While the name of this blog has the word “apple” in it, I’ve never really spent any time inventing apple recipes.
My intention was to choose a blog name that was arbitrary, food-related, but not as blunt as “Kelly’s Vegan Food Blog.”
So Appleseed Cuisine it was, having nothing to do with anything.
A friend of mine has a disease that causes the esophagus to swell, possibly to the point of closing. It’s rare and scary.
It’s auto-immune, allergy, acid-reflux, sensitivity… a single thing or combination of things happening. That’s the unknown.
How do you find out what’s going on?
An Elimination Diet
In this specific situation (under the supervision of the best doctors) the only ingredients to start are:
- vegan baby formula powder (French Vanilla & Unflavored)
- cooked apples
- extra virgin olive oil
- sea salt
- matcha tea or black coffee
As time passes and no reactions are recorded, new foods will slowly be introduced into the mix, and reactions and sensitivities will indicate which foods are causing the problem.
Let’s get to work.
This week, I spent a whole day dreaming up as many ideas as I could about how these few ingredients could be combined together in different ways to make a more interesting menu.
I always try to practice thinking wide open about food, but being limited to such a small list of acceptable ingredients– it really focused me to spend a lot of time on each ingredient.
I had to explore how many ways EACH can be used, how many textures can be created, and how all the factors could be combined.
This is a great practice in shifting a narrow-minded, single-outcome perspective to a wide-open, “anything is possible” perspective.
The first base recipe I started with is for a mayo-like sauce. Olive oil can be drizzled into a blender and turned into a whip. By adding some unflavored formula powder, water, and salt, this had the texture and taste of mayo.
Mayo Base Recipe:
- 2 1/2 tablespoons unflavored formula powder
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- Blend first three ingredients together in high-speed blender.
- When mixed well, open blender lid (while blender is still running) and slowly drizzle in olive oil until it whips.
Notes: By varying the portions of powder to oil, the different formula flavors, and addition or not of salt, different textures and flavors are achievable that are reminiscent of:
- cream cheese (more unflavored formula and salt)
- sour cream (little more water, little more salt)
- french vanilla pudding (lot more french vanilla formula, no salt, less oil)
With a little more unflavored formula and a little more salt, I was able to make a cheese for an interesting alternative to mac and cheese:
App & Cheese
- 2 apples, peeled
- about 2 tablespoons of “cheese”
- boil pot of water to blanch apples
- apples and shred in the food processor with the shredding attachment
- blanch apple shreds quickly (about 30 seconds) in the boiling water
- remove apple shreds and let cool a bit
- when apples are cool enough, squeeze excess water out so they are dry shreds
- add shreds to bowl and mix with about 2 tablespoons of formula cheese (above)
- cut thick skins off apples
- toss with oil and salt
- bake at 350 degrees until crispy
- top with “sour cream”
- 2 apples, peeled, shredded in food processor
- 1/4 cup french vanilla formula powder
- splash of water
- mix paste of french vanilla formula and water
- form cookies on lightly oiled baking sheet
- bake at 350 degrees F until they start to brown
- check and flip
- remove when 2nd side starts to brown
- add matcha to formula for matcha cookies
- substitute strong coffee in place of water to make coffee apple cookies. (Those were actually really good. Ha.)
Simple Apple Ratatouille
- 2 apples, peeled and sliced thin
- pinch salt
- splash olive oil
- toss with salt and olive oil
- line up apples in cast iron
- bake at 400 degrees F until browned
Five-Piece Apple Nugget with Side of Mayo
- 2 apples, peeled and sliced into nuggets (don’t discard the peels!)
- pinch salt
- 1/4 cup unflavored formula
- splash of water
- olive oil to fry
- Lay out the peels from your apples on an oiled baking sheet, sprinkle with salt, and bake at 350 degrees until brown and crispy, like so:
2. Add all crispy peels to the food processor (fitted with the S-blade) and process until peels are crumbly and resemble bread crumbs.
3. Mix together the unflavored formula and enough water to make it into a thick batter.
4. Dry off apple slices with paper towels, drudge apples in batter, then roll in peel crumbs
5. Heat pan and add enough olive oil to fry.
6. Fry the nuggets up, few minutes on each side, and serve with mayo
Apple Hashbrowns topped with Sour Cream
- 2 apples, peeled, and shredded in the food processor
- 1/4 unflavored formula powder
- splash of water
- sea salt
- oil to fry
- sour cream to top
- Mix batter with unflavored formula powder, a splash of water, and pinch of salt.
- Combine with apple shreds.
- Heat oil in a pan.
- Spoon apple mixture into oil
- Fry until browned well
- Carefully flip and fry until both sides are browned
- Top with blob of sour cream and pinch of salt and enjoy
Other Experiments to Try
- apple sauce
- whole apples poached in matcha tea or in coffee
- pressure cook apples
- marinating apples in salt brine
- salt-baked apples (completely buried in salt)
- cooking formula like a pancake in a thick batter (matcha pancakes, coffee pancakes)
For only having a few ingredients to work with, there were so many combinations and possibilities that I couldn’t test and photograph them all in an entire day! I was not expecting to have so many options with such limits.
Challenge yourself to think wide open.
So much is possible when we are provided with the opportunity to stretch our minds.
Love and healing to you.