Crunchy Plum and Apple Cobbler with Port

The apples in this cobbler bring a softness to the mix of fruit and the addition of the port gives it a fullness of flavour. As well, the sprinkling of demerara sugar over the balls of dough creates a crunch as it bakes in oven.

 

Plum and Apple Cobbler with Port

 

Crunchy Plum and Apple Cobbler with Port
Prepares: 4 servings
 
  • Preparation time: 25 minutes
  • Cooking time: 30–35 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • 400g (14 oz) Victoria plums/prune plums (about 7)
  • 2 dessert apples
  • 3 tbsp demerara sugar
  • 2 tbsp port
  • 170g (6 oz) self-raising/self-rising flour (1⅓ cups)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 55g (2 oz) butter, diced (¼ cup, or ½ stick)
  • 70g (2½ oz) caster/superfine sugar (3 tbsp)
  • pinch salt
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tbsp natural yogurt

  • You will also need a 1½ litre (6 cup) baking dish.


  1. Method
  2. Heat the oven to 190°C (375°F) (gas 5).

  3. Wash, halve, and stone the plums and place in a bowl. Peel the apples, core and thinly slice and add to the bowl.

  4. Sprinkle over the demerara sugar and toss to coat. Then add the port and stir to mix. Spoon into the baking dish and put to one side.

  5. Sift the flour and baking powder into a mixing bowl. Now rub in the butter to form breadcrumbs. Then stir through the caster/superfine sugar and salt.

  6. In a separate bowl whisk together the egg and yogurt. Make a well in the centre of the dry ingredients and then pour in the egg and yogurt mixture. Bring the mixtures together to form a soft, slightly sticky dough.

  7. Shape into small balls (about 16) and drop over the fruit. Then sprinkle with the remaining demerara sugar.

  8. Bake for 30–35 minutes until the cobbler has risen and is golden.

  9. Serve with double cream/whipping or heavy cream.

 

 

Apple Crisp

Apple Crisp

 

A classic simple dish of apples with a crumbly topping baked in the oven until the apple juices are bubbling and the topping is crisp. Serve with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream. Delicious.

 

Apple Crisp
Prepares: 4 servings
 
  • Preparation time: 20 minutes
  • Cooking time: 30 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • For the apples
  • 450g (1 lb) apples (3 medium)
  • 70g (2½ oz) granulated/white sugar (⅓ cup)

  • For the topping
  • 55g (2 oz) flour, sifted (⅓ cup)
  • 55g (2 oz) porridge oats/rolled oats (⅔ cup)
  • 70g (2½ oz) light muscovado/soft brown sugar (⅓ cup)
  • pinch salt
  • 55g (2 oz) butter, melted (¼ cup, or ½ stick)

  • You will also need a 2 pint ovenproof dish measuring 25 × 15cm (9 × 6 inches)


  1. Method
  2. Preheat the oven to 190°C (375°F) (gas 5)

  3. Peel and core the apples. Slice them fairly thinly and place in a bowl with the sugar. Toss together and then spread over the base of the ovenproof dish.

  4. Mix together the first four ingredients of the topping. Pour the butter over the top and mix in until the mixture has become crumbly. Sprinkle evenly over the apples.

  5. Bake for 30 minutes or until the apples are tender and the juices are bubbling around the edge.

  6. Best served with ice cream or whipped cream.

 

Apple Clafoutis

Apple Clafoutis

 

This French dessert of apples cooked in a brandy syrup, and covered with a sweet batter, is then baked. Just dust with icing sugar and serve this clafoutis warm, ladled with cream, to make a delicious dessert.

 

Apple Clafoutis
Prepares: 6 servings
 
  • Preparation time: 20 minutes
  • Standing time: 10 minutes
  • Cooking time: 1 hour 10 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • 4 small dessert apples
  • 40g (1½ oz) butter (3 tbsp)
  • 115g (4 oz) caster/superfine sugar (½ cup)
  • 1 tsp caster/superfine sugar
  • 1½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp brandy
  • about 240ml (8 fl oz) whole milk (1cup)
  • 3 eggs, large (U.K.)/extra large (N.A.)
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 70g (2½ oz) plain/cake and pastry flour, sifted (½ cup + 1 tbsp)
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • 1 heaped tsp icing/powdered sugar sifted

  • You will also need a large frying pan/skillet and a round 25.5cm (10 inch) diameter ovenproof dish with a depth of 5cm (2 inches), greased with a little butter.


  1. Method
  2. Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C) (gas 4)

  3. Peel, quarter and core the apples. Then cut each quarter into wedges about 1cm (½ inch) thick.

  4. Melt the butter in the frying pan/skillet and, when it begins to foam, add the apple wedges. Toss to coat with the butter and then cook the apples over a medium heat, turning occasionally, until they begin to soften and turn golden in colour, about 5 minutes.

  5. Lower the heat and add 55g (2 oz) (¼ cup) of the sugar, cinnamon, and brandy and stir to coat the apple wedges. Cook for a further 2 minutes until the sugar has dissolved, creating a golden sauce. Remove from the heat and set aside for 10 minutes to allow the apples to absorb some of the liquid.


  6. Now using a slotted spoon, pile the apples into the prepared dish and scrape the juice into a measuring jug. Add milk to the jug to make the liquid up to 300ml (10 fl oz) (1¼ cups). Whisk to combine the milk and the juice.

  7. Pour into a blender along with the eggs, remaining sugar, vanilla extract, flour, and salt. Blend on high for 1 minute, scraping the sides down with a spatula until the batter is smooth. (The ingredients can also be whisked together until there is a smooth batter – it is just easier with a blender.)

  8. Pour the batter over the apples, sprinkle the extra teaspoon of sugar on top and bake on the middle shelf of the oven for about 1 hour, until the batter has puffed up and is golden. To test whether the batter is cooked, pierce in the centre with a skewer and it should come out clean.

  9. Leave to cool for about 5 minutes then serve warm with a dusting of icing/powdered sugar.

Updated: January 17, 2019

Apple Soufflé Crêpes

Apple Soufflé Crêpes

 

Preparing the apples as a purée and then mixing with meringue make these filled crêpes very light. They are finished off in the oven where they will puff up and look quite impressive. Then a dusting of cinnamon – this a very different type of crêpe.

 

Apple Soufflé Crêpes
Prepares: 4 servings
 
  • Preparation time: 40 minutes plus (the crêpes can be made while the filling is cooking)
  • Standing time: 20 minutes
  • Cooking time: 40–45 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • For the crêpes
  • 115g (4 oz) strong plain/all-purpose flour (⅔ cup + 2 tbsp)
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 egg
  • 300ml (10 fl oz) semi-skimmed milk (1¼ cups), OR
  • 240ml (8 fl oz) full fat/whole milk (1 cup) and 60ml (2 fl oz) water (¼ cup)

  • For the filling
  • 565g (1¼ lb) dessert apples (4 medium)
  • 120ml (4 fl oz) water (½ cup)
  • 3½ tbsp caster/superfine sugar
  • 20g (¾ oz) butter, softened (1½ tbsp)
  • 3 eggs, medium (U.K.)/large (N.A.), whites only
  • ground cinnamon for dusting

  • You will also need a shallow-rimmed, lightweight pan, 20–23cm (8–9inch) in diameter with rounded sides for the crêpes and four shallow, ovenproof dishes, each large enough to take two folded and filled 15cm (6 inch) crêpes.


  1. Method
  2. First make up the batter for the crêpes. Sift the flour and salt into a mixing bowl and make a well in the centre. Break the egg into the well and, using half the milk, gradually whisk the egg and milk into the flour, using a balloon whisk. Once a smooth consistency is reached and lots of bubbles rise to the surface, add the rest of the milk quickly. Do not over-mix.

  3. Or use an electric mixer. First mix the egg and milk together then mix in the sifted flour and salt until the batter is smooth and lots of bubbles rise to the surface. Be careful not to over-mix.

  4. Let batter rest for 20 minutes.

  5. Meanwhile, peel, quarter and core the apples and place in a large pan. Add the water, cover the pan, and cook over a low heat for about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the mixture is reduced to a pulp.

  6. Now to cook the crêpes. Get the pan really hot and then reduce to a moderate heat – about the temperature needed for frying an egg. Use oil or butter to grease the pan. If using oil, use groundnut or another flavourless oil (not olive oil) and pour a little in a small bowl. If using butter, melt a large knob of butter in the pan and then pour into a small bowl. Add a little oil or butter to the pan and tilt the pan to cover the base. It should just glisten, not run with oil or butter.

  7. Stir the batter, then pour about 45ml (3 tablespoons) of batter in the centre of the pan for each crêpe. Immediately lift and tilt the pan in all directions to spread the batter. You are aiming to make a 15cm (6 inch) crêpe.

  8. Turn when the batter starts to curl away from the sides of the pan, the mixture begins to bubble and the underside is golden. It should take about a minute. If it seems a bit sticky, give it a couple of seconds more. Loosen the edge of the crêpe from the pan, then flip it over with a palette knife and cook until the underside is golden. Slip each cooked crêpe from the pan directly onto a piece of kitchen paper which will absorb any grease and keep it light and dry. Repeat the process with the rest of the batter, greasing the pan each time, until you have 8 crêpes.

  9. Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F) (gas 6).

  10. Now once the apples have been reduced to a pulp, turn up the heat and continue to cook for a further 5 minutes until thick. Stir continuously to prevent the apple catching on the bottom of the pan.

  11. Add 2 tablespoons of the sugar and stir to melt the sugar.

  12. Now to make the meringue. Whisk the egg whites in a large bowl until stiff.

  13. Add the remaining sugar, a tablespoon at a time, whisking well between each addition, until the meringue is glossy.

  14. Stir a quarter of the meringue into the apple to loosen it a little, then fold in the rest.

  15. Spoon 2–3 tablespoons of the meringue mixture over half of each crêpe. Then fold the other half of the crêpe over the meringue mixture.

  16. Grease the ovenproof dishes with butter and place two crêpes in each dish, a little apart so they are not touching. Bake for 10–12 minutes until puffed up and hot.

  17. Dust with cinnamon and serve immediately before the soufflé has a chance to sink.

 

Apple Within

Apple Within

 

Chunky pieces of apple are baked within a sponge mixture – hence its name. Another way to enjoy cooking apples when they are at their best.

 

Apple Within
Prepares: 4 servings
 
  • Preparation time: 10 minutes
  • Cooking time: 50 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • 110g/4 oz butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
  • 110g/4 oz soft light brown sugar
  • 1 egg, large (U.K.)/extra large (N.A.)
  • 100ml/3½ fl oz milk
  • 250g/8 oz self-raising flour
  • pinch of ground cloves
  • 450g/1 lb cooking apples, peeled, cored and roughly chopped*

  • *This is an English recipe where Bramley apples are used. The closest variety of apples I have found in Canada are Mutsu or Crispin. Pink Lady are good too when the other varieties aren’t available.

  • Equipment
  • A baking dish, roughly 20 × 20cm/8 × 8 in.


  1. Method
  2. Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/gas mark 4

  3. Butter the baking dish.

  4. Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add the egg and beat until combined. Mix in the milk, then fold in the flour and cloves. Fold in the apples.

  5. Tip into the dish. Spread the mixture out but leave the surface quite uneven. Bake for 45–50 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean. Cover with baking parchment if it starts to brown too much.

  6. Serve hot with cream and extra sugar.

 

Buttermilk Pancakes with Apples and Maple Syrup

Buttermilk Pancakes with Apples and Maple Syrup

 

These buttermilk pancakes with apple and maple syrup are thicker, North American-style pancakes. The addition of the  buttermilk in the pancakes and the topping of sweet dessert apples, all smothered with maple syrup, make this a delicious dessert.

 

Buttermilk Pancakes with Apples and Maple Syrup
Prepares: 4 servings (12 pancakes)
 
  • Preparation time: About 20 minutes
  • Standing time: 20 minutes
  • Cooking time: 30–40 minutes

  • Ingredients
  • For the pancakes
  • 225g/8 oz self-raising flour
  • 2 tbsp baking powder
  • 50g/2 oz caster sugar/fine white sugar
  • 170ml/6 fl oz buttermilk
  • 2 large eggs (U.K.)/extra large eggs (N.A.)
  • 140–170ml/5–6 fl oz milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 40g/1½ oz butter

  • For the apples
  • 4 dessert apples
  • 50g/2 oz butter
  • 1 tbsp icing sugar

  • To serve
  • maple syrup
  • crème fraîche


  1. Method
  2. Sift the flour and baking powder into a bowl and stir in the sugar. Make a well in the centre and add the buttermilk, eggs and most of the milk. Gradually whisk the flour into the wet ingredients, adding enough extra milk to make a smooth, fairly thick batter. Stir in the vanilla extract and then set aside to stand for 20 minutes.

  3. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 150°C/300°F/gas mark 2 and warm 6 plates.

  4. Peel, core and thickly slice the apples. Melt the butter in a large frying pan and add the apple slices in a single layer. Dust with the icing sugar and cook over a medium heat for 2–3 minutes on each side until golden. Tip onto a warmed plate, cover with foil and keep warm in the oven while cooking the pancakes.

  5. Heat a large, heavy gauged frying pan over a medium heat and melt the butter in it. Pour into a small bowl and use this to smear the pan between cooking each pancake using a wodge of kitchen paper. The pan should be lightly greased, not running with butter. Add 4 tablespoonfuls/¼ cup of batter and cook for 1–2 minutes until bubbles appear on the surface of the pancake and the underside is golden brown. Turn and cook for a further minute. Lift out on to a warmed plate, cover loosely with foil, and pop back in the oven to keep warm. Repeat using the remaining batter until there are 12 pancakes.

  6. To serve
  7. Pile three pancakes on each plate and top with the apple slices, pour over some maple syrup and serve with a spoonful of crème fraîche.