Well this one happened by accident!  We were in Lorton – there was a huge bucket of apples; “help yourself” said the frayed cardboard sign – so we did.  Nik begged me to make apple crumble.  I said I was busy!  “Find me a recipe then”, he said.  So I quickly scrawled down a suggested list of ingredients for him to try.  Now, Nik is a precise kind of guy so he methodically started preparations and made notes on my list.  Every now and then I would hover in the kitchen long enough to figure if things were going okay but not long enough to get roped into rolling up my sleeves!  Once I’d established he was done, we had some chats on proportions whilst this beauty of a crumble was turning golden in the oven.  Well by this time it was 6pm on a Saturday evening so we decided to have it for Sunday breakfast! Nik had his with sheep’s yoghurt and I made an oat cream – totally the best breakfast of this month so far!

But the story goes on …  I had casually suggested adding bananas to the mix and so Nik recipe tested this idea the following week, which proved to be delicious too. Official new dream team!!!!

Fruit Layer:

800g cooking apples, peeled, cored & sliced

75g Medjool dates

3 fresh figs, sliced

1 tsp. cinnamon

¼ tsp. ground cloves

1 tbsp. lemon juice

50ml. hot water

2 tsps. runny honey

Zest of 1 lemon


Optional switch:

1 large banana instead of the figs (layer over the apples just before adding the crumble topping)





75g ground almonds

50g ground oats

40g oats (I use Quaker)

2 tbsps. coconut flour

1 tbsp. sesame seeds

2 tbsps. sunflower seeds

1tsp. cinnamon

¼ tsp. ground nutmeg

½ tsp. ground cardamom

¼ tsp. sea-salt

3 tbsps. runny honey

6 tbsps. tahini or almond butter

1 tsp. almond extract

1 tsp. vanilla extract


Preheat Oven to 160oC.

Place the apples and dates in a pan and cover with the lemon juice and water. Bring to a simmer and cook gently until the apples are soft and easy to cut with the side of a spoon (7-10 minutes approx.) Add the fig slices and leave on a low heat for a further minute.

Meanwhile, combine the oats, ground almonds, flour, seeds, spices and salt in a bowl, ensuring everything is well mixed.  Mix the honey, tahini and extracts together in a separate bowl and then stir into the dry crumble ingredients.  Mix until you have a damp-looking crumble.

Spoon the apple mixture into an ovenproof, fairly shallow dish and then cover generously with the topping.  Gently press the mixture down into the fruit, especially around the edges, but avoid flattening the mixture as this will spoil the “crumble” effect!

Cook for 25-30 minutes or until the crumble is golden.

Serve warm with oat cream or yoghurt