Last year I made a vegan spaghetti bolognese that was so incredible, that unless you read the ingredients list, you would be content thinking it was a beef or pork dish. Since then the dish has become a regular feature in our house, thanks to being exceptionally delicious and exceptionally easy to make. Eating it so regularly has made me look at the vegan alternatives to some of my favourite meals, and we’re slowly making the shift to having a few vegan days a week.
Save for trifle, there is no dessert I love more than an apple crumble. It is timeless, faultless, and the ultimate comfort food- I can think of few dishes that get better when you add ice cream, cream AND custard. Even the nuked to hell crumble from a shitty Wetherspoon’s in Croydon has it’s charm. I’ve written about my love of this quintessentially British dish before on the blog, but there is always room for improvement, and dare I say it, this recipe gives The Cookery Year one a run for its money.
In this instance, swapping butter out for coconut oil, makes fora lighter (both texture and colour) crumble, and one with a really exciting flavour. Knowing that honey is rarely considered vegan friendly, to add sweetness and a thickness to the crumble, I baked with maple syrup, and because I had some in the fridge, the syrup from some Chinese stem ginger. This added some heat, and cements the dessert well and truly in the winter pudding category. Another difference this time round, was “cooking” the fruit together before baking. As the US has yet to discover or grow proper beefy cooking apples, I have to make do with Granny Smiths, which are always so tart and don’t quite soften like they should.
I think vegan and non-vegan alike will enjoy this version.
6 GRANNY SMITHS
12 oz BLACKBERRIES
3 tbsp COCONUT OIL
3 tbsp MAPLE SYRUP
1 tbsp GINGER SYRUP
6 oz ROLLED OATS
2 oz WALNUT PIECES
Skin and de-core apples, chopping into 1 inch pieces. Throw into a pan with blackberries and 2 tbsp of water, and cook on a medium heat with the lid on for 10 minutes. Preheat the oven to 375F/190C.
While the fruit is cooking, blitz the oats and walnuts together on a pulse setting- you don’t want a dust, you want chunks. Melt the coconut oil on a low heat, adding the syrups once melted, being sure to stir gently. Add the oat/walnut mix until well coated, and remove from the heat.
Add the apple/blackberry mix to your baking dish of choice, using a draining spoon if necessary, adding the crumble topping afterwards. I chose to sprinkle about a teaspoon of brown sugar on top, before baking for 30 minutes.
Serve warm with ice cream, cream AND custard. Trust me.