“Liquid Vanilla”, is a raw expression of “Vanilla Extract” only completely pure, and raw. Using whole, organic raw vanilla beans and purified or spring water we create a vanilla concentrate that is like no other, infusing all of our recipes with the potent and aromatic flavor of the heavenly vanilla bean.
* 8 Whole Vanilla Beans
* 2 Cup Purified or Spring Water
* Using a sharp knife, chop all of the vanilla beans into ½ inch size pieces.
* Place chopped beans and water into your high speed blender, and blend on high until no chunks remain.
* Store in a glass container and keep in your refrigerator for up to 3 months. This may also be stored in your freezer and thawed before needed for less frequent use
If you don’t have the beans and just want to use traditional vanilla extract use 1 tsp. of the vanilla extract to every Tbs. of the liquid vanilla.
Always start with soft dates. Medjool dates are usually the sweetest and moistest variety widely available.
You can make your own date paste using a champion or mastication juicer with the solid plate in place. Although there are other options to make a date paste (Food Processor, high speed blender) they all require adding a liquid. Using a juicer with the solid plate in pace will allow you to masticate the dates with no added liquid, giving you a pure and concentrated date paste. When using a champion juicer, go slow, and take breaks as your juicer will heat up to very high temperatures otherwise.
Soft whole dates also work while making pie crusts, (you just need to process the crust a little longer), and they will break down completely in a high speed blender.
Note: Be sure to buy dates that are moist, but not overly moist and definitely not dry or hard. The variations will change the outcome and final result of the recipe you are working on.
Crispy Nuts, Nut Flour/Pulp & Milks
You will find in many of my recipes if I am using nuts they may now be titled “crispy”. Due to the anti nutrients in nuts, seeds, legumes and grains I have begun a more extensive soaking and drying process so that the foods I make are more digestible and allow for mineral absorption. You may or may not choose to take these extra steps, but I certainly recommend it!
This is how I make my crispy nuts:
2 cups of nuts
4 cups of purified water
2 tsp. to 1 Tbs. sea salt
Soak for 7 hours.
Repeat salt soak one more time.
Soak nuts in purified water for an additional 4-6 hours.
Dehydrate 20-30 hours or until crispy all the way through.
Fo some of my recipes I have actually peeled the almonds before I dry them. Peeling almonds is a lot of work. I use a towel and twist one almond at a time to loosen the peel. This is not necessary, but if you are making a cream, or cheese, it helps with the texture and the color.
For most of my cake bases, and many other raw recipes; cookies, crackers breads etc. “Nut Flour or Pulp” is a regular ingredient. Almond pulp, flour or nut pulp/flour is simply the fiber that is left over after making a milk or cream with a nut or seed base. The most important thing to have in mind when you are making a milk and know you will save the pulp to use in a recipe at a later date is to allow the nuts to be completely broken down during the blending process. This will leave you with a fine textured base which will give you a much more enjoyable experience when creating and enjoying your recipe.
1 Cup of almond or nut pulp is just about 1 cup of fresh soaked almonds or nuts. So for a cake with 8 cups of pulp you will need to start with at least that many cups of whole soaked nuts before blending! You may want to start with a little more just to be safe.
A basic nut milk is 1 part soaked nuts or seeds of choice to 3 parts water. For a creamier milk use less water and for a lighter milk use more. After thoroughly blending your ingredients (wait until any rattling sounds are completely gone), strain through a nut milk bag. Voila you have nut milk that will last a minimum of 3-4 days, and the pulp that is left over you can begin to save up in a large freezer bag. The other option is to make a whole lot of milk which can be frozen (it will separate in freezing, but usually will reincorporate well if blended after defrosting), and make your recipe using fresh pulp.
If you prefer a sweet milk, I recommend blend your sweetener in after you make the milk. This way your pulp will be neutral and can be used for a variety of different recipes. For a sweetened milk try adding a small pinch of sea salt (Himalayan Crystal is my preferred choice), a splash of liquid vanilla from above and a couple Tbs. of Raw Honey, or sweetener of choice!
At home I normally just blend a whole coconut adding a little extra water if it’s too thick and a little extra meat if it seems too thin. Below is a basic and consistent recipe for a nice consistency of coconut milk. Once you get to know it you can just improvise as well. Enjoy!
* 2 Cups Coconut Water
* 4 oz. Coconut Meat (Weight)
Pour the coconut water into a high speed blender.
Weigh out 4 oz. of coconut meat and also add to the blender.
Blend on high until the ingredients have emulsified and milk has formed.
Store in a glass jar and keep refrigerated. Will last 4-5 days.
**If you open the coconut and the inside is a pink or purple color it has gone bad. This does happen regularly so it is best to buy a couple extra; if you don’t need them, just eat them, use them for a smoothie or empty the contents and freeze then in separate containers for later use.
Coconut Oil & Cacao Oil/Butter
We use liquid or gently melted oils for all of our recipes. This allows for easy measuring and a “true” measurement.
*Place an open jar of coconut oil into a deep bowl
*Pour hot water into the bowl until the jar is deeply but not completely immersed in the water.
For Cacao Butter:
*Chop Cacao Butter into fine pieces and place in a bowl.
*Immerse that bowl into a larger bowl that is filled with hot water.
*Stir occasionally to help expedite melting process.
*This method can also be used for coconut oil.
Many of our Cheesecakes, Frosting’s, cheeses etc. call for soaked cashews. the ultimate outcome will be VERY different if you use unsoaked cashews. Mainly due to the fact that they nearly double in size after soaking. Soaked cashews impart less of a “cashew” flavor than unsoaked cashews. Which is desireable when you are not looking for a cashew flavored food.
*To soak your cashews simple take just over half the amount you need soaked. So if you need 2 cups soaked cashews begin with 1 1/4 to 1 1/2. (I tend to allow myself to have a little extra by starting with more rather than using half the amount and then possibly running short. There is always something yummy to make with those extra cashews.)
*Place your cashews in a large bowl and add 2 to 3 times the amount of water. Set at room temp. the cashews should be ready within 4 hours.
*Another option is to allow them to soak in your fridge overnight.
*You will know they are ready by either cutting or biting them in half. As long as they are soft all the way through you know they are ready to use. If they are still a bit firm they need a little more time soaking.
Irish Moss Preparation
Properly soaking the Irish moss has a huge impact on the entire recipe. Closely following these directions will create the Irish moss to be as consistent as possible for the best results in the finished product. Only soak the amount you think you will use for one week – as you will notice mentioned below, after that time the moss will begin to lose its integrity.
All preparation steps for Irish moss only use cold water. Rinsing or soaking Irish moss in warm of hot water will cause the Irish moss to release its mucilaginous gelling properties into the water, rendering it a much less potent product to a completely useless product depending on the level of heat and how long it was immersed.
Directions for rinsing/soaking Irish moss:
1. Thoroughly rinse small amounts of the Irish moss under cold, running water. Ideally use filtered water. This process should remove any presence of sand, other seaweeds, or any small little plastic treads (usually light blue or red in color) which are left over from harvesting.
2. As you wash the Irish moss one piece at the time, place the rinsed pieces in an empty container. Whatever size container you are using, do not fill it up more than 3/4 of the way.
3. Once finished with rinsing, fill up the container with water. With your hand mix the Irish moss inside the container (if container is too small, shake well with lid on). This will create friction and will release more impurities. Drain the water and repeat 2 more times. The water from the last rinse should be really clean. If not, repeat one more time.
4. Now fill up container with water, completely covering the Irish moss. Put lid on container and place in fridge for at least 24 hours before using.
5. Don’t rinse the Irish moss after the soaking process is complete, and don’t drain or replace the soaking water.
note: if you have a lot of moss leftover try storing it in an airtight container without any water – refrigerated. I have had moss last me up to a month stored this way. Smell it before use if it still smells like the ocean (salty and a little funky) it’s all good. If it begins to smell sweet and change in color it is no longer good.