Hello, my pretties! I am back in my second home (this here hotel in Oklahoma City), and I just finished my first day of Level II at the 105degrees Academy. It doesn’t feel at all strange to return; in fact, I was back in my groove the second I walked in the door. L2 is a night class, from 3-9pm (which is why you’ll see I’m posting later in the evening than I did last month). I’m one of four students, but get this—I am the only one that’s completed Level I. How is this possible? The other three are doing doubles—i.e., L1 and L2 simultaneously. This means those poor souls will be in the kitchen from 8am to 9pm every day this month (including Saturdays, since the classes are slightly accelerated thanks to the holidays)! Looks like I’ll be the only well-rested member of the bunch.
So anyway: today. First, our Level II instructor Haylee broke out the kombucha!
We sampled some of this already-brewed batch.
Here’s the “mother” (bottom left) and the SCOBY (or Symbiotic Colony of Bacteria and Yeast, top right), the keys to fermenting kombucha. We each cut off a chunk of SCOBY to start our own batches.
Since we’re only making a quart apiece to start with, this’ll be done with its first fermentation cycle in about a week.
We hacked some coconuts after that.
We colored some of our coconut purée pink and green.
Using a method similar to the kimchee-cashew dumplings in Level I, we formed our wrappers.
I call this one “1970’s Lampshade Meets Happy Bleeding Hearts.” We’ll see how these dots turn out once the wrap is dehydrated.
I’m calling my second one “Preschooler’s Art Project.”
Here’s my mise en place for our one fully-composed dish of the day…
…a citrus-fennel salad with orange, grapefruit, and avocado, dressed with macadamia nut oil and lime juice.
Raw food has opened me up to actually enjoying citrus fruits…sometimes. Luckily, this was one of those times.
I layered my salad with a ring mold before topping it with a fanned avocado half and some whole macnuts.
Even though I ate (and more or less liked) the fennel and the citrus fruits, I was really in it for the avocado and macadamias. YUM.
Gorgeous colors like these breathed springy life into an otherwise chilly night.
It’s so nice to be back.