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Advanced Raw Cuisine: Day 11

raw vegan thai salad

I’m officially into my third week of Advanced Raw Cuisine via Matthew Kenney Culinary Online. Today marks the start of… wait for it… PASTRY WEEK! We’ll be making cookies, breads, and crackers, and finishing the week with some chocolate making and a cheese plate with the nut cheeses that have been patiently fermenting in the refrigerator. I really loved putting the cheese plate together in the first level fundamentals class. The recipes we worked on today were fabulous. I have no doubt the rest of the week will be a lot of fun. 🙂

It’s time to get back to the cinnamon rolls… They were setting up in the freezer, and then I sliced them. I prefer my sweets in smaller portions, so I made these rolls smaller than usual. Not a whole lot of “swirl” going on, but I think they’re cute anyway. Cutting them down to this size also allowed me to use my sushi mat to roll them, which made the whole process really easy. After slicing, they went into the dehydrator for a few hours to warm up before plating and serving them later today.

raw vegan cinnamon rolls raw vegan cinnamon rolls

The next project was to learn a method for making raw bread loaves in the dehydrator! I had seen some of these before in old raw foods books, but they relied on sprouted glutenous grains, which I am unable to eat. This method does not! We used flours from some nuts and some sprouted gluten free grains for these. The seaweed, Irish moss, was used to hold the whole thing together and give it a bit of a bouncy texture. 

Since these breads will be going on our cheese plates at the end of the week, we were given free reign to add our own seasonings and make our own shapes. The rectangular loaf has some chopped olives in it. In the profile, you’ll see I shaped it like a cute miniature loaf of bread with the little “bubble” at the top. Those high school pottery classes are finally paying off! 😉

The second rounder loaf has a big of molasses and chicory root tea added in to give it a darker color and depth of flavor, as well as some caraway seed. My intent for that one was to be like a faux-rye bread with a biscotti-like profile after it is sliced. I am so excited to see how these turn out!

raw vegan bread loaf raw vegan bread loaf raw vegan bread loaf raw vegan bread loaf

All this pastry work sure does make a girl hungry. Thank goodness there was a salad recipe planned for today. This is a “Thai salad”. We learned more about combining unique ingredients and textures, and also about styling salads. This is a great lesson for me because I absolutely love salad, and I’m always looking for ways to make them a bit prettier. There is a little bit of the spicy sesame dressing peeking out from under the greens, and some more mixed into the mix of colorful vegetables and coconut on the top.

This was an amazingly delicious salad. It’s still pretty warm here in central Florida, so it was nice to have something that was light and refreshing, but still had a lot of flavor. I would definitely make this one again!

raw vegan thai salad raw vegan thai salad raw vegan thai salad

After the salad, it was time for dessert. It’s pastry week, right? Bring on the pastries! =D

Remember that chocolate chili sauce I made on day 10? It’s going on the cinnamon rolls! This was one exotic dessert and I really loved it! The rolls are topped with some chocolate and chopped walnuts (the rolls also have walnuts in them). The drink you see paired with them is a chili-cacao herbal tea with a cashew foam to make something that is kind of a cross between a tea latte and a cappuccino. I topped it with a few slivers of thai chili pepper. Chocolate and chili are one of my favorite flavor combinations! 

This wraps up day 11. Looking forward to more pastry adventures on day 12!

raw vegan spicy chocolate butter raw vegan cinnamon rolls raw vegan cinnamon rolls

Advanced Raw Cuisine: Day 8

raw vegan vietnamese pho

Day 8 of Advanced Raw Cuisine at Matthew Kenney Culinary is completed! 

The day started by soaking some chondrus crispus, commonly known as the seaweed, Irish moss. This is a seaweed that is a natural source of carrageenan – about 55% by weight. It is also a rich source of minerals. We use it in raw cuisine because of its gelling abilities. It is also about 10% protein! To use it, we soak it in water for 3-4 hours and then blend it with some water to make a gel that can be added to our recipes. 

irish moss soaking

 As this is the week we learned about advanced equipment, today we were introduced to the smoking gun. This is a really neat gadget that allows you to “cold smoke” food and beverages. There is a chamber where you put a small amount of a combustible, usually wood chips, and then you light them until they smolder. The fan in the gun blows the smoke that is produced through the tube and by inserting it into a sealed container, the smoke becomes infused into the foods that are in that container.

For this project, we smoked the raw coconut and cashew tofu that was made yesterday. The smoked was produced so fast that I didn’t have a chance to snap a photo of it in action, but you can see it hovering above the tofu cubes The sealed container is left alone until it’s not longer cloudy from the smoke, and then you know it’s been absorbed. It adds such a rich dimension of flavor to recipes, and it’s fun to play with!

raw vegan smoked tofu raw vegan smoked tofu raw vegan smoked tofu

After smoking the tofu, it was time to assemble the pho dish. We made an intricate broth, with 16 different ingredients, but it was well worth it. It had a very complex and delicious flavor, and it went down so easy. It was both light in texture and very flavorful. We added squash and coconut noodles, some scallions, red pepper, cilantro, the smoked tofu, and a few curried cashews. The whole thing was topped off with some black sesame seeds. 

If you’d like to make this recipe at home, it is on page 92 of Matthew Kenney’s book, Everyday Raw Express: Recipes in 30 Minutes or Less.

raw vegan vietnamese pho raw vegan vietnamese pho raw vegan vietnamese pho raw vegan vietnamese pho raw vegan vietnamese pho

 

After eating this amazing dish, we reviewed and started a panna cotta recipe. There were a few different flavor options available, and I chose the one that used raw cacao butter so that I would have white chocolate panna cotta! Here they are hanging out in a couple different mold shapes about to go into the freezer so I can eat them tomorrow. 🙂

raw vegan white chocolate panna cotta raw vegan white chocolate panna cotta raw vegan white chocolate panna cotta

That concludes day 8! Looking forward to day 9!

 

Advanced Raw Cuisine: Day 6

raw vegan beet carpaccio

Day 6 of Advanced Raw Cuisine at Matthew Kenney Culinary has been completed! This starts the second week of class where the focus is on “advanced equipment”. We’ll be learning how to use the sous vide technique for raw food, how to infuse a smoky flavor into the food via a smoking gun, and how to use the dehydrator as a hot box. I’m very excited about playing with some new kitchen toys!

To start the day, some prep work was required. I made almond milk and processed the strained out pulp into almond flour. I also made some oat flour by soaking raw oat groats, dehydrating them, grinding the grains, and sifting the flour from the bran. 

Next, it was time to harvest some herbs and season the macadamia goat cheese, which had been fermenting over the last 24 hours. I choose lemon balm, parsley, and dill. The lemon balm added a really nice flavor. It is slightly tangy like lemon, slightly sweet, and slightly bitter. It’s one of my favorite tea herbs. The parsley added an earthy quality to the mix, and the dill gave it a rich and savory quality. I love dill so much. I’d put it in everything if I could. 

fresh garden herbs

The macadamia cheese was shaped into a log by rolling it in parchment paper. It was then rolled in the fresh chopped herbs. It had a very herbal and earthy flavor, complimented by the tanginess and saltiness of the nut cheese itself. 

If you’d like to make the macadamia goat cheese, you can fine the recipe on page 48 of Everyday Raw Express: Recipes in 30 Minutes or Less by Matthew Kenney.

raw vegan macadamia goat cheese raw vegan macadamia goat cheese

Following the cheese flavoring, it was time to experiment with the sous vide technique! I was a little intimidated that our first project was to utilize beets. It’s no secret that I have a love-hate relationship with them. I try to like them, I really do. I know they’re super healthy, but they taste like dirt to me. It’s not my fault though. Science says I’m just overly sensitive to geosmin. I taste it in fresh corn sometimes too. 

Geosmin is an organic compound with a distinct earthy flavor and aroma produced by a type of Actinobacteria, and is responsible for the earthy taste of beets and a contributor to the strong scent (petrichor) that occurs in the air when rain falls after a dry spell of weather or when soil is disturbed.” [Wikipedia]

Another side effect of being a supertaster, I suppose. So there. 

I chose yellow beets for this assignment since they have a milder flavor to me. I also love they are the color of sunshine, and I live in the Sunshine State, after all. I sliced the beets on a mandolin, tossed them in some seasoning, and added some fresh herbs from my garden. They went into a vacuum sealed back, and then into the water bath.

I’m using the Anova Sous Vide Immersion Circulator. It’s pretty awesome. It clips onto any container, so you can use a big stockpot that you might already have and it stores easily since it’s basically just a metal cylinder. It stores easily if you have a small place like I do, and there’s no need to purchase a separate sous vide machine. Best of all, it’s very reasonably priced at less than $200 if you get it through Amazon.

raw vegan sous vide beets raw vegan sous vide beets raw vegan sous vide beets

After this project, we made an oat crumble and put it into the dehydrator and also made an almond gelato, which was put into the freezer to set up. 

Then, it was time for a lesson about agar agar. Agar is a seaweed that has amazing gelling properties. It’s not technically raw, but as a sea vegetable, it is rich in minerals, low in calories, and a good source of fiber. It can be used as a replacement for gelatin, and it can also be re-heated and re-blended if it sets too quickly. It’s a very versatile and it’s benefits outweigh its drawbacks. We used it to make a raw vegan version of tofu, with a base of coconut and cashew. 

It had a really nice flavor and texture. It didn’t have the same weird aftertaste that traditional soy based tofu does, and it is completely soy free. If you’d like to make this recipe, it is on page 66 of Matthew Kenney’s book, Everyday Raw.

raw vegan coconut tofu raw vegan coconut tofu

Finally, it was time to plate the beets with the components that we’d been putting together. This dish contains the sous vide beets, the macadamia goat cheese, the lemon butter I made on day 5 and put in the freezer, some crushed pistachio, and a few microgreens or sprouts. 

If you’d like to make this dish, you can find a similar recipe on page 48 of Everyday Raw Express: Recipes in 30 Minutes or Less by Matthew Kenney.

raw vegan beet carpaccio raw vegan beet carpaccio raw vegan beet carpaccio raw vegan beet carpaccio raw vegan beet carpaccio raw vegan beet carpaccio

What a great and delicious day! I can’t wait to see what we’ll be creating next!

Advanced Raw Cuisine: Day 5

raw vegan corn and mint ravioli

I just completed day 5 of the Advanced Raw Cuisine course through Matthew Kenney Academy. What a wonderful experience my first week has been so far. We covered different types of sauces extensively every day, putting our lessons into practice with a variety of delicious recipe creations. For many of these recipes, we also learned new techniques for food preparation. 

Today, we learned about a 5th type of sauce used in raw cuisine, the “enhanced sauce”. This group of sauces is quite versatile. They are emulsified and using the basic method, they can be used to create either a light and silky smooth sauce, a butter, or an ice cream. For today’s lesson, we used this technique to create a tangy “tomato fondue”, which was used as a sauce in a raw ravioli dish that we plated later in the day.

raw vegan tomato fondueraw vegan tomato fondue raw vegan tomato fondue

While the sauce was warming and thickening in the dehydrator, we created a second enhanced sauce. We were given the option of creating either an olive oil ice cream or a basil butter. I chose the basil butter because I grow my own basil, and I love being able to make recipes with food that I’ve grown myself. This creation went straight from the blender into the freezer to use at a later time. 

basil

When the tomato fondue came out of the dehydrator, it was time to assemble and plate the rest of the ravioli components. We made the corn and mint pesto, which you can see hiding between the coconut wrapper squares  in some of the photos, and we also tossed a little baby arugula with a little olive oil, pine nuts, salt and pepper to help break up the color and spacing on the plate. I had the coconut wrapper squares that were prepared and cut up for the previous day’s lesson all ready to go! 

Bonus: The mint came from my garden. It’s really rewarding to be able to use my own herbs in these recipes!

This is the final result. The whole dish came together beautifully. I was able to put it together quickly and have it ready for lunch time. The tomato fondue was savory, tangy, and had a buttery, but light consistency. The corn and mint pesto was very slightly sweet and refreshing. The coconut wrappers were infused with a bit of carrot and also offered a subtle sweetness to contrast the tanginess in the sauce. They also contributed a more solid, but still soft texture. The arugula tossed with olive oil and lightly seasoned added just a hint of bitterness and saltiness, which nicely balanced the whole dish, both in flavor and in plating. I was thrilled with how well this turned out.

raw vegan corn and mint ravioli raw vegan corn and mint ravioli raw vegan corn and mint ravioli raw vegan corn and mint ravioli

The final project of the day was to get started on some macadamia nut “goat” cheese, which will be used in some recipes over the next few days (and probably plenty of snacking too). 🙂

raw vegan macadamia nut goat cheese raw vegan macadamia nut goat cheese

 

Advanced Raw Cuisine: Day 4

green curry kelp noodles

Day 4 of Advanced Raw Cuisine at Matthew Kenney Culinary has been completed!

Today’s creations were very exciting! We revisited the coconut wrapper technique that we learned in Level 1 and used to create the kimchi dumplings. For this variation, we added a little carrot juice to give them a brilliant orange color. They went into the dehydrator and will be used in a recipe tomorrow to create ravioli!

This is a really simple method to create flexible grain free wrappers that can be used in a variety of ways, from wraps to dumplings, to ravioli. Just blend some fresh young coconut, toss in a pinch of salt and whatever vegetable juice you’d like to color/flavor it with, and dehydrate until it holds together, but remains flexible. 

carrot coconut wrappers carrot coconut wrappers

The next project, green curry kelp noodles, was the main focal point of the day, and was used to illustrate today’s sauce lesson: plant based sauces. This is a class of raw vegan sauces that use pureed produce as a base. The green curry sauce we made today incorporated coconut milk and herbs with sweet and spicy notes.

It was plated with kelp noodles that we tenderized with warm water and baking soda. This was nothing short of amazing to me. I’ve tried kelp noodles before, and I could never completely get past the crisp texture and semi-bitter flavor until now. Simply soaking them with a little baking soda softened them up just like rice noodles and made the flavor more neutral, and they are completely raw! In this state, they are easily seasoned by any sauces and flavors that are mixed with them. We marinaded these in some chili oil and lime juice. 

The marinaded kelp noodles are topped up with a variety of vegetable noodles that include zucchini, carrot, and radish. Also in the mix are some marinaded mushrooms, fresh cilantro leaves, and some of those curried nuts we made yesterday

It was an amazingly fresh and vibrant dish, full of flavor and texture. I ate every last drop! 🙂

thai green curry kelp noodles green curry kelp noodles green curry kelp noodles green curry kelp noodles

The final task of the day was to flavor our nut cheeses that we started fermenting on day 2. Below, I have created:

  • caraway and smoked paprika (macadamia nut/ fermented coconut water)
  • honey, cinnamon, cardamom, and fig (brazil and pine nut/ water kefir)
  • parsley, onion, garlic, and turmeric (cashew/ probiotic powder)
  • dill (macadamia nut/ rejuvelac)

I can’t wait to eat these! They have a couple weeks to set up in the fridge though, as this is a lesson in aging nut cheeses. 

raw vegan fermented nut cheese raw vegan fermented nut cheese raw vegan fermented nut cheese raw vegan fermented nut cheese

Raw Food Level 1: Day 17-18

raw vegan mango lassi panna cotta with black cherry sauce

Raw Food Level 1 is almost complete! Just 2 more days of class to go! Over the course of days 17-18, I worked on a lemon tart as part of the process for learning how to use Irish moss. Irish moss is a seaweed that can be used to thicken puddings, tart fillings, etc. 

Here is a photo of the seaweed soaking in preparation to use it.

irish moss soaking

There were some other essential skills that we learned here too. We made tart crusts that firmed up in the refrigerator, a frozen meringue formed into a quenelle, and some dehydrated citrus slices. It was fun learning how to make the quenelle, a classic French technique. I’ve always wanted to learn how to do that. All my frozen treats will be fancier from now on. I also didn’t know that you could dehydrate and eat citrus slices. I always found the peels to be bitter when blended or juiced, but after painting on a little agave and dehydrating, they are a delicious tart treat!

I shared this tart with my husband and visiting relatives, and they all gave it a big thumbs up.

raw vegan lemon meringue tart raw vegan lemon meringue tart raw vegan lemon meringue tart raw vegan lemon meringue tart raw vegan lemon meringue tart raw vegan lemon meringue tart

Both of the dishes that I’m working on for my final project are of my own creation. We were tasked to come up with a three course menu, and then to execute two of the dishes. I chose the starter and the dessert. 

My starter is a cucumber tzatziki roll. The herbs are on the inside and the cucumber is on the outside! It is topped with a sweet pepper relish and paired with a root vegetable with a cumin vinaigrette. Which of my practice plating arrangements do you like best? 

raw vegan cucumber tzatziki rolls with root vegetable salad raw vegan cucumber tzatziki rolls with root vegetable salad raw vegan cucumber tzatziki rolls with root vegetable saladraw vegan cucumber tzatziki rolls with root vegetable salad

 My dessert is a mango lassi panna cotta infused with with cardamom and dusted with cinnamon. It is paired with a peppery black cherry sauce to create a spice blend reminiscent of chai. The panna cotta is topped off with a pecan tuile. Below are the photos of my practice plating before my big final presentation on day 19!

raw vegan mango lassi panna cotta with black cherry sauce raw vegan mango lassi panna cotta with black cherry sauce raw vegan mango lassi panna cotta with black cherry sauce raw vegan mango lassi panna cotta with black cherry sauce

Raw Food Fundamentals: Day 11

raw vegan chocolate truffles

Day 11 of learning raw food fundamentals has been completed!

I started the day with some lessons about how to make raw vegan versions of cheese. This was very insightful. I have seen other recipes in the raw food community about fermented nut cheeses, and this course has allowed me to do some fun experiments with that, as well as learn some great techniques. I can now re-create comfort foods and as an added bonus, get some extra probiotics in my diet. I will never complain about that. 😉

Here is some “swiss cheese” spread out on the dehydrator sheet ready to go in. We’ll see what it looks like tomorrow.

raw vegan swiss cheese

After this, I started the process of soaking and sprouting some buckwheat for use in a later recipe. After the soaking is done, it still has to be dehydrated back to a crispy state. I am excited to see what it will be used for. 

Next came the assignment I was most eager to work on. CHOCOLATE! That’s right, we learned how to make chocolate truffles, and we got to select our own toppings. The texture and flavor of these is amazing. They aren’t overly sweet either, like the truffles you might purchase in a chocolate shop. I think they had just the right amount of sweetness. 

The recipe for the batter to make the truffles is in Matthew Kenney’s book, Raw Chocolate

In the photo with the truffles on the big round plate, the center truffle has pecans on it, and the flavors on the rest, starting clockwise from 12 o’clock position, are:

  1. cacao nib/chili powder/applewood smoked sea salt
  2. bee pollen
  3. pistachio
  4. maple candied pineapple
  5. lime zest, dried coconut, coconut sugar
  6. cinnamon, ginger, orange and lemon zests
  7. cinnamon
  8. cacao nib / Pirate’s Bite spice blend from Spice & Tea Exchange in Winter Park, FL

I sampled a few to make sure they were safe to eat. I have some other taste testers coming to visit tomorrow. 😉

raw vegan chocolate truffle toppingsraw vegan chocolate trufflesraw vegan chocolate trufflesraw vegan chocolate trufflesraw vegan chocolate truffles

 After my fun afternoon of truffle rolling (which may or may not have been accompanied by a lemon honey margarita), we made pancake batter. They’re all ready to go into the dehydrator! I was really excited to see this. I haven’t had pancakes in a long time. I can’t wait to see what they taste like!

raw vegan pancake batter

I’m all set for big day #12! I can’t wait to have more fun with the fermented cheeses and see how these pancakes turn out!

Fundamentals of Raw Cuisine: Day 7

raw vegan kimchi dumplings

I made it to Day 7 of Fundamentals of Raw Cuisine! As I’m on the extended timeline, this is about half way through my third week of working on this. It’s a lot of work, but very rewarding. 

I worked on more knife skills to start off this day of course work, but you are probably getting tired of seeing the same cuts every day. Besides, today, I was told to work on getting my speed faster, so I was not allowed to measure as I went, but instead just had to cut, cut, cut, and measure afterward. Surprisingly, I didn’t do too bad. Most of my cuts were the right width or close to it, but my length was way off. Apparently, I can’t tell the difference between 2.5″ and 3.25″. This is why I am not a carpenter. 🙂

Anyway, the first thing I did today was to blend up some tostada shells and stick the into the dehydrator for a recipe that will be assembled on Day 8. After that, it was time to assemble the kimchi dumplings using the cilantro coconut wrappers that I put into the dehydrator yesterday. The filling called for tahini, so of course, I made my own. I’m going to reuse the rest for hummus later. 🙂

raw tahini

I will not lie. These wrappers were very challenging. I actually messed up the first batch, and had to re-do them. I’m not about being wasteful, especially when I had to spend hours cracking coconuts, scraping their meat out, etc. So, I took my too-thin, cracked, and dried up coconut wrapper failures, and put them in the blender with some water. I figured the dehydrator takes water out, so I’ll just put some back in. Thankfully, it worked.

I was a little wiser about spreading the mixture on the dehydrator sheets the second time, but even then, I had to keep a close eye on them. I checked every few hours and brushed on a little water if I thought an area looked like it was drying faster than another, paranoid that it would crack again. After they came out, I cut them into squares to be used for the dumpling wrappers. 

We used our homemade kimchi and some other ingredients to make a creamy/spicy filling for the wrappers. They were topped with a ginger foam (which didn’t really foam up all that well for me), and the plate was sauced with a red cabbage puree that had some of the kimchi juices in it.

To be honest, I wasn’t thrilled with my plating on this one, but we have been encouraged to be a bit bolder and more asymmetrical, to play with white space, etc., so I’ve been taking the opportunity to experiment a bit. I am getting some great feedback from my instructor, so my plating is improving each time. 

If you are interested to make these dumplings, the recipe is in Everyday Raw by Matthew Kenney on page 64. It is the recipe called “Sesame Cashew Dumplings”. The modification made for the class was to blend some homemade kimchi into the fillings.

raw vegan kimchi dumplings raw vegan kimchi dumplings raw vegan kimchi dumplings raw vegan kimchi dumplings raw vegan kimchi dumplings

The last assignment of the day was to make ice cream. OH YES! We were given a base recipe for a vanilla ice cream and some ideas for modifying it to make our own flavors. I came up with this “orange cake” ice cream, which I really loved, and I topped it off with a sage infused honey that I made with sage from my garden and a local raw orange blossom honey. The honey is really what inspired me to combine orange and sage to begin with. 

My ice cream recipe is a modification of the base vanilla ice cream recipe they provided for us, which can be found in Matthew Kenney’s book, Everyday Raw Desserts on page 138.

raw vegan orange cake ice cream raw vegan orange cake ice cream raw vegan orange cake ice cream raw vegan orange cake ice cream raw vegan orange cake ice cream raw vegan orange cake ice cream

 

Lastly, I am going to toot my own horn a little bit because I am tickled pink to have had (more of) my photos re-blogged by Matthew Kenney’s official Tumblr account. See my kimchi dumplings and my ice cream? =D

adrienne frankenfield food photos on matthew kenney tumblr adrienne frankenfield kimchi dumpling photo on matthew kenney tumblr adrienne frankenfield ice cream photo on matthew kenney tumblr

Fundamentals of Raw Cuisine: Day 6

raw vegan pad thai

Day 6 of my raw food classes (“Fundamentals of Raw Cuisine” at Matthew Kenney Academy) started off with more knife skills exercises. Slowly, but surely, I am getting used to the proper way of gripping everything and moving a little faster with my cutting. We are focusing on accuracy this week, so I had to pull out the ruler to make sure my cuts were precise. My carrot strips always bend after I cut them!

knife skills exercises knife skills exercises knife skills exercises

We also started working with coconuts this week! This is something that I am already familiar with, but that doesn’t make it any easier! I do have a lot more confidence in cracking coconuts now than the first time that I did it. I have an old meat cleaver that has never actually been used on any meat… I use it only for breaking into my coconuts!

We already got the heads up for approximately how many coconuts we would be using in this course, so my wonderful husband bought me a whole case of them, and I spent all day Sunday hacking them open, draining the water, scooping the meat, cleaning the brown skin that lines the shells off the meat, etc.

I got everything put inside of freezer safe containers and bags so I’m all set and hopefully won’t have to crack anymore coconuts open for the rest of the class. I hope I have enough! Most of them looked pretty good and had thicker meat than average. My husband must have a hidden talent for picking out better coconuts than I do!

cracking open young thai coconuts

After the coconut cracking, we started working on a recipe for cilantro coconut wrappers that will be used for a dumpling recipe on Day 7. There will be a finished photo of it with the Day 7 material. Coconuts make great additions to wrappers made in the dehydrator because their fat content helps to keep them pliable. 

The next thing we got to do was make the smoothie recipe that we created at the end of week 1! I made my smoothie and felt that it needed a few adjustments, so after my second try, I was happy with the final result. I decided to call it the “Summer Chiller Smoothie” because of all the seasonal and cooling ingredients in it. Just click the link to go check out the recipe!

Summer Chiller Smoothie with cucumber juice, frozen pineapple, mint, and matcha! Summer Chiller Smoothie with cucumber juice, frozen pineapple, mint, and matcha! Summer Chiller Smoothie with cucumber juice, frozen pineapple, mint, and matcha!

We got to put together a really awesome dish of “Sesame Noodles” today as well. It called for almond butter, so I made my own! Almond butter is really easy to make. All you need is almonds and a food processor with a good motor in it because you will be running it for 15-20 minutes. Just put the almonds in and turn on the food processor. Stop every 2-3 minutes to scrape down the sides, and then turn it back on. First, it turns into crumbs, then it turns into a meal, then it turns into a paste, and then after it starts to warm up slightly and has been beaten by the blades for about 15 minutes, it will start to release more oils and become buttery. After that point, just blend it until it reaches the creaminess that you want. 

raw almond butter

The almond butter was used in a sauce that went into this “Sesame Noodles” dish. It seemed similar to other raw dishes I’ve had that were meant to mimic a “Pad Thai”. I even put my own variation of Pad Thai together a while ago, if you want to go check it out.

If you want the exact recipe for this dish, it’s kind of a cross between recipes from 2 of Matthew Kenney’s books: Sauce from the Spicy Sesame Noodles (page 99) in Everyday Raw Express: Recipes in 30 Minutes or Less and vegetable assortment from the Pad Thai (page 107) in Everyday Raw, served over yellow squash.

This one that we made for class was very delicious. I really liked the sauces and the variety of vegetables in the dish. We were supposed to practice some plating techniques with this dish as well. Stacking, I got. Saucing, I need to work on. My instructor says the folks at the school have been very impressed with my work thus far though. 🙂

raw vegan pad thai raw vegan pad thai raw vegan pad thai

Lastly, there was an optional exercise to soak some wheat so we can grow our own wheatgrass. Well, I accidentally grabbed my oat groats instead! I did realize what I had done the next day, and then put my actual wheat berries into the jar to soak. I noticed after I opened the jar to drain them and thought they smelled suspiciously oat-y. 😉

oat groats oat groats

 

Lastly, I was thrilled to see that the pickles I made for class were shared on Matthew Kenney’s Tumblr site! I got kudos for growing my own pickling cucumbers. =D

adrienne frankenfield pickles

Tropical Super Green Smoothie

Tropical super green smoothie with pineapple, banana, kiwi, coconut water, and hemp seed

What is a “super green smoothie”? It’s a super charged green smoothie with a stronger taste of the greens either from using more of them or using more potent bitter greens. I enjoy making these about once a week to get an extra boost of nutrition. 

Some of the most nutritional greens are those that grow in the wild. People look at me funny when I tell them that I like dandelion greens in my smoothies. Thankfully, others realize the health value of these wild edibles and have begun to cultivate them instead of spraying them to kill them or yanking them out of lawns. 

Dandelion greens are not only good for you, they are good for the earth. The leaves are a good source of beta carotene and the roots are good to cleans and strengthen the liver. They also put nitrogen back into the soil! Our soil and crops would be so much healthier if we practiced crop rotation with dandelions. 🙂

The other ingredients in this smoothie are not nutritional slouchers either. I added tropical flavors to help tone down the bitterness of the dandelion greens, but they can stand on their own as well.

  • Bananas are an excellent source of potassium and inulin fiber. Inulin is a great prebiotic and feeds the bacteria in your intestinal tract. Eat your bananas!
  • Pineapple and kiwi are both great sources of vitamin C, which will keep your immune system strong. Humans cannot synthesize their own vitamin C as other animals can, and must consume it from plant-based foods. Pineapple also contains an enzyme called bromelain, which aids digestion. Anecdotally, I also find it to be good for my lungs.
  • Coconut water is a good source of electrolytes.
  • Hemp seed is a good source of plant-based protein, good fats, and magnesium. It contains all 10 essential amino acids, omega fatty acids 3 and 6, and gamma linolenic acid (GLA). Source: http://manitobaharvest.com/hemp_nutrition.html

Given the balance of protein, fat, and electrolytes in this smoothie, it would be great as a companion to your plant-fueled workout!

Tropical Super Green Smoothie
Serves 3
This is a nutritious super green smoothie that will assist cleansing and strengthening your liver, supporting your lungs, and providing protein, fat, and sustained energy and electrolytes throughout the morning or after a workout. It's also high in vitamin C! It makes 3 servings, which means my husband gets 1, and I get 2. 😉
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Prep Time
10 min
Total Time
10 min
Prep Time
10 min
Total Time
10 min
Ingredients
  1. 3 c coconut water water
  2. 3 handfuls dandelion greens
  3. 4 kiwi fruits
  4. 1 banana
  5. 2 c. chopped pineapple
  6. 1/2 c hemp seed
Instructions
  1. Add all ingredients to a high speed blender (I use a Vitamix).
  2. Serve and enjoy!
Notes
  1. Dandelion greens have a strong bitter flavor. This is a "super green" smoothie because the ratio and flavor of greens is strong than someone who is new to green smoothies might enjoy. If you are "an old pro", this one is for you!
A Taste of Two Plates http://tasteoftwoplates.com/