Monday, June 21, 2010

Raw Pasta with Marinara Sauce

Once I began this raw food adventure, I thought I had said Goodbye to glorious pastas and sauces. Luckily, I was wrong.

Raw Pasta
I use this Vietnamese tool to make the "pasta" from zucchini. I bought it from Ronnie and Minh. If you think you'd like to go all out and get the Veggie Spiral Slicer instead of this little tool, you can get it much cheaper at Amazon than on this site. You can also make pasta from zucchinis by cutting lines down the length of the zucchini, then cutting down the length across these cuts to create long thin noodles. Practice your knife skills by making noodles.

I couldn't imagine how a raw marinera sauce could have the rich flavour of slow simmered tomatoes, but there is a secret that makes this sauce thick and rich.
It's the sun dried tomatoes.
Raw Marinera Sauce
Here's a basic recipe. Once you make it you can adjust the sweetness and the seasonings.
*First, soak 10 to 15 sun dried tomato halves.
*2-3 Cups of tomatoes (I love Heritage tomatoes for this, but Romas are fine too) If there are a lot of seeds I take some out.
*1-2 dates. If they are not fresh, soak them. (Start with adding one date. That might be enough for your tastes. It is for ours. Add a second or a third if the dates are small or if your sauce needs it.)
*garlic to your tastes. We add 3 cloves, but we love garlic. Remember, Raw is stronger in flavour than cooked.
*1/4 cup of good olive oil
*seasonings: Celtic sea salt, oregano, Italian parsley, cayenne (I put in a whole cayenne pepper, seeds removed, but one could start with a pinch of powdered cayenne and taste.

Blend this up in a high speed blender until it has a wonderfully smooth texture and taste. You might want to add a little fresh lemon juice if it needs it, or some water if the tomatoes weren't really juicy. Enjoy the tasting part and make the sauce perfect for your taste buds.

Cultured Nut Cheeze
I don't even miss Parmesan cheese when I add some pistachios (or pine nuts) and this time I added a light and breezy cultured Brazil Nut cheeze. I use coconut kefir to culture my cheezes. It was a perfect compliment to the sauce.

Marinated Shitake Mushrooms
These aren't essential, but give an added flavour. Wipe the mushrooms with a cloth, remove woody stems and slice. Add some wheat free Tamari (this isn't raw, omit if you are 100% raw) and lemon juice to marinate.

That's it! A perfect summer lunch. For a larger meal, add a salad and flax crackers or flatbread. I'll post a raw flat bread recipe soon.

Mango Coconut Happy drink

We've been inventing a lot of delicious drinks lately..still drinking green smoothies a lot, but also becoming more adventurous and at home with pairing ingredients we might not have before.

This one was a great finish to a wonderful day in the garden:

Half of the meat and juice of a young coconut
1 Mexican or Phillipino mango (the small yellow ones with the interesting magatama shape)
a tablespoon or two of coconut milk (or about a third of a can if you like creamy drinks or don't have fresh coconut)
tray of ice
cup of water (or coconut kefir)
a couple of spoons of coconut sugar (to taste). This can be sprinkled on top of the drink for texture and interest.

Whizz up in the Vitamix until silky, pour into glasses, top with grated nutmeg, cinnamon and a little coconut sugar.

Refreshing and delicious drink for two. Serve with spoons because it's thick.

I'm not sure why the texture is so much more velvety when using this kind of mango.

James applies the nutmeg to the drinks.

Also delicious with the coconut milk and ice is fresh pineapple (raw pina colada) and combining mango with pineapple. The combination of papaya and pineapple is also good but in a more quiet, subtle way.

Happy Summer Celebration!