Martha Stewart Living Radio: The Radio Blog

Word of the Day: crumble

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Crumble means to break something into small pieces, like the feta cheese that’s in your salad. Crumple, on the other hand, means to crush, but not to break. So you crumble food but you crumple a piece of paper. A good way to remember is that crumble is like breaking something into crumbs. In the kitchen, crumble is also a noun, for a fruit-filled dessert covered with crumbs of pastry. You might describe that as a crumby dessert, but be careful not to call it crummy. Either way, leave the word at home if you’re ever in Scotland, where crummie refers to a cow.

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