River Cottage

Apple, raisin and walnut crumble recipe

This warming dessert is a festive substitute for Christmas pudding and is a River Cottage favourite

Serves 8


  • 75g raisins
  • About 4 tbsp cider brandy
  • 100g walnuts
  • 1.25kg cooking apples, peeled, cored and finely sliced
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon

For the crumble

  • 225g plain flour
  • A pinch of sea salt
  • 200g cold, unsalted butter, cubed
  • 150g soft brown sugar
  • 75g medium oatmeal
  • 75g ground almonds


How to make apple, raisin and walnut crumble

1. Combine the raisins with the cider brandy and leave to soak - ideally overnight.

2. Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas 4. Scatter the walnuts on a baking sheet and toast in the oven for 5-7 minutes, giving them a shake halfway through, until just beginning to colour and develop aroma. Leave to cool then chop very roughly. Leave the oven at 180°C/gas 4.

3. For the crumble, sift the flour and salt into a bowl (or food processor). Add the butter and rub in with your fingers (or pulse briefly in the processor) until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in the soft brown sugar, oatmeal and ground almonds. Squeeze a few handfuls of crumble in your fist to make lumps, which will give you a deliciously 'rocky' crumble.

4. Put the apples in a large bowl, sprinkle over the caster sugar, add the walnuts, cinnamon and the soaked raisins and any residual brandy, and mix. Transfer to a large baking dish, packing down the apples as much as you can.

5. Scatter the crumble over the top of the apples in a fairly even layer. Bake for 40-45 minutes, until browned on top. Serve hot, with cream, custard or ice cream.

© River Cottage

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Gordon's training video: Making the perfect caramel

Rich, smooth and tasty - that's enough about Gordon - here's how to make caramel for Cookalong Live. Browse more cooking tips on 4Food from Channel 4

Wednesday 23 December 2009
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