Apple And Pear Crumble

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Apple and pear crumble is a classic dessert that is often prepared at home during the fall and winter months. This dish is a great alternative to apple pie and apple crumble. Here’s a delicious crumble recipe to try at home! The apples and pears are baked with a crumble topping. Perfect warm with cream!

THE MOST INCREDIBLE APPLE PEAR CRUMBLE

Warm apple and pear crumble, all caramelized and rich fruit, with a hint of the best spices, buried in that buttery soft and crisp crumble, topped with vanilla bean ice cream = basically the best dessert ever. 

There are few desserts I love quite as much as a freshly baked apple crumble or apple crisp. A crumble can work in every season and filled with a variety of different fruit options, this gooey baked treat is always topping my list.

The Most Incredible Apple Pear Crumble

I kicked this crumble up for the cold weather with the addition of pears and a few warming winter spices, making it extra perfect served fresh out of the oven (with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top, naturally.)

a dessert with vanilla ice cream
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Perfect Apple and Pear Crumble, Every Time

Apple crumble happens to be a surprisingly simple dessert to throw together (since it’s basically the quick alternative to a classic apple pie.) Also, I love making apple crumble for simple holiday desserts and on random weekdays when I’m craving something sweet. So, basically any time I have apples (or berries) to use up. It’s a great dessert for using up leftover fruit, is customizable by swapping out different types of fruit, adding nuts, etc., is so simple to make, and comes out great each and every time.

And really, what’s not to love about this classic dessert? Gooey and warm spiced, caramelized apples and pears bubbling through a decadent, chewy, doughy, subtly crispy-along-the-edges crust; the dessert practically begs for that big ‘ol scoop of vanilla bean ice cream on top.

Fruit Options in Crumble

Just as I did here, you can also easily swap out the apples in any great crumble recipe for a combination of apples and pears or any variation of berries. We’re big fans of using up older berries from the refrigerator (or even frozen berries we have on hand), like in this classic berry crisp.

top view of Apple Pear Crumble
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The Difference Between Apple Crumble and Apple Crisp

Both simple desserts are made with similar fruit bases and streusel-style toppings made from flour, butter, and sugar. The difference is that an apple crisp typically contains oats, while a crumble is just flour. Variations can be made in each, i.e., adding chopped nuts to the crumble or crisp topping before baking for extra crunch.

Apple and Pear Selection

Whenever I make an apple crisp or apple crumble, I like to mix up the apple selection. Some of my favorite apples – Honeycrisp apples – always work well in apple desserts, but I’m also a big fan of mixing up flavors. So, for instance, pairing Granny Smith apples with Honeycrisp apples, Fuji, McIntosh, Braeburn, or Golden Delicious will give you the perfect balance of tart and sweet.

Hint: you can also use a combination of apples and pears to make this knockout dessert, especially in winter, when some of the best pears are perfectly in season. I always like to mix apples and pears, rather than just using pears, since pears can be a really delicate fruit, especially when baked on their own.

If you’re adding pears to the mix and you are baking in the winter time, I really love baking with D’anjou pears, though the beauty of a fruit crumble, is just about any will work well in this recipe.

In this crumble, the cooking apples collapse to a purée that is a nice contrast to chunks of cooked pear. Use any kind of pear; windfalls and firm ones are fine. Demerara sugar adds a good crunch to the topping, as well as flavour.

Preparation time

less than 30 mins

Cooking time

30 mins to 1 hour

Serves

Serves 6–8

Dietary

Ingredients

For the crumble topping

  • 100g/3½oz cold butter, cut into small pieces
  • 125g/4½oz plain flour
  • 75g/2½oz demerara sugar
  • 75g/2½oz roughly chopped nuts (optional)

For the filling

  • 500g/1lb 2oz cooking apples (2 medium–large)
  • 400g/14oz pears (2 medium–large)
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp runny honey
  • yoghurt, custard or cream, to serve

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 190C/170C Fan/Gas 5.
  2. To make the crumble topping, put the butter in a large mixing bowl and add the flour. Use the tips of your fingers to rub the butter into the flour until you have a texture like large breadcrumbs. Stir in the sugar and the chopped nuts, if using.
  3. To make the filling, peel, quarter and core the apples and cut into 1cm/½in pieces. Quarter and core the pears and cut into 3cm/1¼in chunks crosswise (no need to peel). Spread the fruit in a shallow ovenproof dish about 30x20cm/12x8in and about 5cm/2in deep. Sprinkle over the cinnamon, drizzle over the honey (dip the spoon in just-boiled water first and the honey will slide off), pour over 120ml/4fl oz of water and mix together. Cover the fruit with the crumble topping, but do not press it down.
  4. Bake the crumble for 45–55 minutes, or until the top is lightly brown and the liquid in the bottom is oozing up around the outside. Serve warm or hot with yoghurt, custard or, best of all, cold cream.

Recipe Tips

If you have time, make the crumble topping 30 minutes earlier and leave in the fridge while you chop the fruit, to slightly improve the texture.

Ingredients

Crumble

  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup plain flour, sifted
  • 1/2 cup caster sugar
  • 1/2 cup desiccated coconut
  • 100 gram butter, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon golden syrup

Filling

  • 3 apples, cored, cut into wedges
  • 3 pears, cored, cut into wedges
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 2 tablespoon caster sugar
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • ice-cream, to serve

Method

Apple and pear crumble

  • 1Preheat oven to moderate, 180°C. Place a large, deep pie plate on an oven tray.
  • 2To make filling: Combine apples, pears, water and sugar in a large saucepan. Bring to the boil on high. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 5-10 minutes, until just tender. Stir in raisins and pour into pie plate.
  • 3To make crumble: In a medium bowl, combine the oats, flour, sugar and coconut. Place butter and golden syrup in a small saucepan. Stir over low heat for 2-3 minutes, until melted. Pour into the dry ingredients. Mix well.
  • 4Sprinkle crumble mixture evenly over fruit. Bake for 12-15 minutes, until golden. Serve warm with ice-cream.

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