Since I am always baking and many vegan recipes use apple sauce, I am forever buying apple sauce at the supermarket. My issue with commercial apple sauce though, is that many of them contain sugar and preservatives which are so unnecessary! So I attempted making apple sauce in my slow cooker and I was so impressed! Just 3 ingredients and I had the most delicious – and more than sweet enough – apple sauce! It is so good that I have been eating a small bowl of it every night for dessert:)
- Apples, peeled and cored (I used golden delicious but use what you like)
- cinnamon sticks or ground powder
Roughly chop apples. Put just enough boiling water into your slow cooker to cover the bottom of it (about 3/4-1 cup). Add apples and cinnamon to taste. Cook on low until apples are completely soft. (Mine took about 6 hours) Remove cinnamon sticks if you have used them. Pour contents into a food processor and process until you have a smooth apple sauce. Add sweetener to taste. I didn’t need to add any as my apples were deliciously sweet.
Pour into a glass jar once cooled and store in the fridge for 3-5 days.
I love sweet potato in any form…Baked, roasted, chips, mashed….This is one of my new favourite ways to eat it. Extremely simple to make and the combination of flavours makes for an interesting light meal. If you are also a sweet potato fan – give it a try! I adapted this recipe from here.
The cheese filling is delicious. It does not taste like conventional cheese, but it has a ricotta-like texture and the nutritional yeast does give it a cheesy taste. I love the flavour explosion in my mouth of combining the spiciness of the mushrooms, the sweetness of the potato and the creamy cheesy taste of the cheese. Yummm….
- 4 sweet potatoes
- baby tomatoes
- chilli/cajun salt/spice
- olive oil
- 1 cup of brazil nuts
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice (bottled is fine)
- 1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
- salt to taste
- fresh rosemary
Wrap the sweet potatoes individually in foil and bake in a preheated oven at 200°C until soft. (This takes about 45 minutes in my oven, but varies according to your oven and the size of your sweet potatoes.)
Prepare the filling while your sweet potatoes are baking. Slice your mushrooms and saute in olive oil, seasoning with your favourite spicy salt – I used cajun spice, but any spicy seasoning will do. When the mushrooms are done, remove them from the pan and set aside. To make the “cheese” stuffing, place nuts, water, nutritional yeast, lemon juice and salt into your food processor and process until smooth. Taste and salt to desired level. Just 5 minutes before you want to remove the sweet potatoes from the oven, sprinkle a few drops of olive oil onto the baby tomatoes and pop them into the oven. Remove them after about 5 minutes or when they are just starting to burst open.
Remove foil from sweet potato, cut a slit down the middle, fill the gap with the “cheese” and top with mushrooms and tomatoes.
Almond butter is probably one of the most addictive nut butters out there. It is also one of the most expensive. Luckily, it is super easy to make at home – not only will that save you money, but you can ensure that no nasty additives were added to your nut butter.
You have the option of making raw or roasted almond butter. Personally, I prefer raw almond butter, but make both and see which one does it for you:)
- 3 cups raw almonds (I don’t bother to peel mine – the brown skin just provides extra natural goodness)
- pinch of salt
- 1-2 tablespoons neutral oil (eg. olive oil or grapeseed oil)
- Optional but recommended: 1-2 tablespoons of honey or maple syrup
Preheat your oven to 180°C. Place almonds on a baking tray in the oven and roast for 5 minutes. Remove the tray and give them a stir every 2 minutes after that, until the almonds are fragrant and slightly browned. Do not roast them to the point of burning them as this obviously adds a nasty burnt taste and dries the nuts out too much. When the nuts are ready, pop them into your food processor and start pulsing. Once they are chopped, put the processor onto full speeds and keep scraping down every once in a while. After some time, the mixture looks like crumbs – keep going. Eventually it looks pasty and starts to form a ball. Use a spatula to push the ball flat so that the almonds make contact with the blades of your food processor and switch the processor on. While the blades are running, pour the oil and salt in. Do one tablespoon first, process, scrape, process etc. Only add more oil if needed. The longer you process it, the smoother it will become and it will EVENTUALLY become a perfectly smooth runny butter. The whole process may take about 20 minutes, depending on the strength of your food processor.
Throw raw almonds into your food processor and just let it run. Every couple of minutes you can give your processor a little rest while you scrape down the sides and then continue processing. The nuts first become chunky, then floury and then it forms a hard ball that rolls around the inside of your food processor. Just keep going and it will eventually form a paste. At this point I find the butter is very hot and doesn’t seem to want to go runny and smooth immediately. Switch off the food processor and leave it alone for 20 minutes or longer. After that, when everything has cooled down a bit, switch the processor on again and you will see it turn into a smooth nut butter very quickly. If you are impatient, you can add a tablespoon or two of neutral oil while the motor is running. Otherwise, you don’t need the oil – it will sort itself out if you just keep going. Add optional honey or maple syrup while the motor runs.
Store it in an airtight glass jar. It lasts for about 3 months in the fridge but the texture gets thicker in the fridge due to the cold temperature. I prefer to store it at room temperature in a store cupboard where it lasts about 2 months. Feel free to add honey, cinnamon, vanilla or whatever you fancy:)
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