I kept humming My Favourite Things from the Sound of Music while making this crumble, because it really is jam-packed with a lot of them, flavour wise. Apricots, plums and figs spiced with orange zest, cardamom and anise seeds with a streusel topping with pistachios and cinnamon.
I always freeze the plum kernels when I have fresh plums in the kitchen, until I have enough for a portion of ice cream. They scent the ice cream with the loveliest bitter almond/marzipan notes that work so well with stone fruit desserts. Or any type of dessert, where you would want an almondy flavour with a bit more complexity.
If you don't have enough plum kernels, tonka beans are a great substitute - or a good vanilla ice cream. Or skip the ice cream altogether and serve it with creme fraiche or simply on its own.
Fig, plum and apricot crumble with plum kernel ice cream
Plum kernel ice cream
5 egg yolks
100g granulated sugar
35-40 plum kernels
650g whole milk
50g heavy cream
40 glucose syrup
Pinch of salt
1 tsp. ice cream stabiliser*
Add plum kernels, milk and cream to a pot and bring to just below boiling point. Remove from heat and allow to infuse for 30 minutes. Sieve the mixture and discard the plum kernels. Return the milk to the pot and add the sugar mixed with stabiliser, if using, and glucose syrup.
Heat the milk mixture to 75C, and meanwhile whisk together the egg yolks and sugar until very light and pale.
Slowly pour the mix over the egg mixture while stirring. Return to the pot and heat to 70C/160F.Blend the ice cream base with a hand blender, then pass through a fine meshed sieve. Transfer ice cream base to the fridge and allow to cool and age overnight.
Churn according to the instruction for your ice cream maker.
Fig, plum and apricot crumble
1 Tbsp. roughly chopped, raw pistachios
30g all-purpose flour
1 Tbsp. sugar
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
Pinch of salt
1½ Tbsp. unsalted butter
75g plums, pitted
75g apricots, pitted
2 Tbsp. sugar
2 tsp. corn starch
1/2 tsp. ground anise seed
1/2 tsp. ground cardamom
2 tsp. freshly grated orange zest
Begin by preparing the topping. Whisk together flour, sugar, cinnamon, pistachios and salt in a bowl. Rub in the butter until the mixture is crumbly and no dry spots remain. Chill in the fridge while preparing the filling.
Preheat oven to 175/350F. Cut the fruit in quarters and combine with corn starch, sugar, spices and orange zest. Pour into a 18cm/7inch ovenproof dish and sprinkle the crumble topping over the fruit.
Bake until golden and crispy, about 30-35 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 15-20 minutes before serving.