Tea & Sympathy Apple Crumble Recipe

We’re having a real “we can’t believe we haven’t done this already” moment. Because today’s recipe is one of the Tea & Sympathy classics. And despite blogging for well over a year now, we’ve never shared it with you. We’ve given you shepherd’s pie, scones, and our famous chicken and leek pie, but apple crumble seems to have slipped under the radar. Unforgivable, we know.

Our memory was jogged while drinking a cup of our new Rosie Lee English Breakfast blend teabags. Apple crumble, with its salty sweet covering along with the soft, cinnamon apples within, is the perfect accompaniment to a cup of tea. Especially, when served with lashings of custard!

So here it, from us to you, our very special apple crumble recipe. To be served with Rosie Lee!

Tea & Sympathy Apple Crumble

Serves 4-6
Preparation Time: 1 1/2 hours


For the filling
1 1/2 lbs Granny Smiths or other cooking apples, peeled, cored and sliced.
2 tablespoons sugar
5 whole loves or 1/4 teaspon cinnamon
1/3 cup water

For the crumble topping
1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon sweet butter

Warm custard or heavy cream, optional.

  • Preheat the oven to 350F.
  • For the filling, combine the apples, sugar, and spice in an 8 x 8-inch )square or round) buttered baking dish. Add the water.
  • For the topping, mix together the sugar and flour and rub in the butter until it resembles bread crumbs.
  • Cover the apples evenly with the crumble mixture. Bake, uncovered, for 1-1 1/2 hours, until the topping is golden brown.
  • Serve with cream, or custard, if you like.

Mrs Beeton: the godmother of British cookery… and the original Martha Stewart!

Isabella Beeton, 1836-1865

Born in 1836 in Cheapside, East London, Isabella Beeton is remembered to this day as one of the most influential cookery writers of all time.Her seminal book Mrs Beeton’s Book of Household Management gave advice on all important aspects of running a household, from fashion, childcare, animal husbandry and the management of servants to notes on science, religion and industrialism. At over 1,112 pages long, the book contained 900 recipes and Mrs Beeton was a keen advocate of the use of local and seasonal produce; ideas which we at Tea & Sympathy hold dear.

Original cover of Mrs Beeton's Book of Household Management, first published in 1851.

Pretty much every cookery great since – see Elizabeth David, Julia Child, Delia Smith and Martha Stewart – owe something to this amazing woman. The book is also remarkable for its beautiful illustrations. We thought we’d treat you today with a few our favourites, which define vintage chic as well as make our mouths water!

And that all British classic: the Christmas plum pudding. Beautiful – to the taste buds and the eyes!