27 Jan 2014

FETTUCCINE ALFREDO with ZUCCHINI PASTA & CAULIFLOWER SAUCE


This is pretty amazing. Sometimes I wonder how people even have time to eat animal products when there are so many different ways to use the plethora of edible plants we have on this planet. There's no time to eat the same recipe twice! (Except this one.) Having said that, I ain't judgin'. People can eat what they want, preferably with no one getting hurt, and I will eat what I want. Tonight I wanted this. Real. Bad. 


Inspired by this recipe, I set out to make a pasta sauce that was white, creamy and full of flavour. I paired it with everybody's fave veggie for raw noodles: zucchini. The result was beautiful, tasty and ultra good for you. This also happens to be very filling. I couldn't even finish it and I am still really full (I ate at like 3:00 and it's now 9:30). Well... I also had it with a slice of this.

I just got home from a particularly awesome weekly event in Vancouver about questioning reality, and practicing meditation. The group of people that show up are wonderful and very open to learning and growth; it's such a warm environment and I feel like in the next several weeks I will only become more enlightened as to what is inside my head and heart, as well as to what my place is in the world.

One more thing: I'm thinking of doing a juice fast soon; since if I am being totally honest, lately I've really felt like only consuming liquids (despite my past few recipes). Who wants to join?


FETTUCCINE ALFREDO with ZUCCHINI PASTA & CAULIFLOWER SAUCE

Noodles:
3 small zucchinis 

Sauce:
1 cup cauliflower
1 tablespoon miso paste
1/4 cup cashews 
2 cloves of garlic
1 tablespoon coconut nectar
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
Salt, pepper, paprika and coriander, to taste
Water, as needed 

Toppings:
Parma
Cilantro 

To make the noodles: slice the zucchinis on a mandolin or spiral slicer, or even through a cheese grater. Put in a large bowl and set aside. 

To make the sauce: blend all the ingredients together until smooth and thick, adjusting according to taste. Mix into your noodles and let them sit for 10 minutes to soak up the sauce. Top off with parma and cilantro and enjoy.

VANILLA, RASPBERRY & PEPPERMINT CREAM CAKE with CACAO TRUFFLES


I know, I know; I'm freaking out about this one too. I MEAN CAN LIFE GET ANY MORE MAGICAL! C'mon, momma nature, why you gotta be so amazing? You're making the rest of us look bad. All that is in this cake is fruit, nuts and seeds - and I promise it tastes even better than it looks. Typing that out literally made me giddy and I squealed a little bit just now. 


I'm tryin' real hard to balance out the ratio of dessert and savoury recipes on the blog because I wanna give you what you've been asking for... but you know me - I can't go more than a day without something sweet.

This was made in excitement of reaching 40,000 likes on good ole facebook.com. Sometimes I forget how much of a privilege it is having an entire community of amazing people supporting me through all my trials and tribulations... and cake-making. Seriously, you guys are my emotional backbone, in that you give me strength and confidence with each word and cyber hug we share. Thank you for being.


Lemme give ya a rundown of what this cake is all about. We've got a basic raw crust on the bottom (dates and hemp seeds), followed by three gorgeous cashew and orange cream layers. One is subtly sweet and includes vanilla, one is a bit tart and flavoured with raspberries and one is mega refreshing and packed with peppermint leaves. It's all topped off with dark chocolate (cacao) truffles and drizzle. I also sprinkled mine with hemp and pumpkin seeds because... it looks prettier like dat, ya feel me?

As far as deliciousness goes, I think this is a sufficient description to give you an idea of what to expect:  I practically fell on the floor after my first bite... but instead stayed upright and proceeded to devour a slice in mere minutes with wild eyes while whispering sweet nothings to the very thing I was eating.


VANILLA, RASPBERRY & PEPPERMINT CREAM CAKE with CACAO TRUFFLES  

Crust:
1/2 cup hemp seeds
1/2 oats or almonds
1 cup dates

Cream cake:
2 cups cashews
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 cup dates 
1-2 tablespoons coconut nectar (optional) 
1 teaspoon vanilla powder
Pinch of Himalayan salt
1/4 cup melted coconut oil
1 peeled orange 
Water, as needed (I used about 1 1/2 cups)
1 cup raspberries
1 cup mint leaves

Truffles:
1/2 cup dates
1 tablespoon cacao powder
2 tablespoons melted coconut oil 

Chocolate drizzle:
Use this recipe. 

To make the crust: pulse the hemp seeds and oats or almonds in a food processor until they turn into flour or crumbs. Add the dates and process until it all sticks together somewhat. Press in to the bottom of a lined cake pan (mine is adjustable and was about 7 inches). Put in the fridge.

To make the cream cake: blend all the ingredients together until smooth, EXCEPT the berries and mint. Take out one third of the mixture and pour onto your crust. Put back in the fridge. Take out half of the remaining mixture in the blender and set aside. Add the raspberries to the blender and blend until you get a smooth pink cream. Spread on top of your first layer and put back in the fridge. Put the remaining mixture (that you set aside a moment ago) back into the blender along with the mint leaves; blend until smooth and green. Spread evenly on top of the pink layer and keep in the fridge for 24-48 hours to let the cake set and flavours develop. 

To make the truffles: put all the ingredients in your food processor and process until smooth and thick like frosting. Roll into balls and coat in cacao powder. Decorate your cake with these, as well as hemp and pumpkin seeds, if you like. Drizzle with chocolate and slice! 

26 Jan 2014

RAW VEGAN POUTINE: IS THIS REAL LIFE?


Yes, yes, this is real life. My friend told me awhile ago that I should try making a raw vegan version of a Canadian culinary favourite: poutine. This is the result and I've gotta say I'm pretty happy with it. Poutine is a dish that originates from Quebec (if I'm not mistaken) and includes a hearty serving of french fries topped with gravy and cheese curds. Not exactly a health food but hey, people love it. And I love this. Well... loved*. It's in my stomach now.

The "fries" are slices of jicama (a turnip-like sweet root) coated in spices and olive oil, the gravy is a mushroom-onion sauce and the "cheese curds" are spoonfuls of a creamy cashew-herb cheeze. I added avocado and chives to mine for extra colour and more textures. I'm not claiming this tastes like the original, and it doesn't even really look like it, but guess what: I don't care. This is a delicious, healthful recipe all by itself that just happens to be inspired by poutine, and there's nothing wrong about that. Dig in.


RAW VEGAN POUTINE with MUSHROOM GRAVY, CASHEW CHEEZE & JICAMA FRIES 

Fries:
1 jicama 
1/2 teaspoon each of cumin, turmeric, coriander, salt, pepper, chili
2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil 

Gravy:
1 cup mushrooms
1/2 onion
2 teaspoons tamari (or salt, to taste)
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon sage
1 teaspoon thyme
2 dates
Water, as needed

Cashew cheeze:
1 cup cashews
3 tablespoons nutritional yeast
Salt and pepper, to taste
1/2 teaspoon each of basil, rosemary, turmeric, dill
Water, as needed

To make the fries: peel and slice the jicama into fries then coat in the other ingredients and dehydrate for a few hours or leave as is. You can also use your oven at it's lowest temperature. 

To make the gravy: blend all the ingredient until smooth, adding water as needed. Adjust according to taste. 

To make the cheeze: same instructions as the gravy, adding as little water as possible. Leave in the fridge overnight so it thickens up. Top off your fries with cheeze, grazy, chives and avocado. Some salsa and nut meat would be great additions too. Nom. 

24 Jan 2014

CREAMY BUTTERNUT SQUASH SOUP with MARINATED MUSHROOMS


Raw soup gets me through the winter. It's warming, filling, super nutritious, and easy and quick to make. You can basically throw whatever you want into the blender and it ends up being a delicious bowl of warm goodness. Think of raw soups as savoury smoothies. Or not. I don't wanna force you against your will or anything... our relationship doesn't have to go there. Let's keep it friendly, okay? Let's make some soup, yeah? 


In case you didn't just catch this from the series of mushroom photos above; I like shrooms. A) They are delicious and have a unique texture unlike any other plants (maybe that's because they're fungi, not plants... oh yeah) and B) they are B-E-A-UTIFUL, amiright? They look like magical clouds or intricate architectural plans. Enough about fungus for now though, the squash deserves some credit too; nobody gets left out 'round these parts. Butternut squash has loads of fiber and cancer-fighting beta-carotene, plus it's a lovely colour and also has a special taste profile which is even more flavourful when you serve it raw. 

Okay is it just me or is my writing irregularly weird today? Probably due to the fact that my mum is sitting in the same room as me practicing a script for a children's book (she's an actress); it's messing with my head and making it kinda hard to concentrate... 

"Little Bo Peep has lost her sheep and doesn't know where to find them... and doesn't know where to find them... and doesn't know where to find them..." 

AH. Enough! I'm just gonna give you guys the recipe: click here

16 Jan 2014

RAW VEGAN TIRAMISU with VANILLA CREAM & COFFEE LADYFINGERS


You guys have been asking for this recipe for a looong time now. Apologies for not making it sooner. But now that it's here - let's all take a moment to dance and sing about the wonders of the earth. In what other world can we create a luscious, creamy, sweet dessert entirely from raw nuts and fruits that looks and tastes THIS good? This is it, folks - welcome to the best place ever. On that note, since our spherical abode IS so welcoming to us, maybe we should return the favour? Let's not leave our garbage lying around, let's not pollute the water, let's not steal milk from baby cows, let's not mess with nature (yes, I'm talking about GMOs) and let's not eat our animal friends!? 

None of that is necessary. This recipe, however, is a mandatory task. By that I DO mean the planet will implode if you don't make it and enjoy the heck out of its healthy, sexy flavour. ASAP. 


I am very pleased with how this recipe turned out. I wasn't sure I'd be able to recreate the classic dessert that became such a celeb in the 50's (?), but I did! I think this would probably taste equally mind-blowing if you used macadamias instead of pine nuts. Jus' sayin'. I used cold-pressed coffee for the ladyfingers and the combo of the coffee plus sweet vanilla cream plus cacao powder on the top is pure bliss, let me tell ya. Actually, don't listen to me. See for yourself... with your taste buds... 

"Taste buds don't have eyes, Emily, so they can't see. What are you even talking about..." 

Dammit. 


New train of thought: as far as my personal life is concerned - things are on the up and up! The past week I have been busy working on my second book (pre-order my other one here), reestablishing old friendships, thinking hard in my university lecture halls, cuddling with my current beau, and maintaining my "healthy" addiction to my record player and collection. Anybody dig Carpenters? I cannot get enough of them right now. Also 2Pac. Gotta love the Pac... and what the HECK!? The album Surf's Up by The Beach Boys is insane. 

"Okay, that's enough rambling from the likes of you, Em... just give us the recipe."

Hmph. 


RAW VEGAN TIRAMISU with VANILLA CREAM & COFFEE LADYFINGERS

Crust:
1 cup oats or walnuts
1 cup raisins
2 tablespoons cold-pressed coffee*

Ladyfingers:
1 cup oats
1 cup dates
Pinch of salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons cold-pressed coffee*

Vanilla cream:
2 cups pine nuts or macadamia nuts 
2 cups water, as needed
1/4 cup liquid coconut oil
3 tablespoons coconut nectar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
3 teaspoons soy lecithin (optional, but recommended to thicken the mixture)

To make the crust: process the oats or walnuts into flour in a food processor. Add the raisins and coffee and process until it forms a ball. Press evenly into the bottom of a lined bread pan. Set in the fridge.

To make the ladyfingers: process the oats into flour in a food processor then combine the rest of the ingredients in a food processor until they begin to stick together. Form into rectangular cookies (ladyfingers) that will fit into your baking pan. Dehydrate for 1-2 hours on each side, or use your oven at its lowest temperature.

To make the vanilla cream: blend all the ingredients until smooth and thick, like pudding, adding liquid as needed. Spread half this mixture onto your crust, then place your lady fingers close beside each other on top of the vanilla cream. Carefully spread on the rest of the vanilla cream and set in the fridge or freezer for at least 24 hours. 

When ready to serve: gently take the tiramisu out of the pan, dust with cacao powder, and slice into squares with a sharp knife.

*Steep roasted coffee beans in water overnight, strain and use the liquid.


13 Jan 2014

LIVE LONG AND PROSPER


Today I'm reviewing some products sent to me by a friend. They come from the companies Longevity Power and Ancient Sun Nutrition. I received a bunch of super food powders made by Longevity Power, and a couple raw chocolate bars made by Ancient Sun Nutrition.

The super food powders are ultra smooth and I've been adding them to my smoothies in the morning for an extra energy boost and increased mental clarity, as well as faster recovery after exercise. My fave smoothie recipe right now is 2 bananas, 1 orange, 1 cup frozen pineapple, 2 cups water and 1 tablespoon spirulina powder! The raw chocolate bars didn't last very long - I ate them in two days and enjoyed every bite. One was minty and the other included blue green algae... sounds weird, but trust me, it's delish.


Among the powders I received, there was maca, spirulina and goji berry. I also am experimenting with the red asparagus root powder which is supposed to alleviate stress. And finally there's one bottle that apparently has over 60 super foods in it... woah, man. That's the one I like adding to my smoothies. When I share it with friends, they say they notice they feel "cleaner" or "clearer". 

As I always say, products like these are not necessary to achieve optimum health - but if they work for you, then they can definitely be a useful and effective tool. They are, in fact, concentrated high quality nutrition which is effortlessly absorbed by your body. Besides, they're fun to try and delicious to taste. Just remember that they are supplements; and ultimately long-lasting, sustainable health is found from a plant-based, whole foods diet with adequate water, sleep, sunshine and exercise.

10 Jan 2014

TOMATO CUCUMBER SANDWICH on ONION & CORN BREAD with OLIVE & KALE TAPENADE


I literally could not stop eating this. It tastes so incredibly vibrant and delicious that I bet you won't be able to control yourself either. The bread is moist, chewy and bursting with flavour from the veggies it's made from; so it pairs perfectly with the fillings of tomatoes, cucumber and kale & olive tapenade, because those ingredients are supa fresh too.

Since it's winter, the kitchen is too dark to photograph food in now, so I have moved out to the deck (which we recently got a roof for, so the lighting isn't too harsh anymore). So here I am, out on our deck, gobbling up mini sandwich after sandwich and making quite a mess because I just want to get this glorious grub in my mouth... I think it was the last bit of confirmation needed by my neighbours to declare me 100% nuts. But there aren't even any nuts in this recipe! Gimme a break! ("Ha-ha... Emily, you're so hilarious...")


The recipe instructions tell you to marinate the tomatoes and cucumber, but FYI: the veggies you see in these photos were just plain and raw - I simply sliced them and used them like that. You can do whatever you want. You can also use whatever fillings you want! The reason I used tomato and cuke is because they were sitting in the kitchen and basically begging to be enjoyed (you can call me the veggie whisperer, it ain't no thang).

I can't wait for you guys to try this recipe out, because I KNOW you've been wanting more savoury lunch and dinner ideas. Me knowing that has nothing to do with my vegetable telepathy skills; I can just read comments on Facebook. Some other savoury recipes to expect include poutine, soups, bread, salads, pizza, wraps, etc. Having said that... I may or may not have made raw vegan tiramisu... it might be in the freezer... I'm sorry! But no one can defeat my sweet tooth. It's a von Euw thing; ask my dad.


I think if you make this recipe, you should listen to an album called Spiritual State by Nujabes while you eat. Here's an amazing track from it. Most of the album is instrumental, smooth and jazzy; but every now and then you've got some sweet rhymes being dropped. Very chill positive vibes... just like what you're gonna feel when you munch on these sandwiches.

I have to say: I am feeling amazing about life in general. Two days ago I received my first advance copy of my book, Rawsome Vegan Baking, in the mail, I just got a second book deal (expect a smoothie, juice and energy bar cookbook from me in December 2014), I'm going to be working closely with an amazing sustainability-focused company (more deets to come), school has started again and I love all my courses, I essentially got married to my record player, and I am overflowing with inspiration and recipe ideas for the blog! I feel like I kinda said all that in my last post, but I may as well repeat it because a) you could be new here and b) it's just how I FEEL!

Enough random typing. Let's eat.


TOMATO CUCUMBER SANDWICH on ONION & CORN BREAD with OLIVE & KALE TAPENADE

ONION & CORN BREAD

1 cup flax seeds
1 cup sunflower seeds
1 cup corn  
1 chopped onion
2 chopped tomatoes
Salt, pepper and cumin, to taste

Grind the flax and sunflower seeds into flour in a high speed blender. Put this flour in a food processor. Add the other ingredients to the food processor. Pulse until the mixture becomes kinda like chunky paste. You may have to mix it up with a spatula a few times. Spread onto dehydrator trays and dehydrate for about 2 hours, then slice into squares and flip over. Dehydrate for another 2 hours until the slices are pliable. Note: if you don't have a dehydrator, use your oven at it's lowest temperature.

OLIVE & KALE TAPENADE

1 bunch kale
1/3 cup olives
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
Pink Himalayan salt, as desired
1 peel garlic clove (optional)

Soak the olives in the olive oil over night. Throw all the ingredients in a blender or food processor and process until it reaches the consistency of pesto or tapenade.

TOMATO & CUCUMBER

1/2 cucumber
2 tomatoes
Salt, pepper and cumin

Slice the tomatoes and cucumber and coat lightly in olive oil and spices, set in the dehydrator (or oven at its lowest temperature) until it softens and its skin begins to wrinkle. Spread the tapenade onto your bread, followed by your veg slices. Chomp!