This wonderfully warming, autumnal crumble is very adaptable: I love the combination of plum and blackberries with the spices and hazelnuts, but you can use plums alone, or swap them for blackberry and apple, or just apples.
And it has one big advantage: you make the filling and topping a day or more ahead and bring them together just before you want to eat, giving you more time to spend with family and friends. And we all need a bit of that after the past 18 months.
I’ve got a new recipe in development featuring greengages, but while I perfect it (hopefully before the wasps get them), here’s a reminder of some of the other plum and autumn fruit recipes you could be cooking. Continue reading →
The elder tree is a remarkable thing. It doesn’t look like much – it’s more of a weedy shrub or a shrubby weed than a tree – but it gives us fragrant elderflowers early in the season, and deliciously winey elderberries at this time of the year. Continue reading →
Wild garlic abounds at this time of year … everywhere except in my neighbourhood. I am planting some for next year but in the meantime I have to forage far afield to find it. There are alternatives though if it’s equally elusive where you live. Continue reading →
Like a lot of Brits I’m leery about picking wild mushrooms. Hedgerow fruit, no problem. Wild garlic, absolutely. But in spite of the fact that I often picked field mushrooms with my dad when I was a child, I’m funny about funghi. Too many Agatha Christie novels at a formative age, perhaps, along with a yawning gap of ignorance.
“Mushrooms have got a bad PR agent, that’s all,” says Carl Shillingford Continue reading →
You’d have to be colour blind not to notice the current fashion for edible flowers and micro greens. They appear in almost every posh restaurant and glossy magazine photo-shoot. And they are very enticing: the bright colours of the flowers and the tiny, delicate but sometimes pungent shoots. Continue reading →
It was a bit of a wrench picking the hips from the wild roses because they looked so beautiful glowing in the autumn sun, but I consoled myself with the thought that they’d shrivel and drop off soon anyway and I’d be conserving their flavour through the winter, suspended in an amber jelly. Continue reading →
Harvesting the last of the wild plums from the hedgerow and being short on time, the thought of picking the stones out of bullace jam didn’t appeal. But it’s one of the family’s favourites so I wanted to keep the bullaces’ gorgeous greengage flavour while cutting the workload. Continue reading →
There’s something enormously satisfying about getting food for free – if you ignore the personal cost of the bramble scratches, nettle stings and midge bites.
You can make this jelly with a wide variety of hedgerow fruits in addition to the crab apples – try blackberries, wild plums (bullaces), sloes and elderberries. If you can’t source crabapples, cooking apples will do. Continue reading →