Baking| Strawberry Apple Crumble … feeding the diva on a diet!

“In two decades I’ve lost a total of 789 pounds. I should be hanging from a charm bracelet.”
Erma Bombeck

Strawberry Apple Crumble I made this 2 days ago after the dieting diva was pestering me for dessert, with a condition that it must be healthy and low fat… and delicious of course. She has a penchant for strawberries, yet as I lazily dithered she loudly wished there was a diet food delivery service! I didn’t tell her that like pizzas, diet food here too is also just a phone call away. My belief often … what you don’t know, can’t hurt you!Strawberry Apple Crumble As I learnt fairly recently, the concept of gourmet diet food delivery is catching on in India now as well. It’s a novel concept for folks on the go and customises a diet for individual requirements with consultation with  nutritionist, keeping in mind individual dietary requirements, heart rates, lipid profiles and what not! Strawberry Apple Crumble It’s a concept that seems to work well here too as it breaks certain trends like fat and sugar laden meals which are traditionally prepared in Indian households where deep fried food and the lavish use of clarified butter is much the norm.  What you get is a nutritionally balanced meal from each of the five food groups etc with a mix of complex carbohydrates, vegetables, lean protein {vegetarian or non vegetarian}, using a heart friendly oil like olive oil … with the promise to deliver delicious meals!Strawberry Apple CrumbleMaking diet food is much my voluntary vocation at home these days, with the dieting teen refusing to eat otherwise. I dived into the fridge to put together a ‘healthy dessert’.  Apples stared back at me and a box of strawberries. I knew just the thing I’d make… a fruit crumble. I find crisps and crumbles one of the easiest desserts to bake. They are therapeutic, satisfying and look pretty with fruit juices oozing out invitingly. For this recipe, use firm tart apples for this as they pair tantalizingly with sweet strawberries … Holi - Indian summerWe’ve bid a hasty adieu to winter and with it pears, apples. Even more hastily, we’ve welcomed summer. Spring was sweet and short , marked in India by the festival of colour, Holi, which as you can see above the kids enjoyed to the last drop of colour! Need I say more? {Just for the record, they are back to looking normal again!}. With Spring came strawberries that flooded the market for a bit.

Strawberry Apple CrumbleWhat’s the difference between grunts, slumps, buckles, cobblers, crisps, crunches, pandowdies, and brown betties?
All of these quick and simple desserts are made of fruit topped with a biscuit dough or a crumbly mixture of flour, butter, and sugar.
If biscuit dough is dropped by the spoonful on top of the fruit, it makes a lumpy, “cobbled” surface–like a street paved with round stones–and so the dish is a COBBLER.
Traditionally, if the biscuit is stirred into the fruit during cooking, it’s a PANDOWDY.
To be a CRISP, a CRUMBLE, or a CRUNCH, the fruit must be topped with some variation of a butter, sugar, and flour topping. Typically, a CRUMBLE has flour, sugar, butter, and oatmeal; a CRISP has flour, sugar, butter and nuts; and a CRUNCH has sugar, butter, and breadcrumbs. There are also cake-like variations, which include BROWN BETTIES and BUCKLES. Read more at Food Network Kitchens

Think summer in India and think Mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the mid day sun … lyrics from a song I heard when I was a kid. It’s from the musical revue “The Third Little Show” (1924), Noel Coward and is about all I recall from the song. It paints a graphic picture of the blistering heat that beats down during the Indian summer, with Englishmen wearing sola topees {pith helmets often worn by the British in the tropics} walking about at noon! The song is amusing to say the least. Here are a few lines from the song …

Mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the midday sun
The Japanese don’t care to, the Chinese wouldn’t dare to
Hindus and Argentines sleep firmly from twelve till one
But Englishmen detest-a siesta …

Strawberry Apple CrumbleAnd as you hum the song, here’s a recipe for a heart friendly dessert with complex carbs, delicious fruit and low calories. Use fruit of the season, stone and pip fruit work great here, throw in a handful of chopped dry fruit, almonds, pistachios, walnuts etc, then throw in some tart cherries, craisins, raisins if you like, add some fresh herbs like thyme for a nice Spring feel …  and bake until the juices begin to enticingly ooze out. ENJOY!!

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Also find me on The Rabid Baker, The Times of India

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About me: I am a freelance food writer, recipe developer and photographer. Food is my passion - baking, cooking, developing recipes, making recipes healthier, using fresh seasonal produce and local products, keeping a check on my carbon footprint and being a responsible foodie! I enjoy food styling, food photography, recipe development and product reviews. I express this through my food photographs which I style and the recipes I blog. My strength lies in 'Doing Food From Scratch'; it must taste as good as it looks, and be healthy too. Baking in India, often my biggest challenge is the non-availability of baking ingredients, and this has now become a platform to get creative on. I enjoy cooking immensely as well.


  1. So jealous of your herbs hehe. These crumbles look great – on a diet or not!
    Xiaolu @ 6 Bittersweets´s last blog post ..Guest Post- Handvo Indian Savory Snack CakeMy Profile

  2. Nice blog u got here :) some of the recipes mention preheating at a temp. But I’m clueless about the time. Help?

  3. Mandira Kalra Kalaan says:

    ok so I just put a apple crumble into the oven and then got on to my laptop to check my reader and email and I saw this….now I am wishing I had put strawberries in mine too :-)


  4. What a quick and yummilicious dessert that too low fat….cant get any better than this!!!
    Njoyed reading ur post!! Great clicks as always!!

  5. These look delicious! Perfect diet treat!
    pigpigscorner´s last blog post ..Pea and Gammon SoupMy Profile

  6. I love your little pots!
    Miriam/The Winter Guest´s last blog post ..Soldaditos de Pavía or codfish beignetsMy Profile

  7. A great dessert when one is on a diet! Delicious and not calorie-ladden. Perfect!



  8. Apple crumble is one of my favorite go-to desserts..perfect results every time with minimal effort.Pairing it with strawberries sounds like a great idea..but alas,end of strawberry season,so no luck there.Planning a Mango crumble as soon as the Mango season starts..can’t wait!!
    Divya Kudua´s last blog post ..Salted Fudge BrowniesMy Profile

  9. Great Dessert. I was also planning a Apple berry crumble. Your addition of thyme is interesting and a great twist to the normal recipe. Great diet dessert as well.

  10. Great Dessert. I was also planning a Apple berry crumble. Your addition of thyme is interesting and a great twist to the normal recipe. Perfect diet dessert as well.
    CurryLeaf´s last blog post ..Brownie Squares with Praline ToppingMy Profile

  11. Oooh, the beautiful desssert caught my eye, but then my gaze went to your lovely lush pot of thyme and I have gardening envy! The kids looked like they had a great time during Holi. Did it take much to scrub them clean ? :)
    shaz´s last blog post ..Thumbs up for thumbprintsMy Profile

  12. Perfect Apple crumble topped with the zest of sweet strawberries, simply awesome combo! Full of nutrition and fibre, hands down to this lovely dessert for all occasions!
    sonia´s last blog post ..In a Quest of Stuffed ArtichokesMy Profile

  13. What absolutely gorgeous pics and especially love how the strawberry juice runs down the side of the ramekins of the crumbles. That colour festival sounds incredible: your kids sure know how to put it on!
    Jill´s last blog post ..A Fishy Start Ends in a Juicy- Creamy FinishMy Profile

  14. Dear Deeba How are you dear? I love crumbles always (and I made a crumble too)
    This strwberries and apple crumble look delicious, and like always I love your picturse!!!
    lots of huggs! gloria
    gloria´s last blog post ..Plums CrumbleMy Profile

  15. i love all your photos and the recipe is awesome too. yay for fruit coming together! thanks so much for sharing, looks lovely! as per usual 😉
    Meg Luby´s last blog post ..Thanksgiving Treats- Figgy-Peary-Cheesy GoodnessMy Profile

  16. Helene says:

    What a gorgeous dessert using strawberries. They are not in season in Canada yet. Can’t wait. Love your small dessert cups, they are so cute.
    Helene´s last blog post ..Next Cooking StarMy Profile

  17. That crumble looks so yummy. Looking at it, I owuld never guess it’s diet food. I love the grayish slate background you’re using. Pretty pictures as usual.
    Sukaina´s last blog post ..Lemon Bundt CakeMy Profile

  18. Wat a wonderful and gorgeous dessert, crumble looks super delicious..
    Priya´s last blog post ..White Chocolate PuffsMy Profile

  19. I love a good crumble – thanks for sharing so much here, the background, the pictures, the recipe, the rituals, the festivals. Did you paint on the drips? They look so perfect!
    Sally Prosser´s last blog post ..Ginger chocolate biscuitsMy Profile

  20. Oh i loved that you incorporated Holi into this post. i wish i could go to india during this time seems like a blast :) So interesting about the diet food delivery service, i am sure they have that here too just don;t know about it. :)
    Delishhh´s last blog post ..Pink Grapefruit and Campari SorbetMy Profile

  21. Looks amazing and sounds amazing. I love crumbles and the like. They’re always filled with current produce and topped with crunchy goodness. Not to mention the a la mode variety I love so much!
    Sharlene´s last blog post ..Samoa BarsMy Profile

  22. Crumble looks delicious! I see that your kids enjoyed Holi to the fullest! Good to know that they are back to looking normal again. :)
    cool lassie´s last blog post ..Spinach- Roasted Peanut And Tamarind Chutney Spinach ThogayalMy Profile

  23. Oh Deeba, how I wish you were my mom! LOL. I’m probably much older than you though! Your crumble looks delicious! I hope your dieting diva thoroughly enjoyed it! I know I would!
    Shelby´s last blog post ..Potato Masal and Masala Poori for Taste &amp Create!My Profile

  24. What an absolute delight…. :) love the Crumble….
    Just bid adieu to Apples and Strawberries with Strawberry n Almond Brownies and
    Chocolate Apple Crumble

    The Variable, Crazy Over Desserts – Nachiketa
    Catch me on facebook @ Crazy Over Desserts

  25. Wow nice recipes and pictures…looks appetizing!´s last blog post ..Dragon Shrimp with Steamed Rice-A Seafood Lovers DreamMy Profile

  26. Nice recipes and pictures.´s last blog post ..Dragon Shrimp with Steamed Rice-A Seafood Lovers DreamMy Profile

  27. Hi Deeba,

    This looks yumm!! we are having it after dinner today.


  28. Gorgeous crumbles! You are right in that there is something so artistically beautiful in a cooked crumble with the juices running down the sides. And now that it is getting warmer here I have actually been craving something like this! And I am seeing our first strawberries on the market. And listening to your stories of the Dieting Diva, I am somehow glad I had boys. But then again, they may not diet but they are boys. xoxox Missing you honey!

  29. Looks wonderful – nothing like fruit bubbling up through crumble – we are welcoming apples into season here so I am quite keen to cook with them – I am surprised that you don’t cook the apples first – my mum made lots of apple crumbles when I was young and always used stewed apples
    Johanna GGG´s last blog post ..Cheesey bikkies- what not to doMy Profile

  30. Maybe I’ll do strawberry and apple. Our next week’s TWD is strawberry rhubarb crisp, but there is no rhubarb to be found yet this cold spring. Love all crisps.
    Katrina´s last blog post ..Watermelon Salad with Tomato and Feta RecipeMy Profile

  31. Spring is here Deeba, and with strawberries follow the rest of the summer fruit:D Glad to hear these are low calorie:D

  32. Whenever the thermostat climbs in the middle of the summer and my kids are begging me to go out and play with them after lunch, I always say “Only mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the midday sun”. Lovely to see that quoted here. Your crumbles are gorgeous and your post is, as usual, thought-provoking.

  33. Very delicious! I could eat this for breakfast!

  34. beautiful photographs! ! sounds delicious!
    nadia´s last blog post ..oh dear- its killing meMy Profile

  35. This looks awesome. I need a live in cook! LOL :-)
    rohan´s last blog post ..48 HR-57 Washingon DC JazzMy Profile

  36. Well you certainly don’t have to be on a diet to enjoy a fresh fruit crumble like this!
    Sylvie @ Gourmande in the Kitchen´s last blog post ..potatoes with crème fraîche sauce well dressed potatoes for a guest postMy Profile

  37. Every time I read a post here the first attraction is the quote. They are always so to the point and beautiful and thought provoking. It really gives me an intellectual high. Then comes the food. A crumble is probably my most loved dessert. Easy to make and the surprise that comes out from under that layer of cake always entices me. And who can miss those amazing photographs. They always make me feel hungry even on a full stomach. That diet diva doesn’t know what an amazing mom she has ……
    I wish I was your neighbour :-)

  38. Hi Deeba,

    Inspired by you I too made a crumble . Your idea of adding oats was brilliant.
    SinFoodie´s last blog post ..Marie biscuit Apple Kiwi CrumbleMy Profile

  39. Wonderful, wonderful dessert….and I love those baking cups :)

  40. I think the US needs to start gourmet diet food deliveries. I’ve never heard of it, but it’s a great idea. As is your delicious crumble, especially love the pictures with it oozing out of the cup!
    BarbaraBakes´s last blog post ..Daring BakersMy Profile

  41. Great diet dessert Deeba
    and your daughter reminded me a little of mine (the long flowing dark hair).

  42. Love the oats and the fresh fruits in the crumble! The dessert look just the right choice for any dieting Diva.
    Sanjeeta kk´s last blog post ..A Few Healthy Salad Recipes in Your Platter to Chill out in Summer!My Profile

  43. We’re all dieting divas! Great dessert, Deeba.
    (And your ramekins are adorable.)

  44. what a treat for the eyes! love your blog Deeba n those ramekins….whr did u get them from ? gotta know 😀
    rahin´s last blog post ..Of Alexia- flowers and a small Giveaway!My Profile

  45. Ruchira says:

    Delicious recipe Deeba! I tried using strawberry with seedless black grapes and my daughters literally licked the dish clean. I always enjoy visiting your blog.

  46. love your fruit bakes deeba,,, and this one’s fab. love the bowls looks like they playing holi too. the images have a lovely rustic feel to it. hmm… now i wish i was in gurgaon.
    Rajani@eatwritethink´s last blog post ..House of RiceMy Profile

  47. This looks crazzzy good!!

    Mary xo
    Delightful Bitefuls
    Mary @ Delightful Bitefuls´s last blog post ..Chicken- Spinach &amp Tomato Pizza in a Cast Iron SkilletMy Profile

  48. I love the combination of strawberry and apple- I bet it is delicious!

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