I started this blog mainly because I have a lot of opinions about eating out. I also enjoy cooking, experimenting and baking. I found that a cooking/baking blog could be a tad time-consuming. But now, I just have to talk a little about my cooking style and share a recipe for something I made.

I usually don’t follow recipes to the grit unless it involves baking. and even then I try to sneak cardamon and extra butter in where I can. I can’t be bothered.  As a result of being so defiant to guideline, I usually have a fair number of uh-ohs and shoulda couldas. And then there are sometimes when recipes are completely wack and I must damage control, as in the case with one of my favorite “cook”-books: The Raw Food Detox Diet by Natalia Rose.

Don’t let the name scare you, raw food is a cuisine. Its one of the few defining food genres unique to American Gastronomy, if there is such a thing. American Gastronomy, and most other western cultures for that matter, have much borrowing going on. No matter how local and seasonal, a sorrel sauce is french and always will be. Raw Food cuisine is unique to all the supplement popping, psuedo-science yoga enthusiasts of the Whole Foods Market demographic in the most yuppy new-agey quarters of America.

The idea behind “raw food” is that we tax our “enzyme factories” eating “dead” (cooked) food, where as if we ate more raw food, the enzymes are kept intact and our bodies don’t have to produce them unnecessarily for digestion and not to mention being able to retain all the phytonutrients that are possibly being depleted by cooking.

I don’t know if I buy all this, but I will say that from time to time, it sure as hell tastes good:

This, my friends, is what I call raw: Chocolate Cardamom Cream Pie in a Cinnamon Pecan “Crust”.

This is 100% raw, vegan, soy and gluten free. even the spices were raw. I crushed the cardamom seeds and pulverized the cinnamon sticks. And you’ll never guess what went in this mock pie.

Give up? Can’t figure out how a pie could have such a creamy filling without tofu or dairy? Cant understand how a crust could be made without graham crackers, butter or flour?

Okay okay, but you’re not going to believe this. 🙂 The cream was made out of avocado, raw cacao powder, raw agave, crushed cardamom and bourbon vanilla. Yes I said avocado. Avocado, if you haven’t noticed, is a great blank canvas. Meaning that on its own it’s pretty useless (unless you add {truffle} salt) but it does hold and bring out whatever flavors are added to it. Try it! The crust was made out of pecans, cold-processed coconut oil, dates, ground almonds, cinnamon, vanilla and nutmeg. That’s it.

Here’s my “recipe” that should fill a normal sized pie-ware. I suggest making the pie crust 1st.

Pecan-Date Pie Crust

12-18 dates, pitted (depending on the date size)

3/4 – 1 cup of pecans

1/4 cup of almond meal/flour

2 tablespoons of cold-processed extra virgin coconut oil (I like the Artisana brand)

1/4 cup fresh almond milk, or the stuff in the tetrapack if you absolutely must.

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground cloves.

So this recipe was adapted from The Raw Food Detox Diet, but I changed it. The original asked for only 6 dates and 1/2 cup of pecans. That’s impossibly short! There is no way that would have fit into a pie pan! So I added more of those 2 ingredients and then improved a couple other that I believed would help give the impression of a crumbly cookie buttery crust: Almond meal and coconut oil. What you want to do with this is to give a preliminary chop to the dates. Then add all the listed ingredients in a food processor (with the largest blade attachment) and process until you have a crumbly mix. It’s okay to have clumps. The prelim. date dice should help eliminate most of the chunkadge.

Once you have a mix, press into the pie pan (preferably one of those glass types). Now this is going to get sticky, but just have fun. Pretend like you’re playing with play-dough again but this time you will smell cinnamony sweet and not play-doughy 🙂 Once you have pressed the pie crust into the pan, set it in the freezer to harden while you make the pie filling. But only let it sit in the freezer for as long as it takes to make the filling.

Chocolate Avocado Filling (this can be eaten as a pudding too!)

6 Avocados (small)

1/3 cup of Agave (I ended up added closer to 1/2 cup because I have a wicked sweet tooth, so sweeten to your liking)

6-8 tablespoons of cacao powder, depending if you are going for a “milk” or “dark” chocolate feel.

6 pods (shelled) of cardamom, crushed in a mortar and pestle.

A dash of cinnamon

Blend all the ingredients in a food processor or hand mixer until smooth, lookout for unblended avocado chunks. They are sneaky. Again, I improved this recipe. The one in the rawbook said to use only 1/2 of an avocado, 6 dates and 2 tablespoons of cacao. To make 2 cups?? Impossible! And! who wants chunks of dates in a cream pie filling?! So I added more avocado, cacao, slipped in agave and cardamom. Best decision to go against the recipe grain.

Now that you have the chocolate “pudding”/pie filling, take out the pie crust from the freezer and pour it on in there! Use a spoon to smooth out the wrinkles and decorate with sliced strawberries, edible flowers or whatever tickles your fancy!

Take lots of pictures before you dive into this because it will get a little disheveled. Enjoy!

1 Comment on In the kitchen: my turn, making dessert.

  1. Lara
    August 23, 2011 at 4:53 pm (13 years ago)

    Hoorah for eating out in Seattle – one of my fav hobbies 🙂


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