Tuesday, 29 October 2013

warming pear, ginger and lime crumble

Pear, Ginger and Lime Crumble

As the nights draw in, my need for warm yummy comfort food increases. Crumbles are the perfect pudding to satisfy the hungriest of visitors, but are still easy to make. This recipe is pretty quick, and the ingredients are interesting enough for it to be a bit fancier than the usual crumble, if you need it to be. 

Serves 4 greedy people!

For the crumble:

250g plain flour
90g caster sugar 
1 tsp of powdered ginger (or mixed spice if you don't have it)
115g of vegan margarine (I use 'Pure')

For the filling:

100g sugar
100ml water 
4-6 ripe pears, depending on their size. I used 4 the first time, and wished I'd had a few more. 
5 chunks of stem ginger in syrup - usually in the baking section of the supermarket 
1 lime 

1. Pop the oven on to 200 celsius/400 fahrenheit 

2. Peel and then chop up the pears into chunks. Chop the stem ginger into small pieces, and get the zest from the lime with the smallest edge on your grater. Once you've zested the lime, squeeze the juice out into a cup. 

3. Put the water and the filling sugar into the pan and bring to the boil. Very slowly and carefully add the chunks of pear - be careful not to splash the mixture on yourself as hot sugar syrup hurts!

4.  Turn the pan heat down to a simmer, and after 2 or so minutes, add the stem ginger, half the lime zest and the lime juice. Stir for another few minutes until the smell is so delicious you feel a bit dizzy!

5. Spoon the mixture into your oven-proof dish. I think smaller but deeper dishes work best for crumbles, so the filling seems thicker than if you had a long, shallow dish.

6. Now for the crumble mixture. Using a medium to large bowl, sift in the sugar, flour and powdered ginger. 

7. Cut the margarine into chunks and add it to the dry ingredients. Rub the margarine into the flour using your hands. It's messy - enjoy it! Keep going until it's the consistency of breadcrumbs - you don't want any fine floury bits or chunks of margarine left but it can look a tad rustic, that's fine.

8. Pile the crumble topping onto the pear filling in the dish. Don't pat it down - but give the dish a little shake if you want to spread the filling out a bit. 

9. Pop into the oven for 25-30 minutes - keep an eye on the topping, it should be golden brown. 

10. Sprinkle the remaining lime zest on the crumble either in the ovenproof dish, or once you've served into bowls. Serve with vegan ice cream, or custard, cream or just by itself. 

What crumble warms your cockles on a cold night? Are traditional puddings your favourite? 

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