Apple and Bramble Crumble

Recipe from Anne Donovan
Submitted by Canongate Books


4 oz plain flour
4 oz wholemeal flour
3 oz butter
Tablespoon or more pinhead oatmeal
2oz Demerara sugar
3/4 large cooking apples
Brambles – as many as you like
Juice of a large lemon


Heat oven to 200 degrees Celsius
Put flours in a bowl
Cut butter into small pieces and rub into flour till it’s like breadcrumbs (or use a food processor)
Add sugar and oatmeal and mix in.
Squeeze lemon into a bowl.
Peel and slice apples and put into lemon juice to avoid discolouring.
Add cinnamon to apples.
Add brambles to apples.
Put fruit in earthenware dish and spoon crumble mix over.
Cook till fruit is bubbling and top slightly browned (about 30 mins)

Serve with custard or ice cream.

Autumn for me is not the season of mists and mellow fruitfulness – it’s the season of brambles. Covered in scratches, fingers dyed purple, I forget everything except the wonderful abundance of nature. Autumn is my favourite time of year; the sky is a richer blue than in summer and there’s a freshness in the air. Brambling can get obsessive, and if you pick too many it can take ages to clean and freeze them, but what a reward – you’re stocked up for a year of apple and bramble crumble!

Gone are the LeavesAnne Donovan is the author of the prize-winning novel Buddha Da, the short-story collection Hieroglyphics and Being Emily. Buddha Da was shortlisted for the Orange Prize, the Whitbread First Novel Award and the Scottish Book of the Year Award. Full of wonder and intrigue, and told with the grace and charm for which Anne Donovan is so beloved, her most recent novel Gone Are the Leaves is the enchanting story of one boy’s lost past and his uncertain future.

Anne Donovan is published by Canongate Books.