cinnamon

apple walnut cake (vegan)

4th October 2019

This cake base originated from Amy Chaplin’s first book, ‘At Home in the Whole Food Kitchen’ and has been adapted, posted and baked many times with different variations to suit the seasons. In Spring, there is this rhubarb cardamom cake or these raspberry quinoa muffins.  In Summer, I replace the base with the recipe below and make these ginger peach muffins or when the tree is heavy with plums, the original, plum millet cake. When the cooler days creep in and the leaves start to fall, Autumn arrives and I halve figs to place over the top and sprinkle with almond flakes or a pear and macadamia based on this recipe. With Winter close behind this cinnamon apple walnut crumble is a good place to be or a spiced pumpkin version sounds inviting. As you can see when you have a good base recipe the variations are endless!

~ dried fennel seeds

~ leaf and light

~ fennel flowers

apple walnut cake

Preparation – 40 minutes

Baking – 35 minutes

Serves 8 or (9 muffins baked for 35 minutes using half the apple filling)

ingredients

¼ cup/50g millet

¾ cup/185ml water

walnut crumb

¾ cup/90g walnuts, roughly chopped

2 Tbsp/40g coconut sugar

2 Tbsp/40g maple syrup

1 tsp cinnamon powder

apple filling

4 small/2 large apples (245g), peeled and chopped into small uniformed cubes

1 Tbsp ghee/coconut oil

1 Tbsp brown sugar/maple syrup

½ tsp cinnamon powder

cake ingredients 

1½ cups/210g whole-spelt flour

1 Tbsp baking powder

¼ tsp fine rock salt

¾ cup/220g maple syrup (can replace with ½ cup/65g raw brown sugar plus ¼ cup/50g almond milk)

 cup/65g mild-tasting olive/coconut oil

¼ cup/50g almond milk

2 Tbsp/20g vanilla essence

cook the millet

1.  Rinse the millet, drain and place in a pan with water, bring to boil, simmer rapidly for 5 minutes, then reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 15 minutes or until water has evaporated. Remove from heat; let sit for 10 minutes before removing the lid. Measure out 1 cup/180g cooked millet – set aside.

2.  Preheat the oven to 180C/350F.  Line an 11 x 7-inch baking pan or favourite cake tin with baking paper.

walnut crumb

3.  In a small bowl, place the walnuts, sugar and maple syrup, stir to combine and set aside.

apple filling

4.  In a pan over medium heat, add the ghee/oil and sugar, melt the mixture, stirring to combine. Cook until the mixture begins to bubble, about 2 minutes, then add the apples and cinnamon, toss to coat them with syrup, cover and allow to simmer for 3 – 4 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.

 assemble the cake

5.  Whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt in a mixing bowl.  Set aside.

6.  In a separate bowl, combine millet, maple syrup, oil, almond milk and vanilla essence – whisk to combine. Pour into the dry ingredients.  Mix thoroughly with a wooden spoon; do not over mix.

7.  Spread the batter evenly in the baking pan and place the apple cubes over the top and let them rest on the surface.

8.  Crumble over the walnut crumb.

9.  Bake until golden for approximately 35 – 40 minutes, until golden or a toothpick comes out clean. Remove and allow to cool.

Serve with a generous dollop of thick cream.

carrot cake – vegan

9th November 2017

There are two ways to serve this cake:

  •  with a decadent cashew cream for a special occasion.
  •  or for a warm earthiness, sprinkle the top with 2 tablespoons sesame seeds and roughly chopped raw walnuts before baking.

Both are delicious.

As a general rule, all nuts are heating. In Ayurveda, it is recommended to eat sparingly, especially cashews as they provoke pitta and because of their thought-provoking qualities can disturb the sleep and meditation.

sesame-seeded carrot cake

Inspired by the much-loved Spice Cake.

The cardamom adds a rich warmth, so it is important to grind your own as the taste is much more fragrant, fresher and more flavour intense. 

cashew cream 

1 cup/140g cashew, soaked for 4 hours

¼ cup coconut cream (the cream from the top of a can of coconut milk)

1 Tbsp coconut oil

1 vanilla bean

2 – 4 Tbsp maple syrup

ingredients for the cake 

2 Tbsp sesame seeds – for sprinkling inside the greased pan

½ cup/50g walnuts – for garnishing

2 cups/210g tightly packed grated carrots (approx 2 medium)

dry ingredients 

1 cup/120g whole-wheat flour

1 cup/120g unbleached white flour

2 tsp baking powder

1½ tsp baking soda

½ tsp fine rock salt

1 heaped tsp cardamom powder

2 heaped tsp ground cinnamon powder

wet ingredients 

½ cup/125ml melted coconut oil/mild-tasting olive oil

1 cup/250ml maple syrup (can replace with 1 cup/180g brown sugar)

¼ cup/45g brown sugar.

½ cup/125ml hulled tahini paste

½ cup/250ml almond milk

1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar

½ cup/80g golden raisins

prepare the cashew cream 

1.  Soak the cashews for at least 4 hours or overnight in cold water, then drain, rinse and place in a high-speed blender.

2.  Split the vanilla bean down its length, scrape the seeds into the blender, along with the coconut cream, coconut oil and maple syrup, blend until creamy and smooth. Taste and adjust the amount of maple syrup. Transfer the cream to a bowl, cover and place in the fridge until ready to use.

prepare the cake 

3.  Preheat the oven to 350F/180C. Oil a 9-inch springform pan or a baking dish with oil and sprinkle the sesame seeds around the sides and bottom of the pan.

4.  Spread the walnuts on a baking tray and bake for 10 minutes.  Roughly chop, and set aside.

5.  Wash the carrots and grate either using a box grater or your food processor (using the smaller grater attachment). Set aside.

6.  In a medium bowl, sift together the dry ingredients –  flours, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and spices. Whisk to combine.

7.  In another medium bowl, combine the wet ingredients – oil, maple syrup, sugar, tahini, soy/almond milk and vinegar. Whisk until the wet ingredients are emulsified.

8.  Pour the liquid ingredients into the dry, whisking together just until all the dry ingredients are absorbed. The batter will be quite wet.

9.  Stir in the grated carrot and sultanas, fold gently with a spatula to combine.

10.  Pour the batter into the oiled pan and place in the oven. Bake about 50 – 60 minutes, or until the cake is springy to the touch and a toothpick comes out clean. If the top looks like it’s getting dark, but the inside needs more time, cover loosely with aluminium foil for the last 10 minutes of baking.

11.  When the cake is completely cool and you are ready to serve. Spread the cashew cream evenly over the top of the cake. Decorate the cake with the toasted walnuts and long strips of carrot peel. To keep the carrot strips from discolouring, toss in a little lemon juice before placing on the cake.

Serve within a few hours of frosting otherwise, it is best to keep the cake refrigerated or to frost only when ready to serve.

barley salad with roasted-spiced fennel & carrot

3rd April 2016

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The plum trees are blossoming. Spring has arrived.

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A delightful spring salad with substance.

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barley salad with roasted spiced fennel & carrot

Serves 4 -6

A perfect salad for the early weeks of spring when the days are still cool and the season´s beautiful ingredients are starting to trickle in.  I love the chewy, nutty texture of the cooked barley, the satisfying sweetness brought out from the roasted vegetables and the earthy spices that bring it all together.  It is lovely served with a bowl of guacamole or creamy hummus and this beetroot salad.

for the salad 

2 cups barley, cooked (see lemon barley water)

3 medium fennel bulbs

5 medium carrots

1 heaped tsp cumin seeds

1 heaped tsp coriander seeds

1 tsp turmeric powder

½ tsp cinnamon powder

tsp chilli flakes or chilli powder

2 Tbsp ghee/oil

⅓ cup fresh roughly torn mint leaves

⅓ cup finely chopped fennel fronds

for the citrus dressing 

zest from one lemon

zest of one orange

3 Tbsp lemon juice

2 Tbsp orange juice

3 Tbsp olive oil

2 Tbsp sweetener, honey, agave, or maple syrup

¼ heaped tsp salt

preparation

1.  Preheat the oven 405 degrees F/210C. Line a baking tray with parchment paper and set aside.

2.  Prepare the barley, following these directions and keeping the water to make a luscious barley lemonade.

3.  Wash the fennel, trim the fennel stalks and fronds (save for the salad), remove the tougher ends and outer layer – cut into small slices.  Wash carrots, peel and cut into medium chunks.  Set aside.

4.  Dry roast the cumin and coriander seeds in a small pan, when lightly toasted turn off the heat and grind to a rough powder with a mortar and pestle.  Add the cinnamon, turmeric, paprika and salt. Stir to combine.

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5.  Spread the vegetables out in one layer on the baking tray, lined with baking paper, drizzle over the ghee and sprinkle over the spice mix, toss the vegetables until they are well coated.

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6.  Place the tray in the oven and roast for about 30 minutes, or until vegetable are browning. Remove from oven and set aside to cool.

make the citrus dressing 

7.  Combine all the ingredient in a bowl and whisk to combine; set aside.

assemble the salad 

8.  Place the cooked barley in a large salad bowl, pour over the dressing ingredients and allow to marinate for 15 – 30 minutes.

9.  Once sufficiently marinated add to the bowl, the roasted vegetables, fresh mint leaves and fennel fronds.  Toss to combine, season with more salt, and a few rounds of freshly ground pepper.

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Goodness shared by Stacey

Kristin’s cinnamon spiced Moroccan stew

20th January 2016

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Since arriving home from our American trip a few weeks ago, I have been ‘nesting’ in my home, cooking, baking, moving things about, filing, organising, simplifying, and creating things, all inspired by my stay in Sebastopol and that lingering sense of being held, nurtured and a deep inner feeling of peace I felt there.

This tasty Moroccan stew is inspired by Kristin, who made it for dinner one rainy, chilly evening. I have been making it weekly for Jonathan to take to work and for the children’s school lunches, or in the evenings for a warming, cosy, comforting meal.

This was a recipe Kristin had written down for me and sent by ‘snail’ mail years ago, but I had never gotten around to making it.  So when I arrived home from our trip, I set about rifling through my drawers, walls, cupboards, mirrors, where I have all of her artwork and things stuck – to find it.  I keep all of her letters as they hold such soft, peaceful beauty and the art inside always inspires. She says I am her muse, but she is my teacher, in so many, many ways – I admire her authenticity to this yogic lifestyle and teachings, and her simple living as a householder.  She has the ability to live with such modesty, surrounded by natural beauty as you can see by the images below – but still maintains a balance as she moves in this world.  I am ever grateful to be moving on this path with her.

kristin in windowkristin kitchen windowinspiration kristin house

– Sebastopol, California.

Freshly grind the spices where possible, it makes all the difference to the flavours of the finished dish. The cinnamon and cumin have an exotic aroma, flooding your senses with a ‘little of the divine’.   It is delicious.  Use any combination of vegetables – carrots, sweet potato, pumpkin, eggplant, zucchini, beans – all combined to make at least 5 cups of finely chopped or sliced vegetables…

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Kristin’s cinnamon-spiced Moroccan stew with couscous

Serves 4 – 6

for the couscous

2 cups couscous

3½ cups boiling water

½ tsp salt

4 Tbsp ghee/butter

½ cup roughly chopped almonds

for the stew

cup olive oil

2 heaped tsp cumin seeds

2 heaped tsp turmeric powder

1 heaped tsp cinnamon – preferably Indian – a spicy, strong cinnamon

1 heaped tsp good quality paprika

a combination of approximately 5 cups of finely chopped vegetables – 

2 sticks celery

1 large red bell pepper

2 large tomatoes

2 small carrots

1 small sweet potato/wedge of pumpkin

1 cup green beans

2 cups water

1 cup pre-cooked chickpeas

2 heaped Tbsp jaggery

1  heaped tsp fine rock salt

a handful of chopped parsley or coriander

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prepare the couscous

1.  In a medium saucepan, place the couscous, ghee and boiling water.  Stir to combine, cover and allow to sit for 20 minutes, undisturbed.

prepare the stew

2. In a small pan, dry-roast the cumin seeds until slightly golden, allow to cool and grind in a mortar and pestle. Add the turmeric, cinnamon and paprika – set aside.

3. Heat the oil in a medium saucepan, and saute the celery and red pepper until soft, add the tomatoes, and spices, stir to combine.

4.  Add the starchier vegetables first as they take the longest to cook, add the water and pre-cooked chickpeas, simmer for 10 minutes, then add the green beans, cover and simmer on low until the vegetables are slightly softened – 10 minutes.

5.  Season with salt and jaggery, stir in the chopped parsley/coriander.

6.  Fluff the couscous with a fork, and garnish with the roughly chopped almonds.

To serve, scoop a generous helping of couscous, a bountiful spoon of Moroccan stew, garnish with more almonds and freshly chopped coriander/parsley.  A few good rounds of pepper, and if desired, a crumbling of feta or grated parmesan.

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Goodness shared by Stacey

pumpkin bread with a toasted walnut cinnamon swirl (vegan)

6th April 2015

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Just before we left for Israel for the holiday break, I was trying to use up most things in the kitchen. With this in mind and the arrival of a new cookbook, ‘At Home in the Whole Food Kitchen’ by Amy Chaplin, I was perusing through it the night before and was drawn to a recipe for pumpkin bread. It is an amazing book full of delicious recipes.

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mizpe hayamim – Israel

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pumpkin bread with a toasted walnut cinnamon swirl

Recipe found ‘At Home in the Wholefood Kitchen’ with a few tiny variations.  You can use any winter pumpkin, but the dense-fleshed ones like kabocha and red kur work the best because of their low water content.    

Lately, I have been mixing the cinnamon walnut twirl straight into the batter so that it is incorporated throughout.

Makes one 12-inch loaf pan

cinnamon walnut swirl

1 cup/100g toasted walnut halves, chopped

2 tsp cinnamon powder

2 Tbsp coconut or brown sugar

2 Tbsp maple syrup

pumpkin batter 

½ medium kabocha pumpkin, peeled, seeded, and cut in ½-inch dices (about 3½ cups/440g)

2 cups/240g whole-spelt flour

2 tsp aluminium-free baking powder

½ tsp salt

¼ cup, plus 2 tablespoons olive oil (65g)

½ cup/140g maple syrup

2 tsp vanilla essence

1 Tbsp vinegar

preparation 

1.  Preheat the oven to 350F/180C.  Lightly oil a loaf pan and line bottom and sides with parchment paper.  Set aside.

make the cinnamon walnut swirl 

2.  Place the walnuts on a tray and toast for approximately 8 minutes.  Allow to cool, roughly chop and place in a bowl, with the cinnamon, maple syrup, and sugar – mix to combine and set aside.

make the pumpkin batter 

3.  Steam the pumpkin for 10 minutes, or until soft – drain well, and cool.

4.  Place in a bowl and mash with a fork – measure out 1½ cups and place in a medium bowl, add the oil, maple syrup, vanilla essence, and vinegar – whisk until smooth and set aside.

5.  In another medium bowl, add the flour, baking powder, salt, and stir to combine.

6.  Using a rubber spatula, fold the flour mixture into the pumpkin batter until just combined.

7.  Spread half of the batter over the bottom of loaf pan. Layer the cinnamon-walnut mixture evenly over batter and top with remaining batter.

8.  To create a swirl, use a small rubber spatula or butter knife to zig-zag back and forth, finishing with one stroke through the centre. I like to sprinkle the top with 2 tablespoons of brown sugar and extra cinnamon and with roughly chopped pumpkin and sesame seeds.

9.  Place in the oven and bake for 45 – 55 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.  Remove from the oven and allow to sit for 5 minutes before turning out and place on a wire rack. Slice and serve warm or at room temperature.

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Goodness shared by Stacey

raw granola

22nd March 2015

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I thought I would revisit this post which was posted in the very earlier stages of this blog.   The previous content and photos didn’t do this amazing raw granola the attention which it deserved – which is a shame because it is a well-loved staple in our house.  So here it is again with beauty and intention. 

I make this on a weekly basis adding it into my morning porridge, on its own with freshly made nut milk or in a fruit and chia bowl in warmer months.  It also makes a great travel food.  It is made in a special oven called a dehydrator that blows hot air, but never gets hot enough to burn you or your food.  This allows all the delicate nutrients that are usually burned out of cooked foods to remain.  If you don’t have a dehydrator, you could use a normal oven.  But, only if you set it at the lowest temperature possible (usually around 150F/65C) and make sure the oven is no hotter than 100F/37C, otherwise it will lose most of its enzymes, vitamins, and fatty acids (though not the protein and fibre).  If using the oven, you should use Pyrex cookware.

This recipe is time-consuming as the almonds do have to be soaked, then blanched in hot water and the skin is taken off.  This is the most time-consuming part.  It is well worth it, though.  It does need forward planning, and once you get into a roll with it, it becomes easier.  If you want to go one step further, you can sprout the buckwheat (usually takes two days after soaking).

With all the soaking and dehydrating, raw granola takes about a day-half to prepare, but the time spent actually making the cereal is only a half-hour.

Just in case you do decide to get creative, here is a little guide for soaking seeds and nuts. By soaking with just a little bit of lemon juice, it helps neutralize the phytic acid.

SOAKING TIME (hours)

almonds                         8

buckwheat                    6

cashews                         8

flax seeds                       8

pecans                            2

pumpkin seeds            4 – 6

sesame seeds                4

sunflower seeds           4 – 6

walnuts                           2

Just remember to always rinse and drain the buckwheat thoroughly, as it becomes very slimy when soaked.

raw granola

Inspired by ‘I am Grateful’ by Terces Englehart, with a few creative changes.

I start soaking in the night and assemble early morning to dehydrate for that day (flip it in the evening) and it is ready for breakfast the next morning.

Makes about 8 cups

ingredients 

1½ cups/210g whole almonds

½ cup/65g sunflower seeds

½ cup/95g whole buckwheat

6 medium/550g sweet apples, cored but not peeled

½ cup/90g/ 6 Medjool dates, chopped into small pieces

½ cup/60g dried cranberries/apricots

½ cup/40g dried shredded coconut

1 Tbsp freshly grated ginger

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 tsp cinnamon powder

1 tsp cardamom powder

pre-soak 

1.  Just before going to bed. In a small bowl, cover the almonds with 1-inch water.  In another bowl, cover the sunflower and buckwheat together with water.

preparation

2.  The next morning. Rinse and drain the buckwheat and sunflower seeds. After rinsing, allow them to sit in a sieve for 30 minutes, to allow as much moisture to drain out.  Stirring them once or twice.

3.  Rinse and drain the almonds.  Cover again with hot water, allow to sit for a few minutes.  Drain and peel.  The skin will come off easily without much effort.  Pat dry and roughly chop.

4.  In a food processor fitted with a large grater attachment, grate the apples (If using organic no need to peel).

5.  In a large bowl, combine the almonds, sunflower and buckwheat, stir through the coconut, cranberries, dates, grated ginger, vanilla, cinnamon, and cardamom powder.   Add the grated apple in small batches, mixing well after each addition so that it is well combined.

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6.  I have a small dehydrator oven, so I used all four trays.  Cover the four trays both with the grid and Telfex sheets.  Divide your granola mixture into equal parts on all trays, about 3 cups granola on each tray.  Spread out the granola with your hands.

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7.  Dehydrate at 145F/63C for 1 hour, then reduce temperature to 115F/46C, after 10 hours or just before going to bed, flip the granola onto a clean mesh dehydrator tray, carefully remove the silicone sheet, and continue to dehydrate for another 12 hours, until the following morning, or until you have the right texture.  I like mine quite dry.

8.  Roughly break the bigger pieces of the granola up and store in a sealed glass jar in the refrigerator.

This recipe is easily adjusted to your liking.

Goodness shared from Stacey

apple raspberry pie

6th October 2009

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There is something very satisfying about making a pie.  As soon as I had taken it out of the oven, I felt heady with a deep satisfaction of culinary achievement.  My daughter, who is very particular about almost everything gave it 9 out of 10, which is a real compliment!  What inspired me to make this was the basket of freshly picked apples I picked from our tree the other day.

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apple raspberry pie

makes 1 double-crust 9-inch (23 cm) pie 

for the dough

350g flour (I use 250g white & 100g whole wheat)

90g/½ cup sugar

1 tsp fine rock salt

200g unsalted pure butter

100mL very cold water

1 tsp apple cider vinegar

for the filling

1kg apples, peeled, cored and cut ¼-inch pieces

50g butter, plus extra for greasing

100g fine brown sugar

1 heaped tsp ground cinnamon

¼ tsp ground nutmeg

125g raspberries – fresh or frozen

1 heaped Tbsp cornflour

for the glaze

2 Tbsp milk

2 Tbsp granulated sugar

to make the dough 

1.  Place the flour, sugar and salt into a bowl and mix, then cut the butter into hazel-nut size pieces and add to the flour, making sure all the pieces of butter are well coated, cover and place in the freezer for a minimum of 1 hour or overnight.

2.  In a food processor with an S-blade attached, add the very cold flour and butter, process for 20 seconds (the mixture should resemble fine meal), then pour in the very cold water and pulse in short bursts.  The dough will still look crumbly, but if you press it between your fingers, it should become smooth.  If the dough is too dry and is not coming together, add ice water a tablespoon at a time.

3.  Turn dough out onto a clean work surface.  Gather and press the dough together to form a unified mass, then cut the dough in half and put each half on a large piece of plastic wrap.  Loosely cover the dough with plastic. Using the wrap as an aid (to avoid warming the dough with your bare hands), shape the dough into a round.  Wrap each piece tightly in the plastic and refrigerate for at least 2 hour and up to 24 hours.

for the filling

4.  Put the sugar and butter into a saucepan and when the butter has melted, add the apples, cinnamon and ground cloves – slowly cook for 15 minutes with the lid on, turn off the heat and allow to cool.

5.  Tip the apple mixture into a sieve for 15 minutes, allowing the juices to collect in a bowl at the bottom.

6.  Add the cornflour to the reserved juice and whisk together.  Set aside to roll out the pastry.

7.  Rolling out the bottom crust, remove the disc of dough from the fridge, but keep the other round refrigerated. Dust your work surface with flour and using a floured rolling pin, roll out to a 13-inch circle (Rolling the dough between two layers of grease-proof paper /cling film will also stop it sticking).

8.  Butter a 26cm pie dish and line with the pastry, trimming off any excess with a sharp knife. Cover with plastic and place in the freezer for at least 30 minutes.

9.  When ready to assemble the pie, preheat the oven to 215C/425F.

10. Rolling out the top crust, remove the remaining round disc of dough from the refrigerator and let it sit until pliable enough to roll, then using a floured rolling pin, roll out to a 13-inch circle.

11.  Retrieve the pastry pie from the fridge and stir the cooled filling a few times, then scrape it into the pie shell, place the raspberries on top and spoon over the reserved juices.

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12.  Place the dough over the filling, pressing the bottom and top crusts together to seal.  Pop the pie in the freezer for 20 minutes.

13.  Cut steam vents into the top of the pie and brush the pie with milk and sprinkle with the sugar, then place it in a pre-heated oven for 35 – 40 minutes, until golden brown or crisp. Allow to cool completely for the filling to set.

To serve, slice the pie in portion sizes and serve with a generous helping of vanilla ice-cream or custard.

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Apple Pie made by Noa.

Shared goodness by Stacey

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