I am sitting in my kitchen, surrounded by furniture (that belongs in the family room) as carpet layers, window washers and air conditioning technicians swarm my house like it’s a hive. The dogs have been sent to “Auntie Jan’s” house for the day and the poor cats are locked in the courtyard so they will not escape out doors being left open for workers. It is happening again. Another move is underfoot.
Two years ago this May, I moved from my beloved Minnesota to the San Francisco Bay Area, and I couldn’t be happier. It is an enchanting place to live.
I am often asked why I moved…and I don’t talk about these things too often here as I don’t want to bore you with my personal life, but I will tell you that I moved for love.
And now it’s time to continue our journey in a new home way up “on the top of the world” with stunning views and a little piece of land for the pups to run and play on in the East Bay. It is going to be an adventure as we are embarking on an entire renovation of the new house, but it will be a lot of fun, too. The best part? I get to design a fully new kitchen from scratch. And it will be perfect for making videos for you. That is something I have been wanting to do for a long time.
If I followed the stars, I would think they would say it is a time of great positive change. Many things that seemed stuck are now moving quickly. Many plans that have been on the drawing board are on the verge of manifesting.
My focus is still mainly on raw, but I am incorporating more whole food (non-processed) plant based (vegan) cooked food into our daily diet. I am working towards my “Professional Plant Based Chef Certification” through Rouxbe.com. I have always wanted to go to culinary school, but time constraints and being vegan were the two biggest stumbling blocks that prevented that. Rouxbe, an online cooking school offers a wonderful Professional Plant Based Certification course that I am loving.
This course, along with T. Collin Campbell’s “Plant Based Nutrition Certification” which I completed last year has been life changing. Not only has my understanding of a whole food plant based diet increased dramatically, my skills in creating recipes and preparing the food, both raw and cooked, has also increased. Even if you have already established a big knowledge base, there are always things to learn. And these two courses were pivotal for me.
It is going to be a crazy few months around here but I promise to keep you in the loop and keep the recipes coming. And maybe even share a few before and after pictures!
Today’s recipe actually originated from an assignment that I needed to complete in the raw section of my Plant Based Certification. We started with a nut pâté base and were required to layer in ingredients. I loved this assignment because it is something we do almost on a daily basis with raw.
Blackberry and Mango Almond Nut Pâté Salad
- 1 cup almonds, soaked overnight rinsed and drained
- 1/2 cup pine nuts
- 2 cloves garlic
- 1 lime, juice and zest
- 1/2 teaspoon Himalayan salt
- 1/3 cup water
- 1/2 red pepper, seeds and pith removed, finely diced
- 1 tablespoon finely diced ginger
- 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh mint
- 1 mango, cubed
- 1 avocado, cubed
- 1 pint blackberries
- 1/4 cup thinly sliced green onion
- Himalayan salt and fresh ground pepper
1. Pulse almonds, pine nuts, garlic, lime juice and zest and salt until very fine dice is achieved. Do not over process.
2. Pulse in water until just combined.
3. Remove from food processor and stir in remaining ingredients.
4. Taste and add more salt and fresh ground pepper to your linking.