Happy hump day, everyone! Before I tell you about today’s adventures in raw chef-dom, I want to address a question I’ve been asked by more than a few people recently: “Can you share the recipes you’re making?” The short answer is that no, I can’t share recipes we make in class, as they’re the property of the 105degrees Academy. The extended answer is that no, I can’t share these recipes, BUT I can tell you where you can obtain many of them!
My instructor for Level I at the Academy is, as you know, the highly-acclaimed Russell James. I’ve pointed several of you towards his blog, where many of his periodic updates contain free recipes. You can also sign up for his email newsletter, wherein he often shares exclusive recipes. Coolest of all, though are his e-books and DVDs.
Russell offers an array of raw food e-books covering different styles of cuisine (like Thai and Mexican) as well as popular themes (like holiday recipes and, of course, chocolate!). He even offers an e-book full of recipes that don’t require a dehydrator. And oh yeah, don’t forget about the CHEESE!
Speaking of, if DVDs are more your style, Russell has an awesome “How To Be Your Own Raw Food Chef” homestudy DVD course! This is really worth checking out—it includes a full-color workbook, high-quality binder, and 10 professionally shot DVD “modules,” teaching you everything from knife skills and mise en place to raw cheese-, bread-, and sushi-making, plus how to develop your own recipes. All the while, Russell keeps a pragmatic eye on practicality for the home cook. Before I took the plunge and enrolled at 105degrees, I was thisclose to purchasing Russell’s DVD course. It’s really an amazing value, and having now learned so much from Russell myself, I would recommend this to anyone out there who’s wishing and yearning to be more knowledgeable and skilled in the art of raw food.
Now! Onto today’s eats and treats. First thing this morning, we took yesterday‘s coconut yogurt out of the dehydrator, where it had cultured overnight.
We whipped it smooth and sweetened it with glugs of honey.
A pile of diced ripe mango provided the perfect palette for big dollops of coconut yogurt and a healthy sprinkle of bee pollen.
I also threw on some fragments of yesterday‘s buckwheat granola…
…as well as just a smattering of crumbled coconut butter, cuz I’m decadent like that.
Fruit + yogurt: so seemingly simple, yet so delightfully enjoyable.
Breakfast is served!
Actually, we weren’t even close to being done with breakfast foods for the day. First, though, we put together a sweet ‘n nutty crust…
…that we pressed into some mini tart pans.
What for? Russell’s famous chocolate torte. After making the silky cacao filling and pouring it over the crusts, we refrigerated these to let them set overnight.
After that, we marinated some mushrooms and wilted some spinach.
Yesterday‘s sweet and savory crêpes had dried overnight…
…as had our eggplant bacon…
…and coconut bacon bits.
Never in my 25 years did I ever dream I’d be the type of person to snack on bacon bits…until I met these raw vegan wonders. I love them!
Where does all this lead? Straight to…Crêpeland!
I am pleased to introduce to you: my sweet & savory crêpe duo.
This mildly-seasoned crêpe wrapper swathed a filling of meaty mushrooms, softened spinach, eggplant bacon shards, and creamy cashew cheese.
Even though I’m not normally drawn to earthy flavors like these, I thought this crêpe was stupendous.
Now let’s flip to the sweet side of things.
My fruity crêpe wrapper swaddled more honey-tinged coconut yogurt, plus plump raspberries and succulent blueberries.
A drizzle of agave and just a fairy-dusting of maple sugar completed the sacchariferous twin.
These sweet & savory crêpes truly yielded the best of both worlds!