Tuesday, 8 May 2012

The Rawmazing Race: Waldorf Salad in New York

Tonight I'm in New York, sitting in a posh restaurant with Donald Draper, wearing a fab frock and looking glamorous having ordered a stylish and ever popular Waldorf Salad...Who am I kidding? I'm sitting with my husband on the sofa watching an episode of 'Ello 'Ello and not in any state of glamour at allBut I am eating a Waldorf salad.Yes, I know it's just a salad. But this is one of the most famous salads in the world and was created at the Waldorf in New York some time in the 1890s. A typical Waldorf salad contains copious amounts of egg layden mayo with celery, apple, and walnuts (with or without lettuce). Tonight, I made some cute Waldorf stacks and drizzled raw vegan mayo made with cashews over the top. It was pretty yummy if I do say so myself, and the cashews add some protein, good fats, iron, zinc, and copper to my nutritional intake for the day. The walnuts add some folate, B6, and thiamine. So have a go at this little salad and make your own raw vegan mayo.

To make the mayo, I blended raw cashews, lemon juice, extra virgin olive oil, salt, pepper, apple cider vinegar, water, and a little nutritional yeast. I just added  a little at at time until I found the balance I liked, but used probably 2/3 cup cashews. Leftover mayo will make a great dip for some veggie sticks tomorrow!

So where to next on this raw vegan plate hopping adventure? Not sure, but stay tuned!

Saturday, 5 May 2012

Sprout & Bean Catering Shenanigans

Ready for food!

Cups and saucers
Picnic blankets and cushions

Mrs Sprout and Mrs Bean in action!

I know, I've been terribly slack, only one post this week. I promise, I'll make it up to you. Last two weeks have been a little bit crazy with Sprout & Bean doing a couple of parties, but tired though we are, it's amazing getting great feedback and people who want to know more 
about us and are interested in hiring us in the future. Last night was a 30th birthday party for a friend, and we had a lot of fun styling and getting our vintage crockery and whatnot.  Unfortunately we didn't really have the opportunity to take more photos, but you can see the picnic baskets and cute bottles of lemonade in some old drawers. Mr Sprout found us a swag of picnic baskets for props and we have some vintage thermos that added to the picnic afternoon tea theme.  We provided the props and the vegetarian and vegan options and were delighted that people loved what we offered. Mrs Bean made an assortment of gluten free choc ganache tarts and some cappuccino mousse pies, I made the usual gluten free goats cheese tarts, and for dinner we made an assortment of yummy salads, haloumi skewers, and chickpea Caesar bites, and marinated pumpkin pieces. And dessert...we did a sundae bar with an assortment of toppings like raspberry curd, lemon curd, vanilla sugared almonds, choc hazelnuts, ganache, and caramel sauce with proper sundae glasses. Want to hire us? ;)

A little while ago we also did a Tiki-tacular night which was also a heap of fun. It was a fundraiser night for Quizworks ministry and although it was a little cold being the end of March, those who came made it a great night. The event was held in the churchyard of St John's in Ashfield, and we had lots of curious onlookers walking by (obviously wishing they could join in)and some donated even though they weren't part of the night which was great! It was a great opportunity for us to link our beliefs in vegetarian food for compassionate and environmental reasons with people who are sharing Jesus with kids - after all, Jesus is all about being compassionate! We did haloumi skewers with lychees and cherry tomatoes; mini pineapple pizzas, a tiki- slaw created for the night; a green salad; coconut lime rice; and huli huli tofu. Dessert was a little boat with a mini coconut creme brulee in a shot glass, a raw vegan choc truffle, and a pineapple shaped cookie. 

Mr Bean having a good time at the bar

The dinner..or part of it, as you can see quite a bit got eaten!

Dessert boat

Mr Bean, Mr Sprout, and friends handwork in setting up the atmosphere 

Mini pizzas

The bar

Tuesday, 1 May 2012

Rawmazing Race: Chilli Wraps in Acapulco

Life has been very busy of late juggling a full time job on top of catering work, but hey - it will all be worth it when I can eventually concentrate on catering only. I didn't get much of a chance to post any more baking, but Bake My Day will probably be resurrected at a later date.

So, being the 1st May, the Rawmazing Race has now begun. This may not be a coherent trip around the world as such, depending on what I feel like eating and ingredients readily available. I also want to try and do easy recipes that don't require a lot of special equipment, and preferably, something that doesn't require a great deal of time, so not  a lot of dehydrating sort of stuff. Since I have a heap of fresh tomatillos, first stop is Acapulco on the coast of Mexico. The menu? Chilli wraps - easy to do without a tortilla.

2/3 cup walnuts, crushed
1/4 cup sunflower seeds, crushed
1 cup fine chopped mushrooms
big handful chopped spinach
1/2 cup grated carrot
approx 10 soaked semi dried tomatoes
1 fresh tomato
1 clove garlic crushed
1/2 tsp chilli powder
handful fresh coriander leaves
1 cup chopped tomatillos (or fresh tomatoes)
1 small onion
Large lettuce leaves for wrap
1 mashed avocado

Soak semi dried tomatoes in warm water for 10 minutes, then puree.
Crush nuts and sunflower seeds- if you don't have a food processor or a mortar and pestle, fold into a clean tea towel and bash with a rolling pin or a tin of beans or whatever you have...
Chop mushrooms, onion, tomatillos, and tomato, grate carrot and chop spinach.
In a bowl, combine all ingredients including chopped fresh coriander, garlic and chilli powder. Add a little water, cover, and leave in fridge until ready to use. I made mine in the morning and it was perfect for dinner, the flavours had gone through really well.
Take a large lettuce leaf such as a cos or iceberg, spoon the chilli down the centre, and top with mashed avocado and tomatillos (or tomatoes). Fold over and eat!

This was super easy, it only took me about 10 minutes to make, and I could make it in the morning and all I had to do was spoon it into a lettuce leaf and serve. It was warming too with the chilli in it, so perfect for cooler evenings. Plenty left over for lunch as well! It is rich in vitamins B-6, A,C, and E, copper, manganese, selenium, iron, and zinc. It also has a  protein from the nuts and avocado, so it's good all rounder.