Friday, November 21, 2014

Compassionate Thanksgiving Meal

Thanksgiving, a time for family, friends, abundant food and gratitude. Over the past several years we have transitioned our families holiday celebrations from visiting extended family to celebrating with vegan friends. I love my extended family they are wonderful people, but my ethics just could no longer coexist over a table filled with slaughter and cruelty. Sharing a completely compassionate meal on this day of gratitude just feels so right for my soul.
Being a chef, Thanksgiving Day (or rather week) is almost my favorite time of the year. I plan months in advance and test out new recipe ideas. Last year I organized a holiday meal fundraiser when I was just getting  Here Comes The Sun Vegan Bus started. This year my non-profit is taking orders for meals to be picked up and the profits will be forwarded to Farm Animal Sanctuary. I love to offer an option for local vegans to bring to their family gatherings or for those awesome beings that are just awakening and want to save a Turkey this holiday. The meal I have designed this year is nutritious as well as delectable, gluten free and completely cruelty free. In case you are not near Southern New Hampshire to pick one up, I thought I'd share some recipes here with you. Enjoy with gratitude! Reasons to Love Turkeys

Butternut Squash Bisque
-8 Cups Butternut Squash, peeled and cubed
-4 Tbls. Melted Coconut Oil
- sea salt
-1 Sweet Onion, chopped
-1 Clove Garlic, minced
-3 Stalks Celery, sliced thin
-1 Apple, peeled and chopped
-2 Carrots, chopped
-1" Piece of Ginger, peeled and grated
-1 Tbl. Nutritional Yeast
-8 Cups of water of veggie stock
-1/2 Cup Full Fat Coconut Milk
-1 tsp. Cinnamon
-dash of Allspice

Preheat oven to 400. Toss the butternut with 2 Tbl. melted coconut oil and sea salt. Roast for about 45 min. or until tender. Heat the remaining 2 Tbl. coconut oil over medium high in a large pot. Saute the chopped onion until tender. Add garlic and ginger, saute 3 minutes. Add apple, celery, carrots, sea salt and nutritional yeast. Saute until all is softened. Add water or veggie stock and roasted squash. Blend in Vitamix (or any blender) in batches. Return to pan and add coconut milk, cinnamon and allspice.
Garnish with fresh cashew cream, toasted coconut and pumpkin seeds.

Corn Bread
This Southern Style Corn Bread is best made in a cast-iron skillet, but if you don't have one it works fine in a glass dish.
-2 Cups Yellow Corn Meal (be sure to use organic non-GMO)
-2 Cups Gluten Free All-Purpose Flour Mix
-2 Tbl. Baking Powder
-2 Cups Almond Milk (or any non-dairy)
1/3 Cup Maple Syrup or Brown Rice Syrup
1/3 Cup plus 2 Tbl. Melted Coconut OIl
1 tsp. Sea Salt

Preheat oven to 400. Sift corn meal, flour and baking powder in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, blend milk, syrup, 1/3 c coconut oil and salt. Blend the wet ingredients with the dry.
Heat a cast-iron skillet over medium high  and add 2 Tbl. coconut oil. Swirl to coat the pan. Pour the batter into hot skillet and bake for 25 min. or until bread is firm to the touch and golden brown. Serve warm, cut into wedges.

Faux Turkey Breasts
(Adapted from The Real Food Daily Cookbook)
-1 Pound Tempeh
-12 oz. Firm Tofu Drained
-1/3 cup light Miso
-3 Tbl. Dijon Mustard
-1/4 Cup Melted Coconut Oil
-2 Large Onions, chopped
-1 Tbl. Dried Sage
-1 Tbl. Marjoram
-1 Tbl. Rosemary
-1 Tbl. Thyme
-1 tsp. fresh ground black pepper
-1 tsp. nutritional yeast
-1 1/2 tsp. sea salt

Use the shredding disk on a food processor to shred the tempeh and tofu. Stir the miso and mustard to blend. Heat 1/4 cup oil in large skillet over medium high. Add onions and saute until translucent. Add all the herbs and spices to onions. Stir in the tempeh and miso mixture. Saute for 8-10 minutes until golden. Set aside and let cool enough to handle.
Preheat oven to 350 and oil a heavy baking sheet. Using gloved hands shape the tempeh mixture into eight patties. Make oval patties that are 4-5' long and about 3" wide. Taper at one end to resemble breasts. Arrange in baking sheet and brush with oil. Bake 35 - 40 min.

Here's  link to another amazing turkey alternative: Miyoko's Famous Turkey Alternative I've made this one for the past several years to great reviews. I'm not making it this year because I needed the main dish to be gluten free. The stuffing and gravy by Miyoko here is incredible and I will be using those.

Here's a link to my favorite sweet potato casserole by Oh She Glows that I've been making for years: Sweet Potato Casserole

Finally desert! A link to my Raw Pumpkin Pie

I am so full of gratitude to all who support my mission with Here Comes The Sun Vegan Bus and all the incredible beings in my beautiful life! Sending abundant wishes for a joy filled compassionate holiday.

*If you are nearby here's the info on the offerings from Here Comes The Sun Vegan Bus:
Here Comes The Sun Vegan Bus is offering a Kind Thanksgiving Meal for pick up in Southern New Hampshire. Each huge meal includes:
-Butternut Squash Bisque
-Baby Greens with Citrus Pomegranate
-GF Corn Bread
-Cranberry Sauce
-Sweet Potato Casserole with Pecan Crumble
-Faux Turkey Breast with Gravy
-Savory Stuffing
-Plus your choice of G.F Pecan Crusted Pumpkin Pie or Chocolate Cream Pie
All for only $30 per. meal
Quick place your order by Tuesday November 25th!
Everything is always vegan and gluten free.
Here Comes The Sun Vegan Bus
Just send us a message on our page or call 603-268-1061 to order!
Remember we are a non-profit and your donations will help a farm animal sanctuary this winter!

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Harvest Moon Mochi Waffle Mix Magic

photo by

 I was recently sent a new product developed by Harvest Moon Mochi to try and review. If you are not familiar with the magnificent mochi check out an earlier blog I did on my love for it here. Mochi is simply ground up sweet brown rice that has been pounded into a cake and dried. When baked the rice puffs up and makes a delectable treat. The popular food is used in Japan to level out blood sugar levels and is said to be high in many minerals including iron and calcium. 
Harvest Moon Mochi is made in Boulder Colorado and owned by brothers Drew and Seth Carson. They are passionate about sourcing ingredients that are pure, organic and non-gmo. These brothers on a mission are bringing mochi up in the spotlight where it belongs as a versatile food that is easy to prepare and super nutritious. You can find Harvest Moon Mochi in four flavors at your local natural foods store and find out more about what they currently have available here:
Harvest Moon Mochi's newest product that I was sent to sample is simply genius. They have taken Mochi to a new level and made it even more convenient and delicious. The Mochi Waffle Mix comes packaged and frozen. You simply spoon it out onto a heated waffle iron and close the lid for a few minutes. The smell of the cinnamon raisin variety that I had was intoxicating. My two girls and I were excited to open the waffle iron after a few minutes and see the mix transformed like magic into a puffy waffle. We topped the waffles with vegan butter, fruit and local maple for a perfect special breakfast. You may not consider waffles when thinking of a healthy and fast breakfast, but Harvest Moon Mochi is flipping that assumption around with this innovative product. Seek it out, you will not be disappointed.

Friday, February 14, 2014

Abundant Love!

I have been surrounded by abundant love in the past month and am feeling ready to share and overflow my joy onto everyone. Last month I traveled across the country to LA to stay with my very dear friend and soul sister, Keren and her fantastic family. There I got to cater a movie cast and crew and nourish the project with my creative vegan cuisine. This film project is going to be going places! I am super excited about it, follow it at After the film gig I found out that The Raw Living Expo was happening so I extended my stay and contacted the expo organizers. I was able to volunteer my talent and work in the demo kitchen. It was a thrilling weekend! I met so many awesome raw stars at the expo, my head was spinning all weekend. I'm still riding the high over a week later.
The fabulous California sunshine adventure has got my girls and I itching to get back to the west coast. We all really belong someplace warm. We felt so very at home in Venice and long for sun, culture and art. There are so many more options and opportunities for us there. I have a new vigor for getting Here Comes The Sun Bus on the road!
Today is Valentine's Day and I am feeling overwhelmed with love and gratitude for all the blessings and special people in my life! I wish I could see them all and give them some of the special treats that I made today, since that's not quite possible, at least I'll post the recipes and hope you get the chance to try them. Comment if you want some raw chocolates, I'm happy to now have a tempered recipe that I can package and ship without worrying too much about melting.
First this morning I made my gluten free vegan pancakes in heart shapes for my two girls. I use a gluten free flour mix that I make up myself and keep on hand for all my baking. It's simple and I'll share it with you.
GF Flour Mix
2 Cup Brown Rice Flour
2 Cup White Rice Flour
1/2 Cup Tapioca Flour
1/2 teaspoon Xanthan Gum (optional)

The xanthan gum helps in things like muffins and cakes that you want to rise a bit, but if you have an aversion to it or don't have it on hand, it's not necessary. I've heard a lot of people say that xanthan gum is something man made and unnatural, but I recently found out that it's just a by product from the process of fermenting cabbage. It is used in some medications to absorb sugar in the intestines and as sort of a laxative. However in such small amounts there should be no such side effects unless you are super sensitive. Anyway back to the flour mix. Simply sift the four ingredients into a bowl, mix and keep it in a large glass jar or gallon zip-lock bag. You can make larger amounts if you have the need to.
Then use it whenever a recipe calls for all-purpose flour, I've had great success in many dozens of recipes.

Best Ever Fluffy Perfect Gluten Free Vegan Pancakes
3 Cups GF flour mix
6 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 cup coconut sugar (or granulated cane sugar)
2 cups almond mylk (or other non-dairy mylk)
4 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
2 Tablespoons ground flaxseed
1 cup pure water
6 Tablespoons melted coconut oil
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Sift together the first four ingredients (the dry ingredients) into a large bowl.
Add the rest of the ingredients into another bowl and stir well. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and pour in the wet ingredients. Gently stir until everything in incorporated. There will be lumps, it's OK, do not over mix. Let the batter rest while you  heat your cast iron skillet or electric griddle. I love my electric griddle for pancakes and perfect grilled cheezes. If using cast iron I coat with a pat of coconut oil. I don't find the need to oil with the non-stick electric griddle. Use about 1/3 cup of batter per pancake and pour onto per-heated pan. Wait for about 4-5 minutes to flip. They will puff up and let you know when they are ready. Today I used a plastic chef's squirt bottle filled with batter to make perfect heart shaped pancakes. I have also added vegan chocolate chips, blueberries and bananas to this recipe at times and had great success.

We had a special guest coming to stay with us today. My brother in-law, Angel who has been living in Mississippi, but is being deployed overseas for a year next week. I know he has a sweet tooth and I wanted to make him a special valentine, so I tried a new version of my favorite healthy doughnut. The girls and I have been playing with this recipe a lot in the past week. We have made some really yummy flavors and have come up with dozens of more fun ideas to try. Today's attempt was mocha with chocolate glaze and goji dust. I love using goji dust in place of sprinkles as a fun healthy alternative. I've used it on cupcakes and called it fairy dust. It's pretty and festive for the day of love. Don't worry about a bitter goji taste. You won't find it because the glaze or frosting your putting it on is so sweet.

Mocha Love Doughnuts
1 Cup Gluten Free Flour Mix
1/2 Cup  Coconut Sugar (or granulated cane sugar)
1 1/2 teaspoon Baking Powder
1/4 teaspoon Salt
1/4 teaspoon vanilla bean
1/4 Cup Almond Mylk
1/4 Cup Organic Coffee
1/2 tsp Apple Cider Vinegar 
1 flax egg (1 Tablespoon ground flax mixed with 3 Tablespoons water) or 1 egg replacer
4 Tbs Earth Balance
Sift together flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and vanilla bean in a large bowl. Add the rest of the ingredients to a small sauce pan and heat just to warm and melt the butter. Once melted, add the wet ingredients to the dry and incorporate gently. I used a mini doughnut pan and a doughnut hole pan. Mini muffin pans make nice doughnut holes too. Once I just spooned the batter into circles onto a cookie sheet and that worked too. Bake in a preheated oven at 350 for 14 minutes.

For Chocolate Ganache Glaze

1/2 Cup Almond Mylk (or other non-dairy mylk)
2 Tablespoons Pure Maple Syrup, Coconut Nectar or Brown Rice Syrup
3/4 Cup Vegan Chocolate Chips (like enjoy live or Trader Joes)

Heat the mylk to a boil on the stove top. Stir in the syrup and turn off the heat. Add the chocolate and whisk until smooth. Dip the top of each doughnut into the glaze.
To make the Goji Dust I put about 1/4 cup of Goji berries (dried, be sure to pick out any moist looking ones) into a coffee / spice grinder. Alternatively you could do this in a dry high speed blender container. Sprinkle the goji dust onto the glazed doughnuts. Goji dusting makes my heart sparkle!

Love to you all everyday!

Friday, December 13, 2013

The Dream Must Go On!

 The girls and I were a bit discouraged that our Kickstarter campaign failed to reach it's goal. However we were overfilled with gratitude to all the loving support that our project did receive. The hard conversion work continues here and though it's eaten up most of our savings, it's looking great. Please take a moment to check out our new fundraising platform and send us some love here (there are gifts available)!

Stay tuned for more super macroraw recipes as I start to create the menu for Here Comes The Sun Bus.Exciting times! We are very much filled with gratitude for your continued support!

A sneak peak of the inside of our dream home in the process!

Monday, November 18, 2013

Mmmm Pumpkin Pie

Autumn here has been a season of expansion, hard work and much excitement. My two daughters and I are on a mission to turn a school bus into our traveling home and vessel for us to spread incredible vegan food, love and compassion while adventuring around the country. In the past few weeks we've built walls, bunk beds and a kitchen aboard our bus. Our dream is to have the diesel engine run on waste veggie oil and have solar power for all of our energy requirements. The value of these systems are immense, but the upfront costs are prohibitive. That's why we created a Kickstarter to help fund our vegan bus project. As an incentive to watching our Kickstarter video I included a recipe for a Pumpkin Pie Smoothie at the end. There are only a few days left of our campaign, so if you have not backed it already please do. There are some very yummy rewards for our supporters! Here Comes The Sun Bus Kickstarter

This season while I am not building on the bus, I'm in the kitchen making comforting, warming dishes. I'm excited to be spending a vegan Thanksgiving with dear friends and am using these days before to test recipes. One that will be there for sure, no testing required, is also one of my most requested recipes all year long. The raw pumpkin pie, that has no pumpkin. The original recipe came from Matthew Kenney's Everyday Raw. He's a big time restauranteur and huge inspiration. I've made quite a few changes, but the idea for a pumpkin-less pie is genius. No one ever believes me that there is no pumpkin in this pie, but truly the magic in pumpkin pie is in the seasoning.

Raw Pumpkin Pie

1 and 1/2 cups pecans
4 ounces chopped dates
dash of vanilla
pinch of sea salt.

Process the pecans until small crumble size. Add dates, vanilla and sea salt and process until it holds together. Press into a coconut oil greased 9-inch spring form or tart pan.

1 cup cashews
1 cup coconut nectar (or liquid sweetener of choice)
1 cup coconut oil
1 cup carrot juice
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
pinch of sea salt
1/4 of a vanilla bean, scraped
2 teaspoons cinnamon
2 teaspoons nutmeg

Blend all ingredients in a high speed blender until very smooth. Fill crust and freeze 6-8 hours.

If you are in the area come by and support Here Comes The Sun Bus project at a Vegan Thanksgiving Fundraiser at Good Karma Cafe next Sunday.


Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Summer Time Sweet Treats

I grew up in my parents bakery. My mother would bring me to the shop early in the morning and I'd sleep on the wooden bakers table before school. You might say that baking and desserts are in my blood. Since going vegan five years ago and then raw vegan almost two years ago, I've cut out all refined sugar and lost my cravings for sweets in general. I do eat a ton of fruit and feel like that satiates any natural sweet cravings. Still I love creating traditional desserts in a healthy, vegan, macroraw way to impress and nourish my friends, family and clients. Summertime is a busy time here around my NH lake for gatherings. Recently I created a few new dessert recipes to share with my peeps and would love to share them with you too!

Raw Vanilla Cheezecake with Fresh Summer Berries
I made this delectable cheezecake for our Fourth of July celebration, hence the star berry decoration. We had friends over and enjoyed a vegan BBQ, Dandies over the fire, swimming on the lake and fireworks. The cake was cool refreshing finish to a wonderful day.

2/3 Cup Hazelnuts (or Almonds)
1/4 teaspoon Sea Salt

Process the nuts and salt in a food processor until flour like.

3/4 Cup Dry Coconut
1/2 teaspoon Pure Vanilla Extract
2/3 Cup Dark Unsweetened Dry Cherries
2 Tablespoons Coconut Nectar (or Maple Syrup-not raw or Raw Honey-not vegan)
1 Tablespoon Coconut Oil

Add the coconut, vanilla, cherries, nectar, and oil into the processor with the nut flour and process to form a dough like consistency. Press this into the bottom of a spring-form pan that has been lightly coated with coconut oil. Set the crust aside and make the filling.

3 Cups of Cashews that have been soaked at least 1 hour
1/2 teaspoon Sea Salt
1/4 Cup Lemon Juice
3/4 Cup Coconut Nectar 
3/4 Cup Coconut Oil
2 Tablespoon Pure Vanilla Extract

Blend all ingredients in a high-speed blender. Pour into pan over prepared crust.

Any fresh summer berries. I used Strawberries, Raspberries and Black Raspberries.
Arrange the fruit on the top of the filling before placing in the freezer.
Freeze cheezecake for 6 hours or overnight.

Raw Mint Layer Brownies
-adapted from
I recently tried these to serve at a Rawk Starz show. All the attendees loved then and I've received several requests for the recipe.

2 Cups Raw Brazil Nuts (or other raw nut)
1/4 Cup of Raw Cacao Powder
4 Tablespoons Coconut Nectar
1/2 teaspoon Pure Vanilla Extract
Pinch of Sea Salt

Process nuts and cacao powder in food processor. Add remaining ingredients and process well. Press into the bottom of an 8 * 8 pan that has been lined with parchment paper. Place the pan in the freezer while you prepare the next layer.

20 Mint Leaves
1 Tablespoon Spirulina
1 1/2 Cups Raw Coconut Flakes
1/3 Cup Coconut Nectar
1/2 Cup Coconut Oil

Process mint, spirulina, and coconut until mint is broken into tiny pieces. Add nectar and oil and process well. Press onto the bottom brownie layer and place in the freezer while you prepare the top layer.

1/4 Cup Raw Cacao Powder
1/4 Cup Coconut Oil (melted)
1/4 Cup Coconut Nectar
Pinch of Sea Salt

Mix all in a bowl  and pour over mint layer. Place in freezer for at least one hour. Remove from freezer and flip bars onto a cutting board. Peel off the parchment paper and cut into small squares. Garnish each bar with a fresh mint leaf.

Baked Chocolate Gluten Free Macro Fudge Brownie 
I'm 34 weeks pregnant with a surrogate baby boy. He and I had a craving for old fashioned fudgy brownies today. Here's the healthy version I created. Just one was rich and satisfying enough.

1 Cup Shredded Zucchini
1 Banana Mashed
2/3 Cup Water
2 teaspoons Pure Vanilla Extract
3 Tablespoons Chia Seeds (Ground in a Spice Grinder)
1/2 Cup Coconut Oil
3/4 Cup Pure Organic Maple Syrup

3/4 Cup Unsweetened Cocoa Powder
1 Cup Coconut Flour or Brown Rice Flour
1/2 teaspoon Sea Salt
1/2 teaspoon Baking Soda

Pre-heat oven to 350
Mix zucchini, banana, water, vanilla, chia, oil and syrup in a medium bowl and set aside. Sift cocoa powder, flour, sea salt and baking soda in another bowl. Add the dry to the wet ingredients and evenly press into a 9 *13 pan that has been coated with coconut oil. Bake for 20 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool 30 minutes. Pour fudge topping (recipe below) over brownies and spread evenly. Place the pan in the freezer until frozen or as long as you can wait! Cut into squares with a sharp knife and remove brownies with a spatula. Enjoy!
Fudge Topping:
1/2 Cup Cocoa Powder
1/2 Cup Coconut Oil (melted)
3 Tablespoons Maple Syrup
Dash of Pure Vanilla Extract
Pinch of Sea Salt

Mix all ingredients in a bowl.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Spring Clean Fuel

Feeling the joy and freshness brought by the spring time sunshine here in New England this week has me inspired to fuel my body and soul. I can't even believe all that I accomplished today and I credit it to my fueling food and natural Vitamin D burst. I woke early and had a huge glass of lemon water and calmed my body and soul with some simple yoga stretching. After that, I brought my new RawkStarz mobile to my mechanic and walked the 2.5 miles back home. Once home I made 60 ounces of: