Raw Apple Pie

Studies have shown that fruits and veggies have a host of nutrients which are lost when we heat them above a certain temperature. This might be one explanation for the ‘raw food movement’ boom, and the plethora of interesting raw food starters, mains and desserts we are seeing on our favorite recipe sites. If you really thought that following a raw food and vegan diet meant ‘enjoying’ little more than raw broccoli and carrot salads, then think again! There are a wealth of excellent recipes which are easy to make, packed with natural flavor and easily as delicious (some say more so) than cooked or baked varieties. In this post, we offer up a tempting raw apple pie recipe, made with the healthiest seasonal ingredients; this is an ideal choice for a healthy festive dessert the whole family will enjoy. Best of all, it takes just 10 minutes to whip up!

Serves 6.

For the crust

For the filling

For the sauce

  1. Start with the crust. Process the cashews, almonds, coconut, dates and sea salt in a food processor (don’t worry if the mixture is slightly chunky). Press the mixture down into a crystal pie pan, covering the base and sides of the pan.
  2. Next, work on the sauce: place the orange and dates in the food processor and add enough water to ensure the mixture is not too solid. When you’re happy with the texture, set aside.
  3. Take the apple slices and sprinkle the cinnamon and sauce on top, mixing well to ensure as many pieces are smothered in the delicious sauce. Pour the mixture onto your pie crust, cover with aluminum foil or plastic wrap, and refrigerate for a few hours (overnight or longer is best), to enable the apples to ‘soften’ and absorb the delicious sauce. Remove from the fridge half an hour before your meal and enjoy!
  4. Serve with vegan whipped cream on top if desired.
  5. The pie will hold for around two days.

Why Raw?

Baked apple pie is one of the most popular desserts worldwide, yet health-wise, raw apple pie is a better bet, simply because it contains no flour (which tends to be highly processed) or sugar, and because the apple is uncooked. Those who try raw vegan desserts for the first time often say they are shocked by how much more intense flavors are and by how similar flavor can be to traditionally prepared desserts. This is especially true these days, when machines such as dehydrators are used to make everything from vegan bacon (made of super fine slices of zucchini of all things!) to quiche (made with texturized protein or tofu). The key to all the flavor in raw food is often the sauces which accompany them: the raw food movement often takes its cue from Asia to create amazing salad dressings, sauces for vegan products, etc. Desserts are also surprisingly sophisticated; some of the most popular raw vegan treats include imitation Reese peanut butter cups (made with raw cacao and homemade nut butter) and Chunky Monkey (similar to the previous dish but also containing raw slices of banana in its interior).

Why is Raw so Healthy?

Undoubtedly, pursuing a strict raw vegan diet takes effort and in order to do so, you will need enough time to shop, prepare, dehydrate and marinate foods before cooking, etc. Nut milks, so delicious and easy to make, for instance, often require soaking beforehand, so if you are a busy entrepreneur or you simply do not wish to spend time in the kitchen, a raw food diet may not be for you. However, it is important to note that you don’t need to follow a 100 per cent diet to obtain its many health benefits; just try to introduce a few raw foods into your weekly diet, and perhaps try out a few raw food dessert recipes every once in a while until you get the hang of cooking in this unique manner. Be inspired by the fact that raw foods are highly rich in nutrients, enzymes and antioxidants, which keep ageing at bay, and are particularly important for those who really need a nutritional boost, such as those recovering from eating disorders like anorexia nervosa or bulimia. Those who have gone through long periods of consuming low-nutrition meals tend to suffer from dietary deficiencies. Nutritionists recommend that they consume nutritionally dense foods like dates, which are high in niacin, potassium, calcium, iron, copper, Vitamin B6, and Vitamin K. Dates are also antioxidant- and fiber-rich, keeping cancer and heart disease at bay. Apples, meanwhile, contain an amazing array of polyphenols and have powerful anti-cancer, blood sugar and cardiovascular benefits.

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