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, December 11, 2011

Welcome 2012 Mega Raw Recipe Book Sale

To celebrate the upcoming holidays and the arrival of 2012, I'm offering all of my recipe books at very special prices! From now until January 9th, you can order The Best of The Sunny Raw Kitchen, The Best of Raw Freedom Community and my new Delightfully Raw and Deliciously Raw at a savings of 15 to 25%!

Festive Offer on the Printed Versions of Delightfully Raw and Deliciously Raw
Unlike my two previous recipe books, Delightfully Raw and Deliciously Raw are not only available in electronic format but also as hard copies. There truly is something different and special about holding an actual book in your hands. They are both so colorful, filled with gorgeous mouthwatering pictures and detailed recipes. (Find out more about Delightfully Raw here! Find out more about Deliciously Raw here!

Order a hard copy of my Deliciously Raw book and get 15% off!
Pay $12.70 instead of the regular $14.95. (save $2.25)

Click on the button below to take advantage of this limited time offer!

To redeem your 15% off use the code: HOLIDAYS10

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Note: During the check out process, you'll be given the option to pay either with Paypal or with any major credit card.

Order a single hard copy of my Delightfully Raw book and get 15% off!
Pay $27.15 instead of the regular $31.95. (save $4.80)

Click on the button below to take advantage of this limited time offer!

To redeem your 15% off use the code: HOLIDAYS1

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Remember that you can still take advantage of my Delightfully Raw Combo. If you would like to get uncooking right away while you wait for your copy of Delightfully Raw to arrive in the mail, you can immediately receive it in electronic format for an extra $5.00.

You will receive the download link for the Delightfully Raw ebook in your inbox as soon as your payment clears.

Pay $32.15 instead of the regular $36.95. (save $4.80)

To order the Delightfully Raw Combo just click on the link below!

To receive 15% off your hard copy use the coupon code: HOLIDAYS12

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Order two hard copies of my Delightfully Raw book and receive 20% off! 
Pay $51.12 instead of the regular $63.90 and save $12.78!

Click on the button below to take advantage of this limited time offer!

To redeem your 20% off use the coupon code: HOLIDAYS2

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IMPORTANT: For technical reasons, S&H for physical books can only be calculated accurately for North America. For international orders, please send me an email!

Rawesome Ebook Sale
From now until January 9th I'm also offering all of my recipe books in electronic format at 25% off! 

Deliciously Raw Ebook

Pay only $8.99 instead of the regular $11.99 and save $3.00!

 To order my Deliciously Raw ebook, click on the link below!

To redeem your 25% off, use the coupon code: HOLIDAYS9

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Delightfully Raw Ebook

Pay only $14.98 instead of the regular $19.98 and save $5.00!

 To order my Delightfully Raw ebook, click on the link below!

To redeem your 25% off, use the coupon code: HOLIDAYS3

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The Best of Raw Freedom Community

Pay only $9.75 instead of the regular S12.99 and save $3.25!

For The Best of Raw Freedom Community ebook, click on the link below!

To redeem your 25% off, use the coupon code: HOLIDAYS4

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The Best of The Sunny Raw Kitchen

Pay only $8.24 instead of the regular S10.99 and save $2.75!

For The Best of The Sunny Raw Kitchen ebook, click on the link below!

To redeem your 25% off, use the coupon code: HOLIDAYS5

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Ebook Package #1
My first two best sellers, The Best Of The Sunny Raw Kitchen and The Best of Raw Freedom Community, can be purchased together in one convenient package. 

Pay only $16.50 instead of the regular $22.00 and save 5.50!

To order this package, simply click on the link below! 

To redeem your 25% off, use the coupon code: HOLIDAYS6

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Ebook Package #2
You can also purchase my first three books, The Best Of The Sunny Raw Kitchen, The Best of Raw Freedom Community and Delightfully Raw in a single package.

Pay only $26.99 instead of the regular $35.99 and save $9.00

To order this package, simply click on the link below! 

To redeem your 25% off, use the coupon code: HOLIDAYS7

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Ebook Package #3
Purchase all four of my recipe books with just one click!

Pay only $31.50 instead of the regular $41.99 and save $10.50

To order this package, simply click on the link below! 

To redeem your 25% off, use the coupon code: HOLIDAYS8

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Ready or Not - Freegold: The Real New World Order 
And last but not least, you can also purchase Don's new Ready or Not - Freegold at a discount until January 3rd. In this book he talks about how the global economy is destined to collapse into a hyper-inflationary depression and how best to prepare yourself for this.

Pay only $7.49 instead of the regular $9.99 and save $2.50!

 To order Don's Ready or Not - Freegold ebook, click on the link below!

To redeem your 25% off, use the coupon code: HOLIDAYS11

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Please Note:
The ebooks come in PDF format; if you don't already have 'Acrobat Reader' installed on your computer, you can download a free copy at www.adobe.com.

The downloading instructions for the ebook(s) will be sent to your inbox shortly after you've completed your payment. (If you don't receive it, you might want to make sure it hasn't been sent to your SPAM or junk folder!)

IMPORTANT: If you are having any difficulty ordering or using the above coupon codes, simply make your payment via the 'Donate' button on the right sidebar of my blog. Just make sure to mention what it's for in the appropriate box. ;-)

Please don't hesitate to contact me at:


Wishing you all a wonderfully healthy and vibrant Holiday Season and a positive start to the new year 2012!

Stay Healthy This Holiday Season

Don't know what to bring to holiday parties? Worried about ditching your healthy eating habits?

Healthy Holidays: A Survival Guide is here to help you make it through.

You’re not alone in overeating and giving in to temptation during the holidays. Parties offer trays of rich, cheesy hor’doeurves, family members remind you, “It’s your favorite!,” and grocery stores cram their shelves with processed sweets. Sometimes, your diet can be far from the front of your mind.

Healthy Holidays: A Survival Guide can help you navigate the rough holiday voyage so that you stay healthy and happy. Details here!

This book has so many solutions to your holiday needs. A few features are:
  • Over 50 healthy, raw recipes
  • Travel tips for what to pack and carry what you travel
  • Advice on discussing what you eat with friends and family
  • Thoughts on how to stay healthy and eat raw during the winter
This book includes recipes from:
  • Cherie Soria
  • Nomi Shannon
  • Elaina Love
  • Angela Stokes-Monarch
  • Russell James
  • And yours truly! *wink wink*
Don’t let your body take a beating this season.  Instead, arm yourself with our guide for healthy success!

Check out all the details about Healthy Holidays: A Survival Guide here!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Roadtrip to LA: Better Life Cuisine and Cafe Gratitude

Diane recently acquired a cute little hybrid car - a Honda Insight. It runs on both gas and electric and is incredibly fuel efficient (the previous owner managed to get a lifetime average of 86 miles/gallon!!!) Unfortunately she learned quickly that town driving is not the best way to keep the battery recharged. Therefore every so often Diane likes to take her new sweetie on the highway for a ride. You know, make her happy! ;-) And so a couple of weeks ago we took a little road trip to L.A.

As soon as we got the chance we left the Interstate in order to hop on the Pacific Coast Highway. It was a clear sunny day and the ocean was stunningly beautiful.

Our route took us right by the residences of many a Hollywood celebrity as we passed Malibu. Not surprisingly all you could see from the road were fancy gates and tall trees as they value their privacy. (I certainly can't blame them!) It was strange, though, to think that most of the famous movie stars have, at one point or another, driven down this very same road.

Feasting at Better Life Cuisine
Our first stop was Better Life Cuisine in Santa Monica - an awesome raw cafe that Don and I visited last spring. The food is phenomenal, the portions generous and the prices super reasonable. In other words, a raw enthusiast's heaven!

I ordered the same thing as before: the Curry Wrap. I know, I know, what a bore but it was so darn yummy! It consists of copious amounts of mixed greens, alfalfa sprouts, sunflower, green tomato, 'grilled' onions, cucumbers, curry sauce, 3 croquettes and house dressing expertly tucked into a soft veggie tortilla.

The Wrap was still huge as ever! I thought that the flavor of the wrapper itself was a tad too strong, overriding the subtlety of the filling. No doubt something about that particular batch of tortillas. It was accompanied by a side of Kale Salad that was super tasty.

As it happens Diane went with the Lasagna (marinara sauce, zucchini, mushroom, 'grilled' onion, ricotta cheese, Parmesan cheese, tomatoes, basil, mozzarella cheese), which is what Don had ordered back then. So much for novelty I guess! She absolutely loved it, especially the marinara sauce which was flavorful and light. It came with a small serving of Tomato Basil Soup that was really very good, albeit cold. (We're so used to enjoying warm raw soups!)

Isn't the presentation sensational?

I was so full I only managed to eat half of my Wrap, but that's not to say we couldn't try their desserts! We left with a piece of Pumpkin Pie and Chocolate Pie - both to live for! - and a Cinnamon Roll. Yum yum yum! (Sorry no pic as they had lost their firmness by the time we got home. boo hoo. Still tasted divine!)

A Walk on the Pier
Satiated, we headed to the famous Santa Monica Pier for a walk. I was vaguely aware that I might encounter a familiar face, something common here on star turf and all. Wouldn't you know it, as we were driving down Broadway on the sidewalk I caught sight of Carrie-Anne Moss who played Trinity in The Matrix. Wow! What are the odds that, of all people, I should see the lead actress from my favorite movie!?!

The pier was buzzing with activity; street performers, tourists, kids happily boasting ginormous balls of cotton-candy (yikes!), and locals enjoying a stroll with friends.

It was windy and cold - even for a Kanuck like me - so we stayed on the pier and didn't venture onto the beach.

The views from both sides of the pier.



The famous Ferris wheel at the amusement park.

Feasting at Cafe Gratitude
Just before we left that morning I was struck with a rather bold idea: since we were going to drive that far, why not continue a little further to Cafe Gratitude's new LA location for dessert? After all, according to Google Map it was only an extra 12 miles... Didn't sound too bad!

In reality it meant getting deeper into the mouth of the beast - the most populated city in the US. In spite of our intention to avoid the highway we ended up on it for a short stretch. It was of course packed and traffic was at a crawl. Sooooo stressful! Both Diane and I got headaches from the tension.

Thankfully, in spite of that, the GPS took us uneventfully to our destination through the beautiful residential streets of Beverly Hills. This latest addition to Cafe Gratitude's chain was opened earlier this year. Neither of us were overly impressed by the place. For one thing the restaurant is very spacious and in my opinion completely devoid of atmosphere. It felt slick and commercially oriented, lacking the warmth and heart that their San Francisco locations are renowned for. Perhaps because of all the hard edges, the combination of the customers' voices and the music was also so loud that we couldn't comfortably carry on a conversation.

The menu is designed to appeal to a wider clientele and range of taste buds by offering both cooked and raw vegan items. Not a bad idea as I know that the appeal of raw foods can reduce dramatically during the cold months. Although we came with the intention of just having dessert - their specialty in my opinion - we ended up ordering a couple of savory things.

While browsing through their take out menu a couple of years ago I noticed that they offered a raw rendition of bagels. I was anxious to finally try it. I AM PEACE, a live onion bagel with cashew crème cheese, nori “lox,” tomato, onion, capers and sprouts, is technically only served for breakfast but the server didn't make a fuss about it. I thought it was super yummy; a really nice combination of flavors.


The people next to us received their food while we were browsing through the menu and I couldn't help but gawk at their fare: tamale. Diane could hardly believe it when I told her that I'd never had a tamale before, so we decided to order that as well.

The server asked if we'd like Guacamole and Nacho Cheese like the lady at the next table and I said "Sure!" What she failed to mention, of course, was that these came at an additional cost. The dish was very good although we agreed that red tomatoes were lacking for both color and flavor. I honestly think that the dish would have been grossly incomplete with only the Zucchini-Mushroom Tamale, black beans and salsa verde it comes with. Why they put the guac and cheese as 'optional' borders on a cunning ploy if you ask me.

We were told that they were out of the daily Layered Cake and the choice of Cheesecake was Banana Chocolate. Since Diane is no big banana fan in the end we decided to go with a piece of Tiramisu. I've made it at least a couple of times at home but was curious to taste the original version. I thought it was excellent and that the texture was perfect, although as Diane pointed out, the coffee flavor wasn't very pronounced. But that was actually fine by me as I was concerned to get a caffeine buzz, sensitive as I am to that stuff.

We decided to head back via surface streets. It did take longer but then again I was glad to get a chance to get a feel for LA since I was there. Melrose Avenue with its funky and hip stores reminded me a little of Montreal.

We were exhausted by the time we got home, 2 1/2 hours later. The extra drive to Cafe Gratitude was indeed a bit much. On the other hand in light of last week's shocking news this was perhaps my last opportunity to ever partake of their food. As most of you may already know by now, the Engelharts announced (on facebook actually - What a way to learn that you've lost your job!) the closure of all of their Northern California restaurants due to several law suits from former employees. (You can read about this unexpected turn of event here and here.)

I still don't totally get their decision to shut down seven locations (eight including Gracias Madre) and put over 200 employees out of work rather than fight back since, as it has been suggested, "the lawsuit number is under $200,000." The whole thing just doesn't make any sense and leaves a bad taste in my mouth - no pun intended - especially since they intend to keep their LA outpost and open a new venue in Venice.

Anyhoo I'll let you decide for yourself...

P.S. I couldn't help but smile at the clever title of this article: "I Am Closing:" Cafe Gratitude Owners Will Shut Down Rather Than Fight Lawsuits.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

In Diane's Sunny Kitchen - Part I

Ok, it's official, my interest in food prep is back! Woo hoo! And oh the yummies that have been coming out of Diane's kitchen these past weeks!

When the idea of my visit to California started to take form, both Diane and I eagerly began to look forward to doing some uncooking together. Her diet had been less than ideal for the last few months and her body was paying the price. As for me, after this summer's miserable dry spell I was at last getting excited to be creative with food again. Yippee!

But first things first; we had to restock Diane's cupboards! I've already told you that we got lots of specialty raw products at The Raw Food World in Ojai. We also placed an order with Earth Shift Products, which is basically the buyer's club version of Ultimate Superfoods. They offer super high quality products at up to 70% market retail price. (By the way, you can now get a free membership. Simply use promotional code E511 while signing up!)

As for fresh produce, most of it comes from Diane's weekly CSA basket but we also like to go to one of the wonderful local Farmer's Markets. We are so blessed here as tons of fruits and veggies grow all year round. The Santa Barbara Markets are soooooo vibrant and abundant; it's always such a treat to wander through them!

Isn't this display just gorgeous?

A rainbow of flowers next to the sprout stand.

This has got to be the most beautiful heap of mixed greens I've ever laid eyes upon!

Let's Hit The Kitchie!
The kitchen is one place where Don's absence has been sorely felt. He's always so helpful with chopping, making fresh juice and smoothies, and not to forget doing the dishes! Every mama's dream, I tell ya! (You should have seen how mine fell in love with Don during our last visit! he he) In spite of Diane's attempts to will him to teleport over here a few times, we have had to resort to our own efforts. ;-)

We've almost instantly and comfortably fallen into the routine of Diane preparing our morning juice (carrot, apple, beet, ginger and a touch of lemon), while I whiz up a smoothie for our lunch. Beverages have never been my forte but a gal's gotta do what she's gotta do, and actually it hasn't been so bad at all. I just end up mostly throwing together the same blends over and over. That's all! *shrugs*

Ninety percent of the time I make a green smoothie, alternating between the Mango Spinach Smoothie from my Deliciously Raw book, and a pineapple, banana, apple, orange, lemon juice and fresh greens blend. But once in a while I whip up something special such as Heathy's Butterscotch Shake or my Strawberry Banana Shake, which I just adore!

The other day while looking for more scrumptious ways to use young coconut, I stumbled upon the recipe for the Coconutty served at Thrive - Seattle's awesome raw restaurant. No wonder it's their best selling drink; it is super simple and oh-so-luscious!

Thrive's Coconutty
Posted here

Serves 1 or 2

Meat from 1 young coconut
1 cup coconut water
1 cup ice
6 cashews (I used macadamias)
About 1 tbs of your sweetener of choice (dates, agave, maple syrup, etc)

Blend until smooth in a high power blender.

Close your eyes and pretend you're on a sun kissed beach somewhere tropical! ;-)

Depending on Diane's schedule, either me or the two of us work on dinner. When that happens it's always such a special and fun time! We usually do so with a glass of her home brewed kombucha - THE best I've ever tasted! At times we go all out and have an "aperitif". Ahhhhh, the good life! ;-)

We virtually always start off our evening meal with a raw soup, a habit that Don and I've had (and cherished!) for the last 10 years or so. What a wonderful and unsurpassed way to enjoy lots of fresh veggies with minimal fuss! There are soooo many outstanding recipes to choose from, several of which I have already posted on my blog. (Make sure to check out my Recipe Index here!)

I've been making some favorite lighter soups like Cream of Zucchini, Cucumber Avocado Dill and Popeye Gone Raw Cream of Spinach but also heartier comforting gems such as Corn Chowder, Cheezy Spinach Almond Soup and Cream of Celery.

Green Cucumber Soup from Delightfully Raw

As we found a huge watermelon at Costco, on the menu one evening was an exquisite and refreshing concoction I hadn't made in years: Alissa Cohen's Watermelon Soup. Sooooo good!

It's been such a delight to enjoy all kinds of different entrees, something I didn't have the energy to do all summer long. Here are some of the yummies we've treated ourselves to:

Broccoli in Hoisini Sauce with Parsnip "Rice"

I could hardly believe Diane had never tried the outstanding Raw Vegan Crab Cake recipe that's been floating around the web a while. Now we HAD to do something about that! We served them with a simple Tartar Sauce made from a Cashew Sour Cream (cashews, water, lemon juice, salt) in which we tossed some chopped Bubbie's Pickles and fresh dill.

My Hemp Burgers, which we served on Onion Bread with Cashew Cream, and a thick slice of tomato and lettuce.

I also initiated Diane to the art of making Spring Rolls with rice paper. This is yet another awesome dish that is easy to prepare, color-full and absolutely delicious. We served them with a simple dipping sauce made from tamari, olive oil, lemon juice, crushed garlic and finely grated ginger.

Zucchini Pasta with my variation of Basil Arugula Pesto. So very good! We sprinkled some Pine Nut Parmesan from my Spinach & Cream Pasta Casserole on top. To live for!

As you've seen most of the time we serve our entrees accompanied with a salad tossed in a dressing such as my House Dressing (always a winner!), my Caesar Dressing or Cafe Gratitude's Fig-Balsamic from their I Am Grateful book). I had tried the latter a while back and decided it would be a perfect use for Diane's dried Black Mission figs. The recipe calls for soaked figs, balsamic vinegar, olive oil, jalapeno pepper, salt, lemon juice and black pepper. I haven't found the recipe posted online but I have come upon a variation of it that looks mighty good.

Fig-Balsamic Dressing
Posted here

5 fresh figs, stems removed
6 tablespoons good quality balsamic vinegar
1 to 2 tablespoons Grade B maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon sea salt or Herbamare
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Place the figs, balsamic vinegar, maple syrup, and salt in a blender and blend on medium until combined and the figs are lightly pureed. With the motor running on a low speed, slowly pour in the olive oil. Add black pepper if desired and blend on low speed, slightly, to incorporate.

Pour dressing over your favorite salad. Transfer remaining dressing to a glass jar. Will last 7 to 10 days in the refrigerator.

In the sweet department, we've been keeping it simple but that's not to say that our treats haven't been decadent!

Cafe Gratitude's Chocolate Mousse, one of Diane's absolute faves.

I am Magnificent Raw Chocolate Mousse
From Cafe Gratitude's I Am Grateful

Posted here

½ ounce Irish Moss
½ cup water
2 cups almond milk
¼ cup well packed, finely chopped dates
¼ cup agave nectar
¼ cup + 2 tablespoons cacao powder
2 teaspoon vanilla
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons lecithin
½ cup unscented coconut butter

Put Irish moss, cut into small pieces, into blender carafe with water and blend on high speed until dissolved and smooth and very thick.

Add milk, date, agave nectar, vanilla, salt, and cacao powder and blend until smooth.

Add lecithin and coconut butter until well incorporated.

Pour into cups and place in fridge/freezer until set.

We found some incredibly moist and sweet fresh honey dates sold by the DuVall Farm at the market. How could we resist such deliciousness!?! It gave me the idea of making Date Squares, an old family favorite, and something I had mysteriously forgotten about. I don't know what took me so long to recreate this recipe in the raw! I gave the traditional version an orange twist - wow! - but feel free to make the Date Squares with water instead of orange juice. We enjoyed ours warm right out of the dehydrator with a scoop of raw Vanilla Ice Cream. Beyond heavenly!

Orange Date Squares

Makes 6 large or 10 small squares

2 cups pitted soft dates
1/4 cup fresh orange juice (or you could use water if you prefer)
2 tsp vanilla extract or liquid vanilla*

* To make Liquid Vanilla: Blend 3 whole vanilla beans, roughly chopped, with 1 cup water in the blender until completely dissolved. Store in fridge for a month or so and use in place of vanilla extract.

Process dates, orange juice or water and vanilla in food processor until smooth.

1 cup almonds, ground
1 cup cashews, ground
1 1/2 cups oat flakes
1/4 cup coconut sugar
1/4 - 1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp salt
1/4 cup melted coconut oil
2 or 3 tsp water to help the ingredients stick

Place dry ingredients in a bowl and mix by hand.

Fold in melted coconut oil. If desired add a little water, one tsp at a time, to help the mixture stick together.

Press half of the Crumble mixture in a glass dish.

Top with an even layer of Date Filling.

Finish with the rest of the Crumble mixture.

Place in the fridge to set.

Carmella's Note: For extra decadence, warm these up in the dehydrator for an hour or so and serve with your favorite Raw Vegan Vanilla Ice Cream. To live for!

I received this next recipe in one of Sunfood.com's newsletters and was immediately intrigued. Mulberry Lucuma Cookies? Sounded mighty good to me! I ended up having to tweak it a little to suit my taste buds but the result was quite tasty. Diane loves loves the flavor; she could have sworn that there were spices in there but really, the mixture of mulberry, lucuma, orange zest and almond extract do the trick all on their own!

Mulberry Lucuma Cookies
Posted on Sunfood.com here

2 cups mulberries
1 cup cashews or almonds, soaked for two hours
2 Tbsp lucuma powder
1 Tbsp coconut oil, melted in dehydrator
1 tsp vanilla powder
1/2 cup shredded raw coconut
2 tsp orange zest
1/2 tsp Kalahari Salt

Drain and rinse cashews or almonds well after soaking.

In food processor, add all ingredients. Process until well incorporated and sticks together.

Roll "dough" into 1 inch balls and set on a plate.

Get a dehydrator tray ready with a Paraflexx sheet on top. Place balls onto dehydrator sheet.

Press balls into flat cookies with a fork.

Dehydrate at 120 degrees overnight or to the consistency you would like.

Store in airtight container.

Will last for up to one month.

Carmella's Notes:
~ I found the batter quite dry and under-sweetened so I added an extra 1 tbs lucuma, 7 honey dates or 3 Medjhools and 1 tbs coconut nectar.

~ I didn't have coconut flakes so I used 1/4 cup coconut flour instead.

~ I also added 1 more tsp orange zest and 1/4 tsp almond extract for extra flavor.

~ Although the addition of dates did help to moisten the dough a little, it was still quite dry. Therefore I only dehydrated the cookies for about 4 hours total at 110 degrees.

Firing Up the D
As you've probably guessed by now, we've been giving Diane's dehydrator a good work out since I got here. We've dehydrated the above cookies as well as countless batches of persimmons (more about that coming up). We also had a savory D day during which we made the Hemp Burgers and Crab Cakes mentioned above. We were getting a little short on crackers so we each made one kind.

Diane usually likes to just throw things together when making crackers. With the help of yours truly we made sure to write the ingredients down this time.


Diane's Buckwheat Crackers
2 cups buckwheat, soaked and sprouted for a couple of days
1 cup carrot pulp
1 cup soaked sunflower seeds
1/4 cup apricot kernels (optional)
About 1 cup water or veggie juice, as needed
2/3 cup ground flax seeds
1/4 cup lime juice
1 tbs Nama Shoyu or tamari
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp garlic powder
1/8 tsp black pepper

Pumpkin seeds, roughly ground
Chipotle powder

Process first set of ingredients in food processor. Add water or juice as needed in order for the mixture to to process smoothly.

Add the next 6 ingredients and process until well incorporated. Adjust seasoning to taste.

Spread batter evenly onto 3 non-stick dehydrator sheets.

Sprinkle with a mixture of ground pumpkin seeds, salt and chipotle powder.

Dehydrate at 120 degrees for 2 or 3 hours.

Flip onto mesh and turn temperature dial down to 110. Continue dehydrating until fully dry - about 8 hours total.

A ways back one of my readers, Nilgun, shared a Chia Cracker recipe that she particularly enjoys and I was glad to finally get an opportunity to try it out. It is indeed very good and super nutritious to boot! The recipe was created by Solla, a raw chef who comes from Iceland.

Chia Crackers
From Raw Solla's free ebook

1 c chia seeds, soaked in 10 c (?) water for 2 hrs
1 c flax seeds, soaked in 2 c water for 8 hrs
1 c sesame seeds
1 c hemp seeds
1 stalk celery, chopped
1/2 red onion, chopped
1/2 c sun-dried tomatoes, soaked
2 Tbsp spices (1/2 Tbsp of each: red paprika powder + onion powder + curry powder + oregano)
2 cloves garlic
1 tsp Himalayan crystal salt
Pinch of cayenne

Mix together in a large bowl:

Flax seeds + chia seeds + sesame seeds + hemp seeds + the soaking water from the chia and flax.

Blend in a food processor:

Celery + red onion + garlic + sun-dried tomatoes; when blended stir into the seed mixture, along with the rest of the recipe. If the resulting mixture is too thick, you can add some more water. It is especially magical to use the water leftover from soaking dates...

Place 3 c of the dough onto each Teflex sheet, spread it out evenly and dehydrate for 10-12 hrs at 105°. Then flip the crackers and remove the Teflex sheets, continue dehydrating for 6-8 hrs or until crispy.

Nilgun's Note: There seems to be a mistake in the cracker recipe. (I haven't seen any other mistakes in the booklet.) The water amount (for the chia) seems massive. I used one part seed to one part water for the soaking and then added water as needed to the batter.

Carmella's Notes:
~ On Nilgun's suggestion I used a lot less water with the chia seeds (more like 3 cups total).

~ I nearly doubled the amount of spices.

~ As I always do with most of my dehydrated goodies, I started off the D at 120 degrees for 2 or 3 hours, then turned it down to 110, flipping the crackers onto the mesh as soon as they feel dry to the touch and peel off relatively easily from the teflex sheet.

Persimmon Heaven
One of Diane's friends, Stan, has a persimmon tree growing in his yard. I was jumping up and down with excitement when I found out about it, as these are such a special (and expensive!) treat up in Canada. And so we ventured there one afternoon in order to relieve him of some of the tree's bounty. (Can't let all those lovely persimmons go to waste now, can we?) ;-)

We paused briefly on the way to admire sculptures that one of Stan's neighbors, an elderly gentleman, had in his garden. We discovered that they were in fact his work and he gladly gave us a colorful account of what they represent.

Look at those bright orange babies!

They were the biggest I'd ever seen!

We left with two bagfuls of persimmons that had already been picked. Definitely not as much fun as doing it yourself but I did get to actually pluck one or two.

Got one!

Our loot

We've been enjoying the persimmons on their own but found that dehydrating them was the best way to keep up, as they started ripening real fast.

They turn out such a gorgeous color and taste just like candy!

Persimmons  have a wonderful thick consistency; all you have to do is blend them up in a food processor or blender to obtain the most decadent pudding! One day I made a batch of Whipped Cream and assembled Persimmon & Cream Parfaits.

Alrighty, on that sweet note I think I'll take a little breather.

Diane and I have volunteered to help at the Organic Soup Kitchen for Thanksgiving on Thursday. This is something Diane has been meaning to do for a long time and as for me, it will be a first too. (In Canada Thanksgiving isn't such a big deal.)

There's certainly so much for me to be thankful about in my life! What about you, what are you grateful for?

Wishing you all a wonderful and blessed Thanksgiving!