The curious rhubarb, powerfully sour when raw but when cooked with enough sweet element (such as sugar, maple syrup and honey), it balances pleasingly between sweet and tarty, silky and almost additive. I know this lanky vegetable is not everyone’s cup of tea, its intense tanginess (without cooking it right) is somewhat off-putting. My friend’s mother whom I dined with last week, while we were devouring this rhubarb apple crumble I made, told me that she never likes rhubarb because it is too sour, but she was impressed by this dessert, particularly, the combination of apple and rhubarb. She has even asked me for the recipe.
This recipe is adapted from the British classic rhubarb crumble recipe I came across on Jamie Oliver’s website. Though the addition of apple is purely spontaneous, since I had two Gala sitting on the kitchen worktop for a few days and needed to be eaten urgently, so I didn’t hesitate to add them to the dish. I was almost certain that they would give an extra fruity note to the dessert. It turned out that the sweetness of the apple married beautifully with the tangy rhubarb, so it was a win win.
I made the crumble gluten free with oat and ground almond, oat give the crumble a nice crunch and almond adds extra sweetness to the dessert hence I reduce the sugar stated on the original recipe. I can imagine it will work fantastically on apple or berries crumble as well.
Gluten Free Rhubarb and Apple Crumbles
adapted from April Carter’s best ever rhubarb crumble recipe at jamieoliver.com
For the filling:
- 400g rhubarb, cut into 3 cm batons (as well as halve for the thicker ones)
- 2 medium size Gala apple (or other sweet apple), remove the core and seeds, quartered and cut the wedges into 2 or 3 pieces
- 75g caster sugar
- 1 tsp. vanilla paste or powder
- 2 tsp. arrowroot powder (or corn starch)
For the crumble:
- 100g gluten free oat (small flakes)(you can use regular oat if not intolerant)
- 80g ground almond
- 100g cold butter, cubed (plus more for the baking dish)
- 45g caster sugar
- a pinch of salt
- ice cream
- vanilla custard
Preheat the oven at 200 degree celsius. Grease a baking dish with some butter.
Combine the filling ingredients in a mixing bowl and then transfer them to the greased baking dish.
To make the crumbles, mix the oat and ground almond until well combined. Add cold butter cubes and use a table knife to cut into the mixture until the butter becomes small. Use your hands to work the butter into the mixture until it resembles breadcrumbs, leaving some larger pieces. Add the sugar and the salt.
Shake the crumbles carefully and evenly on top of the rhubarb apple filling, then bake it in the oven for 35-40 minutes. Served with ice cream or vanilla custard.