Raw Blueberry Cheesecake Recipe

blueberries fresh
I absolutely love blueberries, busting with flavour and packed full of health benefits!

They have an incredibly high level of antioxidants and studies have shown that blueberries can help reduce risk factors for cardiovascular disease, improve memory and reduce risks of certain types of cancer.

Instead of using traditional cheese for this cheesecake, I use organic cashew nuts, which give a wonderful creamy texture when blended and work perfectly with the other flavours in the dessert.

You won’t believe its raw!

Always buy organic if you can, due to the higher levels of antioxidants present than the non-organic counterpart, especially in the case of the blueberries.

Blueberry cheesecake 01

Crust ingredients:
1 ½ cups pre-soaked almonds
½ cup ground coconut
½ cup dates
pinch salt

Filling ingredients:
2½ cups cashews, soaked
1½ cup blueberries
3 tbsp lemon juice
6 tbsp coconut sugar, ground
1 tbsp maple syrup
¼ cup water
1 vanilla bean, scraped
Pinch salt
1 tbsp psyllium husks (optional) *
6 tbsp coconut oil

¬ Place all crust ingredients in a food processor and grind until mixture resembles biscuit crumbs;
¬ Press mixture into 7” tart pan and place in freezer to set;
¬ Blend all filling ingredients except coconut oil in a high powered blender until fairly smooth;
¬ Add coconut oil and blend again until very smooth;
¬ Garnish with ground coconut and crushed nuts or blueberries.

For more delicious recipes you can download them here from my Facebook page.

Sign up for my newsletter and be the first to hear about my upcoming Raw Food Workshops and the latest Raw Foods Company news. Join the raw food party on Twitter and Facebook.

Festive Nut Roast Recipe

Nut roast 01

Nut roast is a traditional festive recipe that is common amongst vegetarians. This raw version is packed full of flavour and contains lots of seasonal vegetables which are good for us at this time of year. All the ingredients combine to create a deliciously nutty winter dish.

For the Nut Roast:

½ cup walnuts
½ cup almonds
1 cup pumpkin seeds
½ cup sunflower seeds
½ red pepper, diced
½ yellow pepper, diced
1 large tomato, diced
1 red onion, diced
1 large courgette, diced
3 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp lemon juice
¼ cup fresh coriander, finely chopped
¼ cup olives, finely chopped
1 tsp harissa
2 tbsp agave nectar
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp dried basil
1 tbsp nutritional yeast
Pinch salt and black pepper
¼ cup ground flax seeds

Nut roast 02

¬ Process first four ingredients in food processor until finely chopped
¬ Marinate red and yellow pepper, tomato, red onion, courgette in olive oil and lemon juice in a separate bowl, for at least 30 minutes
¬ Add nuts and seed mix to marinated vegetables and stir well
¬ Add remaining ingredients and continue to mix all ingredients until thoroughly combined
¬ Roll into log shaped pieces
¬ Optional: place on mesh screen in dehydrator for 3-4 hours at 115F

Caramelised onions:

3 medium red onions, finely diced
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 tbsp ground coconut sugar

¬ Coat diced onions in other ingredients
¬ Place on teflex sheet and dehydrate for 8-10 hours at 115F

Butternut squash and sage mash:

butternut-squash-mash

1 medium butternut squash, peeled
½ cup cashews, soaked for 2 hours and drained
4 tsp fresh sage or 2 tsp dried sage
2 tsbp olive oil
3 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp raw honey
1 tsbsp nutritional yeast (optional)
2 tsp Pink Himalalayan salt
Pinch black pepper

¬ Using a vegetable chopper or food processor, dice butternut squash into very small pieces. Add 1 tsp salt and 1 tbsp lemon juice and cover in water. Soak for at least 2 hours
¬ Rinse and drain butternut squash and place in blender with remaining ingredients. Blend until very smooth. Garnish with black pepper

Wilted spinach:
4 cups spinach, coarsely chopped
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp lemon juice
¼ tsp salt
Pinch black pepper

¬ Add spinach to remaining ingredients.
¬ Mix well and marinate for 1-2 hours at room temperature

Mushroom gravy (optional):

3 portobello mushrooms, finely chopped
1 tbsp sweet white miso
1 clove garlic, finely diced
1 tsp lemon juice
¼ tsp salt
Pinch black pepper
2 tbsp olive oil
¼ cup water

¬ Marinate mushrooms in miso, garlic, lemon juice, salt and pepper for 30 minutes
¬ Spread out on a teflex sheet and dehydrate at 115F for 2 hours
¬ Place ingredients in blender with 2 tbsp olive oil and blend adding a little water at a time until smooth
¬ Place gravy in a squeezie bottle

Nut roast 03

To assemble:

¬ Place a bed of spinach in a circular bowl, with a circular space in the middle
¬ Spoon the butternut squash mash into this hole in the middle of the spinach
¬ Lay 3 nut roast pieces cut into 2 inch3 discs in a stack on top of the mash
¬ Optional – top each piece of nut roast with mushroom gravy
¬ Garnish with caramelised onions and diced red pepper
¬ To serve warm, cover and place in dehydrator for 2 hours at 115F

You can keep in touch with me on Twitter and Facebook where I share lots of great tips and recipes (and lovely photos of all the raw food goodies I’ve been making at Down To Earth Café.)

Sign up for my newsletter and be the first to hear about my upcoming Raw Food Workshops and the latest Raw Foods Company news.

Eating Seasonally (Part 2)

So I decided for this blog to pick out another delicious food that is very suited to being enjoyed at this time of year – butternut squash.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Butternut squash is a winter squash, and is actually a fruit, as it contains seeds. It has a lovely nutty flavour and is packed full of antioxidants and phtyonutrients. It is low in fat and high in fibre, making it great for the digestion and also for the heart. It is also high in potassium, which helps support healthy bone growth.

It’s vibrant yellow colour is indiciative of the high levels of carotenoids, which support heart function and it also contains beta-carotene, which has been shown to help prevent breast-cancer and prevent macular degeneration. It’s levels of vitamin A also help to support healthy skin and mucus membranes and it is also very high in Vitamin C, helping to boost the immune system in those cold winter months.

Creamy butternut squash and sage mash

This mash is an easy recipe to make and is full of flavour. It can be enjoyed as it is, or can ben served in place of regular cooked mash as an accompaniment to any meal.

Ingredients

1 medium butternut squash, peeled
½ cup cashews, soaked for 2 hours and drained
4 tsp fresh sage or 2 tsp dried sage
2 tsbp olive oil
3 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp raw honey
1 tsbsp nutritional yeast (optional)
2 tsp Pink Himalalayan salt
Pinch black pepper

• Using a vegetable chopper or food processor, dice butternut squash into very small pieces. Add 1 tsp salt and 1 tbsp lemon juice and cover in water. Soak for at least 2 hours.
• Rinse and drain butternut squash and place in blender with remaining ingredients. Blend until very smooth. Garnish with black pepper.
• The mash can ben served cold or warm. To warm, if you have a Vitamix, you can continue to blend on high, until mash reaches desired temperature. Alternatively, place mash in a pan and warm on a very low heat.

You can keep in touch with me on Twitter and Facebook where I share lots of great tips and recipes (and lovely photos of all the raw food goodies I’ve been making at Down To Earth Café.)

Sign up for my newsletter and be the first to hear about my upcoming Raw Food Workshops and the latest Raw Foods Company news.

Eating Seasonally (Part 1)

In today’s world, with the advent of supermarkets and imported food, we have become accustomed to eating pretty much any food at any time. Eating seasonally however, can bring major boosts to your health and can also support the health of this wonderful planet we are living. When we eat fruits and vegetables that have not been grown in season, in a large number of cases they have been flown long distances, up to 1000s of miles to get here.

They have often not been allowed to grow to maturity and are picked in an immature state, which means they will more than likely lose a lot of nutrients before they arrive on our shelves. As well as the reduction in nutrient content, the cost in shipping and increase in atmospheric pollution to deliver this produce to us cannot be ignored as a major detriment to the sustainability of the planet.

By eating seasonally, you are living much more in tune with the planet’s natural cycles. The food you consume will often contain nutrients that correspond to your bodies’ needs. You are also purchasing fruit and vegetables that have had time to ripen and reach their optimum level of quality, when they will contain the highest possible levels of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.

Alongside eating seasonally, it is also really important to choose high quality organic produce. By choosing organic, you are avoiding the harmful pesticides and chemical that are sprayed on the fruits and vegetables and research has shown that there are higher levels of vitamins and antioxidants in organic compared to non organic produce.

Farmers’ markets are an ideal place to shop for high quality organic fruits and vegetables. You get to speak to the local farmers and find out exactly how they have grown their food and at the same time you are supporting the businesses that are working with food in the right way, rather than giving your money to nameless multinational organisations that care more about profits than creating a harmonious and sustainable planet.

A seasonal vegetable – Parsnips

Parsnips are a perfect vegetable to be eaten at this time of year. Most people know the conventional ways of eating parsnips, but when prepared in the right way, they can also be eaten raw, preserving more of the beneficial nutrients and enzymes. They are an excellent source of dietary fibre, and contain antioxidants, which have been shown to have anti-fungal, anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties. They are also rich in Vitamins K and E and high in folic acid, a B vitamin, which can help prevent birth defects in pregnant women and support healthy brain function.

Fruity-spiced parsnip rice

One of the best ways to eat parsnips raw is to create parsnip rice. There are many ways of making different flavours of parsnip rice, so feel free to play around with the ingredients, but I enjoy this recipe as it contains warming spices, which are perfect for this cold time of year. The parsnip rice can used in place of normal rice, added to a salad or enjoyed on its own as a snack!

Ingredients:
4 medium parsnips, peeled and chopped roughly
3 tbsp cashew nuts
4 tbsp mixed dried fruit, including raisins, cranberries and apricots
1 tbsp raw apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp ground coconut sugar or raw honey
1 ½ tsp mixed spice
1 tsp ground nutmeg
1 tsp lemon juice
Himalayan salt and and ground black pepper to season

•    Place all ingredients in a food processor and process until ‘rice-like’ consistency is reached.
•    Parsnip rice will keep in the fridge for 2-3 days

You can keep in touch with me on Twitter and Facebook where I share lots of great tips and recipes (and lovely photos of all the raw food goodies I’ve been making at Down To Earth Café.)

Sign up for my newsletter and be the first to hear about my upcoming Raw Food Workshops and the latest Raw Foods Company news.

Pumpkin Pie Halloween Recipe

So Halloween season is upon us! That spooky and magically festive time of year, where we get the chance to dress up, share in lots of merriment and of course enjoy delicious food! So I though I would offer a suitable festive Halloween recipe – pumpkin pie!

This dessert is brought to life with wonderful spices such as ginger and cloves, perfect warming spices at this cold time of the year. I would recommend using sugar pumpkin, rather than one of the larger varieties, which tend to have less flavour. There is a bit of preparation involved in making this recipe, but it is definitely worth the effort!

Raw Pumpkin pie

Pumpkin is very high in Vitamin A and beta-carotene, both of which are excellent for helping to support healthy eye function. Beta carotene may also play a role in cancer prevention. They are also high in fibre, potassium and Vitamin C.

Ingredients:

Base:

1 cup walnuts, soaked for 8 hours then dehydrated
1 cup pecans, soaked for 8 hours then dehydrated
8 dates
1 tbsp coconut oil, melted
2 tbsp maple syrup
1 tsp ground cinnamon
Pinch Himalayan or sea salt

Filling:
1 sugar pumpkin, around 4 cups worth
2 cups water used to soak pumpkin
6 tbsp maple syrup
6 tbsp coconut sugar
½ cup coconut oil, melted
4 tbsp coconut flour
1 cup cashew nuts, soaked for 2 hours.
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp mixed spice
2 tsp cinammon
½ tsp ground cloves
3 tbsp lemon juice, divided
1 tbsp psyllium husks
1 tsp vanilla extract
Pinch Himalayan or sea salt

Method:
¬ To make the base, place all ingredients into food processor and grind until mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Press base into 8-inch tart pan.
¬ To prepare pumpkin, peel and scoop out seeds. Chop in half and then cut into thin strips on a mandoline or using a sharp knife. Chop each strip of pumpkin so that you have roughly 2-inch squares. Salt the pumpkin and add 2 tbsp lemon juice. Cover and leave to marinate for 3-4 hours. Once marinated, rinse pumpkin thoroughly to remove all salt. Then place strips in a dehydrator at 115F for 3 hours. Take the strips out of the dehydrator and place in the 2 cups of water. Cover and let sit for around 4 hours. Remove pumpkin and reserve water.
¬ To make filling, place all filling ingredients with 1 cup of reserve pumpkin water into a food processor and process ingredients until mixture resembles a mash. Transfer the mixture to a blender (you made need to do this in 2 batches) and blend until smooth, adding remaining reserve water as necessary to achieve desired consistency.
¬ Pour filling into tart pan and use a spatula to spread and even out the filling over the base.
¬ Place pie in freezer for 2 hours to set before serving.
¬ Top with ground coconut and pecans.

Wishing you all a happy and healthy Halloween!

A dairy free alternative – Nut milk!

For people that can’t drink dairy products anymore, or would rather avoid dairy products on a regular basis there is a delicious alternative – nut milk! Highly nutritious, satisfying, tasty and easy to make, it can be used it as a direct replacement for cow’s milk. It also makes an excellent base for smoothies and soups. Here is the recipe for almond milk, my personal favourite, but feel free to make with other nuts, such as walnuts, brazil nuts or hazelnuts.

Almond milk

Almonds have extremely high levels of manganese, magnesium and Vitamin-E, which can help reduce risks of heart disease. They are also high in monounsaturates, which can help lower LDL-cholesterol. Studies have also shown that almonds can help lower the glycaemic index of a meal when eaten alongside it (Jenkins DJ, Kendall CW, Journal of Nutrition), providing extra protection against cardiovascular disease and diabetes.

Ingredients
1 cup almonds, soaked for 8 hours and then dried
3 cups water
1 tbsp lemon juice
Pinch Himalayan salt
½ tsp vanilla powder
1 tsp sunflower lecithin (optional)
1 tbsp coconut sugar or preferred sweetener (optional)

• Blend 1st 2 ingredients in a high-speed blender until completely smooth.
• Pour mixture through a nut milk bag, fine-mesh strainer or chinois (you can see a chinois in the following photo) Reserve pulp.


• Add remaining ingredients to milk and blend again.
• Store in a airtight container or mason jar and keep in the fridge.
• Nut milk will keep for 2-3 days in the fridge. The salt and lemon juice both acts as preservatives, giving the nut milk a longer shelf life.
• The sunflower lecithin acts as an emulsifier, otherwise the fat from the nuts will separate from the water over time. Don’t worry if you don’t have lecithin, just give the almond milk a good shake before serving.
• Use the almond pulp in whatever recipes you need it for. It can also be dehydrated and then ground into flour.


Don’t forget you can sign up to my newsletter where i’ll be sharing more raw food education, tips and recipes. Sign up here. Become a fan on Facebook and receive a FREE raw food recipe ebook. Click here.

 

Fennel, blood orange and Jerusalem artichoke salad

 

Salads don’t have to be boring. Simple techniques such as marinating and thinly slicing your vegetables can really add new dimensions to taste and texture that will tickle the palate and satisfy the senses.

This salad is fresh and vibrant, bursting with flavour and perfect anytime of the year. Fennel eaten raw is often something that divides opinion due to its aniseed bite, which I would point out that I am not keep on either. But miraculously, when marinated, it loses this and you are left with a delicate, beautifully crisp and fragrant vegetable. The blood orange adds a wonderful colour to the dish and the perfect sweetness to balance the other flavours. Jerusalem artichoke is also a personal favourite and lends a strong earthy flavour to the dish, perfectly complementing the other elements.

Ingredients:
1 bulb fennel, sliced thinly on a mandolin
2 Jerusalem artichokes, washed and scrubbed, sliced thinly on mandoline
2 blood oranges, supremed, juice reserved
4 tbsp lemon juice
2 tbsp extra Virgin olive oil
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
Large bunch rocket
2 tbsp parsley
1 tbsp nutritional yeast (optional)
1 tbsp cashew nuts
½ tsp Pink Himalayan salt
Pinch black pepper
Pine nuts for garnish

Instructions:
Marinade artichokes in ¼ tsp salt, 1 tbsp lemon juice, 1 tsp olive oil, black pepper and 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar.
Marinade rocket with pinch of salt and drizzle of olive oil.
Grind cashew nuts in a pestle and mortar or coffee grinder and mix with nutritional yeast and pinch of salt.

Assembly:
To assemble, make a bed of rocket, then layer the fennel on top.
Make a cut in Jerusalem artichokes almost to the top and then fold 3 out over the fennel.
Add supremed blood oranges to the salad. Garnish with fresh parsley, pine nuts and sprinkling of cashew/nutritional yeast mixture. If you don’t eat nutritional yeast, you can leave this out and just sprinkle with the ground cashews.

Don’t forget you can sign up to my newsletter where i’ll be sharing more raw food education, tips and recipes. Sign up here.

Become a fan on Facebook and receive a FREE recipe ebook. Click here.