Did you ever take a bite or spoonful from a pie, tart or a crisp that was so good it made you swoon? Something so utterly delicious that you dreamed about it?
Whenever my sister and I visit each other, we cook. Last September she made a lattice top peach pie that was probably the best peach pie I’ve ever eaten. It was made with fresh picked local Ohio peaches which were exceptionally sweet. She added lemon juice, cinnamon, ginger, a couple tablespoons of brown sugar and a little cornstarch to the sliced peeled peaches and poured them into a pie crust. Did the lattice work by hand and carefully placed it atop the peaches. My oh my!
Susan also makes an absolutely scrumptious sweet potato pie. It's never been one of my favorites, however, hers is worth the calories, even when its not Thanksgiving.
Pink Teacup Sweet Potato Pie
2 lbs. sweet potatoes
1/2 c. butter
1 t. cinnamon
1/4 t. ginger
1/2 t. salt
1/4 t. nutmeg
2 T. white sugar
1 c. brown sugar
3 large eggs, separated
1/2 c. of orange juice
1 T. grated orange rind
1/2 c. evaporated milk
1 unbaked 9" pie shell
Preheat oven to 350F.
Peel and boil sweet potatoes until soft and mashable. Add butter, spices, salt and sugars to hot sweet potatoes. Beat until light and smooth.
In a separate bowl, beat egg yolks until light in color and add to sweet potato mixture. Stir in orange juice, rind and milk. Beat egg whites until stiff and gently fold into mix.
Pour mixture into unbaked pie shell. Bake 35 minutes, or until pie puffs up and is firm in the middle. Cool on a rack. Serve with a dollop of whipped cream or ice cream.
This beautiful fruit tarte is also one of Susan's creations. She used fresh strawberries gifted from her friend Barbara and added cherries, peaches, blackberries and blueberries. The fruit was placed over an almond cookie "crust" covered with a vanilla flavored cream cheese. I love the way this looks and I'm certain it was delicious.
Are apples more your thing?
I recently saw the first apples of the season at the farmers market which inspires me to make this scrumptious apple crisp. I made it for the first time last year and I can see myself making this again this season.
Gluten Free Caramel Apple Crisp
- 1 cup gluten-free oats
- ¾ cups raw pecans chopped
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ cup coconut sugar
- 4 tablespoons vegan butter or coconut oil
Place dates into a blender. Cover with hot water and allow to sit for 5 minutes. Drain water and place dates back in blender. Add salt, coconut milk, maple syrup, and vanilla extract. Blend until smooth. Set aside.
Heat 2 tablespoons vegan butter over low heat in a 10-inch oven-prooof skillet. Add apples and salt. Cook for 3-4 minutes over medium heat, stirring occasionally. Add lemon juice, cinnamon, arrowroot starch, coconut sugar, and vanilla extract. Stir to combine. Take off heat.
Pour about 1 cup of the date caramel over the apples. Stir to evenly incorporate.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
In a medium bowl combine oats, cinnamon, coconut sugar, pecans, and salt. Stir to evenly incorporate ingredients.
Add small pieces of solid vegan butter or coconut oil to oat mixture. Using your hands, incorporate the vegan butter so that it has moistened the oat mixture. Sprinkle oat mixture evenly on top of apples.
Bake for 35-45 minutes until apples are bubbling and the oat mixture on top has become golden. Watch to make sure your pecans do not burn! Serve warm with vanilla ice cream.
Store leftovers in the refrigerator and reheat in microwave to serve again.
Pat Bennett is the founder and President of Pat's Granola, a Cleveland based food and lifestyle company.
Pat's Granola is sold online at www.patsgranola.com and is also available at select Northeast Ohio businesses.
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