond and ginger cake if youre so incline. i however, am not.

this cake made me realise a number of truths, to which i was previously either ignorant, oblivious, or indifferent. the first and most important is that chaos, complications and fuck-ups are necessary on the way to achieving greatness. the second, if you have foresight and do a little advanced planning (even over-planning such as buying 800g of almonds when you only need 300g ‘just to be on the safe side’ and having to make two extra almond recipes on account of a nut glut) is a good thing and in a recipe such as this a lack of forethought can be devastating (those prone to frontal lobe syndrome-like tendencies will fall horrendously flat on their face unless they get it together). finally, apples and almonds make for one hell of a cake. in the words of snow…’holy mother of god’. what this cake reaffirmed for me is the following a) butter and sugar, melted, creamed, or simply eaten as is, are good. b) the oxymoronic fact that experimental cooking should only be done after its been tried and tested and c) a cake made with love, especially love for a grandparent, makes for not only a better tasting cake, but so too a self-gratifying experience for its maker. so here it is, the king of cakes.

ingredients. (ive divided them into sections of making…because its a big ol mind fuck when done otherwise)

2 granny smiths

1 royal gala

30g butter

50g caster sugar

100g raisins

this is the first stage which is cooked in a pan on the stove. first peel and core apples and cut them each into 8. melt the butter in the pan, add the apple and sugar and toss to coat the apples. cook til soft (about 5 minutes), then add the raisins and cook for another minute. finally remove from the stove and let cool.

260g almond meal (dont think your clever by avoiding the saw-dust like stuff called almond meal and substituting it for ground almonds because that would not make you clever, it would make you and your cake very very stupid.)

220g almonds

2tsp baking powder

4 eggs

230g caster sugar

145ml maple syrup (i for one cannot tolerate maple syrup. most of the world would disagree the ‘most of the world’ section of my readership should ignore this parenthesis. but for those who have a similar weltanschauung i would suggest replacing the maple syrup with 100ml melted butter and 45ml orange juice.)

in a processor (or for those lacking in such fundamental kitchen aids use a bowl and pound) pulse almond meal, almonds and baking powder together.

whisk eggs and sugar and maple syrup until pale and doubled in volume.

add nut mixture and cooled apple mixture and fold to combine. pour into a greased 26cm tin.

finally and foremost, the topping. that which takes this from cake to something so much more

2 royal gala

50g roughly chopped almonds

30g butter melted

50g sugar (25 demerrera, 25 brown)

core and thinly slice the apples. if you find royal galas intolerable use granny smiths. if you only decided you find royal galas intolerable when you are at the topping stage, use what granny smiths remain, curse yourself and maybe those around you for not being more attentive at the preparatory stage to both your quantities and your emotional state as well as the potential for a sudden and unexpected change of heart resulting in the need for 5 granny smiths instead of the original 3. arrange over the top of the cake. scatter with the chopped almonds. drizzle with butter then scatter with sugars.

bake for 60-75 minutes. its beautiful and i think im ready to say, in full recognition of the profound weight this statement will bear and in full acknowledgement of maureens chocolate cake which was my first glorious foray into the world of baking, this is the greatest cake on earth.

vanilla almond and apricot bars

muesli bars? really? well yes but its not just filler. its because some dark traumatic months a year or two back apricot and almond bars became my lifeblood. only the other day did i taste one again and amongst the bleakness and deeply repressed sadness they conjured, so too was there was a glimmer of fuck they’re good. and also some questions: how are they bound? isnt melted butter the only one true unbreakable binding force of this society? and yet not a hint of butter in sight. where are the oats, where is the solid which holds this ethereal delight together? so many questions…i became weary and had to sit down. after days of sitting and much thinkings later, i decided the closest i could come was a muesli bar with puffed rice, shredded not dessicated coconut and mostly whole almonds. the end result posted here has nothing or no one to do with this vision. because to make things more difficult i had a request for a non-lumpy snack food thats healthy but can have chocolate, with no oats unless you cant see them but most importantly, one that didnt require chewing. so i decided on an apricot almond bar – with instant oats not rolled (because you cant see them if you dont want to) and one which was entirely overwhelmed with the intoxicating scent of vanilla. an amalgam of needs. and here it is…


300g oats (rolled if you want high visibility oats, instant if you dont because of a reason i still dont understand)

100g coconut (dessicated)

200g melted butter

200g golden syrup (this is your bulk standard wet binding agent – i dont care for it at all so i use 100ml honey and 100ml apple juice which i think is not unclever)

vanilla extract (it would seem redundant to put a quantity here)

150g brown sugar

dried apricots (150g or the whole 600g bag depending on what your position on excess is)

150g almonds (roughly chopped)

get oven to 180 degrees. in a bowl combine the oats, coconut, apricots, almonds et al. in a pan melt the butter with the sugar and syrup and stir.

and finally…wet into dry just like a muffin or any other sweet, baked incarnation of the sublime.

theyre good. chewy but not too much chewing. theyre healthy…except maybe for the butter and sugar but then i think its probably more unhealthy in some ways not to have butter and sugar. theyre no exile bar and they might be a bit oaty but i think they represent a middle ground which we can all tread together.