I've been taking it easy, not quite ready to let that wonderful calm and peace-full 'afterglow' go just yet, so I guess it's made my days trickle away slower than usual. Actually, I still feel very internal and haven't been inspired to play much in the kitchen since my return. Well, other than to whip up sweet treats that is. (lol)
Ironically, over the weekend, I had a mega D day of unprecedented proportions. In fact, probably my biggest ever. (Must be the backlog!) And forget April's Fool, I swear I'm not pulling your leg! I was at it for nearly 8 hours non-stop, making sure every last inch of the dehydrator trays got used up.
Anyhoo, let's see what all yummies I had unbaking away in my faithful D...
I'd been planning this D day for months (literally), but the timing was never quite right. I particularly wanted to test 2 a few of Heathy's recipes, and could hardly wait to re-create some of the goodies she made when she visited last fall.
First on my list was her Super Granola Bars...
Every bit as delicious as they are gorgeous!
Every bit as delicious as they are gorgeous!
And her Chocolate Chip Granola Bars
In hindsight, I can see that there was a bit of a granola theme going on all day. Just one of those things. *shrug*
Although I'm not a breakfast person, I thought I'd at least give this next recipe a try, as Heathy has been raving about it for ages. Wowsers! This granola is just out of this world!!! No doubt 'to live for' with a few berries and some nut milk, but I find myself really enjoying it on its own as a simple snack.
A definite MUST try!!!
Cranberry Maple Granola
From Raw Food Real World
Posted by Elizabeth Joy here
Yields 10 cups
1 (- 3) apples cored and chopped
1 ½ cups date paste (dates soaked and then processed until smooth)
½ cup maple syrup
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons orange zest (or ginger powder)
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons sea salt
½ cup sunflower seeds, soaked 2 hours or more
2 cups almonds, soaked 4 hours or more
3 cups pecans, soaked 2 hours or more
1 cup pumpkin seeds soaked 2 hours or more
1 cup dried cranberries or raisins or dried apples
1. In a food processor, place the fresh apples, date paste, maple syrup, lemon juice, orange zest, vanilla, cinnamon, salk and 1/4 of the sunflower seeds and grind until completely smooth. Transfer the mixture to a large mixing bowl.
2. Add the remaining 1/4 cup of sunflower seeds, the almonds, pecans, and pumpkin seeds to the food processor (you don't need to bother rinsing the bowl in between). Coarsely chop the nuts and seeds in a few quick pulses. Add them to the bowl with the apple mixture, add the cranberries and combine well.
3. Spread the granola on a Teflex lined dehydrator trays and dehydrate at 115 degrees for 6 - 8 hours. Flip the granola over onto the screens and peel away the teflex. Continue dehydrating for another 8 to 12 hours, or until the granola is crunchy. Break into pieces and once completely cooled, store in an airtight container. To maintain freshness longer, store the granola in the refrigerator for up to a few weeks.
Next, I played around and came up with my own version of buckwheat granola. So easy to make and the possibilities are absolutely endless!
1/2 apple, peeled and cored
1/2 cup orange juice
4 small dates, soaked
2 tbs raw honey, or to taste
2 cups buckwheat groats, soaked overnight*
1 cup dried coconut
1/2 cup sunflower and pumpkin seeds, soaked
3 medjhool dates, chopped
1/2 cup raisins
Blend apple, orange juice, dates and honey in food processor until smooth. Transfer to a large bowl. Fold in the rest of the ingredients. Spread on teflex sheet(s) and dehydrate at 115 degrees. After a few hours, flip onto mesh and continue dehydrating until fully dry. (Mine took about 20 hours as I crammed the entire thing onto a single tray.)
* Carmella's Note: I prefer to soak buckwheat overnight rather than sprout it as it has a tendency to ferment easily. Just make sure you rinse it really well until it's no longer 'gooey' before using it in a recipe.
I also made Heathy's fabulous Oatmeal Raisin Cookie recipe, which doubles up as the base for her Super Granola Bars. I have to say I used to be no big fan of oatmeal cookies until I tried these. They are totally unreal, especially warmed up in the D!
I'd been eyeing Shannonmarie’s “Rawifed” and Sexy Eclair Dessert, which she recently shared on We Like It Raw, so I thought this was the perfect opportunity to make the graham crackers called for in the recipe. The funny thing is, of all the goodies I made on that day, these were the thinnest, yet they were the last to come out of the D. Go figure!
I actually assembled the Eclair yesterday and it's chilling in the freezer as I'm typing this. Tonight's dessert! Hee-Hah! But more about this in my next post...
"Girlie, you there?"
Right around this point of my uncooking day, I heard a ping coming from my computer: Heathy wanted to chat. As always, her timing couldn't be more impeccable! She has a real knack for connecting in just when I'm having dessert or making something exciting. She told me that, as it turned out, she had to make a bunch of her granola bars that afternoon too! That's us in a nutshell; so aligned sometimes it's really uncanny. (If you don't believe me, read her comment to my last Banana Split post. You'll see what I mean!)
Anyhoo, so Heathy is telling me about how her own D day went, and that she's come up with the most amazing chocolate cookies. "The batter was so good, I couldn't stop eating it," she goes to me. Well, that was it! With a bit of spare room in my dehydrator, I suggested she send the recipe my way 'immediately'. he he "Fresh off the press!" as she said. (Thanks, dearie!)
For some strange reason, this was a totally meant-to-be thing: it perfectly used up left-over ingredients I still had lying around the counter and, of course, can't beat how the recipe serendipitously came to me. (Man, it's tough to be the close friend, confidante and, not to forget, editor of a raw goddess! lol)
Not surprisingly, she's got yet another winner...
Room For Macaroons?
After all this, believe it or not, I still had an empty tray to play with! I decided to make the Mac Macs recipe in Carol Alt's The Raw 50, on Heathy's suggestion. When I saw the amount of salt called for, it did occur to me that it was quite a lot, but I went against my better judgment anyways. NOT a good idea... or so I thought at first! As the resulting batter was way too salty, I started adding a little of this, a little of that (you know how it goes), until I ended up with, well, a different cookie. Don and I agree, these are THE best macaroons we've tasted. A-ma-zingly yummy!
I didn't really keep track of the amounts, but this should be close enough...
Makes 36 cookies
1 1/2 cups dried coconut
1 cup macadamia nuts, roughly chopped or pulsed in the food processor
3/4 cup almond flour
1/2 cup cashew flour
1/4 cup + 1 tbs raw agave nectar
1 1/2 tbs vanilla extract
2 tbs coconut oil, melted
1/4 tsp salt
Put all ingredients into a large bowl and mix well with a spoon or with your hands. Form into balls, place on teflex sheet and flatten gently.
Dehydrate at 115 degrees for about 15 hours or until desired dryness is reached. (We like them slightly moist.)
Phfew! What a day!
Although it went super smooth and I truly enjoyed myself, you know what's my favorite part about uncooking like this? The next day, when it's time to harvest the goodies. Makes me feel like a kid at Christmas every single time!