Take this classic dessert to heady heights with Fiona's little extras. Guaranteed to be a surefire crowd pleaser! 

serves 6

3 Granny Smith apples (approx 550g), peeled, quartered, core removed, sliced

1 bunch (about 6 stalks) rhubarb, leaves and ends trimmed, cut into 3cm lengths

finely grated zest of 1 orange

juice of 3 oranges

1 cinnamon stick

¼ cup brown sugar

2 whole star anise 

1 vanilla bean halved, or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

½ teaspoon rose water (optional)

Crumble topping:

60g     butter, chilled, coarsely grated   

50g (¼ cup) brown sugar

50g (⅓ cup) plain flour

40g (⅓ cup) ground almonds 

50g (⅓ cup) rolled oats

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

½ teaspoon ground ginger

Cream, ice cream, or yoghurt to serve

Preheat oven to 180°C (160°C fan-forced).  Spread the rhubarb pieces over base of a ceramic oven-proof dish (20 x 35cm).  Place the cinnamon stick, star anise and vanilla amongst rhubarb.  Scatter over half of the orange zest and pour over half of the orange juice.  Cover dish with sheet of foil and seal around edges.  Bake for 25 minutes.  Remove from oven and remove foil.  Set aside.

Meanwhile place apples and remaining orange juice in a medium saucepan over a medium heat.  Cover with lid.  Bring to boil, reduce heat to low and cook for 5 minutes until apples are tender. If desired, add rose water and gently stir to combine. Set aside.

Meanwhile, prepare the crumble topping by combining flour, ground almonds, oats, brown sugar, cinnamon and ginger in a bowl.  Rub in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs. Alternatively the mixture can be pulsed in a food processor.

Spread the cooked apples evenly over the rhubarb.  Then spoon the crumble topping over the apple layer.  Bake in preheated oven for 40 minutes until crumble is golden and filling is bubbling around the edges. Serve warm, removing the whole spices, with cream, icecream or yoghurt.  

Tip: For a gluten, dairy and sugar free option, replace the plain flour with equal quantity of coconut flour, replace the butter with three tablespoons olive oil and replace the brown sugar with equal quantity of honey.  

Fiona Hammond © July 2018 

Recipe, photos and styling by Fiona Hammond. www.fionahammondfood.com

Mark Brancatisano