Baking & DessertVegan

By Aine Carlin | September 14, 2011

Photo: Aine Carlin

It’s blackberry pickin’ time again! Not only that but the weather has taken a slight turn for the worse here, meaning fruit crumbles are firmly back on the dessert menu!

I adore crumbles and, even more so, I adore blackberries; but on their own they don’t make for a great crumble filling because they lack texture and bite, which is why I’ve paired them with apple. A classic combination for a reason, these two fruits perfectly compliment one another. Tart and sweet, they exude a wonderful juice that will ensure your crumble is succulent and moist- it tastes even better when re-heated the next day.

What is it about leftovers that makes for superbly scrumptious eating? The flavors have been given time to meld and amalgamate, bringing out the best of the ingredients used. It’s like they’ve somehow fused together to make one lip smackingly good  dish. Crumbles can only benefit from being left overnight – just make sure it’s piping hot when you re-heat it. Cold crumble is never a good thing.

The difficulty that comes with crumble is the age old question of what to serve it with. Are you a (vegan) cream or custard person? Maybe you like a scoop of vanilla ice cream with yours? Or, if you’re anything like me, you’ll take all three without a hint of irony or guilt.

Photo: Aine Carlin

Fiercely hot crumble, warm custard, cold cream and even colder ice cream – the only way a crumble should be eaten. Now, go forth, pick thee some blackberries and get yo’ crumble on!

Photo: Aine Carlin

Aine Carlin is a vegan blogger who specializes in vegan recipes. She also has a keen interest in vegan fashion and is currently training to be a stylist where she hopes to promote cruelty free clothing and beauty. You can find more of her vegan recipes and vegan friendly fashion over at

  • 4/5 cups blackberries
  • 2 royal gala apples
  • 4 tbsp organic unrefined granulated sugar, or whatever sweetener you like
  • 5 tbsp soya butter/spread
  • 1/2 cup brown rice flour
  • 1/2 ground almonds
  • 1/4 cup unrefined granulated sugar, plus more for sprinkling
  • handful pumpkin seeds
  • handful roughly chopped pecans


1. Pre-heat the oven to 200 degrees celsius/350 degrees farhenheit.

2. Thoroughly rinse and sort the blackberries and a put in a large pan. Peel and core the apple and cut into chunks.

3. Add 1/4 cup water and the sugar and bring to a gentle simmer allowing the fruit to soften but not lose their shape - about 10 mins should do it. Transfer to an ovenproof dish.

4. In a bowl combine the flour, ground almonds, sugar and butter. Make sure the dish and butter are cold - I put the dish in the fridge/freezer for a few minutes beforehand. Work the butter gently into the flour mix using your fingers to incorporate it. You can leave it quite chunky or create a fine crumble, which is my preference. At the very end add the pumpkin seeds and pecans ensuring they are evenly combined.

5. Sprinkle evenly over the fruit, along with a tablespoon or so of sugar for extra crunch! Bake in oven for 30minutes until you see the juices bubbling at the edge and the topping is golden.

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