We might be biased here at The Orchard Project, but we love an apple straight off the tree. It’s fresh, juicy, and delicious – and tastes even better when it comes from a community orchard.
But as we all know, harvests often leave you with an overwhelming amount of fresh produce. This year alone, we harvested nearly seven tonnes of apples just from London orchards! So, what to do with all this bounty? Sharing with your neighbours and donating unwanted produce is an excellent way to prevent waste and spread the orchard love. However, cooking and preserving your apples is another great way to enjoy your fruit long after harvest season is over.
Keep scrolling to find our team’s favourite apple recipes…
Annie’s Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal
As the mornings get frosty, starting your day with a warm breakfast can help to keep Jack Frosts’ chill at bay. This oatmeal is sure to warm you from the inside out!
- 1 medium apple, washed and diced (keep the skins on for extra nutrients + gut-friendly prebiotics!)
- 1 tbsp oil of choice (coconut oil adds delicious flavour)
- 1/3 cup or 30g rolled oats
- 1/2 cup or 120g milk of choice
- Sprinkle of cinnamon to taste
- Warm your oil in a saucepan over a medium heat. After pan is warmed, add diced apples.
- Cook apples until soft and browned, about 5 minutes.
- Add oats and milk of choice. Stir and reduce heat to low. Add spices to taste.
- Let oatmeal simmer until you reach desired consistency. Remove from heat and add to a bowl.
- Top as desired; Annie’s favourite is ground flaxseed and almond butter, but you could always add fresh apples for extra crunch, toasted nuts, dark chocolate chips, ginger, nutmeg, raisins, or granola.
Sarah’s Healthy Apple Bread
This apple bread makes a wonderful breakfast or mid-afternoon snack. There’s lots of flexibility in this recipe; you can add raisins or dried cranberries for extra flavour, or swap out the walnuts for almonds, hazelnuts, or sunflower seeds. Experiment with different toppings like almond butter, honey, or marmalade to make it even more unique!
- 750g grated apples (skins on or off)
- 150g sugar
- 100g raisins/dried cranberries (optional)
- 150g roughly chopped walnuts
- 1 tbsp cinnamon
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 500g flour
- Mix the first five ingredients in a bowl. Cover and leave overnight to allow the flavours to mix & draw out moisture from the apples.
- Heat oven to 200°C. Add flour and baking powder to apple mixture. Mix until combined.
- Grease two loaf pans and divide bread batter evenly between them.
- Bake for approximately 45 minutes, until toothpick inserted in middle comes out clean.
Ted’s Everyday Apple Filling
Great for when you have a LOT of apples and some freezer space, this everyday apple filling can be used for applesauce, pie filling, or as a topping for a variety of desserts. It’s lovely to have a batch on hand, especially if you’re prone to craving last-minute desserts.
This recipe was kindly shared with us by Ted Bruning, author of Golden Fire: The Story of Cider.
- Peel, core, and coarsely chop apples until your arms ache or until you run out of apples. Make them fairly chunky, leaving the options open for either a filling with a bit of texture or a completely smooth purée as each recipe requires.
- In a close-covered heavy-bottomed pan simmer your apples with 50g of sugar and the juice of half a lemon per kilo until they just start to soften. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
- Divide into portions (I usually do 200g and 500g portions) and freeze. You can doctor each portion according to your taste as you defrost it for use, adding sultanas, honey, cinnamon, nutmeg, a dash of apple brandy, more sugar – whatever you feel is right.
- To turn it into apple sauce, simply season and purée it, and heat it gently with 10-15g butter stirred in. It might also call for a little more lemon juice or even a drop of cider vinegar, according to your taste.
Nicole’s Dutch Apple Pie
Our Head of Fundraising, Nicole, is originally from Holland and shared her favourite recipe for Dutch Apple Pie – a fun twist on a timeless classic.
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 40g caster sugar
- 150g raisins
- 1 medium egg
- 1 tbsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp cardamom
- 6 tart/sour green apples (a popular one from our community orchards tends to be the ever-reliable Bramley), peeled; 1 grated, 5 cut into small chunks
- 50g fresh white breadcrumbs
- Pastry of your choice (store-bought or homemade)
- 1 egg white
- Preheat oven to 160°C, fan 140°C, gas mark 3.
- Mix the first six ingredients in a bowl to prepare the filling. Once all ingredients are well incorporated, fold in the grated & chopped apples.
- Line a 24cm springform pan with baking paper. Divide the pastry into two equal sized pieces. Place one of the pieces of pastry inside the tin and press the dough evenly into the base of the tin to cover it.
- Divide the remaining pastry into three equal sized pieces. Take one piece and roll into into a sausage on a lightly floured surface. Press this into the tin to form one side of the pie. Repeat with another piece of pastry and gently press together where the sides meet the base to seal. Save the final piece of pastry for the lattice.
- Spoon the apple filling into the pastry-lined pan.
- Spread the breadcrumbs over the apple filling.
- Roll out final piece of pastry to 1/4 inch thickness, cut into even strips, and build a lattice over the top of the pie. You can brush with an egg white for extra crispiness.
- Bake for approximately one hour, until pastry is golden brown and crisp. Remove from the oven and let cool completely before removing the side of the pan; if you’d like to serve the pie warm leave it in the pan.
- Serve with whipped cream or ice cream of choice.