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Plum and Apple Cobbler

We love a good cobbler, so when we came across this ‘oh-so-autumnal’ recipe, we had to make it at once! Plums and apples are a terrific combo, though their seasons overlap only briefly. If you have time, toast the walnuts before adding them to the topping: this enhances their nutty flavor and makes them crisp and quite wonderful. Vanilla ice cream is not optional here . . . it is a MUST!

Plum and Apple Cobbler

1 lb. 10 oz. cooking apples
12 oz. ripe plums
juice of 1 lemon
4 oz. golden caster sugar (½ cup plus 2 tbs.)
4 oz. self-rising flour (¾ cup plus 2 tbs.)
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
2 oz. cold butter, cut into small pieces (4 tbs.)
2 oz. golden caster sugar (¼ cup plus 1 tbs.)
1 egg, beaten
4 tbs. milk
2 oz. walnut pieces (½ cup)
custard or vanilla ice cream, to serve

Heat the oven to 350°F. Butter a six-cup ovenproof dish.

Peel, core, and slice the apples. Halve, stone, and quarter the plums. Put the apples in a saucepan and add the lemon juice, 4 oz. of sugar and 1 tbs. water. Bring to the boil, then cover and cook gently for 5 minutes. Add the plums and cook another 5 minutes. Turn into the prepared dish.

Tip the flour and cinnamon into a bowl, add the butter and use your hands or a pastry cutter or a food processor to rub into crumbs. Add the 2 oz. sugar, then stir in the egg and milk to make a soft batter.

Drop the batter over the fruit, leaving gaps where the fruit peeps through, then scatter over the walnuts. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until the topping has a crisp golden crust. Serve in warm bowls topped with warm custard or cold vanilla ice cream.

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