Fun fact: these bars came about by complete accident. I probably shouldn’t admit that since I’m a professional blogger and all, but I’m firmly of the opinion that delicious things can come from kitchen accidents.
It’s all part of my ethos that people shouldn’t be worried about not being a “good cook”.
Because, you see, cooking is all about confidence. Just get in the kitchen, get your hands dirty, and get stuck in. Very, very rarely will things go so wrong that what you create is truly inedible. And if you feel it could be better? Well, then you will know what to do, or not to do next time.
If I could give one piece of advice to the kitchen shy, it’d be this: just relax and give it a go!
So yes, these fruity crumble bars may have come about by accident, but I can tell you that they’ve been made many times since then, and are now a firm favourite in our house.
I would never ever dare say anything negative about a crumble. Why would I? In my opinion, a crumble is a near perfect pud. But if I had to, and I mean HAD TO, like gun to my head had to, it might be that they’re hard to carry around. They’re more of a pudding than a snack. See? I said had to. That’s the worst insult ever.
However! That’s where these fruity crumble bars come in.
They’re all the great things we love about a crumble, but in a handy portable bar. What’s not to love? If a crumble and a tart had a love child…these fruity crumble bars would be the result. Delicious.
I also like the idea of being able to serve these at tea time, because who doesn’t love a proper afternoon tea?
- Berry Filling
- 400g berries: blackcurrant, redcurrant, raspberries...you choose. Can be frozen too, just allow to defrost before you get started
- 90g caster sugar
- squeeze of lemon juice
- 2 tsp cornflour
- Crumble topping
- 75g butter, cut into cubes,
- 200g plain flour
- 1 egg white
- 100g cater sugar
- 1 tablespoon icing sugar
- Pastry base
- 120g plain flour
- 50g butter, cut into cubes
- 2 egg yolks
- Preheat the oven to 180c
- To make the berry filling simply pop the fruit in a pan with the sugar and cook for 5 minutes or so. It will boil a bit ferociously but the sugar will dissolve and it will turn thick and jammy. Take off the heat and stir in the lemon juice and cornflour. Leave to cool.
- For the pastry base line a baking tray approximately 30cm x 20cm with non stick paper.
- I have started making pastry in a food processor as I find it much easier, but for some people this is sacrilege so by all means make it by hand! I bung the flour and butter into a food processor and pulse until it looks like sandy breadcrumbs. Then slowly add the add yolks and pulse - don't over pulse. When you touch it with your fingers you should be able to squidge it together. Tip into the lined tray and smoosh it out into an even-isa layer.
- Take a fork and prick it all over to stop it rising up in the oven. Cook for 15 minutes, remove from the oven and stab any air bubbles again with your fork, and then put back in the oven for another 10 minutes until its cooked all the way through and has a nice colour.
- For the crumble topping simply bung the flour, sugar and butter to the food processor and pulse until it looks like sandy breadcrumbs. Very similar to the pastry base! Then add the add whites and pulse for literally a second or two until it looks like big clumpy rubble...this is perfect!
- Once the pastry base is cooked: spoon in the fruity jammy filling and then sprinkle the top with the crumble rubble. This does not have to be neat...good news for me!
- Pop back in the oven for about 35-40 mins until the crumble topping is golden and crunchy.
- Leave to cool completely before cutting into bars or the fruit will ooze like a river. Sprinkle with some icing sugar if you like and enjoy!