For the past couple of weeks I have been focusing on comfort foods. For me it is that time of year when I like to cook up some warm and comforting food that satisfies all cravings whilst still remaining within the parameters of a Paleo lifestyle. Whilst some dishes will need some tweaks I have found many work just as well, If not better, with a Paleo twist. A great example of this is my recipe for Christmas Pudding Cake Pops (available in A Paleo Christmas) which is by far the best tasting Christmas cake I have ever made. This was one of the treats I had on sale at Health Unplugged and went down so well I was blown away.
Crumble has been a favourite of mine since I was a child and I was determined to make a Paleo friendly version that would stand up to the original. This apple crumble recipe ticks all of the right Paleo boxes. Grain-free, gluten-free and dairy-free, it is however made with a little coconut sugar and clarified butter. There is, after all, little point in enjoying Paleo treats if they taste like the bottom of the sandbox.
A bit more about clarified butter…
Clarified butter (or ghee as it is also known) is a result of removing the proteins, water and sugar from the butter leaving just the fat solids and is considered to be a Paleo friendly alternative to butter. You can buy clarified butter in the shops but be careful as many brands are chemically treated or have lots of added nasties. As it is such an easy process I prefer to do make it myself.
You simply need to slowly heat some butter in a pan until it is fully melted. Be careful not to leave unattended as it can suddenly boil over or spit if it gets too hot. Once melted, allow to cool slightly before pouring into a plastic container and then place into a fridge to sit for a few hours. You will start to see that the solids are rising to the top leaving a milky whey at the bottom. You need to discard the milky part and what remains is clarified butter. To get yourself started just use a single 250g block of butter and see how you get on. Always use unsalted butter and try to get grass fed where you gain.
A bit more about sugar substitutes…
I have been experimenting with natural sugar substitutes over the past few weeks and have found that two work particularly well in this recipe; coconut palm sugar and Xylitol. I was intrigued to see how combining the two would work and my conclusion was very well indeed! If you wanted to simply use coconut sugar then this also tastes delicious. If you have not already done so then make sure you take a look at my article earlier this week on Natural Sugar Substitutes for the Paleo Diet.
Next week I will be showing you how to make some absolutely divine Paleo custard to go with your apple crumble. It is a recipe not to be missed!
Paleo Apple Crumble
Preparation Time: 20 minutes
Cooking Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
For the crumble:
110g Paleo flour blend
50g clarified butter
2 tbsp coconut sugar (or 2 tbsp Xylitol)
For the filling:
2 Bramley apples, sliced
1 tbsp coconut sugar
2 tbsp water
- Preheat the oven to 160C.
- Lay the sliced apples in a baking dish, sprinkle over the sugar, and add the water.
- To make the crumble, chop the butter into tiny chunks and rub into the flour using the tips of your fingers. You will end up with something resembling breadcrumbs. Shake the bowl and all the big bits of butter will come to the top; rub in any that get left behind.
- Stir in the coconut sugar or Xylitol and pour over the apples. Press it down gently to form a denser biscuit type crumble; it browns quicker than crumble made with wheat flour so benefits from being compact.
- Bake the crumble in the oven for 40 minutes or until completely cooked through.
- Serve hot or cold and enjoy the clean, yet caramel, flavours.
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