Celebrate! Sparkly stuff

I spent a weekend recently down in Torquay with my family, to celebrate a special birthday milestone. As we stepped off the plane, the temp plunged southwards and my beach-side Sydney blood froze. I realised how ill equipped for the cold my wardrobe and body are. Luckily for me the house we stayed in was used to the cold and had every imaginable heating device available. I had full intentions of doing a gluten free food audit of the local area. But the combination of the toasty warm house + family + celebration + amazing food + amazing wine + candles + music + rain + wind + cold = stay inside.

One of my lovely sister-in-laws has been adapting and perfecting this recipe over many different base recipes and trials. It’s a rhubarb, apple and raspberry nut crumble, and it’s an absolute gluten free triumph. The nut topping is just spectacular. She’s not into oats – hence the nut topping creation. I’ve actually never tried anything quite like it. A big thankyou.

Crumble ready to eat

bells beach

So windy the kids were nearly blown over. And cold. Did I mention the cold.

From the house library

From the house library.

orange & red

Getting ready to crumble.


This recipe uses a base of rhubarb and apple, and then you can try all sorts of combinations with it. She’s tried apple, rhubarb, pear and quince, and added mulberries, blackberries and raspberries to bring extra tartness. Basically whatever’s in season or you can get your hands on. This feeds about 6 – 8 adults.



Fruit & innards

One bunch of rhubarb (peeled of string and chopped into 2-3cm pieces)
2-3 green apples, peeled and chopped coarsely
Handful or two of raspberries
Juice of half a lemon
Juice of a whole orange
2 tblsp of castor sugar (more or less as you like)
Vanilla seeds or 1 tsp of Queen Vanilla bean paste (you can do it without this if you don’t have it in the cupboard)

Nut crumble

1/2 cup of gluten free plain flour (I used White Wings gluten free flour)
100g or so of nuts (you can use almond meal, if I have mixed nuts I process them with some almonds, if I just have flaked almonds I smash them with a rolling pin etc)
1 tsp Dutch cinnamon powder
A pinch of allspice
2-3 tblsp of melted butter (I use as much as will give me the consistency of ‘crumbs’)
1/3 cup of brown sugar (optional)

What to do

Fruit: mix all the fruit and innards ingredients together, and transfer to a baking dish (no need to butter the dish or to pre-cook the fruit).
Make the nut crumble: process or smash the nuts, then combine all nut crumble ingredients in a bowl. Mix it all up until it resembles ‘crumbs’.
Assemble & cook: sprinkle the crumble mixture lightly over the fruit in the baking dish. Bake for 40 mins at 180 degrees (conventional or fan forced oven is fine) until the top is nice and brown and the fruit mixture bubbles. Serve warm with cream or gluten free vanilla ice cream.

nut crumble