Tag Archives: apples

Vegetable Soup, or a variation on Minestra

Minestrone (0397)Spring has truly arrived on this little island. The Sun was out beautifully this morning and it was a lovely day. Temperatures are so mild during the day, but we still need to keep the jackets out for the evenings. It’s the perfect weather. Not too warm, not too cold.

During the past few days I’ve been feeling as if I had a nasty fall packaged with a good blow on the head, leaving me with a headache and some bumps, lumps and scratches. Said fall could have been a result of a serious lack of concentration. My mind could have been somewhere else. It could have happened…

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Sugarless Apple and Banana Cake

No Sugar Prune and Banana Cake (0438)Hold on, hold on, I hear you say. I know! Today I am giving you something which doesn’t normally appear much here at C&T HQ. When people ask me for alternative ingredients, or diet related recipes I usually give them links to some of my favourite blogs. I don’t do that out of laziness. Most of the time I go out of my way to look for good nutritious recipes that don’t take loads of time and faff to make. This doesn’t apply to food allergies or any other health issue. I do take issue with those who look down on others because they don’t eat “clean”. What? Are the rest eating dirty? And this is not one of those recipes, so there’s a sigh of relief! I can hear it from here.

But that is another story, or rather another blog post. Having said that I am waiting for some books on the subject to arrive through the post very soon, which I hope to be reviewing in the next few weeks. If they decide to get here, that is. I’ve been waiting for over a month now.

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Puff Pastry Apple Tart

Sliced AppleTart (9987)I think I mentioned this before: apples are not necessarily my favourite fruit. Then, you say, you were living in the wrong places. And you might be right on that one! Michigan is practically apple-mad and so is the UK. For me, apples are meant to be eaten as they are, raw with the skin on if possible. I don’t like cider either, but a trip to the cider mill is always fun.

I am partial though to the apple and pastry combo. I generally don’t believe in rules when it comes to food, but I am particular about this. Apple pie is to be eaten hot with vanilla ice-cream. No custard malarkey business and for goodness sake, no cold pies please!

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Pork Burgers

Pork and Apple Burgers (0174)

I love a good burger. Don’t you? I don’t know what it is but the thought of one just screams of summer barbecues. I find one challenge with making my own though, and that’s coming up with new ways of turning a good burger into something more special. Now I would never bash the ol’ beef burger. Never, but finding a really good one is tough.

A few weeks ago I bought some pork mince on a whim on one trip to the butcher’s. I didn’t know what to do with it until I saw Gill Meller from River Cottage whip up some gorgeous-looking burgers on YouTube. I like how simple they are to make, and the combination of pork, sage and apples is, of course, a classic. So I decided to give this recipe a go. I looked through my herb stash and found that I didn’t have any sage. OK. No biggie I said, and allowed myself some leeway and used my trusty za’atar instead. (At the moment I’m using up some of my dried herbs and spices so that I can replenish with fresh ones.) I also ran out of seeds so I couldn’t toast my own. So I used some ground cinnamon to counteract the tartness of the apples. (I was tempted to add some honey in the mix but in the end I decided to leave it out. It would have given the burgers a more golden caramelised look but then got stuck on how much I would need. The taste would have been great.) It worked. This amount will give you around 8 small patties. Keep me posted if you make these for your next cookout.

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Double-Crusted Apple Pie

Apple Pie (9058)

I think there is nothing more humble, homely and comforting than a pie. There’s also an honesty about it or so I feel. Perhaps it’s because I tend to make shortcrust with my hands, which get very messy, sometimes a little bit too much! There’s always a sense of accomplishment when it’s done, although that still isn’t reason enough for me to make it more often! Joking apart, if you tend to have warm hands like I do, making it manually isn’t the best thing either. There’s always the option of using a food processor, but that also means more things to clean up. So for me, that’s a no-no. Yes, I’m lazy that way.

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