I mean I don’t want to brag but I dare to say that since this really was one of the best cakes I’ve ever made and not just in my opinion. I threw a housewarming party last Saturday for an old group of dear friends, even though I have lived here in Helsinki for almost three months already. Better late than never, right? I just haven’t been able to concentrate on throwing a party (very alarming for me) because of all school stuff and the Capri trip and the application process to some UK unis that I’m in the middle of, even though I’m usually the first person to throw parties at any possible occasion because well, friends and food. Do I need to explain myself more? So now I finally did and wanted some kind of fall-like menu and in fact invented a couple of great recipes but the rest are going to come here a little later, gotta save something…
But this pie, oh my my myyy. I had in my mind the idea of that perfect apple pie, you know, with cinnamon apples covered with the dough and eaten warm with vanilla ice cream. And then I tried to think of a raw and vegan version. And by some kind of miracle, it got about right on the first time trying: my mom and guests liked it and my friend to whom I brought a piece of this today as a birthday cake loved it as well.
In my opinion, the secret lies in the marinade. When I smelled the marinade right after making it I just somehow knew that daaaamn, this cannot turn out to be bad. I don’t know about you, but it has two of my favorite spices, cinnamon and cardamom. Put them in almost any food and I’ll probably love it very much. One side note, you should probably find quite soft or sweet apples since they are not going into the oven. I mean usually you use quite sour and green apples to pies etc. since they turn out yummy in the oven, but if you like them to be sweet here as well, try some quite sweet, red apples. I found still some Finnish apples this late in the fall but anything should go. And yes, I cannot emphasize highly enough how important the marinade is since you are going to use it to the cream as well. Often in other foods as well people throw away the marinade which is like the best part so that’s why I decided to use it “twice” here too. And for it to work its magic, I would recommend to let it marinate overnight, but if you can’t, then a few hours should work okay. But if overnight, they really have time to soften and absorb the sweetness and spices.
The recipe shouldn’t be too tricky and doesn’t really include any fancy superfoods. If you want to impress some raw food or vegan sceptic, make this, since the taste somehow reminds of that best traditional apple pie you love, much because of the lovely spices. Unless you of course don’t like apple pies but then, who are you? 😉
Raw Vegan Apple Pie with Marinated Apples Covered In Cashew Cream
For the marinade:
2 tbsp of maple syrup (could be replaced with agave or honey but this really gives a nice taste!)
2 tbsp of agave syrup (or honey if not vegan)
1 tsp of cinnamon
0,5 tsp of cardamom
a couple drops of vanilla extract (or vanilla seeds)
4 little or 3 big apples
For the crust:
10 fresh dates
1,5 cups of nuts (I used walnuts and almonds)
2 tbsp of agave syrup
1 tsp of cinnamon
For the cream:
2 cups of soaked cashews (preferably soaked in water for overnight but at least four hours)
4 tbsp of agave syrup
4 tbsp of coconut cream
0,4 cups of melted coconut oil (melt in hot water)
0,5 tsp of vanilla extract
juice of one lemon
the rest of the marinade
dried cinnamon apples (if you live in Finland you can get these from Punnitse ja Säästä, they are my favorite) OR really anything you want; cacao nibs, crushed nuts, peanut butter…
First make the marinade. Peel and take the seeds out of the apples and chop them in slices. Put all ingredients for the marinade into a bowl and mix well, then add the apples and mix, making sure that all of the apples get covered. Put it into the fridge and mix every now and then so that the apples marinate evenly.
Put all the ingredients for the crust into a food processor or blender and blend until quite smooth. Spread evenly into a cake tin (with detachable sides), mine was about 24 cm. Then take the apples and put them on the bottom, on circles or however you see best. Now, SAVE the marinade! And put the crust and apples to the fridge to wait.
Then the cream. Put all ingredients for the cream into a blender or food processor. Then take your marinade and add it there as well. It will both sweeten and season your cream. Then mix until very smooth, this can take a while but be patient and make sure that it’s very smooth. Then pour it on top of the apples and with a spatula or knife spread it evenly. Decorate if you want to. Then, put into a fridge or a freezer for a couple of hours so that it sets. Both freezer and fridge should work but freezer more quickly. You can carefully try every once in a while how stiff it is with your finger, depending on when you’re going to serve it. Store the rest (if there’s any left 😉 ) into the freezer.
Lastly, enjoy! Preferably with candles, friends and a crappy weather outside.