Crumbles happen to be one of those things I turn to when I’m hankering for something comforting, warm, sweet and entirely fuss-free. Trust me when I say I have no trouble picturing myself all alone on a Friday night – all I would need is a bowl of apple-cinnamon/blueberry crumble, topped with vanilla ice-cream on one hand, as well as an entire season of HIMYM on the other.
I recently learnt how they can be such a crowd-pleaser at potlucks, which I think is because there’s just something about those blueberry stains, unrefined, uneven crumbs and spilling juices that makes this dessert so messily irresistible and attractive. Indeed a welcome change to cake and cookies, as well as the end to dessert limitations at these parties!
This rendition of the classic crumble is sweet and buttery, with the lemon adding just the right touch of piquancy. Let me just warn you of foodgasms when the blueberries sneakily burst in your mouth.
Blueberry Crumb Bars
Adapted by smittenkitchen, originally seen on All Recipes
Ingredients (yields about 40 smallish rectangles)
For the crumble:
200g caster sugar
100g light brown sugar
1.5 teaspoon baking powder
550 grams plain flour
340 grams unsalted butter
1 large egg
1/3 teaspoon salt
For the blueberries:
Zest and juice of half a lemon
Zest and juice of half an orange
5 punnets fresh blueberries
100g caster sugar
5 teaspoons corn starch
Step 1: Preheat the oven to 190 degrees C (375 F). Grease a 10 x 12 inch pan. (I used a disposable aluminium tray)
Step 2: In a large bowl, stir together the caster sugar, brown sugar, flour and baking powder for the crumble dough. Mix in the salt, lemon zest and orange zest.
Step 3: Use a fork or pastry cutter to mix in the butter and egg, but be careful not to over-mix or else the dough will end up sticking together in large chunks. We are looking to achieve a crumbly, sandy consistency! Pat half of this dough into the tray/pan.
Step 4: In another bowl, stir together the lemon and orange juices, sugar and corn starch. Gently mix in the blueberries and ensure that they are all coated. Sprinkle the blueberry mixture over the crust. Crumble the remaining dough over the berry layer.
Step 5: Bake in preheated oven for 45 minutes or until top is golden brown. If you find the temperature to be too high, cover the tray with aluminium foil halfway through the baking process.
You should let the crumble cool completely before cutting it into bars. They definitely are easier to cut and store when chilled. Alternatively, feel free to scoop a generous serving of the warm crumble and pair it with a large dollop of vanilla ice-cream.