Well, it's my favourite time of year for foraging. It's all begging to be picked, and I don't have enough time to gather what I need. Small handfuls of blackberries have fortified my morning dog-walks for the past month - with the occasional doggy bag (literally!) full of berries brought home when I couldn't resist it. But I have had a couple of serious foraging mornings, one in the quarry and one in Leybourne Woods that have yielded huge bags of apples and mirbelle plums, some bullaces, blackberries and rosehips. I just love these 'me-times', soaking in the peace in the woods and countryside and thinking about the happy hours I will spend pottering in the kitchen putting them to good use.
I was also given 3 tubs of Damsons by my neighbours - and various friends and neighbours have left empty jars on my doorstep over the past few months. People are kind - and they always get a full jar in return!
Produce so far has included Damson Jam, Hedgerow Jam and Pickled Plums. There was wild cherry and apple jam earlier in the season. Lots of Blackberry Cakes too.
Here's a recipe for Blackberry and Apple Crumble Cake:
Preheat oven to 180c and grease and line a small traybake tin.
Mix together for 2 mins in electric mixer:
4 oz softened butter or margerine
4 oz caster sugar
5 oz self raising flour
Pour into the prepared tin. Scatter over 2 generous handfuls of blackberries and 1 large Bramely Apple, peeled, cored and sliced.
Rub together 2oz plain flour and 1 oz softened butter or margerine. Add 1 oz caster sugar. Add this crumble mixture to the cake, on top of the fruit. Sprinkle with demerera sugar and bake for approx 40 mins or until a skewer inserted comes out clean.
Cool for a while in the tin.
Have some friends over, make a big pot of coffee or tea and eat the cake whilst slightly warm - with cream if you are feeling naughty.
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