Very berry crumble

Arlene Thompson from Carrickfergus Cookery School reflects on picking blackberries -an activity which captures the essence of country life in Northern Ireland.

“As a child I loved to eat them as I walked home from school, and my mum would preserve their flavour and goodness by making delicious blackberry jelly. I like to freeze them and then make this lovely crumble!” Arlene will be cooking tasty recipes with a Northern Irish flavour at Ballycarry Community Centre on September 4, 7-9 pm ( admission £5 payable at the door) as part of this year’s Broadisland Gathering celebrations.

Apple, Blackberry and Macadamia Nut Crumble

Serves 8

3 large bramley apples (approx. 740g)

350g blackberries, washed

pinch ground cinnamon

75g golden caster sugar

10g butter

For the crumble:

50g macadamia nuts

150g self raising flour

pinch ground cinnamon

75g chilled butter, cubed

75g golden caster sugar

1. Preheat the oven to 190 degrees C 375 F Gas 5. Peel and core the apples and cut into thick slices. Place in a pan, sprinkle with cinnamon, add the sugar and butter and 3 tablespoons water.

2. Cover the pan, place on a low heat and cook for 4-5 minutes until the apple pieces start to soften but still hold their shape. Tip them into an oven proof dish or individual dishes.

3. For the crumble, roughly chop the macadamia nuts in a food processor. Add the flour, cinnamon and butter until the mixture resembles crumbs. Add the sugar and pulse again until the mixture starts to stick together into lumps.

4. Add the blackberries to the cooled apple mixture, and spread the crumble mixture evenly over the top. Bake in the middle shelf for about 30 minutes (20 minutes for individual dishes), until the filling is hot and bubbling and the crumble is golden. Serve hot with ice-cream or custard.