Michaelmas Dumplings

Wednesday, 29 September 2010

September 29th is a day in the Western Christian Calendar which celebrates the feast of St Michael the Archangel . . . you know who he is don't you? Why he is one of the principal angelic warriors, seen as a protector against the dark of night, and the administrator of cosmic intelligence.

He also smells like cookies . . . dances really well, and is umm . . . very sexy, well . . . at least to me anyways . . . I think it's the chin dimple. I have a thing for chin dimples.

In many areas it has been traditionally said that September 29th is your last chance to pick blackberries before the Devil can curse them, spit on them, or do something even worse!

The indigestible October crop of blackberries is spurned altogether and Michaelmas Dumplings make one final glorious feast of the plump purple beauties!!

No surprise that they are teamed with apple here, as apples and blackberries are a beautiful marriage of choice!

Here you get a lovely tart piece of apple that is wrapped in the heavenly fluff of a buttery dumpling and then simmered on a bed of sweet ripe blackberries . . .

Served warm, with lashings of cream or custard, or ice cream if you prefer, each spoonful is gorgeously delicious . . . the apple having melted into that fluffy dumpling interior and the blackberries forming a sweet purple sauce . . .

Oh my . . . this is one tradition that I quite happily uphold!

Happy Michaelmas!

*Michaelmas Dumplings*
Serves 4
Printable Recipe

Fluffy apple filled dumplings floating on a sea of thick purple blackberry goodness!

8 ounces of blackberries (half a pound)
1 medium sized apple, peeled, quartered and cored
healthy pinch of salt
140g of self raising flour (1 cup)
25g of butter (2 TBS)
granulated sugar
cold milk
300ml of water (1 1/2 cups)

Sift the flour and salt together into a bowl. Drop in the butter and rub it in with your fingertips until it resembles fine bread crumbs. Stir in the sugar. Stir in about 4 TBS of milk and mix together to a soft dough. Divide the dough into four and press each quarter into a flat circle on a floured board. Mould the circle of dough around a piece of apple, bringing it up the sides and over the top to cover it completely and sealing it totally shut. Repeat four times. Place the water in a medium sized pan. Add a heaped dessertspoon of sugar. Stir to dissolve and then bring to the boil. Add the blackberries, place the dumplings on top, cover and simmer for 25 minutes, until the dumplings are nicely risen and fluffy. Serve warm with lashings of cream, custard or ice cream!


  1. Oh WOW Marie... looks devine and funnily enough my michaelmas daisies are in full bloom....a reminder to make this dish prehaps???

    PS - I too have a thing for JT too ;-)

  2. What beautiful color. It looks delicious. Would this work with frozen blackberries (and still avoid the 'curse'??)

  3. Michael..and the dessert:) What a cute movie that was!

  4. Now I don't go for desserts too much but this Marie, looks delicious!

  5. Love this post! We LOVE J.T...and blackberries in a dessert or even in a bowl with sugar and milk is my favorite! Love your sweet post! ♥

  6. I LOVE when you share these traditional British recipes, Marie! Oh, my....I haven't watched that movie in a million years--time to dust it off, I think!

    You make everything look so amazingly decadent--thank you!

    Hope you're having a wonderful night, dear friend! Lots of love and hugs coming your way!


  7. I love the story - I've never heard of that tale before now ;0)
    Very yummy looking and sounding dessert - if only I had some blackberries! I'll have to save this for next blackberry season now ;0(

  8. Your blog is beautiful! I love England & have had some wonderful meals there! Looking forward to cooking with you on "French Fridays with Dorie"!


  9. I really want to make this but I only have me to feed. So you think it would be possible to make the dumplings and then freeze them? Would I do that before or after cooking?

    I love your blog. You have the best comfort food :)

  10. Thank you Nicola! I do try to make things quality on here. I don't want to waste people's time and if I don't think something is good or worth making, I just simply won't show it to you. You get to see the best of the best most of the time! (With a few failures thrown in for reality!) I think this dish could absolutely be frozen in single quantities. Just divide it up into four servings and pack each serving separately. I would thaw completely before re-heating in the microwave on high for between 40 and 60 seconds. That should do the trick beautifully depending on the strength of your microwave! xx


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