Well, it’s been a while since I’ve dropped into this little corner of the internet to lighten your lives – you’re all keeping this as your homepage, right? You check for updates every day? Yeah, cool, just making sure – but life in the, er, outernet has been going on as normal. Sakura season happened in its usual fleeting burst, before storms ripped blossom from the trees and left damp mounds of pink confetti underfoot; I sent an A4 brown envelope to an address in London that I can’t talk about, but obviously wouldn’t have brought up if I didn’t secretly want to talk about it; no one has evicted me for playing Taylor Swift mashups fourteen hours a day and mentally writing lesbian musicals. Yet.
(Oh my god, post-apocalyptic lesbian musicals! Excuse me, I need to write this down.)
But, as you can see, I’ve been missing a creative outlet, and that’s what gets me crawling back – learning how to use Adobe Premiere Pro, in the horribly-amateur-but-I’m-still-proud-of-myself video above, predictably adding sakura flavour to everything I put in my mouth, and pretending my inability to clean my apartment is part of a careless, bohemian, wine-soaked aesthetic. (Technically, most things are wine-soaked, but this is not deliberate and is, in fact, due to very poor coordination).
So here is something both old and new; my favourite crumble recipe, wangled from the school dinner ladies as a graduating seventeen year old (incidentally, one of the few precious things I could bring myself to eat during that year, in which I was quietly self-destructing under a slew of mental issues that no one had thought to diagnose at that point. Be kind to your seventeen year olds, please). It is simple, unpretentious – I have switched in wholemeal flour this time around, in an effort to look like an adult – and yes, intended to be eaten with stewed apple rather than handfuls of dark pink strawberries and cherry blossom sugar. Girl don’t care. One day I will immortalise this recipe properly – with ratios of crumble to a whole variety of fruit, and Actual Measurements that I have Taken – but today there are strawberries, and that's pretty great.
Strawberry Sakura Crumble600g (1lb 5oz) fresh strawberries, hulled and halved1 Tbsp [sakura] sugar1 Tbsp cornstarch1 Tbsp lemon juicea few drops of vanilla/sakura extract75g (2.5oz) light brown sugar75g (2.5oz) white granulated sugar50g (2oz) wholemeal flour75g (2.5oz) quick oats75g (2.5oz) vegan margarine, melted
Literally just stick the first four ingredients in a pan over a medium heat and stir for five minutes until it turns to jam. You want me to walk you through it? You think I'm your grandmother? No man, it's the 'put it in a pan' approach. Take off the heat and add the flavour extract, that's all the guidance you gonna get.
For the crumble: Mix the sugars, flour and oats in a separate bowl, then pour over the melted margarine, and stir to combine - let it clump, that's what you want. Divide the strawberry mixture into four little dishes or one bigger one, and spoon crumble mixture over the top.
Bake for around 20 minutes at 160C, or until golden.