Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Day 2 Advanced Raw Chef Level 1: Part II

Day 2 Part II
So now I will continue writing about our fantastic Day 2 food preparations.
From 3-4PM we were busy creating raw cookies and brownies.
Team 1- Coconut Macaroons
Team 2- Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
Team 3- Walnut Date Balls
Team 4- Best Brownies
I must admit that by far my favorite of these raw goodies were the Oatmeal Raisin Cookies. Bobby, our Master Chef, said that he took his grandma's cookie recipe and converted it to a raw recipe. We were able to eat them warm out of the dehydrator and it was a cookie experience I will never forget. They really were THAT good!!!
Next up on the schedule was the Garden Burger Demo followed by the Ketchup, Mustard and Mayo Demonstrations. My sister-in-law and I took this time in our busy schedule to sneak out to Saturday's Vigil Mass at a very nice, orthodox, Catholic church--just like we like them. It was a much needed escape for us from all of the information overload that we were experiencing during this amazing Raw Chef Training and a time to give thanks for all that we were so blessed to have accomplished thus far. When we returned we were brought up to speed on what we missed and it was time for a Pesto Stuffed Mushroom Demonstration.
Before dinner we were able to go and take a tour of CHI's sprouting room. Boy was I in sprout Heaven, as you can imagine!! Take a look at these pics--can you tell what everything is??
If you want to see a pic of me "Grazing on the Wheat grass" go here and scroll down to the end of my sister-in-law's post. Too funny!!

Dinner was served at 5:30PM
Here is what we had:
Garden Burgers with romaine lettuce buns
Pesto Stuffed Mushrooms
Not So Cheese
Kale Salad with Blessed Tahini Dressing
Coconut Macaroons
Oatmeal Raisin Cookies
Best Brownies
CHI's Almond Joys
Walnut Date Balls
That evening we watched the movie "Eating" and learned sooooo much information that everyone should know. I am really glad we got to see this film, I have been wanting to view it for quite some time now. After the movie several of the students went into the Banya sauna. Then it was light out at 10:30PM.
I will post about Day 3 soon. I was so sad to see our weekend come to an end but I also was so grateful for this amazing opportunity. Stay tuned for Day 3 and our graduation ceremony.
+JMJ+ Today I am grateful for seeing my First Grader learn his math facts for the day. Way to go MA.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Day 2 Advanced Raw Chef Level 1: Part I

Saturday, April 30th, 2011
Day 2 began at
8AM with Breakfast Preparation
Team 1 was preparing Raw Quinoa
Team 2 was preparing Rawsome Oatmeal
Team 3 was preparing Green Smoothies
Team 4 was preparing Almond and Pecan Milks
Our team made a wonderful green smoothie. Everyone really enjoyed it--it was gone before we could even put it on the breakfast table. All of the "Chefs in training" kept sampling it.
Once we all had our preparations completed it was time for a fantastic, raw, nourishing breakfast.

We enjoyed:
Fresh Juiced Orange Juice
Rawsome Oatmeal
Rawsome Quinoa
Fresh blueberries, strawberries
Banana Manna Bread with Cashew Frosting
Green Smoothies
Nut Milks
We also were able to sample the delicious Energy Soups

The one in the forefront is the unsweetened Energy Soup and the one in the back round is the sweet Energy Soup. They had "toppings" to add to the soups:
The toppings were:
Flax meal
Rye seeds
Here is how my Energy Soup looked and boy was it yummy!! I chose the sweet version.

We were so fortunate to have several demonstrations throughout our training and preparation sessions. Like I said in the previous post every minute of everyday was utilized and devoted to teaching us as much as possible during our Raw Chef Training Program. One of our many demonstrations was given by Chuck. He demonstrated how to make the Banana Manna Walnut Bread with Cashew Cream Frosting.

10:00AM Food Preparation resumed
Team 1- Granola Cereal
Team 2- Muesli Cereal
Team 3- Better Than Lara Bars Blueberry
Team 4- Better Than Lara Bars Cashew Cookie

My sister-in-law

11:00AM Food Preparation
Team 1- CHI Corn Chowder
Team 2- Mama Angelina's Tomato Basil Soup
Team 3- Broccoli Soup
Team 4- Paige's Sweet Potato Soup
Our team prepared the Broccoli Soup. It was good and beautiful also.
I dressed it with some EVOO, sprouts, fresh basil and a pinch of red pepper flakes.
Mama Angelina's Tomato Basil Soup

We then jumped right into our next Food Preparation. All teams prepared Raw Pad Thai Salads.

Zucchini Noodles with red bell peppers, sprouts, lentil sprouts, and cilantro. Here are the left over zucchini cores.
Bobby, our Master Chef Instructor told us how he seasons these and then dehydrates them for later uses. What a great idea! He calls them "mushrooms".
We prepared an incredibly delicious sauce for our Pad Thai.

Here is our dish, tossed:

During our Pad Thai preparation we were served a delicious Pineapple Orange Coconut Banana Smoothie. The interns at Creative Health were so gracious and made sure that we were well hydrated and that our energy levels were high.

Lunch was served. We were able to sample each team's Pad Thai and we also had a broccoli and cauliflower salad served with Bobby's famous Poppy Seed Dressing. When I returned home I just had to make this dressing. It is just delicious! Here is how my recipe looked.

Four more awesome demonstrations were on our schedule. These were:
Seed Cheese
Smoked Pepper Cheese
CHI Sour Cream
Sprouted Quiona Rejuvelac

I will stop here for Part I of our Day 2 experience. So much happened each day it still makes my head spin when I think about all that we did and learned. I will finish Day 2's post soon. We had the opportunity to prepare raw cookies and brownies, more demos and our dinner preparation, movie and Banya time.
+JMJ+ Today I am grateful for my son's increased energy and rosy cheeks.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Advanced Raw Chef Level 1: Training and Certification


Well, the exciting news I was referring to in the previous post is that I completed my Level 1 training as an Advanced Raw Chef. I have dual certification, one through Creative Health Institute and also through Alissa Cohen.  Creative Health Institute is such an amazing place. I am so grateful that I was able to go there and meet these wonderful and loving people. Here is a bit from their site:

'The Wheatgrass Place'

Your Body Can Heal Itself..

  • Teaching wellness that works since 1973
  • We are the longest running hands on raw living foods program operating in the same location, for 37 years
  • Over 15,000 graduates
  • We are a learning facility
  • We sell no supplements and our focus is entirely on your learning the skills to live a raw/living food lifestyle

What you get at Creative Health Institute:

"Whether you are suffering from Cancer, Diabetes, Heart disease, or nearly any other ailment, or, you are healthy, and wish to stay that way, our program will provide you the tools to help your body heal itself, naturally! "
Need I say more? I think not.

Flowers that greeted us at the front door. Attention to detail--gotta love it!

So let's talk about their Raw Chef Training and Certification Program. I flew to Michigan and met my sister-in-law who drove up from Ohio. We shared a room at CHI and were on the same Training Station. So needless to say we had a load of fun together learning side-by-side and sharing this, as Cynthia says, "Life changing experience". And that is indeed what this experience was. The amount of love and healing that is given and goes on there is truly amazing. The out pouring of generosity and knowledge is beautiful. Each and every person I met was so special and so unique. I am so blessed to have been in their company.
Our check-in time was on Friday, April 29th from 2-4PM. Cynthia and I got un-packed and settled into our room. They are just like  hotel rooms but it felt more like a sorority to me. I felt like I was back in college at Michigan State, moving into Alpha Chi Omega all over again.  I went to MSU for my first two years and then I transferred to Ohio State University and spent 3 more years there. I graduated with two degrees, a BS in Dental Hygiene and the second, a BS in Education. (a little side note)
After we got settled we looked around the facility and met some of our fellow raw chefs and were given our (precious) notebooks. These held our intense training schedule and our recipes, guide to setting up a raw kitchen, sprouting charts, measurement equivalents, supplemental materials on food combining and seed and nut milks.

 A beautiful welcome reception was given for us.

We were served:
Apple Lemonade

Kale Chips--3 types
Corn Chips
Large Green Salad with Sprouts and Tomato
Mexican Almost Refined Bean Dip

Not So Cheese Sauce


Pepper Cheese Log
Zen Crackers
Mango Salsa
After our lovely reception we were given the overview of class and expectations by our Master Chef instructor and friend, Robert C. Morgan. He let us call him "Bobby".

 Talk about a spectacular man. Such love he has for every person that comes through their front door. He is a stickler for organization, cleanliness and exceptionally fresh, organic ingredients.  He is a wonderful teacher and a wonderful person. I am blessed to have met him and  share 3 days with him and all of the hard working Interns at CHI.
Next we had our introduction to training stations and appliances.

We then had a demo on proper knife skills. Safety comes first at CHI and we all learned a great deal from our instructors. It doesn't matter how long you have been preparing foods in a kitchen, there is always something new to learn.
Next we were split into Teams. We each got to name our teams and I came up with "The Sprouting Spartans". We jumped right into raw food prep. Each team was given a recipe and all of the ingredients needed. Our first food prep was called, "Pizza Party Preparation". Team 1 was Pizza Crust, Team 2 was Marinara Sauce, our team was Team 3- Pesto Sauce, and Team 4 was mozzarella Cheese.
Here is Bobby working with the Mozzarella team, demonstrating how to use a nut milk bag to make the fermented cheese.

 Our pesto ingredients were: soaked cashews, garlic, pine nuts, fresh basil, alfalfa sprouts, and lemon juice. I think it turned out spectacular!

Here is my sister-in-law having a blast playing with a Vitamix for the first time.

And here is my other teammate "T" and I seriously discussing the recipe. I am in the red apron and bandanna.
After all of the teams completed their recipes it was time for our Raw Pizza Party Dinner. The teams got to dress their own pizzas and then we all sat down to dinner.
Here is our dressed pizza.

 Several students commented that these were the best pizzas they have ever tasted. One man from Chicago, I think, liked them better that traditional cooked pizzas. Now that says a great deal!! All of the teams did a great job, everything tasted so good and looked so beautiful. We were also served another very large green salad loaded with sprouts and tomato.

The salad was served with Bobby's Sweet Onion and Poppy Seed Dressing. I made that this week and will be posting about it soon. It is sooooo delicious. I'll have to ask him if I can give out the recipe!
After dinner we had a demo on making raw chocolate syrup. Why would we need to make a raw chocolate syrup you ask, well because they treated us to a raw ice cream party that night. Bobby himself was on the juicers making our ice cream and teaching us as he went along--he never wastes one minute, he had us learning every minute of every day! Wonderful.

  We had fresh strawberries, bananas, pineapple, soaked nuts and the raw chocolate sauce for our toppings. They called them Dessert Banana Splits, I called them pure joy!
Here is my very large serving
Here are Allie and "Cheese Lady" making their raw banana splits. Can't you tell how happy they were?

Needless to say we all were completely exhausted after our first day that we didn't even watch the scheduled movie or go into the Banya sauna. That was fine with me, I needed time to just chill in the room with Cynthia and try to get some much needed sleep. But what a blast Day 1 was!! I will post Day 2 and Day 3 next. You won't believe all that we learned!! Be sure to come back and read all about our raw chef adventures!!
 I must say I was also recovering from the shock of going a whole day without changing a single diaper. Don't get me wrong, I missed my family dearly but this was a much needed escape for me. I am so blessed and thankful.
Want some great raw recipes???? Check this out!
+JMJ+ Today I am grateful for the love given by strangers and the friendships that were created almost instantly upon introductions. XOXO CHI family!!!! I miss you all!

Banana Cream Pie Smoothie Lately I've been blessed with fresh, green, Florida coconuts from my neighbor's trees. We enjoy drinking...