I cooked so much today! It's been awhile since I've spent this much time in the kitchen, and it was really fun!
First I made a batch of French bread, although I took the shortcut route and prepared the dough in my seldom used bread maker. I think it's the first time I've used it in about three years, but it really came in handy today on the dough cycle, to be able to just put everything in and let it go to work. I took the dough out mid-afternoon, shaped it into 4 small balls instead of one long loaf, and then baked them on some stoneware. We shared one for a snack, spread with Earth Balance and Marmite (yum!), then had another with some leftover minestrone soup that I made last night (sorry, no pictures of either bread or soup).
While the dough was mixing up in the bread maker, I made some vegan vanilla ice cream using a recipe from A Vegan Ice Cream Paradise. This was my first time making vegan ice cream, and it turned out really well! I made the Fancy Pants Vanilla, and modified it very slightly, using almond milk instead of soy milk (I still used soy creamer), and corn starch instead of arrowroot. I ran it through our cheapo ice cream maker for about 30 minutes, then put it in a container in the freezer to firm up more. I'm really excited to try some other recipes from that blog! I think I see a lot of ice cream in our future...
The last thing I made today was apple crisp. I used the recipe that I grew up with, my Grandma's recipe, that has a crumbly strudel-type topping instead of the oat topping most people seem to use. The only thing I changed was subbing Earth Balance margarine for the butter, and I don't know how well that worked. While the apple crisp tasted delicious tonight, for some reason that apples cooked down into mush, and the topping never fully crisped up. I think that real butter may be the key to the perfect crispy, crumbly topping, so if you're not vegan, then by all means stick to the original recipe. I did pop this directly under the broiler for several minutes at the end of the cooking time, which helped somewhat. Regardless, though, this was delicious, even if it was more applesaucy than chunky. I served it topped with several miniature scoops of vanilla ice cream and a sprinkling of cinnamon. So satisfying!