Fall is a beautiful time of year to enjoy the leaves changing color, and apple picking season. Apple Day is an annual apple celebration held at orchards in October. The first event was held on Oct. 21, 1990; however, apple events are now held throughout the month of October.
For instance, this past Sunday, Maine organic farmers and gardeners celebrated Great Maine Apple Day in Unity, Maine. There are also many recipes to help you celebrate Apple Day, including apple muffins, apple cake, and apple snack bars.
At Apple Day events, apple lovers get the chance to learn about the various types of apples, including Golden Delicious, Red Delicious, Granny Smith, Gala, and McIntosh. The event will also focus on Maine’s heirloom apple varieties, information sessions on apple history and gardening advice, cider tasting, and vendors selling apples, apple cider, and apple-themed baked goods and desserts. Once you’ve enjoyed apple picking, it is time use your bushel in a variety of apple recipes. The following are a few apple recipes you can try for yourself:
Want a guilt-free apple cake? Try the following gluten-free, and vegan apple cake recipe:
1/4 cup of brown rice flour, 1 tbsp. of quinoa flour, 3 tbsp. of tapioca flour, 1/4 cup and 3 tbsp. of organic cane sugar, 1/4 tsp. of baking soda, 1/2 tsp. of cinnamon, 1/4 tsp. of xanthan gum, 1/4 tsp. of Celtic sea salt, 3 tbsp. of grapeseed oil, 2 tbsp. of vanilla rice milk mixed with a little vinegar, 1 tsp. of ground flaxseed mixed with 3 tbsp. of warm water, 1/2 tsp. of vanilla extract, 1 small apple, coarsely grated, makes about 3/4 cup, 3 tbsp. of chopped pecans.
3 tbsp. of vegan margarine or ghee, 1/2 cup of confectioners sugar, 1 tsp. of brown sugar, 1 tbsp. of maple syrup.
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit
Grease two small cans, lightly dust with brown rice flour, and place on a baking sheet for easy handling. Place the flaxseed mixture, oil, vanilla, and rice milk mixture in a small bowl, and whisk well.
Combine the cane sugar, baking soda, salt, flours, cinnamon, and xanthan gum in a medium bowl. Add the wet ingredients, and mix until everything is moist. Stir in the pecans and apple.
Divide the batter between the two pans, smooth the tops with the back of a teaspoon, and bake the cakes for about 30 to 35 minutes, until a toothpick comes at clean
Remove baking sheet from the oven, and transfer to a wire rack for 10 minutes to cool. Run a sharp knife around the edge of the cans, invert them to release the cakes, and cool completely.
Prepare the frosting, by mixing the icing sugar and vegan margarine, then add the brown sugar and maple syrup and whisk well. Frost your cakes.
Apple Snack Bars
The following apple snack bars can be refrigerated for up to two days, or frozen for two months:
18 tbsps. of unsalted organic butter, or organic ghee, cut into chunks. 3/4 cup of sugar, 1/2 cup of packed light brown sugar, 1/4 tsp. of Celtic grey sea salt, 1 1/2 tsp. of pure vanilla extract, 2 3/4 cups of all-purpose gluten-free flour or brown rice flour, 1 1/2 pounds of apples like Granny Smith, 1 1/2 tbsps. of honey, Coconut sugar (if needed), Freshly squeezed lemon juice (if needed), 1/4 cup of currants (optional), 1/4 cup of coarsely chopped nuts like walnuts, pecans, or almonds (optional), Confectioner’s sugar for dusting (optional).
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit, and center the rack. Butter a 9 by 13-inch baking pan and line with parchment paper.
For the crust and crumbs: Put the butter, both sugars, salt, and vanilla in a food processor, and blend until the ingredients together. Scrape down the sides and the bottom of the bowl as needed, put the flour in and pulse until it is fully incorporated. You should have a moist and soft clump of dough. Turn the dough out, and knead it gently to bring it together. Cut off a third of the dough, cover, and set aside.
Break the other part of the dough into pieces, and press them evenly over the bottom of the pan, making sure to get into the corners, and prick the dough with a fork. Bake the crust for about 20 minutes, or until it is golden brown, and transfer to a cooking rack.
To make the filling and crumbs, peel and core the apples, cut into one-inch chunks, and put into a bowl. Drizzle honey over the apples, and toss to coat evenly. Add sugar or lemon to taste. Mix in nuts and currants, if using, and spread the fruit over the crust.
Pinch off pieces of the reserved dough, and scatter them over fruit. Bake for 50 to 55 minutes, or until the crumbs are well browned, and the fruit is soft when poked with a pointed knife, or a slender skewer. Transfer the pan to a rack, and cool until it is warm, or at room temperature.
Put a piece of parchment paper over a rack, place the bars onto the rack, and peel from the parchment paper. Then turn onto a cutting board, and cut into 24 equal bars. It is optional to dust with confectioners’ sugar before serving.
Here is a recipe for paleo apple muffins, with coconut butter frosting:
3 eggs, 1/3 cup of honey, 1 1/2 tsp. of cinnamon, 1/2 tsp. of ginger, 1/4 tsp. of cloves, 1/4 tsp. of nutmeg, 1/2 tsp. of grey Celtic sea salt, 3 tsps. of baking powder, Coconut butter plus 1/2 cup for frosting, 2 cups of chopped apple, 1/2 cup of honey, 1/2 cup of water, 1 tsp. of vanilla extract.
To make coconut butter, put as much shredded coconut as desired into a high-speed blender, and add a few tablespoons of coconut oil until it starts to thicken. The longer you blend, the smoother the butter will be.
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
Whisk together eggs, spices, salt, honey, and baking powder. Stir in coconut butter until thoroughly combined. Add the apples, stir, and put into muffin tins. You can fill in more than regular muffins since these don’t rise as much. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until it is golden brown. Take from the oven and allow to cool.
In a food processor, or blender, you will blend together a half cup of coconut butter with vanilla, honey, and water, until it reaches a desired consistency. Spread it on the muffins or eat them plain.
Yields 12 muffins
“10 Drool-Worthy Apple Recipes for Fall,” Huffington Post website, Oct. 14, 2016; http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/bitememorecom/10-fall-apple-recipes_b_12470374.html.