One of the main ways I stay inspired about raw food is by traveling. I love to see what is happening in the raw food world beyond the Bay Area.
This week, I made a trip to Los Angeles where I taught two
|Students learning to make kale salad|
sold-out classes at the new Cafe Gratitude in Hollywood. It was incredible!
The new Cafe Gratitude is vibrating with energy. I felt very appreciated. The students were definitely among the most beautiful and healthy looking I have ever worked with, and they were so enthusiastic about the classes.
I am grateful to Cafe Gratitude for believing in my talents as a chef and teacher – and for nagging me to make the long drive down. It was a really fun adventure. I am looking forward to my next teaching trip to Los Angeles, scheduled for November 4-5th.
As far as I am concerned, LA is the Mecca for Raw Food. There are loads of raw food restaurants and chefs doing private work. Truely, my peers are pushing the envelope of raw cuisine.
We visited Planet Raw, Juliano’s much-hyped restaurant. The food was indeed fabulous. No dish topped the innovation of my recipe development class from Living Light last week, but still I was totally inspired. Juliano used cheeses and kelp noodles in ways that were new to me. Every dish was beautiful, the flavors well balanced. Juliano’s ingredients are high quality and absolutely more delicious than cooked food. The best part of the experience was bringing two of my family members who had never had raw food. They loved every bite! And, they offered to join me at any raw food restaurants I wanted to go to the rest of the weekend. That made me so excited. I am thrilled when others love this food as much as I do.
My husband Bashir was gracious enough to shuttle me through
|Bashir enjoying Super-Green Ice Cream|
terrible traffic so I could check out other raw food highlights. We went to
Erewhon, the mecca of grocery stores. I have never in my life seen a raw food selection like this. They have rows upon rows upon rows upon rows of raw grocery items and fresh prepared food. They even have their own line of prepared food, thanks to my friendColleen Cackowski. It was great for me to see just how many companies are now offering raw products. The industry is growing so fast! I treated myself to several bottles of interesting fermented foods, including lotus roots, daikon radish and more. I will play with them more in my home kitchen.
Cafe Gratitude in LA has a different vibe than the Bay Area locations, and a slightly different menu. I went completely bonkers for the “I am Local” and was happy to see my old favorite “I am Festive” back on the menu. They even have this new “mozzarella” cheese on toast dotted with dill that was so fabulous. Bashir ordered a round for our whole table. Even if you are a seasoned Cafe Gratitude customer in the Bay Area, do check out the new LA cafe. It will excite you.
Throughout this whole trip I gleaned lots of ideas for recipes I want to experiment with at home. The lesson here is: To stay inspired about eating raw food, it can be important to see what is happening with others in the raw food community. Even I get excited by learning from others.
I have two suggestions if you are looking for inspiration.
#1: The Living Light Chef Showcase. I love this event! I taught in it for the last two years. My culinary school hosts 12 fantastic chefs for a weekend of demos, and you can sign up to be a virtual attendee. You will get to watch 24 demos (shot in in a professional kitchen) and get an e-book. You will find 80 simple recipes that become every day favorites plus more complex dishes to take your skills to the next level. Last week I tasted several of the recipes and I was blown away! To find out how you can access the Chef Showcase,click here.
#2: “What Raw Fooders Eat” E-book. You will learn what 48 raw fooders eat, plus get $400+ in bonus material. The e-book includes my recipes, and a bonus from me. The book and bonuses disappear TODAY. Click here to find out details.