apple crumble with walnuts and cheese

apple crumble with cheese

If you're someone who gets the magic of salty-sweet in desserts then you're in for a treat with this apple crumble recipe. I grew up in Manila with a lot of sweets mixed with cheese like ensaymada (a Filipino brioche like bread topped with butter, sugar and cheese), mamon (a chiffon cupcake that can be topped with cheese), puto (steamed rice cakes) and bibingka (a rice cake traditionally cooked in claypots lined with banana leaves). So when I was experimenting on apple crumble this week, the tasty leap to cheese was not a big one. 

It's not just Filipinos that love to have sweets with cheese. The North Americans also have their beloved apple pie with a slice of cheese. I suspect this mixing of cheese with sweets is probably an extension of the European tradition of having their desserts with cheese. 

It may seem like a strange combination but don't knock it till you've tried it.


4 medium sized apples, peeled, cored, cut into 1/8 lengthwise segments, then cut each 1/8 segment into 4 crosswise pieces; I use a mix of granny smith, royal gala or jazz apples

1/4 c maple syrup

80 g chilled unsalted butter, cut into cubes

3/4 c plain flour

1 t baking powder

1/2 c brown sugar

1 t ground cinnamon, 1/2 t for the apples and 1/2 t for the crumble

1/4 c chopped walnuts

pinch of fine sea salt

cheddar cheese or any cheese you like, for grating



Preheat oven to 190 °C. Lightly grease oven-proof pan with a capacity of 1.5 litres. 

Mix apples, cinnamon and maple syrup together then transfer to greased baking dish. 

Place flour, sugar, cinnamon, salt and walnuts into a large bowl and combine well with a whisk.  Add butter and rub it into flour mixture with your finger until it resembles coarse breadcrumbs. Place in freezer for 10 mins or in refrigerator until you're ready to bake.

Sprinkle crumble mixture on top of apples. Do not press down the crumble mixture as this will make your crumble too hard when it cooks. Bake in oven for 40-50 minutes, until crumble is golden, apples are soft and syrup is bubbling through the surface.  Place the dish in the middle rack, making sure it's not too close to the heating element as this can burn the crumble before your apples are cooked.

If you use a deep dish, the crumble can end up browning before your apples are cooked. In this case, once your crumble is golden brown, cover lightly with aluminium foil until apples are soft.

Grate cheese over crumble just before serving. 

Serves 4-6.

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apple crumble with cheese by bent street kitchen

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tarte tatin

Apple Tarte Tatin by Bent Street Kitchen

When the weather starts to cool like it has today, my mind inevitably turns to French food. I start dreaming of hearty stews like beef bourgignon or slow-cooked osso bucco. But, we're eating out tonight so I'll have to take out my cast iron pot on another day. I did spy some Kanzi apples in the fruit bowl and the leap to make tarte tatin happened in a millisecond.

I've tried numerous tarte tatin recipes and this is the one I've been happiest with. I did have aspirations of making my own puff pastry but since I got this recipe right just using ready-made pastry I haven't really bothered because it tastes pretty darn good just the way it is!


1 puff pastry, thawed

2 Kanzi or Red Delicious apples, peeled, cored and cut into quarters

1/4 lemon, juiced

1/4 & 1/3 c caster sugar

3 T butter



Preheat oven to 200 °C.

Place apples in a bowl and toss with lemon juice and 1/4 c sugar.

Place pastry on a flat surface. Using a 20 cm oven-proof skillet as a guide, turn it over and press lightly against the puff pastry without cutting through it so you get an outline of the pan's circumference. Cut the pastry 1 cm larger than the pan's circumference.

Place the butter in the skillet and melt over high heat. Stir 1/3 c sugar and cook until the syrup bubbles, caramelises and turns brown. This takes about 6-8 mins. Shake the pan every so often to make sure the syrup is cooked evenly. Add apples and spoon syrup over them. Cook for about 5 minutes. Remove pan from heat.

Arrange the apples cut side up. Drape the pastry over the apples, tucking the edge of the pastry over the apples and inside the pan. Poke 4 small steam holes on top of the pastry. Place in the oven and cook for 20-25 mins and until the pastry has browned and crisped.

Remove skillet from the oven and allow to cool for 5-10 minutes. Place a serving dish on top of the skillet and flip tart onto the dish. Serve warm with vanilla ice cream.

Serves 4.

Click here for printer friendly recipe.

Apple Tarte Tatin by Bent Street Kitchen

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