Autumn is apple season. That’s come around quickly, huh! Some apple varieties are ready to harvest in August, but September and October are when the action really ramps up in the UK. But whilst we’re still also clinging on to the remains of summer, I’ve got a recipe for you that combines your barbecue with the first of the new season’s apples. And, if it’s raining, you can use your oven instead of your barbecue. You can make most of the elements of this dessert a day or two in advance too, so all you need to do when the time comes is cook your apples and assemble. Give it a go, and let me know what you think!
FOR THE BISCOFF CRUMBLE
200g plain flour
125g cold butter, cubed
100g golden caster sugar
100g Lotus biscuits, roughly broken up
80g Biscoff spread, melted
100g mixed nuts
Preheat the oven to 200°C (180ºC fan).
Lightly butter a deep baking dish. Add the Biscoff spread to a small pan and gently heat until runny. Take off the heat and leave to cool.
Put the flour, butter and a pinch of salt to a medium sized mixing bowl and rub together with your fingers until resembling breadcrumbs. Stir through the sugar and broken biscuits and nuts. Then add the melted biscoff.
Bake for 35-40 minutes until the crumble is golden brown. If preparing in advance, transfer to an airtight containter and refrigerate.
FOR THE CREAM
100ml clotted cream
100ml double cream
1 tbsp caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla essence
Whip together the two creams until combined and forming soft peaks then add vanilla and sugar. Put to the side or store in the fridge if preparing in advance.
FOR THE COFFEE CARAMEL
2 shots espresso (or 1 tbsp instant coffee)
120g double cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
200g caster sugar
85g unsalted butter
¼ teaspoon salt
In a small saucepan over medium heat, add sugar and salt and cover with coffee, topping up with water as required. Bring to a simmer, stirring every so often until sugar is dissolved (about 5 minutes). Increase heat to medium-high and cook until deeply golden, without stirring, (4 to 5 minutes more).
Once the caramel is a deep copper colour, turn off the heat and immediately stir in the cream and butter. The mixture will bubble up so be careful! Let it cool slightly in pan, then transfer to a container to cool completely.
FOR THE SESAME BRITTLE
*or you can use shop-bought Sesame Snaps
200g sesame seeds
200g granulated sugar
50g unsalted butter
2 tablespoons golden syrup
Preheat the oven to 180°C
Line a baking tray with parchment paper.
Toast the sesame seeds in a dry frying pan over a medium for a few minutes until they turn golden brown, giving the pan a shake every now and then so they don’t catch. Set aside to cool.
Put the sugar, butter, golden syrup, and vanilla extract in a pan and heat over a low heat, stirring constantly, until the sugar has dissolved. Don’t let it boil! Then take the saucepan off the heat and tip in the toasted sesame seeds and mix well.
Pour the mixture out onto the lined baking tray and spread it out evenly with the back of a spoon or spatula, pressing it down as you go. Pop that in the oven for about 10 minutes or until the edges are starting to brown and crisp up. Remove from the oven and place the tray on a cooling rack. If you want uniform pieces then once it’s cooled a bit score the brittle so that you can break it along those lines later, or just leave it to cool thoroughly and then snap into random shapes. You can sotre your sesame brittle in an airtight container in a cupboard for a week or two if you need to .
All of above can be done few days before you want to serve.
TO BRING THE DISH TOGETHER
Either fire up the BBQ or pre heat your oven to 190°C. Cut your apples in half, removing the seeds, and roast or bbq until golden brown and softened. You’ll probably want one eating apple per person.
Put two halves of cooked apple and a dollop of the cream on each plate, sprinkle some crumble mixture over, stick a couple of bits of sesame brittle in the cream and then drizzle syrup over it all. Serve, and enjoy!