Oh, deary me, we really aren’t having much of a summer in England this year are we? Facebook and it’s On This Day daily reminders of posts from years gone by has been taunting me all week with my posts from July 2015 when it was 34˚C in Sheffield. 34˚C in Yorkshire!
Hungry Hubby and I were good for nothing as the Apple Chapel and it’s many beautiful stained glass windows as it effectively is turned into a giant greenhouse. The one positive of having days cool enough to wear a jumper at home and enough rain to keep me indoors in the sanctuary of my kitchen is being able to get away with wintery puds like this fruity Plumble, to brighten up these grey days.
In case you are wondering, Plumble is the fusion of the two words Plum and Crumble, and shh, don’t tell Hungry Hubby – I love it more than apple crumble (that is sacrilege to The Hungry One). Luckily, he absolutely loves this one although to be fair, he would love any sort of crumble pudding drenched in Bird’s custard!
I spice the plums with a little cinnamon and almond extract although you should wait until you find ripe, juicy and very fruity flavoured plums to make the most of this delicious dessert. Plus only very tender plums will have thin enough skin for me not to want to remove them when you’ve finished stewing the quartered fruits.
Hungry Hubs and I love a good thick layer of crumble topping but to lighten it, I use self-raising flour. A handful of oats lend their wholesome sweet fragrance and ground almonds bring sweet nuttiness and a little bite to the crumbly Plumble topping. Utter bliss when eaten hot with a cold, cold spoonful of creme fraîche to cut the sweetness but if you are #teamcustard like Hungry Hubby, then get your jug ready.
It really is wonderful the next day eaten cold but with hot custard (if you can bare not to eat the lot fresh from the oven!). It’s a golden ray of sunshine no matter the weather outside.
- 5 ripe and juicy plums quartered and stoned
- 1 tbsp soft brown sugar
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon or half a stick of cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp almond extract
- 100 g self-raising flour
- 50 g soft butter
- 50 g caster sugar
- 25 g ground almonds
- 2-3 tbsp rolled oats
Place the plums in a medium saucepan along with the brown sugar and cinnamon. Add 2 tbsp water, stir well and bring to a simmer then put a lid on and cook until softened. The riper the plums, the faster this will happen. Do check every few minutes to see if you need a splash more water, especially if the plums aren't soft to begin with.
When cooked, I like to slip off the skins of the plums but if you don't mind them, skip this step.
Stir in the almond extract and scrape the fruit into a small ovenproof dish. I use an enamelware rectangular dish about 22cm long.
Preheat the oven to 180˚C.
Using a spatula, blend the soft butter into the flour then stir in the caster sugar, ground almonds and oats. Finish it off by hand, with light fluttery movements to form a porridge oats like mix. Pour over the stewed plums and bake for 25 minutes.
When ready, the plumble will have fruity juices bubbling up through any gaps in the topping which will be lightly golden brown. Serve hot with a generous amount of creme fraîche or allow to cool and serve with lashings of hot custard.
It's really worth finding tasty plums which are very ripe for this - tasteless, cannonball-like ones will just be result in disappointment.
The plumble keeps well for a couple of days, covered in the fridge.
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