This weekend I put on a buffet style brunch for out-of-town visitors. Putting on a meal like this for others gives me absolute pleasure! Weeks ago I planned the menu and got to work, dehydrating crackers and breads, along with some of the sweet things, all of which keep well in the freezer. I'm always amazed at what a process it is to create a full gourmet raw meal, or better yet - a whole buffet. A few days ago I continued preparations, making the cake and various creams that would be used, and finally, on the morning of the big day it was just a case of putting things together - making the salads, quiche filling (which would turn brown if I made it even the night before), plating, etc. Fortunately I had the help of my friend Denyse who is eager to learn about raw food...and is the most amazing chocolate maker!
Fruit Salad - A mix of watermelon, red/green grapes, orange, mango, pear, orange honeydew, pineapple, apple, dates.
Green Salad - Romaine, spinach, red cabbage, red and green pepper, grape tomatoes, cuucmber, and sunflower seeds tossed in a lemon/olive oil/sea salt dressing.
Spinach Mini Quiches - Carmella's amazing filling with Elaina Love's zucchini almond crust. Herby velvet green cream, gently mixed with chopped sundried tomato, garnished with dehydrated mushrooms.
Cracker Platter with Salsa, Cheese and Veggies - An assortment of crackers: sundried tomato herb (really a bread but I dehydrated it longer for a cracker), Cheeze-Itz, Zucchini Walnut, Sprouted wheat, and Sarma Melngailis' corn tortillas (which I sometimes dehydrate into chips, but this time kept soft and pliable). A simple salsa of tomato, red/green pepper, cilantro, lemon juice, and sea salt; served with cheddar dip and veggie spears (cucumber, celery, and carrot).
Strawberry Lime Mousse Cake - On a walnut/macadamia/coconut flour crust, garnished with fresh strawberries. My all time favourite (even though I'm a chocolate lover). I just had to make this for the ladies.
Ice Cream Sandwiches - The ladies particularly ooed and awwwed over these. I have to say that I, too, was impressed with the way they turned out. It was completely by "accident". I started out with a different idea in mind for the cookie part - which didn't work, so I kept adding ingredients, therefore, I don't have exact measurements, but I can tell you what I do remember. They've got: walnuts, pecans, coconut flour, cacao powder, carob powder, dates, agave, sea salt, coconut, wee bit of spirulina, almonds...processed together, chilled, rolled, cut out, and then sandwiched together with vanilla ice cream.
Chocolate Raspberry Thumbprint Cookies- These cookies were made with part of the dough from the ice cream sandwich cookies, minus the shredded coconut, spirulina, and some of the nuts, creating a really smooth, dense cookie that I rolled into balls, thumbprinted and dehydrated. The filling was simply raspberries, pureed with a bit of lemon juice and agave, that was spooned into the cookies just before serving.
Banana Berry Bites - Two fun finger foods using the same ingredients. Triple berry cream made of raspberries, blueberries, strawberries, lemon, cashews, and coconut oil, pipped into hollowed out banana slices. Also, banana leather rolled with the berry cream and fresh banana to create berry crepe bites.
I think everyone enjoyed the brunch just as much as I enjoyed making it- and now I get to enjoy some leftovers 😀