Monday, September 7, 2009

High Raw Sushi and Durian!

Good morning, my dears,

I'm writing from Susan's house again. Susan is my catering partner. We're heavy in planning for the Beckwith event that we're catering on Friday, Sept 18th at the Tindley Temple in Philadelphia. If you're in the area and want to come to hear Micheal Beckwith speak, please, please let me know! You can contact me at:

I believe it is $35 for the entertainment and to hear him speak, but if you want the opportuntity to meet him face to face and enjoy a lovely raw cocktail party, the VIP raw vegan receiption that we are catering is $125.

If you do a search under 'Micheal Beckwith Philadelphia' the event will come up. It is being sponsored by Common Ground, a volunteer organization.

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Yesterday, after working for long hours on our budget, etc., and finalizing some of our recipes for over 100 people, we had the most mind blowing lunch: veggie sushi with jicama "rice".

I can't wait to recreate this as a 100% raw dish! Susan is 90% raw, so the dish wasn't 100% raw, containing several traditional japanese condiments, but I was okay with it. Condiments usually don't bother me. Cooked veggies would. Not because they're not good for you. But, because i'd like them just a little too much.

In the veggie nori roll itself was a sprinkling of roasted sesame seeds, and the nori wraps themselves were of the green variety, not the black, so they were roasted and had much more of an authentic japanese flavor. With all of the veggies and the 'rice' inside, these wraps really tasted EXACTLY like sushi.

Susan and her husband Mark made a nama shoyu based dip with pickled ginger, but I made a salt free 'dressing' to dip my sushi into made of fresh lemon juice, fresh ginger, dulse flakes for saltiness and wasabi. I was surprised it was so good being salt free! I was literally in heaven!

Not being salty or nutty, or 100% raw, i can't really say this was 'gourmet raw', but being my first little treat since i've been doing so well on 80-10-10, it was WORTH it! What a lucky girl i am!

The negligable roasted items in it actually didn't bother me 'mentally' that much. I freely use nutritional yeast, which is not raw. And cashews are really not raw, which i freely use in raw cooking and in eating. Sometimes i'll use regular vinegar at my mother's house on a salad, so condiments are not hugely bothersome to me. I find with raw, every person needs to decide for themselves what they will and won't eat. I won't taste meat or cooked grains or cooked veggies simply because i'd like them too much. i don't think cooked sushi wraps will make me binge, so for me, it's not a biggie.

And what's so neat is those two little items sent this dish over the edge as far as authentic sushi flavor. I'd like to try the sushi rolls with black untoasted nori and untoasted sesame seeds to see how it tastes. Maybe it's just as good?

But, the jicama rice? AMAZING. Ah, this had another traditional japanese condiment in it that was also not raw. The jicama was peeled and chopped so finely in the cuisinart to resemble rice. It really DID! Then it was well drained of it's juice, so as not to make the sushi too wet. A little agave and rice wine vinegar, which is not raw, was added to flavor the rice as is traditionally done with japanese sushi rice.

You'll only believe me if you try it, but this was just like eating sushi, the authenticity. First the nori wrap was laid down, the dried and seasoned "rice" was laid ontop on 2/3 of the sheet and on top of that thin shreds of carrot, red pepper, cucumber, scallion, avocado, sprinkle of sesame seeds, and rolled. It LOOKED exactly like sushi, tasted exactly like it and i was just flipping out completely. I actually didn't know until 1/2 way into it that there were roasted sesame seeds in it, but by then, i didn't care!

In actuality, it was a HIGH raw or ALMOST raw dish, but just an absolutely OUTSTANDING one that would be so great served at a party. If i would make it, i'd put a thin blanket of mixed greens down first to block out any moisture from the jicama rice which degrades and breaks down the nori rather quickly. I'd like to try it with the raw apple cider vinegar and see how it tastes, use unroasted sesame seeds and the unroasted nori. I'm thinking it will be okay, but won't taste as authentic! The wasabi in the dipping sauce sent it over the edge. That may not be raw either, but how can you have sushi without wasabi????

If you're high raw, this would be a great dish for you!!

Susan and I also had durian raspberry banana pudding. "Hello, gorgeous!" If you've never tried Durian, it's an aquired taste, but the more you taste it, the more you LOVE it!! Some durians can be really smelly. I've been lucky the last few i've tasted have not been smelly at all so i'm becoming more and more of a durian fan. Although they do say that the more raw you get, the less you actually 'smell' that bad rotten eggs smell that durians give off. Quite the contrary, i was so surprised to walk into my house the other day and smell what smelled like cookies in the oven. I said to myself, 'what the heck smells so good?' It was the durian i had ripening on the countertop!!! I cracked it open and had what looks like scrambled eggs for breakfast. It was mindblowing. If you've never tried durian, you simply have to!

Wow...Susan just made a strawberry, banana, durian shake for us!!! Am i a lucky girl or WHAT????? Durian is a fatty fruit just like avocado, so it's not exactly 80-10-10 fare, well, in very limited quantities it is. But, if you're gonna cheat, this is the way to enjoy 'it' - in the company of wonderful friends, enjoying, savoring, having fun!!

xoxoxo michelle joy

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