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The Ultimate Rhubarb and Fruit Crumble

Posted by Sue Heward on

Belinda Jeffery is one of those cookbook writers that not only explains her recipe for you, but one who tells you about the ambience of the room, the village traditions and shares her baking wisdom very graciously. I started with her Rhubarb and strawberry crumble then made this creation below my own.

I hope you love it, we all thought this dish rocked the Father's Day table on Sunday. I have also put together for you our Christmas Baker's Pack including the Spectacular Diced Fruit, Sticky Quince Syrup and our very new Candied Mixed Citrus Peel...Perfect for making this recipe. Get in quick we only have 50 packs available at a super special price.

The Ultimate Rhubarb Fruit Crumble

Serves 10 generously

350g rhubarb, washed and cut into lengths (I was aiming for 3 cm)
4 apples, peeled, thinly sliced
½ cup (110g) caster sugar
150g spectacular diced dried fruit
50g candied peel
4 tbpns of sticky quince syrup
Icing sugar, for dusting
Vanilla bean ice cream or thick cream, to serve

180g plain flour
125g caster sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon salt
180g cold unsalted butter, cut into small chunks
1/2 cup rolled or quick oats

Method (you can watch me put this together here)

Preheat your oven to 200C.

In a large bowl coat the rhubarb and apple slices with most of the caster sugar. In a second smaller bowl coat the diced fruit and peel with the remaining castor sugar.

I layered the fruit into my oven dish but you could just scoop the fruit mixture in. Starting with apples I did a layer then rhubarb pieces lined up alongside each other, then sprinkled the dived fruit/candied peel mix. I repeated this process again ending with a final layer of apple slices on top. I then finished with drizzling the sticky quince syrup over the apple layer. I used a round ceramic dish with a diameter at the top of 24 cm and 8 cm high (tampering to a smaller round base). You are aiming for a wide diameter and high sides.

For the crumble, I hand mixed the flour, caster sugar, cinnamon, salt, oats and then scattered the cubed butter over the top. You can blend with your fingers; I just used a stick blender (careful to not lift up the blender why its still blitzing otherwise you will have crumble flying everywhere).  You are looking for a crumble not a paste here.

Sprinkle the crumble evenly over the fruit mixture, then into the oven for 35-40 minutes (As Belinda says 'until it looks crisp and golden, and the juices from the fruit bubble up through it here and there').

I did leave the crumble cool slightly before we served for dessert on Father's day this year. Serve with vanilla bean ice cream or cream.

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Rhubarb, Apple and Quince cream cake

Posted by Sue Heward on

If there is one cake you bake this winter please make it this one. This is my take on a cake by Belinda Jeffery. You can find the original recipe here. I'm so enamoured with it and completely love the texture that cream brings to it rather than using butter. So, so, light but so much flavour, it serves 8 but you could definitely stretch it further.

Rhubarb, apple, quince cream cake

Rhubarb, Apple and Quince cream cake

250g Apple peeled and chopped into 1 cm chunks

200g rhubarb washed and chopped chopped into 1 cm chunks

1 1/2 cups self-raising flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

Finely grated zest 2 large lemons

1 large egg

1 cup (220g) caster sugar

1 cup (250ml) pure cream

1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

4 tlbspn Quince butter (I keep a stash of this in my fridge, the recipe is here)

Crumble topping

1 cup rolled oats / oatmeal

1 cup self-raising flour

1 cup brown sugar (loosely packed)

1/2 tsp baking powder

1 tsp cinnamon powder

125g / 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted

Pinch of salt

Vanilla bean ice cream or cream, to serve


  1. Preheat your oven to 175 C. Butter a 23 cm springform tin, line the base with buttered baking paper and then dust the tin with flour.
  2. Have your chopped rhubarb and apple in one bowl.
  3. Measure the flour, baking powder and salt into another bowl. Use a whisk to mix them together for 1 minute so they’re thoroughly combined. Sprinkle in the lemon zest and whisk for another 10 seconds or so, then set the bowl aside.
  4. Whisk an egg into into your electric mixer bowl and beat it briefly (I did this by hand). Then I used the whisk attachment on my mixer. Add the caster sugar and whisk together for 1 minute so the mixture looks creamy. Pour in the cream and vanilla and whisk again until everything is thoroughly combined.
  5. Add all but 1 tablespoon of the flour mixture to the mixer bowl, and use a spatula to stir the two together. Do this by hand and don't beat just fold as this causes the cake to toughen. The batter is still lumpy when you are finished.
  6. Sprinkle the reserved tablespoon of flour mixture over the rhubarb/apple mix in the bowl, and give it a good shake so the pieces are lightly dusted in flour. Now, fold the fruit into the batter – it will be thick with fruit. Scoop the batter into the prepared tin and use a palette knife to spread it out evenly. 
  7. Spoon your quince butter over the cake mixture.
  8. Crumble preparation: Place Topping ingredients in a bowl. Mix until clumps form, like wet sand. Spread over your cake, crumbling with fingers if required to get that crumbly topping.
  9. Put the tin in the oven and bake the cake for 50 – 55 minutes until a fine skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean. Remove the cake from the oven and sit it on a wire rack. Let it cool for about 10 minutes before unclipping and remove the sides of the tin. Carefully remove the base. Leave it to cool until it’s room temperature.

Serve with ice cream or cream. Belinda does write that you can freeze the leftover cake for up to 3 weeks, but we did just eat it all. 

Rhubarb, Apple quince cream cake


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