I’ve been taking a little time to reflect this month on how we’ve been moving forward at LIVA and realizing that I have much to be grateful for.
October is such a wonderful time of year. The leaves begin to turn, making our neighbourhood a festival of orange and red and yellow. The kids are settling back in to their school routines and can still enjoy the lingering warmth of a summer gone by. And, for the foodies among us, it’s harvest time when we enjoy the bounty of the fields and orchards.
While I’m on the topic of orchards - since it is apple-picking season we’re featuring our Sweetheart Apple Tart this month. Maybe it’s the sweet Honeycrisp apples combined with LIVA date sugar that make this so special because whenever it comes out of the oven I hear - “Sweetheart? Is that your apple tart?” Along with tasting so heartwarmingly good my kitchen fills with a sweetly sensuous spicy aroma. Wonderful at any time of the year and for any occasion, it’s a great addition to your Thanksgiving menu.
And here’s another way we’re expressing gratitude to our supporters. We’re presenting two more special, naturally-sweetened recipes to include in your Thanksgiving celebration menu.
These kinds of recipes reflect what I was hoping to accomplish when I started LIVA. My mission is to provide people looking for a healthier alternative to processed, refined sugar a clear path to reconnecting with the sweet things in life.
From the first day we envisioned bringing LIVA to market we made a promise - we will never settle for ‘good enough’. In fact, we never stop in our efforts to improve LIVA date sugar at the same time it helps you improve your life. Our quality control procedures begin with the ultimate care in selecting only the finest organic dates. It continues throughout the dehydration and grinding process where we take exhaustive steps to make sure that what we put in our package is worthy of putting in your body. In fact, our sugar is made with such care that it is being used in the preparation of baby food.
Our mission is to bring you the very best date sugar available anywhere on this planet and we’ll never stop in our efforts to earn and keep your trust.
Along with great taste and a healthier alternative, we think that’s a pretty good proposition!
We wish you and yours a sweetly wonderful and healthy Autumn.
I love hearing from you and sharing ideas to make a life a little sweeter, so tell me yours in the comments box below.
Sweetheart Apple Tart
- 1 sheet puff pastry
- 3 Honeycrisp apples (they’re my favourite but you could also use Northern Spy or Pink Lady)
- 3/4 cup butter
- Juice of 1/2 lemon
- 1/2 cup LIVA date sugar
- 2 - 3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- Pinch of ground nutmeg
- Pinch of ground cloves
- 2 tablespoons corn starch
- Preheat oven to 205C/400F
- Peel, core and slice apples.
- In a large pan, melt butter over low heat
- Add cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves and LIVA date sugar
- Stir to mix and sauté over medium heat until mixed and dissolved (don’t worry if it isn’t completely dissolved; when you add the apples their juices will help)
- Add apples and sauté until completely coated in spice/sugar mix
- Add lemon juice
- Add a slurry of cornstarch (2 tablespoons of corn starch plus a little water just to dissolve)
- Sauté until apples are softened but not mushy
- Set aside to cool
- Set puff pastry into 9 inch tart shell, trim edges, pierce the bottom all over with a fork
- Blind bake on a baking sheet for 15 minutes (if you have pie weights you can use them)
- Remove from oven and add cooled apples (you can get fancy here and fan them out - see my photo)
- Brush with any syrup left in the pan
- Return to oven for another 15 minutes.
- Serve warm
Carrot & Spice Quick Bread
- 1/2 cup sifted all-purpose flour
- 1 cup whole-wheat flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/3 cup trans fat-free margarine, softened to room temperature
- 1/4 cup, plus 2 tablespoons, LIVA date sugar
- 1/3 cup skim milk
- 2 tablespoons unsweetened orange juice
- 2 egg whites, or egg substitute equivalent to 1 egg, beaten
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 teaspoon grated orange rind
- 1 1/2 cups shredded carrots
- 2 tablespoons golden raisins
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped walnuts
- Heat oven to 375 F. Spray 2 1/2-by-4 1/2-by-8 1/2-inch loaf pan with cooking spray.
- In a small bowl, combine first 6 dry ingredients. Set aside.
- Using a mixer, or stirring vigorously by hand, cream margarine and sugar in a large bowl. Beat in milk, orange juice, egg, vanilla and orange rind. Stir in carrots, raisins and walnuts. Add reserved dry ingredients. Mix well.
- Spoon batter into loaf pan. Bake for 45 minutes, or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan 10 minutes. Remove from pan and let cool completely on wire rack.
Delicious Baked Apples
- 1/3 cup dried cherries, coarsely chopped
- 3 tablespoons chopped almonds
- 1 tablespoon wheat germ
- 1 - 2 tablespoons LIVA date sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 6 small Golden Delicious apples, about 1 3/4 pounds total weight
- 1/2 cup apple juice
- 1/4 cup water
- 2 tablespoons dark honey
- 2 teaspoons walnut oil or canola oil
- Preheat the oven to 350 F.
- In a small bowl, toss together the cherries, almonds, wheat germ, LIVA date sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg until all the ingredients are evenly distributed. Set aside.
- The apples can be left unpeeled.
- Working from the stem end, core each apple, stopping 3/4 inch from the bottom.
- Divide the cherry mixture evenly among the apples, pressing the mixture gently into each cavity. Arrange the apples upright in a heavy ovenproof frying pan or small baking dish just large enough to hold them. Pour the apple juice and water into the pan. Drizzle the honey and oil evenly over the apples, and cover the pan snugly with aluminum foil. Bake until the apples are tender when pierced with a knife, 50 to 60 minutes.
- Transfer the apples to individual plates and drizzle with the pan juices. Serve warm or at room temperature.