October 17th is my husband’s birthday, and he must have a cake. Not just any cake, but a Viking-worthy birthday cake supreme! For a man who prefers real, nourishing, authentic food, not fluff and frosting, creating such a cake is a challenge indeed. Furthermore, my own dedication to true health forbids I resort to flour, sugar, milk or any other processed, refined, death-by-sweetness recipes that, alas, include many allegedly healthy options. No, gluten free does not equal healthy. Organic doesn’t equal healthy either, though it is a good place to start. Real healthy is real food, the way nature intended, the way Vikings ate.
Back to the cake. After rejecting numerous gluten free mixes, online recipes and faux healthy pre-baked creations, I had a moment of brilliance. Looking at a bowl full of luscious, fragrant red-green local Montana apples, I thought, why a cake? Why not a cobbler? My husband loves apples and cinnamon, the scents of autumn, the warmth of freshly baked fruit pie with nutty, crispy topping and a scoop of frosty coconut milk ice cream. Yes! A cobbler was the answer.
There was that old email from Radiant Life that I had never deleted, and I scrolled back to find it: Grain-Free Apple Crisp. It was quick, easy, impressive to look at, and 100% authentic, real food. Perfect. I made a few adjustments, and turned out a birthday treat that my man proclaimed the best he had ever eaten. I share it with you below, and wish you a healthy, hearty autumn. Skål!
Grain-Free Apple Crisp
Adapted from the Radiant Life Blog
6 medium apples
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon coconut flour
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
2 cups sprouted walnuts*
1 cup shredded coconut
6 tablespoons coconut oil
1/2 cup maple syrup
*To sprout the walnuts, soak overnight in water with 1/2 tablespoon sea salt. In the morning, drain and spread walnuts on a baking sheet lined with parchment. Turn oven on lowest setting (newer ovens start at 150 degrees F, though my old oven can go lower. Ideally around 108 F) and allow nuts to dry all day (about 12 hrs). In a time crunch you can use un-sprouted nuts.
Wash and slice apples thinly. In a large bowl, mix apple slices with the vinegar and toss to minimize browning. Add the coconut flour, cinnamon and nutmeg and toss well to coat apples. Pour into a 9×9 baking dish or pie plate. Glass or cast iron is best.
In another large bowl cut together coconut and coconut oil with a fork until well combined. Chop walnuts coarsely. Add to coconut mixture along with maple syrup and mix well. Spoon evenly on top of apples and press gently.
Bake in a preheated oven at 350 degrees F for 40 minutes, until the apples are bubbling and the topping is nicely browned.
Serve warm with a scoop of Larry&Luna’s Coconut Bliss ice cream in vanilla or ginger cookie caramel and a glass of homemade mead.