Posts Tagged ‘apple’



Picked these Empire apples myself in Hood River.


Melted earth balance, evenly distributed.IMG_8804First layer-pack it tight.


 Second layer- just pile it on.

This is from the original French Tarte Tatin recipe,  only with vegan butter.  Don’t be daunted.  This is just an apple pie without seasonings or a top crust, and the only scary part is flipping it over.  But take my word for it, it is not that scary. You peel and cut some apples,  melt the soy butter, dissolve the sugar, pack the apple slices in, add another layer of apples, then cover the skillet with your dough, bake it in the oven and flip.  Easy.  It’s so delicious and simple. You might think that just apples, butter and sugar would be bland, but its rich and delicious.

IMPORTANT: You need a small cast iron pan for this. It’s possible that another type of oven proof skillet would work, but I’ve never tried that myself.

Makes 6 servings


  • 9 or 10 inch cast iron skillet or ovenproof pan
  • baking sheet
  • 1 sheet (about 8 ounces) frozen puff pastry OR 2 rolled up pie crusts
  • 8 Tbs earth balance
  • 3/4 cup white sugar (brown sugar is fine to use if you don’t have white, or a combo of white and brown.)
  • About 8 sweet firm apples peeled, cored and quartered
  • If you like, you can add a few squeezes of lemon juice at the end before putting the dough on top.


1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees – have your skillet and baking sheet ready

2. Thaw your dough, then roll it out and refrigerate it.

3. Put the skillet over medium heat and add the butter. When it melts, sprinkle the sugar over the butter until it dissolves. Remove from heat.

4. Fit a layer of apples into the skillet, putting the apples into the pan in tight circles. What’s important here is to pack in the apples — because they will shrink as they cook, you want to make sure they are snug in the pan.

5. When you’ve got a tight single layer, cut the remaining apple quarters in half and strew them over the first layer. This layer can be somewhat mounded, which will give the tart some height.

6. Put the pan over medium heat and cook — staying close by — until the sugar turns a deep caramel color. You’ll see it bubbling up the sides of the pan, but if you need a clearer view, you can gently push an apple aside. To get the color you want without burning the sugar, you may have to lower the heat after a while. Count on 15 minutes, more or less, to get the color. Transfer the skillet to the baking sheet.

7. Remove pie crusts or pastry from the fridge and place it over the top of the pan, covering the fruit, loosely tucking in any overhang.

If using two pie crusts, just put one on top of the other.

8. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, or until the pastry is baked through and, if you used puff pastry, puffed.

9.  Now it’s time to flip it over! Cover the skillet with the large, rimmed serving plate (or pie plate) and, acting quickly and confidently in one smooth flip motion, flip the tart out onto the platter and remove the pan. If any of the apples have stuck to the pan — it happens to the best of us — gently lift them off the pan with an icing spatula and press them gently back onto the tart.

10.  Let cool for at least 10 minutes before serving.

The caramelized sugar is hot enough to be dangerous. Let the tart sit for at least 10 minutes before serving, preferably on a windowsill with a chilly breeze wafting in.



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Hearty enough for an Oregon lumberjack. About $4.50 per serving


You get to make your own BBQ sauce too! 



These pub buns are the best. Local is just the first reason why.

My favorite recipe for a vegan BBQ sauce originally came from The Veganomicon, which is still the basis of my own recipe.  Then after enjoying a scrumptious vegan BBQ plate at Blossoming Lotus, I stole their idea of adding apples to the coleslaw.  And after stuffing my face at Home Grown Smoker, I switched from using seitan to soy curls.  I still can’t get my soy curls to be as full and lucious as theirs, (I’m sure they have access to restuarant-quality curls.)  But I’ve got my own strategy.  Seitan is still a great option, so I’ve included it here for you!

You can even use canned jackfruit as a different shredded-style “meat” option, as I learned from Luminous Vegans.  I will definitely try that next time.

Prepare to get your face messy after inhaling this creation.  Have napkins standing by.

Another option: instead of the cabbage/apple slaw, fill with my collard slaw!  You won’t know the difference and you’ll reap the nutritional benefits of raw collards.

Makes about 3-4 servings

Cabbage-Apple Slaw:

  • 1 cup shredded cabbage
  • 1/2 cup shredded carrot
  • 1/2 red apple, shredded in food processor or with vegetable peeler
  • 1/3 cup white vinegar
  • 1/4 cup of soymilk
  • lemon juice from half a lemon
  • 1 tsp mustard powder
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • dash or two of dried dill
  • salt/pepper to taste

Directions: Whisk everything from the vinegar down in a small bowl, then pour over the shreds and mix. Let sit while you prepare everything else.  Adjust to taste.

Homemade BBQ Sauce:

  • olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic – smashed
  • 1 medium yellow onion, roughly cut
  • 28 oz can of crushed tomato
  • 1/3 cup white vinegar
  • 1/3 cup  balsamic vinegar
  • 1/3 cup molasses
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 dash – 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes (1/4 tsp makes it pretty spicy)
  • 2 Tbs sugar
  • 1 Tbs dijon mustard
  • 2 tsp liquid smoke
  • generous dash of vegan worchestershire (optional)
  1. Sautee onion and garlic in pan with generous splash of olive oil on medium until the onions are soft.
  2. Add everything else except the mustard, liquid smoke and worchestershire. Turn heat to medium low.
  3. Simmer for 30 minutes uncovered. Prepare “meat” while waiting.
  4. After “meat” is ready, add the liquid smoke, mustard and worchestershire to the sauce.  Add more balsamic vinegar if you require more tang.
  5. Remove sauce from heat and blend in a food processor. (If you want to use a blender, you can, but you have to wait until the sauce is cooled.  Hot sauce CAN go in the processor, but not in a blender.  See: Mt.Vesuvius.)

Choose and Prepare 2.5 cups of your “meat”

If using Soy Curls: Pour hot water over them to hydrate.  Once they’ve absorbed the water, drain and press to remove excess water and lightly brown in a pan with a sprinkling of salt.  This way they will be both plump and dry.  Once browned a bit, mix into hot BBQ sauce until curls have slightly absorbed the sauce.

If using Seitan:  Cut into long strips and lightly brown in a pan.  Cover with BBQ sauce in an oven safe dish and bake until the sauce sticks to the strips.  Add more sauce when adding to sandwich for more moisture.

Assemble sandwiches: spread veganaise on both sides, slather some BBQ sauce, then fill with coleslaw and sauce-covered”meat”.

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Forest Apple Pie

Pie, pie, pie.  There’s nothing better.  I’ll take pie over cake any day.

Apple pie is always a frugal option because you likely only need to buy the lemon and the apples for about 5 bucks.


It’s really hard to mess up an apple pie, believe me, I’ve tried, but it always tastes good.

It’s not Friday, it’s Pie Day! It’s not apple season, but they seem to be the only pie fruit I can get right now.  My approach to apple pie is to keep the peels on, and cut uber-thin slices.  White sugar is not allowed under any circumstance, (brown sugar only!) and my favorite secret: brush the top of the baked pie with a makeshift caramel made of  1/2 cup fresh, unfiltered apple juice, 1/4 cup melted earth balance, 3/4 cup brown sugar,  2 tbs corn starch and 1/2 tsp vanilla.  You can save leftover caramel for a topping on each served slice.  I bought a few extra apples and juiced them myself for the sauce, but an easier approach is to buy some cider from the store.

Despite all my yammering above, apple pie is simple, and one of the most stress-free things you can bake.  Even if you take the peels off, cut thick slices or use entirely too much cinnamon.  So feel free to ignore the caramel sauce stuff and just make the simple pie below, which is great as it is.

 Apple Pie 

  • 3 large green apples, skins intact, sliced paper-thin
  • 1 tsp cinnamon powder
  • 1 tsp ginger powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 Tbs lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 Tbs cornstarch
  • 2 Tbs dark brown sugar
  • 2 pie crusts


1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Pre-bake your bottom pie crust for 5 minutes in the pie pan, if you desire.

2. Put sliced apples in a large bowl, then add all other ingredients through the brown sugar. Toss well to coat apples evenly.

3. Pour your apple mixture into your pie crust add holes to the top of your pie crust to properly vent – allows moisture to escape so your pie doesn’t get soggy.

4. Bake pie in 400 degree oven for 15 minutes. Then reduce to 350 and bake for a remaining 20-25 minutes.

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Warm Cherry Apple Bowl

$3.00 – serves 2

This is delicious and simple, but only possible for us when cherries are on sale.  I look forward to summer for this reason.  Rainer cherries are my favorite, but I’ll never pass up dark, sweet ones for the right price.  I found this recipe through the Reboot Your Life website, which is marketed through the Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead documentary.  The doc is about an Australian businessman who was overweight and developed an autoimmune disease.  He committed to only consume raw fruits and vegetables in juice form until he lost weight and reversed his disease.  It’s a great documentary because he achieves his goal, but also ends up changing the life of an unlikely character that comes along.

Though I haven’t joined the Reboot Movement, I sometimes go to their meal plans for juice recipes, which are a pleasure to read, even if you aren’t a devotee.

As you chop the fruit for this you might consider skipping the baking and just eat it raw.  It’s good that way too, but baking brings all the tartness down and turns the fruit into velvety jewels of juicy sweetness.

I tried the recipe with raisins previously and found it to be too sweet for me, so I omitted raisins for this time around.


  • 1 fresh gala apple, cored and chopped
  • 1 cup of pitted and sliced dark cherries
  • golden raisins
  • cinnamon and freshly-ground nutmeg to taste – I used about 1/8 tsp of each


  1. Heat oven to 375
  2. Combine all ingredients in a baking dish, mix well to distribute spices
  3. Bake for 35 minutes
  4. Mix fruit well to distribute the cherry juices and serve!

This is very scrumptious served with soy yogurt.  I love how the cherry juices continue to darken the apples as it cools.

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Apple Pie Oatmeal


I discovered this simple, yet ingenious recipe by chance.  It turned out just as delicious as I thought it would be!  My twist on it is to add raisins and maple syrup at the end.  It was hard to take this photo because I had to hold off on eating it!

Recipe found at Family Feedbag.  All credit goes to Amy Bronee.

  • 1 apple, cored and chopped (skin on)
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup  oats (instant or old-fashioned both work fine)
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg

How To:

  • Bring the water to a boil in a small saucepan
  • Add the oats, apple, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
  • Adjust heat to low and simmer oatmeal for 2-3 minutes, or until oatmeal is fully cooked
  • Serve with soymilk and  brown sugar

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If you’re like my SO and me, you love cooking, but hate dishes.  Even cooking for only two generates time-consuming dish-related chores, which is the last thing you want at the end of a work day.  So once in a while we realize that, “hey- there’s no one here to impress, so why not just go cookless this week?”

First meal of no-cook week is Vegan Waldorf salad.  This recipe is from Vegetarian Times.  Their concoction of lemon juice and agave nectar in the dressing takes the place of the yogurt, (think tangy and sweet.) This salad was delicious by itself on top of butter lettuce leaves, but I imagine it to be even better in a wrap or pita with your choice of mild lettuce.  Who knew celery and apples were fine companions?  I added some raisins in my portion at the end, for even more of a sweet flavor.  I imagine that carrots would fit in nicely, too.  Sure, you have to toast the walnuts yourself first, but that can be achieved ahead of time.

“Classic”  Veganized Waldorf Salad


  • 3/4 cup broken walnut pieces (roasted at 350 for 8 minutes, then cooled.)
  • 2 red-skinned apples, cored and cut into 1/2 inch dice (3 cups)
  • 4 10-inch celery stalks, cut into 3/8-inch dice
  • 1 cup halved red grapes
  • Boston lettuce or butter lettuce leaves for a “bed” on the plate


  • 1/2 cup Veganaise
  • 1 Tbs. lemon juice
  • 1/2 agave nectar (non-vegan folks, use honey!)
  • 1 Tbs chopped parsley (optional)


  1. Combine celery, apples, grapes and toasted walnuts in large bowl
  2. Make dressing: stir together veganaise, lemon juice, agave nectar, parsley.
  3. Toss with salad
  4. Season with salt and pepper, if desired (I didn’t.)
  5. To serve, arrange lettuce leaves on plate, and top with waldorf mixture.

Don’t eat it it too fast!  It is delicious, and great the next day too.

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