I have released four recipe books so far:

The Best of the Sunny Raw Kitchen
The Best of Raw Freedom Community
Delightfully Raw and
Deliciously Raw

These feature some of the most delectable creations to have come out of my raw kitchen and will appeal to anyone interested in a healthier diet, regardless of their level of knowledge and experience. From easy one-step everyday fare to more elaborate and involved gourmet dishes and layered cakes, they offer something for everyone and every occasion. Incredibly tasty smoothies, creamy and comforting warm soups, sexy salads, delicious nut cheezes, satisfying entrees and scrumptious guilt-free desserts...

Healthy food never tasted so good!

To learn more about my recipe books, click here!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

In Jozzie's Sunny Kitchen

Back with you to report about Jozzie and I's kitchen fun in Medford, OR!

Last spring we spent sooooooo many hours playing with food that we very nearly exhausted ourselves. We took things a lot more easy this time around and came up with a 'brilliant' plan to focus our energy in the kitchie working on desserts and enjoy light meals of mostly raw soup and salad.

One of the first sweet treats we whipped up was the Maple Walnut Cake from my new Delightfully Raw, as Jozzie had been drooling over it ever since she saw a photo of the cake. And so it just seemed natural that we should make it to celebrate her birthday. (She keeps getting younger by the year!) ;-)

We used a slightly larger pan than the one in the book, so the cake turned out a little bigger and flatter. We figured that this would help us cut smaller pieces since it's a very rich cake.

And a little peek inside...

Jozzie told me that when she first came over to America from Poland as a little girl, her favorite treat was maple walnut ice cream. So it was no wonder then that she was intrigued by this dessert! The Maple Walnut Cake sent her straight to taste bud heaven; if only you'd have heard her moan in delight as she took her first bite! hehe

We had some Cheezecake left over from the (crazy busy) Holiday class we gave towards the beginning of our stay. A classic simple dessert, so pretty with the bright red berry sauce!

A copy of Matthew Kenney's new Everyday Raw Desserts was waiting for me at Joz's (yay!) and I could hardly wait to make some of the recipes! I know I've said it before but I'll say it again: Matthew is probably THE raw chef I admire the most. He's a true genius!

Jozzie has dozens and dozens of all kinds of extracts so I jumped on the opportunity to make his Butterscotch Pudding (topped here with a touch of Raspberry Sauce for color.)

This was super rich (and I kid you not!!!) We figured that each serving contained about 3/4 cup nuts! Eeek! We could only manage to eat a few spoonfuls, but boy was it ever delicious! Mmmmm

Of course Jozzie had a few dessert creation ideas up her sleeve for us to experiment with. We actually make a really good team; she scouts the net for interesting recipe projects and cooked dishes to transform into raw and I come up with the proportions and how to go about assembling them.

We concocted a Durian and Coconut Cream Napoleon that we thought turned out really well; thin 'phyllo' pastry layered with a Durian Mousse and a Coconut Whipped Cream. Very light and creamy and oh-so-tasty!

Durian and Coconut Cream Napoleon

'Phyllo' Pastry
 We used the recipe from the Baklava on p. 60 in Matthew Kenney's Everyday Raw Desserts. It calls for cashews, macadamias, lemon juice, honey, water, vanilla, salt and flax meal.

Cut into pieces of about 4" x 2 1/2"

Durian Mousse
1 1/2 cups durian flesh
1/4 cup Irish moss paste*
1/4 cup agave nectar (or more, depending on how sweet your durian is)
1/2 cup water
1 tsp vanilla extract
Pinch salt
1/4 cup melted coconut oil
1 tbs lecithin powder

Blend first set of ingredients until smooth in high-speed blender.

Add coconut oil and lecithin and blend again, just to incorporate.

Chill in the refrigerator to set.

To make Irish Moss Paste:
Blend 1.5 oz (or ½ cup packed) soaked Irish moss with 1 cup water in a high-speed blender until completely dissolved.

Coconut Cream
1 cup water
¾ cup young coconut meat
½ cup cashews, soaked
¼ cup + 2 tablespoons Irish moss paste (see recipe above)
¼ cup + 2 tablespoons raw agave nectar or honey
¼ cup melted coconut oil
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract or liquid vanilla
1 teaspoon lemon juice
Pinch salt

Blend all ingredients in a high-speed blender until smooth and creamy.

Place in the refrigerator to set.

Spread a generous layer of Durian Mousse on a piece of 'Phyllo' Pastry.

Top with a second piece of pastry.

Spread a generous layer of Coconut Cream, topped with a third piece of 'Phyllo'.

Decorate with Coconut Cream and Durian Mousse and, if desired, sprinkle with a mixture of ground gogi berries and dried coconut.

Enjoy immediately.

Another brainchild of Jozzie's was a Persimmon Angel Food Cake. We used Matthew's recipe for the cake layer and as I was preparing it, it hit me how very similar it is to my Shortcake using dried coconut, almond pulp, dates, vanilla and salt. The only main difference is that he calls for coconut oil and some almond milk instead of cashews.

The Persimmon layer consists of a light Irish moss based filling with bits of dehydrated persimmons that provide a lovely burst of flavor. Yum!

 Persimmon Angel Food Cake

Angel Food Cake
We used half a recipe of Matthew Kenney's Vanilla Angel Food Cake on p. 114 of Everyday Raw Desserts but you could easily use the following recipe instead:

3/4 cup well packed soft dates, chopped
1 cup loosely packed leftover pulp from making milk
1 cup dried coconut
1/2 cup cashews, ground
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
Pinch sea salt

Place the dates in food processor and process until a smooth paste forms. You may need to add a little water and scrape down the sides of the bowl a few times.

Then add the rest of the ingredients and mix until smooth.

Persimmon Mousse 
3 ripe persimmons
1/4 cup Irish moss paste (see recipe in Durian Coconut Napoleon above)
2 tbs agave nectar
1 tbs lemon juice
1 tsp vanilla extract
Pinch salt
1/4 cup melted coconut oil
1 tbs lecithin powder

Blend first set of ingredients until smooth in high-speed blender.

Add coconut oil and lecithin and blend again, just to incorporate.

Fold in 1/2 cup dehydrated persimmons, packed.

Chill in the refrigerator to set.

Dehydrated Persimmons
5 or 6 large persimmons

Peel and slice the persimmons about 1/4" thick so that the central 'star' design shows.

Place on a mesh and dehydrate. (Sorry we lost track of how long it took; just bear in mind that you want them still a little moist on the inside.)

Keep refrigerated in an airtight container until ready to use.

Spread half of the Angel Food Cake or Shortcake batter at the bottom of a 9"x9" square glass pan lined with saran wrap.

Top with Persimmon Mousse. Allow to set in the refrigerator.

When firm, top with the rest of the Cake layer.

Return to the refrigerator to set.

To serve, cut small portion, top with Coconut Cream from Durian and Coconut Cream Napoleon recipe. Finish off with a nice piece of dehydrated persimmon.

All that sweet stuff aside we did venture into the savory department a wee bit...

While we were there I received a newsletter from Living Light with the following Corn Cake recipe. Jozzie already had corn cakes on her mind so we tackled them one afternoon. Much like Cherie Soria's famous Crab Cakes, these are sooooo easy to assemble and only require a few hours of dehydration. And the Caper/Avocado topping complemented them very well. Delish!

Corn Cakes
Recipe by Cherie Soria
Posted in Living Light's December 2010 Newsletter

Yield: 6 servings

4 cups fresh or frozen corn kernels
1 cup macadamia nuts, ground
3 tablespoons onion, minced
1/4 cup celery, minced
1/4 cup red bell pepper, minced
2 tablespoons dried shiitake mushroom powder
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic, pressed
1 teaspoon red jalapeƱo, seeded, minced
1 teaspoon poultry seasoning
1 pinch white pepper
1 teaspoon Celtic or Himalayan crystal salt
2 tablespoons psyllium powder
1 tablespoon golden flax meal

6 tablespoons capers, oil packed
1 avocado, finely diced
1 teaspoon chili oil

1. Combine corn and other ingredients, except psyllium, flax meal, and garnishes, in a mixing bowl and mix by hand.

2. Add psyllium and flax meal to the mixture and mix again, thoroughly.

3. Using a 1/4 cup measure, create small cakes, about 1 inch deep.

4. Place cakes on a dehydrator screen (no Teflex needed) in a dehydrator set at 105 degrees Fahrenheit for 1-4 hours prior to serving.

5. Remove from dehydrator just prior to serving and garnish with capers, diced avocado, and a drizzle of chili oil. Serve warm and enjoy!

Serving Suggestions: Elegant on a bed of wilted greens with sliced tomatoes and olive oil-packed capers and finely diced avocados spilling over the top. A drizzle of chili oil is optional.  

Notes: Fresh corn can be frozen successfully and used in this recipe. When corn is in season, remove it from the cob and freeze it in sealed containers. Use in salads, casseroles, chips, and corn cakes.

We spent Christmas with Jozzie's family and, as you've no doubt guessed, we had to make something extra special for the occasion. We began our feast with a sparkly "champagne" made with GT's Original Kombucha, freshly squeezed orange juice and a touch of agave nectar.

The main dish was Russell James' Spinach & Wild Mushroom Quiches which both Jozzie and I had made a few times before. We dehydrated them a tad too long, though, and the filling was on the salty side.

We also served a platter with Corn Cakes and BBQ Meatballs that we had already prepared. I had made the latter into very small balls at the Holiday class, but had failed to reduce the dehydration time accordingly. As a result, like for Russell's quiches, the flavors ended up being too concentrated. This time I used a small cookie scoop, as recommended by Tina Jo, and they turned out much better; so moist on the inside and utterly delicious, especially topped with extra BBQ Sauce.

As accompaniment we served Brussels Sprouts tossed in a marinade and 'roasted' in the dehydrator. These were surprisingly good!

Roasted Brussels Sprouts
Adapted from a recipe posted on Body Ecology's site here

2 tbs olive oil
1 tbs Dijon mustard
1 tbs maple syrup
1 tsp tamari
1 lb Brussels sprouts, cored and quartered

Whisk first four ingredients together in medium size bowl. 

Toss in Brussels sprouts and allow to marinate for 15 minutes.

Spread sprouts evenly over a baking sheet and dehydrate until tender (about 3 hours at 110 degrees.)

And on the sweet side we each worked on our own projects; I made Matthew's Marzipan from his new book while Jozzie prepared Heathy's raw rendition of the famous Italian Christmas fare: Zucotto. Unknowingly our choices couldn't have been more perfect as both desserts complemented each other so well. These were really amazing!

Matthew's astonishing creativity really shines through in this Marzipan recipe; the texture was very impressive. As I was making the batter I had my doubts that it would come to a consistency that would allow me to roll it later. However once chilled it was firm enough and sooooo silky smooth. Uncannily like the original marzipan! The almond extract and rose water gave it a lovely subtle flavor. Delicious!

I had a bit of difficulty in assembling the dessert as the instructions weren't correct; the recipe said to roll the batter into a 1/4" thick and 1 1/2" wide strip. In actuality the strip had to be more like 4" wide.

I was surprised by how easy it was to actually roll the Marzipan over the Raspberry Jam. I worked on a non-stick sheet and simply folded each side towards the other until they met. We only had to do a teeny bit of patching at the end in order to hide the jam.

We then rolled the log in very finely ground coconut flour which prevented it from sticking and also made it very pretty.


Heathy's Zucotto cake recipe was phenomenal! It is very dense but the blend of chocolate and almond flavors were to live for!

Italian Chocolate Zucotto
By Heathy Pace
Posted on Eighty Percent Raw site here

An Italian classic in the raw. Walnut cake with a hint of orange is layered with crunchy almond vanilla cream, and smooth rich chocolate cream, in this elegant dessert.  Serve it with orange segments, or fresh seasonal berries for an added burst of flavor and lightness.

Cake Ingredients
    •    1 cup walnuts
    •    2/3 cup almonds
    •    1 cup pitted, packed medjool dates
    •    1/2 teaspoon orange zest
    •    1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Cake Directions
    1.    In a food processor, grind the almonds into a fine powder. Transfer to a bowl.
    2.    Grind the walnuts into crumbs. Add to the almonds.
    3.    Process the dates with the zest and extract until smooth. Add the nuts and process into a smooth dough.
    4.    Line a 1 quart mixing bowl with plastic wrap and press the dough evenly into the bottom and up the sides. Set aside.  

Almond Cream Ingredients
    •    1 cup cashews
    •    1/3 cup almond milk
    •    1/3 cup melted coconut oil
    •    3 tablespoons maple syrup
    •    1 1/2 -2 teaspoons pure almond extract
    •    2 tablespoons chopped almonds

Almond Cream Directions
    1.    Blend all but the chopped almonds, until smooth. Fold in the almonds.
    2.    Spread a thick, even layer of the cream on the cake layer.
    3.    Chill in the freezer for a few hours, or until the cream is firm enough to spread the next layer on top.

Cacao Whipped Cream Ingredients

    •    3/4 cup almond milk
    •    1/2 cup cashews
    •    1/2 cup walnuts
    •    3 tablespoons cacao powder
    •    3 tablespoons maple syrup
    •    2 teaspoons carob powder
    •    Seeds of 1/2 vanilla bean
    •    Pinch celtic sea salt
    •    2 tablespoons melted cacao butter
    •    1 tablespoons coconut oil

Cacao Whipped Cream Directions
    1.    In a blender, combine all but the butter and oil, until smooth and creamy.
    2.    Add the last two ingredients and blend to incorporate.
    3.    Spread the mixture over the almond cream, filling the hole.

    •    Chill the cake in the freezer for a few hours, or in the fridge overnight, until firm.
    •    To unmold, invert the cake onto a plate. Remove the bowl and plastic wrap.
    •    Dust with cacao powder, slice, and enjoy with friends.

And on this sweet note I'll stop here for now. It's a gorgeous sunny day in snowy Mt-Shasta and we'd like to make the most of it and go for a nice walk.

Oh and remember that you have only another day to take advantage of my Mega Recipe Book Sale!

Have a blessed, joy-full, healthy and delicious New Year!


  1. Oh my goodness- what a raw food fest! You are making me miss my kitchen like crazy. I am going to get busy when I get home from Mexico. :)

  2. As usual Carmella you make us drool over so wonderful recipes. Thanks so much for your sharing.
    Happy New Year!

  3. What tremendous raw vegan recipes! Thank you so much. I cannot wait to share try these!

    Happy and Healthy New Year!

  4. What a wonderful post, with so many amazing looking recipes...Thanks for the inspiration!!

  5. Hi - Do you soak the cashews in the Zucatto recipe? Usually I do but since it doesn't say to, I'm guessing no?

  6. Sarah,

    As a general rule I find that it's a good idea to not soak nuts unless it specifically says so in a recipe as it could alter the final texture dramatically. The cashews aren't soaked in this case, although you could if you want, but then you'd have to adjust the amount of liquid to make up for what the cashews have absorbed.


  7. Carmella! This must be one of the most awesome desserts ever! I made it and even though there are three layers, it's really quite easy to put together. It looked amazing and my non-raw friends loved it! This is a new favorite:) Thanks so much!!!!