So here’s what I’m learning about vegan desserts. The more dairy and egg-laden the dessert you are trying to replicate or “veganize” the more ways that dessert can go horribly wrong. I learned this one the hard way over the weekend when I bought a delectable-looking slice of vegan, gluten-free (really, it is??) carrot cake from a very lovely lady at a local farmers’ market. It looked pretty much like the one I make (or made in my not-so-distant past life). I figured it might not be hard to get a good carrot cake going but I was skeptical about that creamy-looking icing. Well, this dessert was both gummy and oddly “off” tasting. Very different and not in a good way. I was feeling a little underwhelmed about the prospects for mouthwatering vegan desserts, either bought or homemade.
Enter this recipe from Tori Avey. I’ve made several of her recipes, and I like how she balances flavors. Since it’s apple season, I was immediately drawn to this recipe for Apple Crisp. I was delighted to see that the only veganizing that needed to be done was to substitute Earth Balance for butter in the crumble. Since this recipe has such strong flavors like cinnamon, nutmeg and clove I didn’t think I’d miss the butter. I didn’t. The combination of tart granny smith apples with the sugar and spices was perfect. The crumble, made primarily with walnuts and rolled (GF) oats, was crunchy and very satisfying. The only new ingredient for me was minute tapioca which I added to the fruit to bring out the juices and help them set up just a bit.
Here’s a look at the apples:
Layered with a nice thick layer of crumble:
And after an hour of baking:
And the house smelled amazing. While we are enjoying sunny warm weather here in Arizona, the smells of autumn are still very welcome. Any fruit pie can be made this way, and I’m sure that peach and blueberry crumble would be terrific.
Well now, this is all very encouraging. Perhaps they have room for me over at the farmers’ market 🙂