Monday, October 27, 2008

Cooking with Apples

I had a big (huge) bag of apples that we bought at Huber's the other week, and it needed to be used up. I'd planned to make apple butter with it, but time got away from me, apples were eaten as snacks, and eventually there weren't enough to make making a batch of apple butter seem worth it, so instead the remaining apples were cooked up with our dinner this weekend.
First, I made some Maple Baked Lentils with Apple. I started by pre-cooking 1 1/2 cup lentils with one bouillon cube. While the lentils were cooking I peeled and diced 3 large apples, 1 carrot, 2 ribs of celery, and 1/2 large onion. When the lentils were tender, I combined those (drained from their cooking liquid), with the chopped veggies and apples in a baking dish, and mixed in about 1 tsp dried thyme leaves. I added about 1/4 cup apple cider and 1/4 cup pure maple syrup and baked at 350 until veggies were tender and juices were starting to bubble. We had the lentils served over a mixture of brown basmati rice and bulgur, with a side of Roasted Squash Rings from Eat, Drink and Be Vegan (I could eat the whole squash prepared this way), and a salad of mixed greens from the CSA with Annie's Goddess Dressing. This was delicious, and perfect on a cool Autumn night. But, truth be told, I thought the lentils were actually better as leftovers for dinner the next day.

Fast forward a few days, and the apples were out for dinner once again. This time I made "Sausage", Apples and Onions with Apple Cider Sauce. For this dish I used Tofurky Kielbasa style sausage, but you could use any vegan sausage you like. I browned the sausages in a little olive oil in a large skillet. When the sausage is browned, remove it from the skillet and set aside. Add to the skillet 2 large apples (sliced) , and 1/2 large onion (sliced). Saute apples and onions for a few minutes until apples begin to soften (don't let them go too far, you don't want them to turn into applesauce), return sausage to the pan then add in about 1 cup apple cider vinegar that's had about 1 tsp arrowroot powder whisked into it. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for a few minutes until sauce begins to thicken. I served the sausages on top of a heaping mound of mashed potatoes with a side of cornbread. Again, another perfect autumnal meal. The sweetness that the apples and cider added to the sausage was perfect. My picky eater, Mairin, gobbled up every bite of sausage!!


Veg-a-Nut said...

I just took my last bite of apple when I got your blog! Dang! Your food creations with apples are amazing.

ttfn300 said...

i just had lentils with sauteed pears, and was loving every bite, sounds like this fits the bill too!

Rico said...

yumyum that is all I can say...and take this as a large compliment as I am a meat eater however ...I just love vegetarian food as it opens another whole vast horizon in cooking for me...I do cook quite a lot of vegetarian dishes too as my wife is vegetarian...and your dishes here are great.