Superfoods 201 – the next chapter

Join us for our next journey into the mysterious realm of Superfoods. We are talking – in my humble opinion – about foods with high nutrient content and density that may positively affect our wellbeing, health and performance. Walking through any well stocked health food store, you will recognise them by their unusual names (at least in our Western understanding) and also their intriguingly high price tags – compared to the standard fare, we have become so used to.

Yum Berries

Many of these foods are sourced from pristine environments like the Himalayan mountains (Goji berries) and the Amazon rainforest – hence their ‘unusual’ names. These plants and their fruits and roots are oftentimes not farmed but wild-harvested which explains their high content in nutrients (non-depleted soils) and also the higher price compared to other foods.

Maqui berries

Foods in this category are Goji berries, Acai, Maca, Noni, Maqui, Suma, Sacha Inchi, Camu Camu, Chia seeds and many more. Many of these are supplied and distributed by companies like Matakana Superfoods. On their website you will also find much detailed information about the different Superfood products.

Superberries Maqui, Yum, Acai, Goji

Among the more ‘common’ superfoods are blueberries, young coconuts, apple cider vinegar, cacao, turmeric, green tea, wheatgrass, sprouts etc.

And yes, we are offering you another class around these preciously packed nutrient-rich foods. Exploring the ones we have not touched on in our last class on the subject, Superfoods 101. To name a few: Maqui, Yum, Mangosteen as well as some old friends like Maca and Cacao.

Superfood pralines

Coming up this
Tuesday, May 1st, 2012, 7-9.30pm
at the Wise Cicada Cafe in Newmarket, Auckland, New Zealand

Your investment: NZD60
including all samples and the complete recipe booklet of the class.

This class will be centered around a systematic approach to using Superfoods in you daily diet. What (powder, berries) can you incorporate where (your green smoothie, almond milk) and how – for maximum benefit to your wellbeing, health and performance. With a bit of good luck we will have Kevin from Matakana Superfoods with us to introduce a few of his products and to answer your questions about the different power foods.

Seats are limited to 20 students. Book your space today!

Ring René to book on: 027 555 1622 or contact us here.

Alternatively go right ahead and confirm your booking by paying the course fee through our PayPal portal by clicking on the button below.

PayPal Buy Now

Looking forward to seeing you on Tuesday!
Warm regards,

René

🙂

PS: We still have room at New Zealand’s first hands-on Raw Chef Training, Level 1. I have extended the Early Bird rate till Monday, April 30, 2012. Book your space Now!

Rene teaching

Raw Cheese Cake- the secrets revealed

Here is the recipe!

Acai Goji Cheesecake

‘Finally!’ I hear you say 😉

First of all let me express my gratitude to Matthew Kenney and his book ‘Everyday Raw’ for inspiring me to venture into the realm of vegan raw cheese cake ‘imitations’ (far yummier than most of the baked dairy-based ones – apart from yours, mum ;-))

This recipe is not for the faint-hearted chef – as the ones who have attended my Raw Cheesecake Master Classes can confirm. You will have to run your high power blender with an open lid and fold over the filling with a rubber spatula while blending.

Cheese cake making

In my element at the Wise Cicada – making raw cheese cakes.

But don’t worry. I can happily supply you with custom made cakes of this kind upon request. Just drop me a line on our ‘Contact‘ page. As long as you are in Auckland, NZ… 🙂

White Chai and Chocolate Raw Cheesecake

And you are still looking for the recipe, right?!
OK, I will give you the non-chocolate version as a basis for your experiments. For a cacao alternative just add 1 cup of cacao powder in the very end. Be aware, that you are adding a whole cup of dry powder to a mixture that is already quite thick. More spatula work!!! …and watch the temperature of your filling mix! Once it starts steaming, you’ve left the realm of raw foods 😉 – and so have the life enzymes.
Only remedy in that case: Lots of extra Love.

Swirly Chai Chocolate Raw Cheesecake

Basic Raw Lemon Cheesecake

Inspired by Matthew Kenney, yet adjusted to fill a big pie shell
Yields a large round tart pan with 16-20 pieces

Crust
4c shredded coconut

1.5 c cashew flour

1 T coconut oil

4 T date paste

Filling
4c cashews

3/4c lemon juice

1c coconut sugar

1c coconut oil, melted

1/2c filtered water, if required

1 t vanilla powder

¼ c lemon zest

Crust

  1. Mix all ingredients together well in a food processor, starting with the dry ingredients, then adding the ‘wet’ ones.
  2. Press into plastic-lined fluted French tart pan to desired thickness. Make sure the rim of your crust has an even height and thickness all around!
  3. Chill crust in freezer for at least 15min or until ready to fill.

Filling

  1. Blend all ingredients in a powerful high-speed blender until very smooth. Start with cashews, coconut sugar and the water-based liquids. When the cashews resemble a smooth thick cream add coconut oil. The flavours can be adjusted last. Adjust liquids as required for the blender to still turn the mixture over. You will have to use the plunger or a spatula to help mixing the filling. Give your blender motor a break from time to time and monitor the temperature of your filling closely. Too much water will make your final cake runny and too little liquids will make your filling too thick for your blender to turn it over without burning a fuse.
  2. To fill the crust properly the blender should contain about 1.2-1.5l of mixture.
  3. Fill the crust and chill in freezer overnight.
  4. Remove from tart pan and wrap with plastic film. Label with flavour and production date.
  5. Store in freezer.
  6. Remove 15-20min prior to cutting and serving

Other flavours can be achieved with red grape juice, acai berry powder, goji berries, chai extract, chai- or cherry concentrate, goji/apricot, cranberry, 2c of melted frozen blueberry/strawberry etc. Make sure to reduce the amount of water accordingly!!!

Good luck!

René

🙂

PS: Next trick: make two different fillings in one pie shell!

Goji Chocolate Cheesecake halves

Raw Food Chef Training – Level 1, a first in New Zealand!

Are you ready for this?
New Zealand’s first Raw Chef Training!

Magnificent Birthday Cake

After many requests for this kind of teaching we decided to offer a very involving hands-on workshop setting over a long weekend. If you are keen to embark on a committed journey into the culinary world of raw foods then this training is for you. This will be the first raw food chef training in New Zealand.

We will offer this training in several stages over long weekends, so even if you have to travel from the South Island or Australia it will be easy to fit it into your schedule. For our local students we also offer to participate in the catering of a five course raw gourmet meal to apply their newly learned skills shortly after the weekend training.

Chad's Red Radish and Microgreen Salad

Level 1 has been taught from

Friday May 25th to Sunday May 27th, 2012
at Eden Valley Lodge in Albany, Auckland, New Zealand.

Next one coming up now, click here!

These are the topics we will cover:

  • Fri pm: Basics of raw foods, the practice of simple and delicious meals for the whole family, kitchen setup and basic skills.
    Afternoon Tea and Dinner
    Cream of Zucchini Soup
  • Sat: menu planning, breakfasts, salads, lunch and dinners, simple desserts
    Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
    Rawdezvous Cafe display
  • Sun: ethnic cuisine, healing aspects of raw food, sprouting, juicing and fermented foods, dehydrated snacks
    Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner
    Raw Food Sushi
  • One or two weeks after: A five-course dinner catered by you and other graduates for 20 guests at the Wise Cicada Café
    Raw Gourmet Fine Dining

Full recipe book, all meals and follow-up support included.

The next Raw Chef Training, Level 1 education is coming up on the first weekend in December 2012. For more information click here.

The seats at this hands-on training are limited to 12 students to assure the maximum learning for everyone. We are receiving bookings as you are reading this.
Get in touch to reserve your space!

You can either ring René on +64 (0)27 555 1622 or e-mail us through our ‘Contact’ page here.

I am looking forward to your booking and a great training.

Warm regards,

René
🙂

Fermented Foods – a pro-biotic feast!

Ever wondered how to keep your immune system and your digestion happy and powerful at the same time?

Here is your answer: Pro-biotic cultures in your food.

They come in many delicious disguises like: Kombucha, Sauerkraut, KimChi, Coconut Yoghurt, Cabbage Rejuvelac, Natto, nut cheeses and a few others.

A glowingly vibrant cabbage

And here is the good news! We’ll be teaching a raw food demo class about and with these friendly little helpers on Thursday, April 26th, 2012.

The demo will mainly deal with the preparation, cultivation, care and culinary use of the first five in the list above – and we will easily fill 2.5 hours with doing that 🙂

This class will give you the knowledge, tools and techniques to maintain high levels of natural pro-biotic cultures in your diet. While supporting your overall well-being it will simultaneously add a whole new dimension to your culinary repertoire.

Mark this date in your calendar and book your space today!

Thursday, April 26th, 7 – 9.30pm,
Wise Cicada Cafe, 23 Crowhurst Street, Newmarket
Auckland, New Zealand

Investment: $60 – including all samples and comprehensive recipe booklet
Our demo classes are limited to 20 students only.
Bookings are essential!

Reserve your place today by contacting us here!
…or by ringing René on 027 555 1622.

See you there or before!

René

🙂

PS: We will have both cultures and finished products for sale at the class.

Dry it, you will like it! A comprehensive class on dehydrated raw foods.

Yes, we are teaching a

Dehydrated Foods Class
Wednesday, April 11th, 7 – 9.30pm,
Wise Cicada Cafe, 23 Crowhurst Street, Newmarket
Auckland, New Zealand

Join us and come along!

The investment is $60/person including all samples (I’m working on them :-)) and a comprehensive recipe booklet.

Selection of Dehydrated Raw Foods

Our menu for the night will include a basic flaxseed cracker recipe, breakfast granola and a lovely raw porridge, spiced nuts and seeds (great savoury snacks this time!), pizza crusts, wraps and an idea for trail bars. And what do you do with all that pulp from making almond milk??? Precisely! We’ll deal with that one too 😉

If you have a dehydrator and you want to use it more come along!

If you are thinking of getting one come along too! René will share some advice on what to look for in a good dehydrator.

Either way, you will come out of this class with more confidence and knowledge around dehydrated raw foods.

Spaces are limited to 20 people and bookings are essential.
Book your space today!

You can contact us directly to book your place, either by clicking here and leaving us a note or by ringing René directly on 0275551622.

We are looking forward to having some good fun together!

Happy Easter,

René

🙂

PS: More classes are coming up. Please see our Teaching page!

Flax seed cracker recipe – one that works

Yes, yes, yes! Another one of our favourite recipes and a staple in our pantry (top shelf, second jar from the left, right beside the chocolate walnuts – yum!, Maca/apple spice granola, buckwheat pizza bread, and the almond bread croutons).

Our pantry top shelf at night

This recipe came about after a bit of trial and error. Nothing fancy but it works – as long as you keep the ratios approximately in proportion. I encourage you to experiment with other ingredients too. Try other nuts or seeds instead of sunflower seeds, or some other vegies that are in season when you make these crackers. Zucchini or bell peppers will be fine.

Flaxseed cracker ingredients

As you can see in the pictures that follow, we are using the good old Excalibur dehydrator. This recipe will work equally well with any other dehydrator. The linseeds don’t have to be golden if you can’t get them. The brown ones will do just fine.

I use the terms ‘flax seeds’ and ‘linseeds’ alternatively. They are the same.

Here we go:

Golden Linseed Crackers

Makes 8 trays or 288 crackers

  •  4 c golden linseeds, soaked in 6-8 c filtered water for 12 hours
  • 2 c sunflower seeds, soaked for 6-8hours
  • 1 c golden linseed meal
  • 3 tomatoes, chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic, pureed
  • 3 T fresh chives, minced
  • 2 t lemon juice
  • 2 ½ t natural sea salt
  • ¼ t cayenne pepper
  1. Set the soaked linseeds, linseed meal, and chives aside. In a food processor, combine the other ingredients and process until smooth.
  2. In a bowl combine with chives, linseed meal, and soaked linseeds. Hand mix well.
  3. Using an offset spatula, spread the mixture onto Teflex dehydrator sheets, forming eight 25cm squares about 0.5cm high.
  4. If your batter mix is thick enough score the tray into individual crackers with your spatula now or dehydrate at 145° F for 1 hour, then with a pizza wheel or carefully with a big knife score into crackers of equal size.
  5. Rotate the trays regularly both horizontically and between the different slots in your dehydrator (Excalibur). Turn down the temperature gradually to 115° F as the crackers dry.
  6. After 4-6 hours flip the cracker sheets and remove the Teflex sheets. Continue to dehydrate at 105°F for about 12 hours or until crisp.
  7. Store in sealed glass jars (see picture above).

And here is the whole story in pictures. Enjoy!

soaked flax and sunflower seeds

4c of flaxseeds turning into 8c when soaked, 2c sunflower seeds require more space too

Flaxseed cracker ingredients

The remaining ingredients apart from your natural salt

Flaxseed cracker batter

A thick and moist mix.

Batter ready to spread

about 2c of batter per tray, get yourself one of these cranked spatulas!

Spread batter

all evenly spread out, with straight edges

Scored into crackers

If the batter is thick enough score the crackers before dehydration. These are the default break lines. 24 crackers/tray. Use your spatula, preferably not a knife. Your Teflex sheets will thank you 😉

Dry enough to flip

This tray is dry enough to flip onto another mesh tray.

Flipped upside down

Place a mesh dehydrator tray on top of your pre-dried cracker tray. Hold both trays together and turn over. You see the previous bottom tray now on top here. Teflex sheet is pointing up.

Peel off the Teflex sheet

Now carefully peel off the Teflex sheet and put the tray back into the dehydrator to finish drying for approximately another 8 hours on 115-105 degrees F.
If batter still sticks to Teflex sheet. Reverse the last steps and dehydrate longer on the Teflex sheet.

Pictures of the finished product is coming tomorrow morning. They are still drying.

Finished drying

Here is a finished tray. Just break them apart and store in a sealed glass jar.

The final product

Voila! The final product after 24hours!
Pass the guacamole!

Enjoy!

René

🙂