Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Ani Phyo's Korean 'stir-fried' kelp noodles with vegetables (Jap Chae)

I just made the most deee-licious dinner! Jap Chae kelp noodles, from Ani Phyo's new book
Ani's Raw Food Essentials: Recipes and Techniques for Mastering the Art of Live Food
It was utterly gorgeous. This link shows her making a version of it on a TV appearance but it's a bit different to the one in the book- I think she's simplified it a bit for live TV ease! The one in the book (that I made) also has spinach, garlic and agave in it and the shiitake mushrooms and onions are marinated in tamari (or nama shoyu or braggs) for at least 20 minutes first. Oh it was amazing. Just like a 'regular' stir-fried rice noodle dish, only better!
I found a great way of making the noodles really soft too. When they first come out of the pack they're quite crunchy, and thin. I put them in a bowl of pure water with the juice of 2 lemons and a crushed clove of garlic and left them to soak and soften for 2 hours, which helps breaks them down. Then I rinsed them and left them in a bowl of warm water for another few hours (or do it overnight) and they ended up soft, fat and plump, mmmmm!
This dish is so quick and easy to make too, no equipment needed except a bowl, a chopping board and a knife! If you're new to raw foods, I really recommend you try it. Kelp noodles are not that easy to get in the shops over here but you can easily order them online, here's one place, Kate Magic's lovely site Raw Living and for this recipe one package serves 4. Go on, give it a whirl, you won't regret it!

Sunday, 12 September 2010

Buckwheat crispies, almond milk, jalapeno burgers, spicy mayo

Delicious lunchbox salad with olives,
caperberries, carrot, tomatoes, mixed sprouts,
peppers & other lovely things that I can't remember...
Haven't written for a while as I've been mad busy with rehearsals, as well as being back at the day job so I've been pretty much been sticking to eating some old staples that are quick and easy to make. At my colonic last week, the therapist told me that there was too much sugar in me, which was causing me to be bloated, so advised me not to have too many smoothies. I think this was probably also down to starting drinking wine again which is full of sugar and very bad for fermenting inside you! There is quite a lot of debate in the raw food world around smoothies, largely due to the high sugar content. Victoria Boutenko was pretty much the first to start the "green smoothie revolution" and a lot of people follow this and feel great, but others, including some at the Hippocrates Health Institute, are not into blending at all, and think juicing is much better. So although I do love starting the day with a green smoothie packed with superfoods, I've been alternating them with raw cereals.

Buckwheat crispies with almond milk
I made a big batch of buckwheat crispies, which are really easy to make and they stay fresh for months, in an airtight container. All you do is soak raw buckwheat groats in pure water overnight, rinse them really thoroughly, then dry them in the dehydrator for about 6 hours. I first got this recipe from Ani Phyo's books, and she recommends dehydrating for 3-5 hours, but it think it takes less time in LA as it's so flippin hot there all the time, whereas we can't rely on such good weather here in London! They are quite plain tasting, kind of like Rice Krispies, but much more nutritious! I have these with almond milk, which is delicious and also really easy to make. Soak half a cup of almonds overnight, then drain and rinse them, and blend them up for a minute or 2 with a couple of dates (depending on how sweet you like it, you can add more if you wish), a litre of water and a capful of natural vanilla extract (optional). Then you strain it through a nutmilk bag, or muslin, or a sieve would probably work. It keeps for 4 or 5 days in the fridge- it will separate, don't worry about that, it's normal, just shake it back together again! You can also add raw cacao powder to this to make chocolate milk, then it's kind of like Coco Pops!

I've been eating jalapeno burgers a lot too- I realise I keep going on about them but have never given the recipe. The recipe I use is based on the recipe here: but I make a lot more and slightly alter the amounts, and made the preparation a bit easier as I'm a lazy cow so just bung it all in the food processor basically, instead of having to do lots of fine chopping! And dehydrate longer too. So here's the recipe I use:

Jalapeno burger, mixed sprout salad, marinated mushrooms,
cherry tomatoes with coriander. Lovely lunch.
Soak 3 cups walnuts for 6 hours and then put them in the food processor with 3/4 cup soaked sundried tomatoes and 1/4 cup soaking water. Grind it up until you get a kind of mince texture and put in a big bowl. Then put 2-6 chillies in the food processor, depending on how spicy you like your burgers! I usually add 2 scotch bonnets or 4-6 jalapenos, but for me, the spicier the better. And I love the rich, earthy flavour that jalapenos add to food, not just the heat, so these are my favourite chili. Then also put in 2 small onions, 2-3 tablespoons tamari, a few twists of salt and black pepper, and some cayenne pepper if you want it spicier! You only need to chop these ingredients roughly before putting in the food processor. Blitz it all up until it's finely chopped, then mix it all in with the nut mixture. Form the mixture into burgers- this makes about 18 when I do it, but it depends how big you want them! I roll a spoonful into a ball, then flatten it and put it on the dehydrator tray. I usually dehydrate them for about 6 hours, 3 on each side. They are sooooooo good!

I also made this spicy mayo/dip to go with the burgers and salad, which came out really good:

Rubbish picture of spicy mayo
1 cup cashews, soaked 2 hours
Juice of 1 lemon (approx 2-3 tbsp)
1/2 tsp cayenne
1 tbsp nutritional yeast
1 large clove of garlic
1/2 cup water
1 dash salt

Put it all in the food processor and blend until smooth. That's it!

I have finally got new batteries for my camera, so you won't have to put up with rubbish mobile phone pictures after today's entry! I promise to use my actual camera and take better pictures from now on!

Saturday, 4 September 2010

Homemade chocolate tart

My chocolate tart
Well, I got a bit experimental in the kitchen this afternoon and came up with this chocolate tart which I am quite proud of! It's quite decadent but it's very rich so you only need a small slice! The crust is sweet and coconutty and the filling is a velvety, moussey, chocolatey mouthful of deliciousness! (If I say so myself!) Here's the recipe:

1 1/2 cups hazelnuts
1/ cup shredded coconut
Dash salt
1/ 4 cup coconut oil
1/4 cup agave nectar

Grind the hazelnuts, coconut and a small pinch of salt in the food processor to a crumb-like texture.
Then add the coconut oil (melted over a bowl of warm water first) and agave and mix in til it comes together.
Then press the mixture down in a pie dish to form a crust.
Then put it in the freezer to set while you do the next bit.

1 1/2 avocados (I know, sounds weird, but just go with it- you would never know there is avocado in this when you taste it! It gives it a lovely velevety, rich texture, just believe me and try it!)
1/2 cup raw cacao powder
1/4 cup agave
1/4 cup coconut oil
1 capful natural vanilla extract
2 tbsps water

Basically, bung it all in the food processor and blend it all up. Add the water last- just enough until you get the right kind of silky texture.

Then get, the crust from the freezer, and spread the chocolate filling over the top. Then I sprinkled some more shredded coconut over the top, more for decoration than anything else. And that's it done, easy peasy!

Natalia Rose's guacamole salad
Thought I'd also share with you a couple of salads I've made recently. Last night I made the guacamole salad from The Raw Food Detox Diet which is possibly my favourite ever salad. It's just avocado, tomatoes, romaine lettuce, coriander, garlic, agave, lime juice (well, I used lemon juice as I didn't have any limes) and salt and pepper, but something about the combination is so delicious. It's really quick and easy too, you just bung it all in a bowl and mix it together. The picture is a bit rubbish as the batteries have gone in my camera so today's pics are all taken with my phone!

Packed lunch salad and black pepper cheeze

I'm also in rehearsals for a play at the moment so I've been making packed lunches to take with me again, and on the left is what I had today. The salad has a mix of different stuff in it- alfafa sprouts, mixed bean and lentil sprouts, sweetcorn, yellow pepper, grated carrot, celery and cress (blast from the past- forgot how good it is!) I've a feeling I've forgotten something else I put in it but can't remember what... but anyway, it was lovely. I also brought some more of that liquid gold elixir dressing to go with it that I've talked about before,  also from Natalia Rose's book. The little tub next to the salad is black pepper cheeze from Ani's Raw Food Kitchen. I know I'm always banging on about this book but it is my favourite, I've had it for ages but it's got so many good recipes in it I use it a lot. However, I've just ordered her new book Ani's Raw Food Essentials so I'm really looking forward to that arriving and trying out some of her new recipes. But anyway, the black pepper cheeze from her old one is really tasty. It's made with cashew nuts, and it's so much better than I imagined it would be. Not sure why but I wasn't expecting too much from it, but it's great, quite addictive.

I was going to tell you a bit about the colonic I had yesterday (my first one!) but I've written too much already, but I will just tell you it was great and I thoroughly recommend that everyone gets it done! If you live in London there's a half price deal on at the moment at a brilliant place with great therapists if you go here: so it's only £39. I think you have to book the deal by tomorrow night though (Sunday night). And if you go here first: you get another £5 off so it's only £34, bargain. It's through a free beauty newsletter thing called wahanda which has loads of cheap deals and offers. But I definitely recommend it!

Ok, I have written much more than I intended to so I must go now, but might go into more colonic info at a later date if anyone wants to know any more! See ya x

Wednesday, 1 September 2010

Strawberry shortcake- YUM! Also, marinated mushrooms with broccoli & brazil nut mash and mushroom gravy for dinner.

This picture is not doing it justice!
Last night I made one of my favourite raw dinners, that I hadn't had for a while- marinated mushrooms with broccoli & brazil nut mash and mushroom gravy. It is delicious! It's another one from Ani's Raw Food Kitchen and it's so good, but the mash is very filling and I ate way too much of it! I couldn't get organic portabello mushrooms again though so did it with small organic mushrooms- it still tasted delicious, but you don't get that lovely rich deep texture you get from the portabello ones. The photo is rubbish, it doesn't look that good- I don't think I have a talent in making my food look appetising in pictures! But I swear it's really tasty. So here's the recipe (makes 4 servings):

4 portabello mushrooms, stems removed
1/4 c extra virgin olive oil
1/3 c Nama Shoyu (It's a soy sauce but I've never seen it over here. I use Tamari instead, or you could use Bragg's Liquid Aminos though there is some controversy around the rawness of this)
1 tbsp finely chopped rosemary or 1 tsp dried.

In a large bowl, coat mushrooms in oil, tamari, and rosemary. Set aside for an hour or two to marinate and soften.

Brazil-Broccoli Mash
1 clove garlic
1 pinch ground black pepper
1 tsp sea salt ( I use a lot less than this, or it tastes way too salty. I think you only need a dash)
1 c brazil nuts
2 c broccoli, chopped

Process the garlic, pepper, and salt into tiny pieces. Add brazil nuts and process into a powder. Empty this powder into a bowl and set aside. Next, process the broccoli while slowly adding the brazil nut powder back in.

Mushroom Gravy
1/3 c extra virgin olive oil
3/4 c mushrooms, any kind
1/3 c water
1 1/2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 tsp sea salt

Blend olive oil, mushrooms, water, vinegar, garlic, and salt until smooth.

To serve, slice each mushroom into 4 or 5 thick strips and serve on top of a scoop of brazil-broccoli Mash. Drizzle with mushroom gravy, garnish with a sprig of rosemary before serving.

Strawberry shortcake
Then, this afternoon I made raw strawberry shortcake. The last time I made it, I put a photo of it up on facebook and was told it looked like alien sick! So this time I have attempted to make it look a bit prettier! It's based on this recipe: and if you watch the video you'll see his looks a bit of a mess too! But it really doesn't matter, it tastes fantastic.
I made some little changes to the amounts and ingredients in his recipe but it's basically the same. I also don't have a vitamix so I did everything in the food processor which worked just fine. Here's what I used:
About 25 strawberries
1 1/2 c nuts (I used hazelnuts and brazils- the hazelnuts gave it a lovely flavour)
1/2 c medjool dates
2 tbsp raw honey (or agave if you don't do honey, or more dates if you don't do agave!)
2 dashes salt
1 dash olive oil
Process the nuts and a dash of salt, then add the dates and 1 tbsp raw honey and process until soft and will come together when you pinch the mix, into a kind of dough. Press this down in the bottom of a flan dish or similar.
Then process the strawberries (reserving some to slice and put on top for decoration) with a dash of olive oil, dash of salt and 1 tbsp raw honey until it turns into a creamy sauce.
Pour the strawberry mix over the base and decorate with remaining strawberries.
I thought I'd just taste a little bit while running the washing up water, and ended up having 3 portions! I couldn't stop. I had to cover the rest and put it in the fridge to stop myself. I really recommend this dessert!