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!

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Raw in a Flash Video: Pasta in Mushroom & Spinach Cheeze Sauce

One of the recipes I get most complimented about is probably my Spinach & Cream Pasta Casserole; a really yummy dish I was inspired to create early on in my raw gourmet phase. It consists of several steps and therefore requires some time in the kitchen. Definitely worth every bit of it, though, I promise!

Then a couple of years ago I developed another somewhat similar pasta combo for my Delightfully Raw book that used Cultured Nut Cheeze as the base. "Wow," is all I can say! It really took things to another level, lending the finished dish a lovely depth of flavors.

Today's recipe is sort of a cross between these two. It has that 'gourmet touch' thanks to Cultured Cheeze, yet can be assembled fairly quickly.

Who said that fast and easy had to be boring, eh? ;-)

And now for the recipe...

Zucchini and Kelp Pasta in Mushroom & Spinach Cheeze Sauce

Serves 2-3

Prep Time: Less than 30 minutes (More if you don't have Basic Cultured Cheeze already made)

Step 1:
1 1/2 cups sliced mushrooms
1 tbs olive oil
1 tbs tamari

Toss together and set aside while working on the rest of the recipe.

Step 2:
1 1/2 cups sliced spinach
1 tsp olive oil
1/4 tsp salt

Massage together in a bowl until spinach is wilted. Set aside.

Step 3:
1 1/2 medium zucchinis, peeled

Make Zucchini Noodles with your favorite spiral slicer - I prefer the Benriner Cook Helper Slicer. (Find out why by reading my Ultimate Guide To Equipping Your Raw Kitchen!)

Step 4:
In a large bowl combine the following:

3 cups or so of zucchini noodles
3 cups or so kelp noodles that have pre-soaked in water for a few hours
Marinated mushrooms and spinach
1/2 cup Basic Cultured Cashew or Macadamia Cheeze
2 tbs finely chopped green onion
1/2 tbs nutritional yeast
1 crushed garlic clove
1 1/2 tsp dried tarragon
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp lemon juice
1/4 tsp salt
2-4 tbs water, until desired consistency is reached (bear in mind that some liquid will be released by the veggies as they sit in the sauce!)*
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

*You might want to mix the Cultured Cheeze and the water first before adding the rest of the ingredients for easier handling.

Allow the kelp noodles to sit in the sauce for at least 30 mins. in order to soften them up.

For a warm dish, place covered in the dehydrator at 110 for 1 hour.

Optional: For extra yumminess, sprinkle the top with a Brazil Nut Parmesan or Pine Nut Parmesan.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Raw in a Flash Video: Strawberry Banana Shake

Today I'd like to share the first video of a new recipe series that I call 'Raw in a Flash'. For various reasons, many of us don't have the time and energy to play in the kitchen for long or as much as we'd like. That doesn't have to mean that we compromise our health with junkie fast food or that we need to be ever munching on celery sticks and green mush! ;-) In 'Raw in a Flash' I will be presenting simple yet very tasty recipes that can be prepared in a short time with a minimum of equipment.

Since a good blender is a 'raw foodie's best friend' and a great time saver, it will be the appliance that will be called for the most. In that light I've decided to feature the Omni V, a relatively new 3HP blender that I discovered a year and a half ago. While its performance is very comparable to other high quality power machines on the market, at $250 it costs significantly less than these, making it the 'best bang for your buck'. This series will give you an opportunity to see for yourself how well it fares. You might also want to check out this page dedicated to the Omni.

To launch this series I've chosen to share with you guys one of my favorite smoothies. In fact, once I'm done typing this I'll be whipping up a batch for today's breakfast. ;-) It's actually a recipe that I developed for the Deliciously Raw book that I wrote especially for the Omni blender. Originally it was made with strawberries but you can easily substitute these with any other type of berries that you have on hand. 

And now for the recipe...

Strawberry Banana Shake
From Carmella's Deliciously Raw

Prep Time: Less than 10 mins (a little more if you don't have almond milk already made)

Serves 2

2 cups almond milk*
2 medium frozen bananas
2 cups strawberries or other berries, fresh or frozen
1/4 cup soft dates
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract or liquid vanilla
2 tablespoons lucuma
1/2 cup ice cubes

*To make almond milk, blend 1 cup almonds that were soaked overnight with 3-5 cups of water - depending on how thick you like it - in a high power blender until nuts are completely dissolved. (About 1 min. or so) Then strain mixture through a nut milk bag, a paint straining bag or even a panty hose. Refrigerated, almond milk will keep for 3 to 5 days.

Process all ingredients in a high power blender until smooth and creamy.

If necessary, adjust sweetness by adding a raw liquid sweetener, such as coconut nectar, honey or agave, and blending again briefly.

Carmella's Note: If you don't have ice cubes, you may want to add some water until the desired consistency is reached. 


Sunday, July 8, 2012

Herb Flax Crackers With Black Pepper & Chive Almond Cheeze

I took advantage of the last of the rainy spell to crank up the 'D' - (that's dehydrator for the uninitiated) ;-) - and stock up on a few staples. With Don's precious help we made a double batch of Garlic Bread and a few trays of pizza crusts. I also experimented with a new kind of flax cracker that turned out really well. They are light, super crunchy and very tasty. Plus, the herb combination possibilities are endless!

Herb Flax Crackers
Adapted from a recipe by Chad Sarno

Makes 2 trays

1/2 cup flax seeds, soaked overnight in 1 cup water
1/2 cup almonds, soaked overnight
1/2 cup sunflower seeds, soaked overnight
1 cup roughly peeled and chopped zucchini
1 garlic clove
1/2 tbs onion powder
1 tsp salt
1 tsp basil
1/2 tsp oregano
1/2 tsp rosemary

Place all ingredients in food processor and blend until smooth.

Divide batter into 2 and spread thinly - about 1/4" - onto 2 teflex sheets.

Dehydrate at 120 for 3 hours, flip unto mesh and turn the dial down to 110. Continue dehydrating until completely dry (another 8 hours or so.)

We've been enjoying the Herb Flax Crackers with my latest variation of vegan cheeze inspired by Jo Stepaniak's awesome Ultimate Uncheese Cookbook. This time I decided to be bold and replaced the usual cashews and tahini with soaked almonds and hemp seeds. It worked like a dream! The cheeze is seasoned with freshly ground black peppercorn and fresh chives from the garden. Yum, yum, yum!

Black Pepper & Chive Almond Cheeze

1 1/2 cups water
1 1/2 tbs agar powder
1/2 cup almonds, soaked for 8 - 12 hrs
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1/4 cup lemon juice
2 tbs hemp seeds
1/2 tbs onion powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp dry mustard
3/4 tsp salt
1 garlic clove
1 1/2 tbs finely chopped fresh chives (or 2 or 3 tsp dry)
3/4-1 tsp coarsely ground black pepper

Set aside a 2 cup plastic storage container.

In a blender add the almonds, nutritional yeast, lemon juice, hemp seeds, onion and garlic powders, dry mustard, salt and garlic clove.

Combine water and agar in a small pan and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, stirring often with a whisk until completely dissolved, about 5 to 10 minutes.

Add mixture to the other ingredients in the blender and process until completely smooth, scraping down the sides of the blender jar as necessary. 

Add chives and black pepper and process briefly on low speed, just to incorporate.

Pour into container and cool uncovered in the refrigerator.

When completely cool, cover and chill several hours.  (I usually serve it after 1 hour or so).

To serve, turn out of the container and slice.

Store covered in refrigerator.  Will keep 5 to 7 days.


Sunny Raw Birthday Book Sale
A reminder that you have a little less than 12 hours to take advantage of my Sunny Raw Birthday Book Sale. Find out how you can save up to 30% when purchasing my books here!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Fourth of July Superfood Smoothie

We're having yet another 'cooped-up-in-the-trailer' day as the sky has been spilling its liquid offering since last night. It's actually been raining pretty much for the entire month of June. I've long given up on complaining about the foul weather, as it wouldn't do any good anyway besides making me even more sad. As they wisely say, "you gotta make do with the hand that's been given to you." *shrugs*

Sooooo, here I am typing this as I sip on a crazy yummy smoothie. I just HAD to pass the recipe on in case you've missed it. It was tucked away in a recent newsletter from Matthew Kenney featuring lucuma powder. (If you aren't already subscribed you can do so here.)

Considered a superfood, lucuma is the fruit of a South American tree and was revered as the 'Gold of the Incas'. I read somewhere that it's actually the most popular ice cream flavor in South America. I don't know whether that's true, but it would certainly be my personal favorite; I just love lucuma's wonderful caramel-like flavor and delicate sweetness! And it certainly is fabulous in the following tasty concoction. Definitely a new fave superfood treat around here!

If you were looking to celebrate the Fourth of July in a healthy way, this smoothie's rich dark blue color makes it a perfect contribution. ;-)

Superfood Smoothie
Published in Matthew Kenney's Wellness Bulletin

1 frozen banana
1 cup frozen cherries or blueberries
1 cup almond milk
1 tbsp lucuma powder
1 tsp raw cacao powder
1 tsp mesquite powder
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp hemp seeds
1 tsp vanilla
Pinch sea salt

Combine all ingredients in the blender, combine well.

Serve and enjoy!

Carmella's Notes:
~ I cut down slightly on the amount of cinnamon and added 1 medjhool date for extra sweetness.

~ I found that the mixture was a little too thick due to the frozen banana and blueberries, so I added a touch of warm water.

Oh, and a quick reminder that you only have a few days left to take advantage of my Sunny Raw Birthday Book Sale. Find out more about it here!

Happy Fourth of July to all of my American friends!