Adapted from: Nigella Kitchen by Nigella Lawson
If you are making this recipe at the peak of strawberry season, I’d cut down on the vanilla sugar by a lot, depending on how sweet the berries are on their own.
If you don’t have any vanilla sugar on hand, use granulated sugar or natural cane sugar and a healthy splash (about 1 tablespoon) of vanilla extract when covering the strawberries in almond meal.
Serving this with soft, billowy peaks of whipped cream, or a healthy scoop of vanilla ice cream is necessary when it’s served straight out of the oven. When served cool from the fridge, a glug of heavy (double) cream does the trick.
If you are lucky enough to have leftover crumble, spoon the remainder into small jars and place the jars in the refrigerator for midnight-snacking over the next couple of nights (if you can resist the urge to indulge).
This recipe requires 1 ovenproof pie dish (or cake pan) approx. 8-in by 2-in deep (about 1 1/4 quarts capacity). For the photos in the post, I decided to use a vintage pyrex baking dish that snugly housed all of the strawberries; the baking time was still the same, so if you have the same dish, feel free to use it.
1 lb (about 500g) Strawberries, hulled
3 ½ tablespoons (50g / 1.75 oz) Vanilla Sugar
¼ cup / 25g / .9oz Almond Meal / Flour
⅔ cup (110g / 3.9 oz) Unbleached All-purpose flour
½ tablespoon (4g / .15 oz) Poppy seeds (optional)
1 teaspoon Baking Powder
¼ teaspoon Fine Grain Sea Salt
5 tablespoons (75g / 2.65 oz) Cold Butter, Cubed
1 cup (122 g / 4.30 oz) Rolled Oats
¼ cup (18g / .65 oz) Sliced Almonds
5 tablespoons (75g / 2.65 oz) Turbinado / Demerara sugar
Preheat oven to 400F / 200C / Gas 6. Place the hulled strawberries into your baking dish and sprinkle on the vanilla sugar and almond meal (I simply took ¼ cup of almonds and processed them in the food processor until they looked like sand). Give the dish a jiggle to mix the ingredients a bit.
Place the flour, poppy seeds, baking powder, and salt, in a mixing bowl and rub the butter into the flour mixture with your finger tips, until the mixture resembles pale oatmeal. With a fork, stir in the rolled oats, sliced almonds, and turbinado sugar.
Assemble the Crumble:
Tip the Crumble topping over the strawberry filling, being sure to evenly cover the strawberries.
Set the dish on a cookie sheet and bake for 30 minutes. When the crumble is ready, the topping will be a slight bronze color and will be blushing with pinkish-red juices at the edges.
Serve warm or cold with generous scoops of vanilla ice cream, a heaping dollop of softly whipped cream, or a generous glug of cold heavy (double) cream. Enjoy!
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