My boyfriend’s family owns a bit of land. That sounds as if they were very rich, so let me explain that I live in the country, and almost everyone owns a bit of land here, either in the form of vineyards or cattle-grazing-fields or, as is the case for my boyfriend’s family, apple tree meadows. Every year, my boyfriend and I, his brother, and several of our friends, go apple-gathering in order to make apple cider and apple juice. If you have never tasted homemade apple cider, you’re really missing out – it’s, as is usual for homemade things, very, very tasty.
I have been apple-gathering 3 times in the past 4 years that I’ve been with my boyfriend (and don’t ask me how I managed to get out of it one year, I don’t remember), but today was by far the most exhausting. The grass below the apple trees had not been mown, so all the apples that had already dropped to the ground were covered by a thick, wet, 30cm-high grass layer, which is basically the perfect environment for apples to ferment. For those of you who are not familiar with apple-gathering: the idea is to pick up all the fallen apples, and then shake the tree’s branches in order to make the other apples drop to the ground, and then pick them up also. It’s simple enough if the grass has been cut down beforehand!
What also made today a bit harder than usual was that the apple trees are very, very old, and therefore no longer carry that many apples. Usually, when you shake the tree, so many apples fall to the ground that you can sit in the middle of an apple paradise and fill an entire basket sitting in that one spot. Today, we had to search for the non-fermented apples, bending down constantly, and looking for them easter-egg-style (as they were all covered by the grass). It was gruesome and not-fun-at-all.
Overall, it took us 4 hours to gather enough apples so that we will have plenty of apple juice and cider for the next year. After those 4 long hours (at least the sun was shining the entire time!), all I wanted was a cup of coffee and some freshly baked goods – but I didn’t feel like baking for 1 hour before being able to devour them, so I decided to make a batch of the quickest and healthiest (if cookies can be) chocolate chip coconut cookies:
Sugarfree Flourless Chocolate Chip Coconut Cookies
- 150g almond flour (almond flour is basically just ground almonds)
- 90g shredded coconut
- 30g vegan margarine
- 1 Tbs. date cream (see the recipe here, or use any other type of sweetener, preferably liquid, e.g. maple syrup)
- 60g dark chocolate (80%), grated
- 1 egg (or flax egg)
- 1 tsp. baking powder
1. Mix together all the dry ingrediens (except the chocolate), then add the wet ones.
2. Using your hands, knead everything into a smooth dough.
3. Add the chocolate (grated), and knead into dough.
4. Preheat oven to 150°C. Using your hands, form small balls. (I ended up with 15). Spread on a baking tin lined with baking parchment.
5. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes. They will turn lightly brown and have a firm outer coat.
6. Allow to cool for at least five minutes, and then serve with some coffee or milk!
If you are using flax eggs, you may enjoy these cooled and raw. I wouldn’t suggest that if you are using a real egg!
Be careful, they’re addictive: