Monday, May 26, 2008

Alex's Birthday Cake (raw pie!)

I made this raw apple pie from the ami's raw food kitchen book. It turned out really good although I forgot to add the raisins to the filling and had to put them on top! I also did not have time to soak the nuts. Next time I will leave the apples that are "filling" in slightly larger chunks as they were almost sauce like in texture and I would have liked them a little larger. I reserved about 2 apples to go on top and put the rest of the slices into the processor with the majority of the sauce and pulsed just a few times. I could have sliced them thicker and had better results. I will also put the cinnamon directly into the sauce so that it mixes in a little better. I used a tart pan but you could use a regular glass or ceramic pie pan or baking dish. I advise looking for cheap dates in advance because this recipe requires a lot and they are over 13$ at whole foods!

Thanks to Nicole for this recipe
Requires: Blender, Food Processor
Makes 10-12 servings

Almond Pie Crust
2 cups almonds, soaked and dried
1 teaspoon sea salt
2 cups pitted dates (use Medjool, Trader Joes has organic ones out here which is half the price of WF)

1/2 cup pitted dates
1 orange, peeled and seeded
Splash of water, as needed

5 cups apples, peeled, seeded, thinly sliced, about 5 or 6 apples
1 cup raisins
2 tablespoons ground cinnamon

To make crust, pulse almonds and salt in food processor until nuts are in small pieces. You want your crust to have chunks of almonds in it, so don't over process. Use some of the finer powder to "flour" the bottom of you pie dish. (I think I used a whole 9x13 pan, unless you want really thick crust/pie)

Slowly add dates into processor in small batches to mix with almond bits. The dates will bind the almonds to form a dough. Press dough into the bottom of "floured" pie pan. Set aside.

To make syrup, place orange into your blender first. Then add dates and blend. If needed, add small amounts of water to help everything mix well. Set aside.

To make filling, place sliced apples in a large bowl with raisins. Toss with cinnamon and syrup. Spoon filling into pie crust.

The Medjool Date
The date itself is probably man’s oldest cultivated fruit. Ancient writings depict date palms growing in Egypt in the fifth century B.C. Medjools were once the most prized dates in the whole Mediterranean area. Moors carried Medjool dates to Spain and they were especially prized there by Moorish royalty. Then for centuries after the Arab occupation, Spaniards sent carefully packed boxes of Medjool dates to friends as gifts. The Medjool would have been lost to the world had not Dr. Walter Swingle, a horticulturist with the US Department of Agriculture, made a trip to French Morocco, observed what he called “the perfect date” and managed to bargain with a desert chieftain for eleven offshoots. These offshoots, sent to the U.S. in 1927, were the nucleus of all the present gardens here. The date gardens Dr. Swingle had observed were rapidly being destroyed by the Bayound Disease and it was very fortunate that the isolated area where Dr. Swingle’s purchase was made seemed to be disease free. The variety later all but disappeared in North Africa. The U.S. Department of Agriculture took no chances and ordered the offshoots kept in quarantine in a remote area in southern Nevada for seven years. In 1935, nine surviving offshoots of the original shipment, plus sixty-four offshoots, which had grown up around them, were brought to the U.S. Date Garden in Indio, where they continued to multiply. In the late 1930’s they were ready for distribution to commercial growers.

1 comment:

HiHoRosie said...

YUMMY! Wow, that looks so good. Of course being hungry at the moment isn't helping me. Snacking on cucumber isn't doing the trick.