This is not one of my typical nice and easy recipes, but it’s so delicious that I couldn’t help myself and spend half of my day in the kitchen trying to recreate something I ate a couple of days ago. To be more precise, these should be the infamous mini bites with cashew, vegetables and portobello mushrooms as stated on the menu of the Food Forum list. They were part of our free lunch menu, created by the Chefs of Menu magazine and tasted so good that I ignored my natural sense of shame, got back to the table and asked for one more :)
The main problem with preparing the bites at home was that I had absolutely no idea what’s in them except for the obvious part – vegetables and mushrooms. So I decided to trust my palate and cooked them combining most of my favorite vegetables – broccoli, cauliflower, aubergines, carrots, garlic, red peppers and baby spinach. A feast for all the senses with the added portobello mushrooms, cashews, ginger and powdered indian pecans.
Except for the divine food the Forum was also rich in interesting lectors and visitors, a bunch of raw chefs, vegans, Ayurveda specialists, nutritionists, all kinds of healthy foodists and some misguided adventurers like my paraglider instructor. The best place to meet “one of your kind” and share ideas. Like the girl who offered to sell me earrings made of small jars filled with flaxseeds… really cute. Or a vegan canadian woman working for the bulgarian Cru restaurant. People like “uncle Mitko” who decided to start a biodynamic agriculture farm at the age of 55 and working in it for 15 years now! That man looked better at 70 then most 50 years old you can meet on the street. A marvelous event, which I wish will happen more often from now on, because the 400 seats theater was sold out well in advance and lots of people couldn’t attend. Great job, Gorichka, for the Food forum!
“Everybody wants to go to heaven, but nobody wants to die” – a graffiti quote seen in Belgrade from one of the Food Forum lectors, Yana Petkova.
For this recipe, you might end up with some extra filling, which is still very good by itself, with a green salad or crackers. Knowing my family’s appetite, I made a double portion of the crust “dough”, and used it for a variety of tart sizes, making individual ones for Paloma. She now eats entirely on her own and enjoys being in charge of her meals, not letting anyone interfere with her spoon. Having a quiche all to herself made her one happy girl, and there may have been a few second helpings involved.
As predicted, I didn’t regret making the extra quiches, as all of them were gone in no time.
The quiche is particularly good when combined with a simple watercress and pea salad, my newfound culinary delight. I’ve tried watercress many times before, and always believed it to be too strong and tangy for me to enjoy. Well, I’ve recently realized that that’s not always the case. If you try it in a right combination of flavours that balance the tang just right, it’s quite refreshing and delicious.
We’ve been enjoying milder weather, which is always exciting after months of lazy summer heat. Consequently, our farmers market has opened for a new season, and the lengthy wait for the freshest local produce is over. We’re happy.
White Corn Tamales with raw cacao mole, marinated portobello, and green tomato salsa (raw)
Traditionally, Mexican mole sauce is made like curry: ground chili peppers, spices, and flavorings are combined according to a cook’s taste and intention. In this recipe, we use raw cacao beans, the unadultured seeds of the cacao tree that are extremely rich in antioxidant flavenols, significantly more so than even red wine and green tea. We use both raw cacao and organic cocoa powder for a more balanced flavor. Green & Black’s organic cocoa from the United Kingdom is the best brand to use but is not easy to find.
Making the mole sauce can be hard on your blender, so it is best to use a via-Mix or one with a strong motor.
“This is an impressive dish to serve guests — its presentation in the corn husk is rustic and fun.” – MK
I’ve been meaning to devise this recipe for a while now, after someone asked me if it was possible. I’ve never, even in my darkest days, been into quiche – but when someone asks me if something is possible to do raw, my brain starts to whirr with ideas that just have to be brought to life, otherwise steam starts to come out of my ears!
I chose to focus on spinach as the featured ingredient this time, and in doing my research, I was amazed at just how many benefits this incredible green has; I actually ran out of space to highlight them all! No wonder I feel so good after my green smoothie of 2 mangoes and a bag (about 200g) of spinach. With all this weight training and spinach, I really will have arms like Popeye!
Spinach and Wild Mushroom Quiche (raw)
Makes 4 small quiche
This recipe will require you to make the bases ahead of time.