Posts Tagged With: apple

Windfall Apple and Oat Crumble – Simple Autumn Classic

Windfall Apple and Oat Crumble
Windfall Apple and Oat Crumble
So the leaves are all turning burnt gold, auburn, crimson and the morning are crisp with deep powder blue skies.  I love this time of year, wandering through dried leaves, staring into fires, wrapping up, rediscovering the delights of sloe gin and big, bombastic bakes!

Desserts or otherwise, its time to wake the oven up,  it tends to be underused in the summer months and dust off our oven dishes.  Autumn and winter mean we need warm hugs and serious sustenance in our bowls/ plates.  It’s something of a survival mechanism and certainly leads to oodles of well-being.  Cosy soul food!

Nothing says autumn more than the first crumble of the year.  Your body knows what’s coming, the dark and windy time when we crave large plates of stodgy happiness to warm our wintery bones.  We are enjoying a beautiful September up here on Tiger Mountain, but the  nights are getting a bit chilly and crumble is the perfect antidote.  Easing us into this time of year in the tastiest of ways.

Crumble’s beauty lie in their simplicity and the way they gobble up our autumn fruity abundance.  This recipe is beautifully basic and can be taken in so many directions with addition of other fruits (think blackberries, damsons, mulberries, dried fruits etc) or flavourings (like elderflower, orange blossom, I’ve even tried a tahini and apple crumble which was a treat).  Adding chocolate to a crumble has been tried and works like a dream.  This recipe is a lovely foundation to add to as you see fit.

ORCHARD DREAMS

We are setting out a little orchard in the garden.  The trees are young (bar our ancient looking plum tree and windswept crab apple) and normally offer scant fruit.  My Snowdonia Pear Tree, a juvenile, was unceremoniously beheaded by a storm recently.  Its tough going for saplings in these parts!  Our little Bardsey Apple tree however is a rugged super star, branches laden every year with tart and juicy, vivid green apples.  Not such great eaters (too much of a twang) but perfect when cooked.  These apples were actually all windfall, saved from the fate of an army of slugs that camp out and descend like slimy vultures on any fruit that hits the deck.

Windfall Bardsey apples in the garden Windfall Bardsey Apples in the garden

APPLE ABUNDANCE

What to do with all those apples?  If your, family members, neighbours, avid scrumpers know of an apple tree, I’m sure you’re asking yourself the same thing.  Here are few little ideas for all those surplus apples:

  • Make a Tart Tatin (see below)
  • Cook into apple sauce and use on desserts and breakfast bowls.  Apple sauce is also wonderful in baking, it helps to bind cakes etc together.
  • Make your own Apple Cider Vinegar or Apple and Mint Vinegar
  • Make Apple Vodka, Whiskey or Gin by steeping the apples in alcohol.
  • Try a Apple and Ginger Smoothie or Apple and Kale Juice
  • Add slices to pancakes and bread (works brilliantly with rye or spelt flours)
  • They make a great Raita
  • Chop them up and mix them into your muesli/ granola/ sprouted grains etc for breakfast.
  • Make Apple and Plum Chutney
  • Make Beetroot and Apple Sauerkraut or add to your favourite Kimchi recipe (there’s a nice one in Peace and Parsnips
  • Add them to stews, salads or soups
  • Spread them out somewhere, preferably on cardboard and keep them for as long as possible.  Crunch and yum!
  • Make cider.
Discovery Apple and Apricot Tart Tatin Discovery Apple and Apricot Tart Tatin

ALL APPLES ARE NOT CREATED EQUAL

When cooking with apples its worth tasting one first.  They can be so varied and this is what I love about them.  They are surely one of the finest things we grow in the UK and our traditional varieties offer up a fascinating and varied palate of flavours and textures to play with in the kitchen; some are flowery in texture and sweet, some crisp and tangy, we just need to find them the right home.  I have to say that the best way to eat a good apple is to give it a little polish on our trousers or jumper (why do we do that?) and crunch into it.  I like to eat the core and seeds as well.

Making this pud into a pure plant-based pleasure is a cinch, you’re really just substituting the butter in the traditional crumble with oil and some flax seeds, which offer a lovely nutty flavour and help to give the crumble a little bite and oodles of nutrition.  I am also not great at using large scoops of sugar, I need gentle persuasion.  You can probably make this with other sweeteners, but for once in the BHK, we’re going (almost) traditional.

Crumble is oh so simple but surprisingly many are still not great.  Being too sweet or having a dry, floury crumble are two cardinal sins of crumble-hood.  I like a nutty, crisp crumble.  This is why crumble is always enjoyed best straight out of the oven.  The longer its left, the more time for the crumble to loose its magic crunch.  I like to add nuts and flax seeds to add even more flavour and bite.  To avoid just a mouthful of floury sweetness, I like oats bound with a little flour.  Simple pleasures are always the best!

So grab a fireplace, a large spoon and a nice crisp autumn night and enjoy this true British classic.

Recipe Notes

You can use gluten free flour and oats to side step gluten here. 

The amount of sugar you will need depends on your apples.  Ours are very sharp, so we went for 90g.  Jane has a sweet tooth (see above) and was very pleased with the sweetness level with that amount.

Crumble is amazingly adaptable, make it well in advance or make a large batch of apple sauce and use for other purposes (see above).  Crumbles also freeze brilliantly.

I don’t like going ott with cinnamon, I just like it somewhere in the background.  Not a main player in a crumble.  Add more if your a spicy crumbler.

Enough frivolity, lets crumble!!!!!!

The Bits

Apples

950g apples

60-100g light brown sugar (unrefined)

3 tbs water

1/2 – 1 teas cinnamon

 

Crumble

100g oats

20g flax seeds (ground)

75g mixed nuts (roughly chopped)

30g light brown sugar (unrefined)

70ml rapeseed/ olive oil

1 teas cinnamon

20g buckwheat/ wholemeal flour

 

Do It

In a saucepan, add all of the ingredients for the apples.  Bring to a gentle boil and cook for 20 mins with a lid on or until the apples are tender and just falling apart.

Mix all of the crumble ingredients together in a bowl.  Preheat oven to 200oC.

In a baking dish (approx 10″ by 8″), spoon in the apple sauce and sprinkle over the crumble mix until there is a nice thick layer.

Place in the oven and bake for 30 minutes, until the crumble is a dark golden colour and the apple sauce is bubbling away.

Before..... Beginning…..
Middle...... Middle……
End! End!
The Prequel (?) - Windfall Apple and Oat Crumble with lashings of custard The Prequel (?) – Windfall Apple and Oat Crumble with lashings of custard

Serve

We had ours with custard.  Mainly because we don’t have any ice cream in the freezer.  If we had ice cream, I am sure there would have been a long debate about which way to go.  Which way do you go?  The timeless question.  I think it depends on how the stars are aligned (or something).  PS – It must be vanilla ice cream.  Of course.  Anything else would be utterly ridiculous.

Beach walking off all that crumble - Dinas Dinlle, near Anglesey Beach walking off all that crumble – Dinas Dinlle, near Anglesey

Foodie Fact

Crumble is food of the Gods and makes you happy:)

Dinas Dinlle Beach Dinas Dinlle Beach
rsz_p1240351 Happy Autumn to you all!!!!!!!!!!!!

 

Categories: Desserts, Foraging, gluten-free, Recipes, Vegan, Wales | Tags: , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

Sprouted Wheat and Apple Bircher

Sunset time at the Beach House

A real breakfast belly filler here.  This is a great start to the day, maybe not the very best, but somewhere close!  This is a bowl designed especially for those who have a busy/active time ahead.  Maybe your a sheep farmer, or a trapeze artist, whatever your activity of choice, this bircher will give you full power!  The sprouting bircher gives slow release energy that will keep you ticking over well beyond lunch, in fact, we find it lasts us until dinnertime!  It’s a beast!

You will need to get sprouting here, or buy some in.  The former is more enjoyable and much cheaper than the later.  It would be a shame to exclude them.  We are keen to get the world sprouting, we’d love to see windowsills full of mungs!  Once you begin to sprout, you just cannot stop.  We used sprouting buckwheat and wheat grains (called wheat berries in the States), both can be bought easily in most shops in the UK in a pre-sprouted state.  They will definitely have them in your local health food shop.

Sprouting is great value and nutrition, the grains/pulses really bulk out and you get a good amount of sprouts from just a hand full of dried little things.  Wheat grains make for brilliant sprouts, they are quick and abundant and have a nice sweet taste.  Wheat grains are basically unprocessed wheat, Ideal if you are craving some bread or biscuits but want to stay super healthy (incidentally, these sprouts make a great loaf I’m told) .

We had this breakfast before a long walk in the hills and it was the perfect fuel to scale some craggy rocks and filthy bogs.  Birchers are a real favourite of mine, basically a bowl of muesli, with yoghurt, given one big stir.  Makes a change, a bit of a mash up.

The seeds and fruit can be played with here, whatever you have in the bowl and fridge really.  We like to used flax seeds because they are great for the digestive system and sunflower seeds because the have amazing health properties and flavour.  This recipe uses organic rolled oats, but you could use oat groats if you were eating raw.

Serves two hungry hikers/ workers 

The Bits

1 cup of organic rolled oats (or oat groats), 1 banana (chopped), 1 apple (chopped, organic is definitely best here), 1/2 cup nuts (we use hazelnuts or almonds), 1/2 cup raisins, 1/4 cup sunflower seeds, 2 tbs golden flax seeds,  1/2 cup buckwheat sprouts, 1/2 cup wheat grain sprouts, 1 cup yoghurt (we use soya, whatever you prefer), 1 teas cinnamon.

Sprouted Wheat and Apple Bircher – in the mix

Do It

Get out a nice big bowl, add all ingredients in no particular order and give it all a good and gentle stir.  It should be well mixed when served.

Bircher post-mix, check out those funky sprouts!

Serve

As quick as you can, in spacious bowls, it does not keep so well.

Sweeties may like a little compote or honey on top of their bircher, but we think it is sweet enough.

Sprouted Wheat and Apple Bircher

We Love It!

This is a bowl of goodness that really sticks to the ribs and is packed with good energy and nutrients.  It deserves to be fully fledged member of the ‘best way to start the day’ gang.

Foodie Fact

A serving of sprouted wheat grains contains your daily requirement of Manganese, which keeps your brain, metabolism and nerves in check.  Good to know!

Here’s a sunshine morning tune:

 

Categories: Breakfast, Recipes, Vegan | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Beetroot and Apple Raita

Beetroot and Apple Raita

The perfect accompaniment to the ‘Hippy Daal’.  This sweet, crunchy, fruity raita salad is the ideal side dish to spicy rich food, also great as a salad in its own right.

This is a really nice twist on your normal raita recipe. Absolutely nothing wrong with the original recipe, but when you have amazing beetroots and apples in the bowl, you just have to play with flavours!

Of course we love beetroot at the BHK, for the most part, we live on the stuff.  We juice it, chop it, grate it……our table is incomplete without a little purple plate or two.

I like using the apples here, because I would normally sweeten my raita, but with these apples it doesn’t need it.

Jane and I on the beach today, enjoying the a little bit of sun (too rare).

The raita will look great if you try and chop all components in an even way.  Squares work well!  Circles more difficult, but very impressive!

Make sure your yoghurt isn’t too thick, water it down if needed.  Otherwise you could have a sticky mess on your hands.  The fresh mint makes this dish, so do try and get some together.  It is really easy to grow and we have found it saves alot of hassle (and money) to have some planted outside or on a window ledge.  If given space, it will spread like wildfire and you’ll never have a fresh mint crisis again (you’ll also have an endless supply of amazing mint tea).

The Bits

1 medium sized beetroot (peeled or scrubbed and chopped), 1 sweet organic apple (chopped), 1/2 cucumber (chopped), 1 small courgette (chopped), 1/2 teas ground cumin, 1 clove of crushed garlic, 1 handful of chopped fresh mint (chopped), 150 ml of yoghurt (we use soya, greek/turkish would be amazing)

Do It

Add all ingredients to a bowl and give it a good stir.

Beetroot and Apple Raita (Raw)

Serve

Leave for at least an hour before serving, let the flavour’s gather.  Serve as you like, traditionally with a stonking curry or as we like, as a main course salad with some green leaves.  Add nuts (hazelnuts, walnuts) to make it more of a meal of it.

We Love It!

Creamy, spicy, fruity and what a crunch!  Difficult to find anything wrong with a raita.

Foodie Fact 

Mint is high in fibre and magnesium.  It is very high in vitamin A and folates and also packs some serious vitamin C.  It also helps with all sorts of stomach issues.

Categories: Raw Food, Recipes, Salads, Vegan | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Sava’s Elephant Garlic Flower Salad

Sava’s last lunch at the BHK

Here was this lunch offering, made by Jane and Sava.   A crunchy wonder, with bucket loads of veggies, topped with the ever intriguing, elephant garlic flowers.

This was Savannah’s last meal with us and we wanted it to be special.  We rustled up a few different salads, dips and even a piquant beige guacamole.

Sava is originally from South London, but is currently masterminding world domination (Sava style) which means spreading love, happiness and vibrant energy to all corners of the world.  Sava is also an ace vegan chef and was the perfect house guest during this raw time at the Beach House.  We have spent most of our time sitting around talking about food and travel, two of our most favourite chat topics.  Its been a gas….

Sava has an brilliant travel website, all about travelling the world and living your wildest dreams.  Its called travel butterfly.  Sava has just returned from travelling around Central and Southern America and there are loads of wonderful tales, images and tips to be found there.

These garlic flowers have thick stems with a potent garlic punch (the whole house stank of garlic after chopping a few up).  The flowers seem edible, with small yellow petals.  One bunch has lasted us quite a few days as its best used sparingly.  Warning, if you are worried about garlic breath, do not approach these flowers (and stop worrying).

You may like to add some spirulina, wheat grass or barley grass powder to the topping if you are raw, or even if you aren’t, this would give you a serious boost.  These are three heavyweight contenders of the superfood world.  It is said that you can live on these green powders (the barley grass actually tastes of dried fish) but not even I will venture this far down the road of cleaning my internals up.  The barley powder we have is labelled as a ‘powerful’ food and should be eased into, you wouldn’t want to over do it (this all seems very tame compared to my tequila slammer days, but unimaginably healthier!).

These salads are always super easy to get together, we’ve made them per person so you can just have it yourself, or share with the people you really, really like.  This is a big salad and designed to be a main meal so there is a lot of ingredients in it.  We realise this goes against some of our ‘The Big Four Raw Food No No’s’ but we are trying to be good!  We topped it with the elephant garlic flowers so we could measure the amount we ate with eat spoonful, it also looked great.

Elephant garlic flowers

The Bits

Per person – Handful of baby corn, 1 carrot (chopped), handful of mangetout, 1 ripe tomato, 1/2 courgette (chopped), 1/2 apple (green and sour is best, chopped), 1 stick of celery, handful of cucumber (chopped), handful of cos lettuce (chopped), 2 teas linseeds, 1 handful of mung bean sprouts, 2 teas alfalfa sprouts.

Topping – Handful of elephant garlic flower (chopped), handful of sunflower seeds, splash of olive oil.

Elephant Garlic Flower Salad

Serve

Layered with a creamy Miso, Tamari and Tahini Dressing, topped with the chopped elephant garlic flowers.

We Love It!

Mainly because Sava made it and she is very lovely indeed.  The elephant garlic is amazing and well worth seeking out, it explodes in your mouth and adds a spot of romance to the plate.

Foodie Fact

Native Americans believe wild garlic to help against ailments such as high blood pressure, asthma and scurvy.

Our Morning Juice Routine

Is stuttering along.  We are still getting into the routine of a mid-morning juice.  I used to have  a nice jug of coffee, now its a yogurt pot full of fresh juice.  I know which one my body prefers (bit sometimes I miss that aroma).

Jane made a magic juice this morning with the trusty Magimix.  Simple and not really worth a separate post, its similar to a couple we have done before.  It was a zesty Apple, Carrot and Ginger.  The perfect balance of sweetness with a kick of ginger.  Here is Jane mid juice:

Jane making morning juice

We aim to be drinking at least one juice per day and are finding that we are not hungry in the mornings.  This would make sense, all of our nutritional requirements are being met, so the absorption cycle of the body doesn’t really kick in until 12pm.  That’s when we whip out the salads.

We plan on getting a 25 kilo bag of carrots from a farm down the road and really getting juicy next week.  Apparently, if you drink too much carrot juice, you actually turn orange.  Watch this space, will make for interesting pictures I’m sure.

Happy days aheadX

Categories: Breakfast, Friends of B.H.K, Healthy Eating, Nutrition, Raw Food, Recipes, Salads, Sauces, Side Dish, Superfoods, Vegan | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Green Kiwi Juice

The bits

Our first juice with the Magimix, quite a moment.  I have never had a more pleasing kitchen gadget.  The motor purs and hums, no clattering and pops like our old smoothie maker.  

I looked at the fruit bowl and veg basket and decided it was a green morning.  Kiwi would go very nicely with apple, the cucumber is always refreshing and the pear would add a nice sweetness.

We loaded it all into the extra big funnel and whizzed it up.  The Magimix made quick work of it.  

The juice was lovely, fresh and sweet, with a good kick of kiwi.

The Bits

2 apples, 1 pear, good chunk of cucumber, 2 kiwis.

Makes enough for two glasses.

Do It

Pop it all in a juicer.

Foodie Fact

Kiwis are sometimes called a Chinese Gooseberry as they are the national fruit of China.  They contain more vitamin C than orange, it is also full of Vitamin K and is amazing for protecting our DNA (which is important!). 

What a wonderful way to start a day.  Let the juice experimenting begin!

Green Kiwi Juice

Categories: Healthy Eating, Healthy Living, Juices, Recipes | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Abigail’s Apple and Pumpkin Vegan Loaf

The heavyweight cake

This is cake in loaf shape.

If you’re looking for something that goes well with a cup of tea, tastes amazing and does your body some good, this fruity loaf’s for you.

I took this recipe from Abigail’s blog http://tofuandflowers.blogspot.com/ which has a lot better pictures than mine and importantly, the loaf seemed to have turned out well.  Although I did change and add to the original.  As you can see, my didn’t rise particularly well, I put it down to not having baking powder!  Otherwise, this is a very simple cake recipe and very tasty.

This loaf really packs a punch!  It’s a heavyweight and really feels like ‘food’, not just a dessert.  Its packed full of fruit and nutrition, no dairy and only has a little added sweetness.

I used honey instead of agave, which I prefer.

With this amount of mixture, I made one big loaf and six small muffins, although Abigail seemed to have fed the five thousand!!!

The Bits

Dry Ingredients: 1 c. oatmeal (plus more to sprinkle on top), 1 1/2 c. whole wheat flour, 1/2 c. white flour, 2 tsp. baking powder, 1/2  tsp. baking soda, 1 tsp. salt, 1/2 tsp. nutmeg, 1/4 tsp. allspice, 1 1/2 tsp. cinnamon, 1/2 c. chopped apple (about 1/3 of a large apple; use the rest with the wet ingredients), 1 c. chopped walnuts (or hazelnuts)
Wet Ingredients: 1 1/2 c. roasted pumpkin, 1 banana, 1 1/2 tsp. fresh grated ginger, 1 c. chopped apple (about 2/3 of a large apple, what you have left over from the wet ingredients), 1/2 c. agave (or 2 tbs honey), 3/4 c. coconut milk (half of a can), 1 1/2 tsp. almond extract, 1 1/2 tsp. vanilla extract.

Do It

Get your pumpkin nicely soft and coloured in a pan and set aside, then:

1. Preheat oven to 200oC. Oil and flour a large loaf tin and muffin tray.
2. In a large bowl, stir together all dry ingredients except the nuts and 1/2 c. chopped apple.
3. In a blender, blend together all wet ingredients (including the 1 c. chopped apple).
4. Mix the pumpkin into the dry ingredients. Once almost completely combined, add the chopped walnuts and apples. Mix up with a nice wooden spoon.
5. Divide the batter evenly between the loaf pan and muffin tray. Sprinkle oatmeal on top of the batter and press the oats into the batter a little.
6. Bake for about 30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.  The loaf will take longer than the muffins.
7. Remove from oven, and cover loaves (still inside their pans) tightly with foil. Allow to steam for 10 minutes. Remove foil, and turn out onto a cooling rack. Cool completely.

Serve

With a dollop of creamy yoghurt.

We Love It

This is a lovely moist spiced nibble at this time of year.  Its pretty much guilt free (if you get guilty about eating food) and is almost a meal in itself.

Foodie Fact

Cinnamon, originally from Sri Lanka, is a wonder bark.  It  has the highest levels of anti-oxidant strength of all foods.  Cinnamon is also anti-inflammatory, anti-septic, rich in minerals and is proven to be soothing.  In Ayurveda, Cinnamon is used to treat diabetes, colds and indigestion.

Categories: Baking, Cakes, Low G.I. (glycemic index), Recipes, Snacks and Inbetweens, Treats, Vegan | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

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