Raw Food Fight #1: Sweet Raw Food Dessert Divas

Raw Food Fight between Shannon Marie and Heather Pace

Welcome to a new, fun, lighthearted feature here at The Raw Foods Witch. I’m interviewing some of the most exciting voices in the raw food world, and letting you pick between the two… in a raw food fight.*

*Note: No food was harmed or wasted in the making of this raw food fight, all deliciously sweet treats were consumed.

Onto the questions!

The Questions and Answers

Shannon Marie of Rawdorable

Heather Pace of Sweetly Raw

1. What brought you to raw food, what’s the story there?

I first learned about raw food, while watching an interview with Juliano on the Style Network.

I was already vegan at the time, so of course, it caught my attention. I couldn’t believe how creative he could be with raw fruits, veggies, nuts and seeds. Having an art background myself (as well as years of playing around in the kitchen with my family), I was so ready to dive in and try it. I bought his uncookbook the very next day.

At the age of 14 I read the book Fit For Life, and turned vegan over night! I stumbled upon a raw restaurant when I was 16 and was in awe. I kept my cooked vegan lifestyle, but went to a raw retreat in California for one month when I was 18 and decided I wanted to eat this way permanently… this didn’t last long as I returned home to a cold Canadian winter and lacked support. With a passion for food preparation I graduated from Culinary School with the intention of bringing healthy food ideas to people. Since then I have gone from 100% raw to low raw (remaining on a mostly vegan diet), and everything in between, but for the past 3 years I’ve remained mostly raw.

2. What is your favorite raw dessert?

Raw cupcakes, but I’m sure you could figure that one out. Sometimes they’re rich and decadent, and other times I lighten them up a bit. There’s just something about that cute little shape.

Oooh, that’s a toughy! Usually it’s whatever dessert I’m eating in the moment… BUT, I suppose my 3 overall faves are: Strawberry lime mousse cake (from my ebook Just Desserts), my chocolate caramel turtles, and ice cream sundaes!

3. Outside of raw desserts, what does your diet look like on an average day?

Although I mainly post recipes for satisfying my sweet tooth, the rest of my diet is fresher and more fitness-inspired. I am a huge fan of Brendan Brazier and his “Thrive” approach. The first thing I have in the morning is just water, followed by some fruit. I get my workout in after that, and recharge with a huge green smoothie.

Lunch is usually a salad and/or raw pudding (I’ve been eating a lot of blended things now that there’s a baby in the house again). Sometimes I do have a raw cupcake at that time. I also graze throughout the day on fresh produce, raw energy bars, homemade trail mix and smoothies.

As for dinner, that’s when I tend to eat more veggies. I love huge salads, zucchetti (spriralized zucchini to look like pasta), wrap sandwiches (using collards, romaine or nori for the “wrap”), raw soups (especially the ones with a variety of textures) … the list goes on, but I will admit to sometimes having lightly steamed veggies or a sweet potato from time to time. I also occasionally consume Ezekiel products, as well as cooked pseudograins like buckwheat and quinoa.

Don’t forget dessert; I never do. I’m so bad about ending the day with a piece of fruit (bad food combining, I know, but it somehow works for me). I also enjoy a good piece of raw chocolate, as long as it’s not too close to bedtime.

LOL, it’s true I eat a lot of dessert!

I start my day with a large mug of hot water/lemon juice, and then I drink fresh grapefruit or green juice.

Lunch is either a superfood smoothie or green soup, and dinner is usually a salad: greens, veggies, nori, spirulina, avocado based dressing.

Dessert is whatever I have on hand that day, or a pudding – frozen berries, banana, superfoods, nuts. Raw chocolate (with gojis/mulberries/nuts) is my snack of choice – I always keep some in my purse, and around the house!

4. What has been the most life changing aspect of eating more raw food for you?

I have so much more energy than before I went raw. It helps me keep up with the little ones around here. Being a busy mom really requires a lot of energy :-)

I feel as though raw food allows easy access to my “higher self” because it is so light, and vibrates at a high level. I experience greater mental clarity, inner peace, energy, and intuition.

5. If you had to give someone who was just starting out advice about raw food, what would it be?

I advise to start out slow. Don’t be afraid to “test the waters” first. If you change too many things at once, you might be more likely to quit the first time you “fall off the wagon.” Nobody’s perfect, so don’t stress yourself out trying to be.

Baby steps! Don’t worry about being “perfect” – you may have the intention of eating 100% raw immediately, but if you happen to fall back into some cooked food, forgive yourself and jump right back on the wagon. Make one change per week that is do-able for you – maybe start by having a green smoothie for breakfast, or replace your afternoon snack with a healthy raw version!

6. To you, what is the meaning or purpose of life?

I think we’re all still trying to figure that one out. I do know that it is meant to be lived to the fullest. Learn from your experiences and enjoy every moment.

Big/good question! I believe that I am a spiritual Being who’s purpose in this life is to learn and grow from all experiences that I create. I feel I am here to live out my passions, speak my truth, and inspire others to live a life they are passionate about too!

7. Tell me about your latest project and how people can get their hands on it.

I finally fulfilled my dreams of putting out a raw cupcake book, in electronic form (maybe one day it will be sold as a hard copy, but right now I’m saving some trees). “The Little Rawdorable Cupcake Book That Could” e-book can be purchased on my site at Rawdorable. I also have some raw cupcake-inspired shirts at my Cafe Press online shop, where I hope to add more designs soon. I’d even love to add an Etsy store in the near future.

Rawdorable

I am SO excited about my new dessert project! The Moonie Pie Challenge is the chance for bloggers to get their creative juices flowing. I’ve created three (vanilla, mint, banana) delicious moonies: silky smooth cream, wrapped in a dense cacao nut cake, encased in rich dark chocolate. Participants make one of the three moonies (with two ingredient changes of their choice), and blog about it. I will judge the creations and then do a moonie pie swap with the winner, who will receive each of my pies. Here’s more information on how to enter and get a copy of the recipes.

Sweetly Raw

8. If you could summarize your evolution and success with raw food, what one word would you use?

Happy :-)

Acceptance

Vote for your Favorite

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(If you’re reading this via email or news feed, click through to cast your vote!)

Let me know what you thought about this raw food fight, who you’d love to see participate and what kind of questions I should ask next! :)

Love, Nathalie

Raw Christmas Dessert Recipe: Meet The Raw Snowman

Raw Vegan Christmas Recipes
Snowy the Raw Vegan Snowman

It’s a snowy winter holiday, and what’s a raw vegan gal to do? Make fun snow-people out of all raw ingredients of course!

This is a super simple, delicious, and fun activity that you can enjoy with your whole family. Once you get the hang of making snow men, you can also make snow families, and even venture out into making raw gingerbread houses.

This is also a great dessert to bring to events, just be sure to find a humane way of cutting our little snow friend.

Raw Snowman Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cup cashews
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 6-10 dates
  • Unsweetened coconut flakes

For decorations…

  • Grape stems for the arms
  • Pumpkin seeds for the eyes (substitute as necessary)
  • Goji berry for the nose
  • Chia seeds for the mouth
  • Mung (green) beans for the buttons
  • Extra sprinkles of coconut flakes for extra fun
  • Cinnamon stick to hold as a prop

How to Make this Raw Holiday Recipe

    How to make raw cashew flour
  1. Place dry cashews into a food processor, magic bullet, or high speed blender (like a vitamix) and process until it looks like flour. Or is finely chopped. It doesn’t need to be perfect here. Remove from food processor and set aside in a mixing bowl.
  2. In the same food processor, or blender add the lemon juice, the dates, and a few sprinkles of coconut flakes. (This is to help the machine process properly, and so that it doesn’t spin with all the food under the blade.)
  3. Put the lemon-date mixture into the cashew flour and mix together with a spoon. At this point you should have something that resembles dough.
  4. Take a handful of dough and roll into a ball. Repeat for a total of three balls.
  5. Take each ball and roll it in some extra coconut flakes to add that snowy white feel to it.
  6. Stack the largest cashew ball on the bottom, the medium one next, and the smallest one on top.

How to Make Raw Dessert Decorations

Raw Cashew Balls

Now you’ve got the makings for a great snowman! It’s time to add the finishing touches that are really going to make this little guy come alive. (Well, he is alive… it’s all live food. Haha.)

  1. Use grape stems for the arms, and simply push them into the sides of the trunk.
  2. Place 2 seeds (pumpkin, sunflower, etc) for the eyes. Notice how this actually gives the face some depth too.
  3. Add a goji berry for the nose.
  4. Use chia seeds for the mouth. This one was tricky, and I used a spoon to stick the seeds in a round shape. Another idea might be to use a toothpick or fork.
  5. For the buttons, push in a set of mung beans. You could use other nuts or seeds too.
  6. Just for fun, add a cinnamon stick in one of the hands. I figured a cinnamon stick looked like a rolled up “crazy carpet”. I used to slide down the snowy hills in those things as a kid, but maybe that’s just me.

How To Eat Your Snow-People

Okay, so it looks great but it’s a pretty big portion to eat all on your own. You can definitely slice this snowman, or even reshape it into balls or cookies.

You don’t need to dehydrate this dessert at all, and it will naturally dry out if you leave it out. If you’d like to preserve it, you can freeze it in a sealed container. Simply let it thaw out before you eat it.

And yes, I realize the irony of freezing a snowman and thawing it out before you eat it. ;)

What Other Holiday Treats Have You Got in Store?

What are you planning to make this holiday season? If you’re not sure you have everything you need to make this recipe, drop a hint to Santa about the Holiday Gift Guide!

Happy Holidays!
Love, Nathalie