Raw Carrot Cake with Cashew Creme
This has recently become my favorite snack. So easy to make. It has a few simple steps and I have made it four times now, so I have it down.
The original recipe is from Russell James, The Raw Chef. I watch his podcast and really enjoy his take on preparing raw dishes. You can subscribe to his free podcast on itunes here.
- 3 cups carrot, grated. Above you see that the cakes look red - that’s because I used heirloom red carrots, I love the color and it’s unexpected, which I love as well.
- 2 cups almond meal
- 1/4 cup chopped raisins. I love the golden ones, though you can use whatever. It would be good with currants too I bet
- 1 teaspoon nutmeg (and a little for the garnish)
- 1 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice
- 1 cup date paste (To make the paste, blend 3/4 cup pitted dates with 1/2 cup of juice. I used tangelo this time, have used orange and tangerine in the past) - Put the dates and juice in the Vitamix and blend for 2 min until velvety smooth
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 T grated rind (of the orange or tangelo you used in the date paste)
- 1/2 cup dried coconut (raw)
Blend all of the ingredients in a mixer, then form into small cakes. I use a ring mold about 3 inches in diameter. I have tried small, large, loaf - pick one try it and the next time try something else. Make sure that whatever form you pick, have each cake consistent in size to have even drying.
Once you have formed the cakes (this recipe makes 20 the size you see above) - put them on a dehydrator sheet and dry at 105 for about 12 hours. This will give them a very nice skin on the outside and the inside will still be very moist. Take them out and let them cool on the counter.
Cashew Creme Frosting
This can go a lot of ways depending on how inventive you are, so feel free to play with it. The base recipe is:
- 1 1/2 cups soaked raw cashews, blended until velvety smooth
- 2 tablespoons raw honey
- 3 tablespoons Coconut Oil. I used Nutiva Coconut Manna as it has a nice thickness that works for the icing
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- pinch sea salt
Blend all of this in the Vitamix until so smooth you can’t believe it’s ground nuts. Then blend 30 seconds more. Place in a frosting bag and put in the fridge for 60 min to cool, this makes piping it onto the cakes a lot easier and it will be runny. Note: Russel says add 1/2 c water and I tried that and it was too runny.
Once thickened you can frost the cake and garnish. I used nutmeg and grated tangelo. Cool and serve with iced Almond Milk.
ps. Thanks to good friends George and Andrea who are looking at buying a home in Ojai in an orchard and brought us a bag of tangelos from the property, which I used in this recipe.
- You could add chopped raw pecans
- You could add cinnamon and cardamon
- You could use ordinary orange carrots ;-)
- You could add oat flour or cashew flour in place of some of the almond flour. The original recipe calls for pecan flour, which I don’t have access to, now, if I lived in Texas…
Let me know if you try this out, and write a comment to let me know how they came out.
Til we eat again…
Raw Gnocchi with Red Pepper Creme
An amazing sauce that you can make quickly to serve with anything that you want to dress up and add a tangy flavor profile.
Note: I learned this at a recent Raw Intensive Weekend Class at Matthew Kenney in Santa Monica.
I will save the Gnocchi recipe for another time, however, it’s a very simple combination of jicama, turnip, cashews, olive oil and nutritional yeast formed into quenelles, then dehydrated for several hours.
I want instead to focus on the sauce as I am always looking for something different to dress up a raw dish. This is perfect.
In the image above you see the raw ingredients
- 1/2 Red Bell Pepper, raw
- 1/2 Red Bell Pepper, dehydrated over night to intensify the flavor
- 1/2 C soaked raw Cashews
- Juice of 1 lemon (2 T)
- Pinch of salt
- Filtered water to adjust consistency
Blend all in the Vitamix and very slowly add water until you get what you are looking for.
This has amazing flavor and I could see you using yellow or green peppers as well as other acids, like lime or vinegars.
One of the things that I learned in the class was to really think about ratios and components and to not be afraid to mix it up.
til we eat again…
ps. I found this link to a review of the Gnocchi at MAKE when they were using beets instead of Jicama and Turnips (like the ones above). You can see the fantastic images here.
Crispy Curly Caraway Carrots - Raw Treats with Snap
I love the Farmers Market in Santa Barbara for the heirloom vegetables that are not available anywhere else. Seriously, who knew about red and yellow carrots? What I love also is that you can find really large varietys that lend themselves well to dehydrating, though carrots have a lot of liquid in them and tend to shrivel. One of the things that you will notice above is that the flat discs and strips become very curly when you leave the skins on, as they have a different water content than the flesh. I like this anomaly.
Here’s how to make them:
- 1 large Red or Yellow Carrot (you can use Orange too)
Wash and slice as thin as your mandolin will allow.
Place in a bowl and drizzle Extra Virgin Olive Oil over them (sparingly). If you measured, it’s about 3 tablespoons.
Sprinkle about 1 teaspoon of very fine Sea Salt (I grind mine to powder so it distributes better).
Now make sure you have evenly coated the strips or discs so that the oil and salt is well distributed, take your time, this part counts.
I then sprinkle Caraway seeds on top. I have also sprinkled Cayenne, Smoky Paprika, Chipotle Chili and am thinking about Ginger next.
Place the strips or discs on Teflex and place into the dehydrator at 110 degrees for 12 hours - turn them over, they will be almost done, but wait…. be patient. After another 12 hours, they will be perfect.
I typically do one or two carrots at a time and fill up several trays in the nine tray dehydrator we have, you can do as much as you like.
So, now when you go to the Farmers Market this weekend, look for cool root vegetables that you can splash some EVOO and herbs on and make some tasty treats for your friends and family.
til we eat again,
ps. I do not have a relationship with any of the vendors or product here, I link to them so that you can see what I am using and decide for yourself.
Raw Vanilla Macaroons - adapted from Matthew Kenney Everyday Raw Desserts
Warning, these are delicious, medium difficulty, and a bit expensive. That being said, they are amazing and so far we only have a few left. I doubled the recipe and made about 20.
There are two things to be made here, the cookie base and the filling. There are some techniques that you’ll need as well. I will continue to iterate on them as I make them again as I think I can make them better next time.
- 1 C Coconut Flour
- 1 C Cashew Flour (I use my spice grinder to make my own)
- 1/2 Cup powdered Agave nectar or Sucanat
- Pinch salt
- 3 T Agave, Honey or Maple
- 2 T Water ( I will be adding at least 4 in my next batch)
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 Vanilla bean, scraped. (These at $5 each and I think you can leave it out of the base and just use it in the filling, your call)
Mix the dry ingredients, then add the liquid. You want this so you can scoop out balls with an ice cream or cookie scoop into 1T balls. In the image above you can see that I have pressing them into a 2 inch ring mold and flattening them. Put them on a dehydrator sheet for about 2 hours. This is the area I am going to continue to experiment with. I think that they can be much thinner, but then, while more delicate, they are harder to manage as well.
Vanilla Creme Filling
- 1/2 C Macadamia nuts (raw)
- 1/2 C Agave Nectar, Maple Syrup or Honey (I used Agave this time)
- 1/2 C coconut butter, melted
- 1 vanilla bean scraped
- 1 t Vanilla extract
- Pinch salt
Blend these ingredients vociferously in a Vitamix, this needs to be silky smooth and will be runny. Place it into the refridergator for an hour, stir/whip, place back. Repeat this several times until the coconut has gotten cold again and you have a creamy spread. Note: I left mine in overnight.
Put the cookies in the refrigerator to cool. You may want to assemble 8 hours later, once the filling has set. I place about a tablespoon on each half, then pressed a top on to it until it squirted out a bit. I used a spatula to smooth the edges (you can see this in the top photo).
These could be domed like the French Macaroons, but dont have that type of mouth feel, so the flatter style seemed to work. You can experiment. I am thinking I might use these ingredients to make thumb-print cookies and it’s be suggested that I dip the whole thing in chocolate.
Let me know if you make these - send a picture.
Til we eat again.
Variations on the Yam Chips - Raw Heirloom Carrots (Red) and (Yellow). You will also notice that I tried the Julienne blade on the Mandolin to get something like a shoestring potato feel.
Last week’s YIPS were so amazing, we ate them in a day, I decided to do another batch and branch out a bit.
I tried exactly the same recipe - super thin slice, drizzle with EVOO and sea salt. This week I did add a splash of Organic Apple Cider Vinegar - going for the Salt and Vinegar taste we so much love with chips.
What’s also different is that I branched out beyond Yams and into Carrots. I did notice after 12 hours in the dehydrator that they shrink at least 60% into very tiny circles. Whereas the Yams shrink by 10% max. Less moisture.
I find it very interesting at how different the carrots look once dried. They really curl up and are not that appetizing looking - but they taste great.
The strips are fantastic.
Next up are some Japanese Yams at Tri County Produce. Red skin but white flesh.
Super Snacky Raw Sweet Potato / Yam Chips*
Wow. Saw these in a photo from MAKE at Matthew Kenney’s in Santa Monica and decided to try and replicate them. In the photo they were used as a salad garnish. Here, I am just trying to make them for a snack first.
Easy to make. And so far, we have eaten 1/4 of the first batch.
Take 1 Yam (it’s really an orange sweet potato, you can’t actually get yams in the US unless you shop at a store that imports them. Yep, look it up.)
Slice it as thin as you can on a mandolin. This is critical. If I could have sliced them thinner I would have. Notice the glove I am using. You can find them here - It’s impossible to use that plastic holder grip thing that comes with the mandolin - these are amazing. Don’t have a mandolin? This is the one I use, it’s from Oxo. Note: No need to peel. In fact, look at the photos, the thin red line is attractive around the edge and may contribute to the nice curl the edges get.
Next, drizzle olive oil and salt on the slices and with your fingers, make sure all of the slices are evenly coated. This was my first batch and I think that I will use less oil next time. The slices are very dry, so you don’t have to worry about toweling them off first.
Place the slices on Teflex and place in the dehydrator at 115 for 12 hours. Turn the chips over onto a new tray and remove the Teflex so that they are on the mesh only for another 12 hours.
My next batch I am going to try to spice them up a bit with some Chipotle and a few with some Nutritional Yeast to get a cheesy vibe to them.
Had I known these were so easy to make, I would have made them a year ago.
Variations that I am considering: try one of the infused olive oils - basil, garlic, lemon… try pink, black, or a more flaked sea salt… try to go sweet with them and use coconut sugar and cinnamon…. what else?
til we eat again,
ps. if you do want to know more about Yams vs Sweet Potatoes check out this article and thanks to this video for giving me a headstart. I love it that I can Google something new and in 2 clicks find exactly what I’m looking for.
*thinking that I might call these YIPS
Raw apple/pear cookies
Grated apples and pear with fresh grated ginger, cranberries (roughly chopped) and raisins. About 5 cups total.
Blend in raw oat flour (1 C), almond flour (1 C), flax (1 C), granola (1 C, though not strictly raw, so use uncooked oats if you wish) and sesame seeds (sprinkled on top) to absorb liquid and make mushy and slightly firm.
Spice liberally with cinnamon (1/4 c), and a dash of salt.
Sweeten with agave and coconut oil. Note: you could also use date paste.
Measure into inch balls and flatten. Dehydrate for 12 hours.
Note: these are great movie snacks. I’ve been handing them out at the SB Film Festival. People love them
Raw Persimmon Crisps.
These are so easy to make and there’s plenty of persimmons in the markets. Slice thin on a mandolin. Prepare a drop of lime juice, grated ginger and cinnamon with a squeeze of agave. Dip slices and drain. Dehydrate at 105 for 12 hours. Really tasty.
Here’s a very happy me while working at the Matthew Kenney Culinary Academy the last weekend in October. I am one of four in the inaugural Raw Intensive Workshop Weekend. I will be posting my class work over the next week or so. I learned so much and was able to spend time with other raw chefs who are trying to take this cuisine to another level entirely. It was so inspiring to be with them.
I typically will write up a menu when we have guests over for dinner. This week I used Paper on my iPad to draw out the dishes. I do this to make sure I don’t forget anything and also to practice drawing. It’s a lot of fun, and this time when people asked what we were having, I just turned the Pad towards them and they could see for themselves. Try it sometime.