An Apple a Day

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There are a lot of fruits that can be grown locally. While berries and Okanagan stone fruit are abundant in the summer, by the time winter rolls around, apples are the only widely available BC grown fruit. Luckily, they are incredibly flavourful and versatile. They can be sweet with the taste of flowers or tart and tangy. Some apples are crisp and firm where others are soft and perfect for cooking.

Here are three recipes that feature this most humble, everyday fruit.

Apple Almond Salad

The Waldorf salad is the classic apple salad. However, apples are a delicious addition to all sorts of salad. This green salad combines the sweetness of apples, with the nutty crunch of almonds and creamy goat cheese. Simple and delicious, it is sure to be a favourite.

Dressing

4 Tbsp olive oil

2 Tbsp apple cider vinegar

2 tsp Dijon mustard

Pinch of salt and black pepper

Salad

2 apples (a firm, tart variety, like Granny Smith)

1 cup of slivered almonds

6 cups of mixed salad greens (about 1 head of lettuce)

1⁄2 cup crumbled goat cheese or feta

Mix the salad dressing ingredients in the bottom of a large bowl.

Thinly slice the apples and chop into bite-sized pieces. Add them to the salad dressing and toss to combine.

Toast the slivered almonds in a dry pan until just starting to brown. Remove them immediately and set aside.

Wash and dry the salad greens. Tear the greens into bite-sized pieces and add to the bowl. Toss with the salad dressing.

Serve the salad, then top each serving with some toasted almonds and a bit of crumbled cheese.

Carrot Apple Soup

This carrot apple soup is based on a classic cream soup, however it uses cashews instead of cream. This not only makes it dairy-free and vegan, it also packs in a lot of protein, fibre and healthy fats. It also means that this soup is hearty enough for a one-dish meal. Perfect for busy weeknights!

1 medium-sized onion

8 carrots

2 apples (a sweet variety like a spartan)

1 celery rib

1 Tbsp vegetable oil

6 cups of low-sodium broth

3⁄4 cup of cashews

1⁄2 tsp of sage

1 bay leaf

Salt and pepper, to taste

Roughly chop the onions, carrots, apples and celery. They will be pureed at the end, so they don’t need to be finely diced.

Heat the oil in a large soup pot. Add all the vegetables and the apples. Cook until the onion is soft, about 5 minutes. Add the broth, cashews, sage and bay leaf.

Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat, cover and simmer for 20 minutes, until the carrots and cashews are soft.

Turn off the heat and remove the bay leaf. Puree the soup, either with a stick blender or in a blender or food processor. The cashews should be soft enough that they will completely disappear.

Taste and add salt and pepper as needed. The amount needed will depend on the saltiness of the broth.

Italian Apple Cake

This Italian apple cake, called torta di mele, is beautiful and delicious. It’s also very easy to make! Serve with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream for a fancy dessert. Or enjoy it with a cup of coffee at brunch.

1⁄2 cup of melted butter

1⁄2 cup of honey

1 cup of milk

3 eggs

1 tsp vanilla extract

Zest of 1 lemon

13⁄4 cups flour

1 tsp baking powder

3 apples (a sweet variety, like gala)

Preheat the oven to 350° F. Grease and flour an 8-inch round cake pan.

Mix the melted butter and honey together in a large bowl. Stir in the milk, then beat in the eggs, vanilla and lemon zest.

Add the flour and baking powder. Stir to combine. Pour the batter into the prepared cake pan.

Next, prepare the apples. Peel and core the apples. Thinly slice them, then arrange the slices on the top of the cake. You will need to overlap the slices. Just press the bottom ones lightly into the cake batter to make a layer of apples.

Bake for 40–50 minutes, until a cake tester comes out clean and the apples are browning.

Cool slightly before serving. If it is not sweet enough, then serve with a dusting of icing sugar.

Emillie Parrish
Emillie Parrishhttp://emillieparrish.com/
Emillie Parrish loves having adventures with her two busy children. She lives in Victoria and is the author of the fermentation-based blog fermentingforfoodies.com.

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