Over the last few months, we’ve been sharing Come Dine With Me… At Home!
The premise is simple: create a three-course menu with Ambrosia apples as the star of each dish. Home cooks can choose their recipes from the Ambrosiaapples.ca website. They can substitute anything they want on any of the recipes – or create their own — but all the dishes must include Ambrosia apples. Everyone is instructed to choose one appetizer, one entrée, and one dessert. Cocktails are optional.
This month’s group: Gerry and Ron from Burnaby, and their guests Tom, Sandra, Katrina, and Andrea
Ambrosia apples purchased from: Whole Foods in Burnaby, B.C.
Although Gerry and Ron are not vegans, one of their guests is. Gerry readily accepted the challenge to feature Ambrosia apples in her all-vegan menu, which included her own adaptations of some of her favourites:
Ambrosia Apple Potato Nuggets with Ambrosia Apple Mango Salsa
Ambrosia Apple and Vegan Bacon Flatbread
Ambrosia Apple Black Current Vegan Crepes
“With an increasing number of vegan friends, we wanted to expand our offerings to include new menu items easily made or adapted to their dietary needs,” says Gerry. “Ambrosia apples are easy to use and lend themselves perfectly to a vegan menu. It was nice to offer a menu, totally different from the salad, soup or wraps we normally offer to our vegan guest, Andrea.”
Gerry conducted a poll to determine the favourite dish of the evening, “Four chose the flatbread. It was really nice combination with the slightly spicy sauce and sweet apples, and the saltiness of the bacon added a nice contrast,” she reports. Two, including the vegan, chose the crepes. “They were light, tasty and delicious,” Andrea says.
Gerry had never cooked with Ambrosia apples, but she will again. “I have eaten Ambrosia apples before, but this is the first time I cooked with them,” she says. “I was very happy with the results and will likely use them more often. Our vegan guest was very happy with the menu and the taste of the apples in all the dishes.”
Some final thoughts from Gerry: “Next time, I might try Ambrosia applesauce as a binder to the potato nuggets to bring out the flavor of these beautiful apples,” she says. “And the slight coconut flavour in the vegan whip paired well with the apples, I may try out a coconut apple recipe some time!” Hopefully, she’ll share her results. The rest of her recipes, and some photos, are below.
Would you like your Ambrosia Apple menu featured in our blog series? Share your interest by contacting us on our Instagram page http://instagram.com/bcambrosia , or by posting and tagging @bcambrosia and #ComeDineWithMe. We will contact you for a few details, and if your menu is featured, you’ll win a fancy Ambrosia apple bag! Check out our recipes here
Gerry’s Ambrosia Apple Vegan Menu
Appetizer: Ambrosia Apples Potato Nuggets with Ambrosia Apple and Mango Salsa
3 ½ large potatoes, shredded
½ large potato, boiled and mashed (to be used as binder, 1 egg can be used for non-vegan)
2 Tbsp almond milk
1 medium Ambrosia apple, shredded
¼ cup finely minced onion
Salt and pepper to taste
½ cup olive oil
1 small Ambrosia apple cut in small cubes
1 small mango, cut in cubes
Juice of ½ lime
2 tbsp cilantro
1 tsp balsamic vinegar
- Combine apple, mango, lime juice, cilantro, vinegar and salt. Set aside.
- Mash boiled potato with almond milk *(mashed potato with almond milk can be substituted with 1 egg)
- Mix together shredded potatoes, mashed potatoes, apple, onion, salt and pepper.
- Heat olive oil to medium high in non-stick frying pan.
- Form small ball, a little larger than a ping pong ball and flatten.
- Fry in oil until golden brown.
- Plate 2 nuggets per serving, top with a spoon of salsa and serve.
Main Course: Bacon and Ambrosia Apple Flatbread
6 vegan flatbreads or pitas
1 c mozzarella cheese
2 Vegan bacon strips per flatbread *(cubed pancetta)
2 Ambrosia apples, finely sliced
3 cups arugula
¼ purple onion, finely sliced
½ cup roasted pine nuts
Spicy tomato sauce (or use commercial / premade sauce)
6 – 7 Roma tomatoes, blanched, peeled and diced
¼ cup diced sweet onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 Tbsp olive oil
¼ tsp cayenne pepper
¼ tsp tabasco
Salt and pepper to taste
Prepare tomato sauce by sautéing sweet onion and garlic in medium saucepan until translucent. Add remaining ingredients, reduce heat and allow to simmer 45 minutes. Remove from heat, use immersion blender to blend sauce. Set aside.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Sautee bacon or pancetta in non-stick pan until browned.
Spoon ¼ cup sauce onto each flatbread, add with layer of apples and bacon. Cover with cheese.
Bake for about 10 minutes or until cheese melts.
Top with arugula and add slivers of purple onion and pine nuts.
Dessert: Ambrosia Apple and Black Currant Crepes
Crepes (can be made in advance)
1 cup flour
2 Tbsp sugar
¼ tsp. salt
½ tsp. baking powder
1 ½ cups plant-based milk
2 ½ Tbsp olive oil
Olive oil for pan
Place all ingredients in blender and blend until smooth.
Heat non-stick pan to medium high, drizzle oil evenly around pan.
Pour batter into pan and swirl until the pan is lightly covered.
Flip when edges appear brown and top is dry. Transfer to plate when golden brown.
If cooking in advance, separate crepes with parchment paper, cover and refrigerate until ready to use.
Microwave crepes together for 30 seconds prior to filling.
4 Ambrosia apples cut into large chunks
¼ cup apple juice
2 Tbsp brown sugar
½ cup blackcurrant jam
Vegan coconut topping
Place Ambrosia apples, apple juice and brown sugar in a medium saucepan and cook until tender.
Smear 1 Tbsp of blackcurrant jam across the bottom of each crepe
Top with 1/6 of the cooked apples fold edges and roll burrito style.
Top with vegan coconut topping and sprinkle with cinnamon if desired.