I’m not sure if this happens to other people, but I have a boyfriend who loves to buy food and then forgets he has it (for the simple reason that he never opens the fridge or the food cupboard doors) so then he buys more of what he already has and the first lot of food that he bought sits sadly in Hefty zip bags (which he imports specially from America, presumably for exactly this purpose) until I haul it out and try to figure out what to do with it before it must be consigned to the bin, producing that special guilt that comes from throwing food away.
Today I was wondering what to do with a quarter of a bag of cranberry and apple muesli, which had been bought a couple of months before for a camping trip and left to languish ever since. There were also some apples – not granny smiths that are recommended for cooking – but golden delicious and some fancy red varietal from Woolies, which had been maturing in a fruit bowl for several weeks. It was cold and rainy and I needed an excuse to turn on the oven and heat up the apartment. So I made an apple crumble.
If you too have months-old muesli and apples that are getting a little wrinkly, here’s how to get rid of them and make your whole house smell happy in one go.
- A cup or two of muesli. Can be any kind. If you don’t have muesli, use oats. Tiger Oats are better, but you could get away with Jungle Oats too.
- About half a cup of flour – plain or self-raising. Don’t stress.
- Some sugar. You decide how much. It depends on how healthy you want to be. I used half a cup (ish)
- Half a cup of butter. This is a stupid measurement, I know, because butter doesn’t come in cups. Sorry.
- A few raisins. They go nice and crunchy in the oven.
- 4 apples. Any kind. Don’t bother peeling them. Just give them a good wash, quarter, core and cut them into thin slices.
- A handful or two of raisins. These get all nice and juicy in the oven.
- A good sprinkle of cinnamon. Not turmeric. (Although I must say, a bit of turmeric can add a certain something to the flavour if you happen to sprinkle a bit on accidentally.)
- Half a lemon – zest and juice.
- Some sugar. Your call how much again. I used about three tablespoons.
What to do
- Preheat your oven to 180 C. Get some kind of ovenproof dish to put everything in. You can grease it if you’re feeling diligent, but it really doesn’t matter. I didn’t.
- Put the sliced apples and raisins in the dish. Sprinkle with lemon juice and zest, then sprinkle with the cinnamon and sugar.
- Put the butter in a pot and melt until it bubbles nicely and goes a bit golden brown. Take it off the heat. Add the muesli, flour, raisins and sugar and stir well, then put the mixture on top of the apples, trying to cover them evenly.
- Bake for 45 minutes.
- Serve hot with ice-cream, whipped cream, creme fraiche, greek yoghurt or sour cream. Any kind of cream-like substance will do.
- Eat two helpings before remembering you’re supposed to be going to a dinner party shortly.
- Tell boyfriend he may now buy more muesli.
Wine pairing suggestion
The robust tannins cut through the sugaryness of the crumble and the plum and blackberry flavours compliment the tartness of the apples and the sour cream.
- 1 pot
- 1 chopping board
- 1 knife
- 1 wooden spoon
- 1 ovenproof dish