real raw kitchen: July 2012

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

RECIPE: cashew cream breakfast parfait

Sometimes I just want to treat myself to something special, a lick-it-off-your-spoon kind of breakfast. Sometimes, though, I want the treat WITHOUT all the preparation. So on this particular morning I had just that. It was fabulous and oh-so good ...

For this quick fix I layered together juicy blueberries, cashew cream, chocolate granola, and fresh papaya.

Sweet Cashew Cream
1 cup cashews
1/2 cup coconut water
1 tablespoon maple syrup (or agave; non raw)
juice from 1/2 lemon
dash of vanilla
shake of sea salt

Combine everything in a high speed blender and blend until completely smooth. If you do not have a Vitamix you may want to soak your cashews and double your recipe to ensure a smooth cream. Once it's blended it's ready to eat!!

Layer everything (any fresh fruit, granola/seed mix) and eat! That's it, about 30 seconds to a delicious breakfast.

I like Go Raw Chocolate Granola and Superfoods Cereal Cacao Crunch  ... both can be found at Whole Foods. If you're up for it you can also make my granola, though it is a prepare-in-advance kind of breakfast. xo

Thursday, July 26, 2012

RECIPE: chocolate macaroons

Sometimes I feel so incredibly lucky to have taste buds. This was one of those times.

Inspired by Raw Food Real World I made a mini version of Sarma's macaroons. Afraid of what damage I could do with the full recipe, I opted for a modest third-size version.

Choco-Coco Macaroons
1 cup shredded, dried coconut (unsweetened)
1/3 cup maple syrup (non raw)
1/4 cup raw cacao powder
2 tablespoons coconut butter (I used oil)
a few shakes of sea salt

In a bowl combine all of the ingredients and mix, completely. It took awhile for everything to become wet, but trust that it will (resist the temptation to add more oil!!). Using a small ice cream scooper, scoop out mounds and place on dehydrator sheet. If you are using your hands, place in the fridge for a little bit, first. Otherwise it will stick to your hands and does not form! Dehydrate overnight (6-8 hours) at 104. Less time for a more chewy texture.

Simply delicious. I've been known to eat the entire bowl of batter before ever getting it to the dehydrator ...

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

RECIPE: skin-sweeping JUICE

This morning I woke up with some serious flare up. My skin was desperate for some attention. Luckily the farmer's market down the street has ENORMOUS sized vegetables, so I was able to make this simple skin-sweep to suck down while I cleaned the apartment.

These beauties were full of Vitamin A, which is a great healer for skin. Vitamin A helps promote skin turnover, aka new, fresh, beautiful skin. In fact, carrots are so full of this beauty vitamin that it is helpful, topically, as well in the form of carrot seed oil. 

Vitamin C is also ever present in this yummy juice. Vitamin C is widely known to help fight off the common cold but it's also an incredible elasticity promoter. What does that mean? Healthy, beautiful, smooth, young skin. Both the oranges and the cucumber (and the carrots too!) contain lots of Vitamin C.

The silica in the cucumber helps repair the skin, helping aid damaged skin get it together. Cucumbers have an incredibly cooling and calming effect in the body and skin. Sucking down one of these makes the skin let out a big "ahhhh". 

3 VERY large carrots
1 VERY large cucumber
2 oranges
1/4" piece of ginger

Run everything through a juicer and enjoy!! (you can really use any combination of these three ingredients and adjust to your liking.)

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

RECIPE: corn tamales

Growing up in the Central Valley of California meant we often had tamales around Christmas time. Though I am not Mexican I feel like the Mexican culture has had a huge impact on my upbringing, whether I acknowledge it or not. It is such a large culture, a warm culture, one that embraces anyone and everyone and leaves no one hungry. Though as a child I despised Mexican food (I don't even know how that was possible) and I resented the fact that almost every other day and holiday had some kind of Mexican food involved I am now embracing my roots as a Californian and jumping at any chance to enjoy Mexican cuisine every chance I get.

So when I saw a recipe by Raw Food Real World that was clean and easy, I was practically salivating on my computer screen. Behold: all Raw Vegan Corn Tamales ...

Corn Filling
Dry corn husks (buy a pack and use as many as you need)
4-5 ears of corn, kernels cut off
1 cup pine nuts
2 medium tomatoes, seeded and minced
1 red bell pepper, seeded and minced
1/4 cup sun dried tomatoes, minced
1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
handful fresh cilantro, chopped
1-2 tablespoons red onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
juice from 1 lime 
S/P to your taste

Place 3 cups of the corn, the tomatoes and the red bell pepper in a bowl; set aside. In a food processor, blend the remaining ingredients until very smooth. Pour into bowl with other ingredients and mix well with hands.

Serrano-Jalepeno Spiced Portobello
Prepare in advance
4 portobello mushroom caps, thinly sliced
1 serrano chili, seeded and minced
1 jalepeno pepper, seeded and minced
3 teaspoons olive oil
S/P to your taste

Slice the mushrooms very thin. I got about 20 slices from one mushroom cap. Toss mushrooms with olive oil, serrano, jalepeno and salt in a small baking dish then dehydrate for 12 hours. They will shrink and become incredibly soft, perfect for folding into the corn filling.

Add the portobello to the corn filling.

Spicy Raw Cacao Mole
6 dried chipotle chillies, soaked 2-3 hours and drained
1/2 cup chopped red onion
1 garlic clove, minced
1/2 cup tomatoes, chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup water (or more, until you reach desired consistency)
2 teaspoons agave
2 teaspoons cumin
1/2  teaspoon coriander
1/8 teaspoon cayenne (more or less depending on your preference)
2 tablespoons cacao powder
S/P to your taste

Blend all ingredients in vita-mix until smooth.

3 ripe avocados, roughly chopped
1 large handful fresh cilantro, chopped
juice from 1 lime
1 scallion, chopped
1 jalepeno, seeded and minced

Place all ingredients in a small bowl and mash well with a fork.

Soak corn husks in warm water for 1 to 2 hours. Dry carefully. To assemble, lay the corn husks flat and place about 1/2 cup of the corn mixture onto the center of each. Fold the bottom up over the filling and then fold the sides over. Using the husk strips to tie the tops of each tamale. Place the tamales in the dehydrator for 2 hours.

Spoon a generous amount of mole sauce on each plate, and set two tamales on sauce. Add guac, salsa, or even raw sour cream as you like. So delicious, exceeding my expectations. Even the non-vegan S.O. approved!!

Monday, July 23, 2012

RECIPE: simple mustard dressing

One of my favorite salads is the garden salad from Euphoria Loves Rawvolution in Santa Monica. In an effort to recreate the salad I played with some basic tastes and finally came up with a dressing I love. This is a very basic dressing that you will likely see everywhere, so make it your own and add or omit what you want!

I knew this was a hit when every time I made it for guests they asked for the recipe, and especially when I received a special request for this salad from my Sig.O. !!

The Salad
4-5 fresh figs, sliced
1/8 red onion, thinly sliced
handful of pine nuts
1 handful of cherry tomatoes, halved
1 huge bowl of spring mix

Simple Mustard Dressing
1 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon ground mustard
1 tablespoon maple syrup (or agave)
s/p to your liking

Combine the salad ingredients in a bowl and toss. Combine the dressing ingredients in a small bowl or jar and whisk. Pour over the salad and eat immediately.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

DETOX ... on all levels

Detox is not just a diet. It is a lifestyle, a frame of thought, and can happen on all levels including physically, mentally, spiritually, and emotionally. When you are serious about detox it encompasses a total  upheaval of your lifestyle: mind, body and soul.

My favorite way to incorporate a total-body detox is to include Bikram Yoga. I miss California so much sometimes it hurts. One of my favorite places in California is Hermosa Beach and one of my favorite rituals in Hermosa Beach was Bikram Yoga on Pier Ave.

Bikram Yoga consists of 26 poses, each completed twice. The temperatures reach upwards toward 105F and you essentially sweat everything out. The amount of healing that occurs during those 90 minutes is incredible. Every session I have experienced I feel incredibly spent and incredibly rejuvenated at the same time. 

I have never felt so at home as I do when I am in a Bikram certified studio. 

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

RECIPE: tropical green smoothie

Nothing starts the day (or ends it, too!) like greens. Really. Try it once and you will find yourself vibrant with energy and free of bloating, gas, sleepiness, and anything else a Grand Slam breakfast will plague you with. 

Tropical Green Smoothie
1 cup fresh coconut water
1 medium papaya (1/2 if it's from Florida...they're huge here!)
1/2 mango
1 banana
3-4 large leaves of kale
3-4 cups of fresh spinach
1 tablespoon bee pollen (immunity, protein)
1 tablespoon hemp protein powder (protein, omega-3)
1 tablespoon spirulina (protein, chlorophyll)
1 tablespoon maca powder (balances hormones)
1 tablespoon MSM powder (good for skin, hair, joints)

Put everything in the blender and blend until smooth. This bad boy should last you for a major part of the day!

The papaya gives it this certain creaminess that is so good. Papaya naturally has AHA, a component of the important Omega-3, so it naturally has fat built in. This fat, minimal in a dietary sense, brings a healthy creaminess to the smoothie. Omega-3s are important for a balanced diet, but AHA is also important for the skin. Rub the inside of the papaya peel on your face for an all N A T U R A L  AHA face peel!!

Not to mention all the goodies added in. Add what you like, omit what you don't. Listen to your body!

Monday, July 9, 2012

RECIPE: raw lasagna dish

One of my favorite meals growing up was lasagna. The cheesy and saucy goodness had me going for seconds and thirds. I still feel the same about lasagna, but this time around I have a guilt-free version that leaves me so energized that I can continue with my very busy day (instead of going into a food coma).

I also took the opportunity to sub in walnuts instead of the usual cashews or almonds in this cheeze to up my Omega-3 intake. It's important to balance our omegas as most people in the U.S. are largely out of balance. It is important to our health and is fairly easy to correct when we become cognizant of our intakes..

Raw Lasagna Dish


For the pasta
  • 1 very large zucchini

For the ricotta cheeze
  • 1/2 cup walnuts, soaked overnight
  • 1/4 cup water (reserve from soaking water)
  • 2 tablespoons light miso paste
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 1 handful of fresh basil
  • 1 handful of fresh oregano
  • 2 cloves of garlic (depending on your love of garlic)
For the marinara
  • 1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes, soaked for an hour (the real kind, not the kind reserved in oil)
  • 2-4 tablespoons of water (reserved soaking water)
  • 1 medium tomato, chopped or 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 handful of fresh basil
  • 1 handful of fresh oregano
  • 1 clove of garlic, chopped
  • 1/8 of red onion, chopped
For the spinach-basil layer
  • 1 food-processor full of fresh spinach
  • 1 handful of fresh basil


For the pasta
  • Using a mandolin, or a thick vegetable peeler, slice the zucchini lengthwise to get your pasta for the layers in the lasagna. 
  • Sprinkle with about 1/4 teaspoon of sea salt and gently coat each slice. 
  • Set in a colander to drain the excess water. It is best if it rests for a few hours at room temperature.
  • When it is drained you can gently squeeze out the excess water and pat dry with paper towels. 
  • Set aside until you're ready for this masterpiece.
For the ricotta cheeze
  • Soak the walnuts overnight, in the fridge (the omega-3 oils go rancid if not kept refrigerated). 
  • Chop the basil, oregano and garlic and place in a high speed blender with the walnuts, water, miso and lemon juice. 
  • Blend until creamy and/or fluffy. 
  • I blended mine with a bit more water so it was creamy, like a spread. I saved some to use in sandwiches instead of mayo ...
For the marinara
  • Soak the sun dried tomatoes in a bowl with water for about an hour. 
  • Place everything in a high speed blender and blend until chunky, or to the texture you like. Use the soaking water for the tomatoes to adjust the consistency.
  • Pour the sauce into a strainer, or colander, to drain excess liquid. You should be left with a chunky sauce.
For the spinach-basil layer
  • Place the spinach and the basil in a food processor and pulse until it is chopped, but not too mushy. 
  • Take everything out and strain either in a nut-mylk bag (cheese cloth) or a strainer to remove excess water. 
Final assembly
  • Once everything is ready use a baking dish to assemble. 
  • Cover the bottom of the baking dish with zucchini slices.
  •  Dollop on the ricotta in a thin layer and spread until even.
  •  Do the same with the marinara. 
  • Sprinkle some of the spinach-basil mixture over the top. 
  • Continue with this layering pattern until you cap it off with your last pieces of zucchini. 
  • Then put a layer of the ricotta and a layer of the marinara sauce and swirl it together so it gets the nice "just-baked" look. 
  • Place in a dehydrator for an hour or two at 140 degrees to get the top nice and crust-like and to warm it through.