Plum and blood orange crumble


My Mum is the queen of puddings. Pavlovas the size of your pillow, spewing with summer fruits and broken chocolate, or huge, washing-up bowl size birthday cakes made to perfection. Dense, muddy brownies and tiny chunks of sweeter-than-thou tiffin for after school. But my favourite of my Mum's puddings isn't ostentatious or planning to make an entrance with sparklers- it's the crumble, which she makes on a Sunday night, usually wheeled into the living room on a tea trolley by about 9pm, with custard and cups of coffee.


This is my version of a Sunday night crumble that never fails to perk up Monday and Tuesday mornings for breakfast, as the blood orange juice gives the crumble a spectacular colour for brightening up any bowl. I tried Alpro's soy custard for the first time with this recipe and I could hardly taste the difference between dairy custard.

Serves 4
Ingredients
1 punnet or about 2 handfuls of plums, de-stoned and cut in half
Juice of 4 blood oranges
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp grated nutmeg
1 tbsp caster sugar for the fruit
2 tbsp caster sugar for the crumble mix
1 1/2 cup plain flour
1/3 cup vegan margarine

Preheat the oven to 180 degrees celsius. In a large mixing bowl, rub together the margarine, flour and sugar until the texture is just a little thicker than sand but very smooth. Set aside.

On a low flame, heat the plums and blood orange juice in a pan, adding in the sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg. You could add in any other spices or fruit you think could also work here.


After about 10 minutes on a low heat the fruit will have begun to stew a little so it is soft and has absorbed the blood orange juice. Pour the mix into a lightly greased oven-proof dish, and top off with the crumble mix.

Bake for around 30 minutes or until the topping starts to crisp up and is a dark golden colour. Serve hot or cold with custard, cream, or just plain.