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raw cooking

raw cooking

I am really not sure where to begin this post. To be honest, I thought that this was going to be goodbye. Over the past few weeks I have been doing a lot of thinking about life: mine, my children’s, life in general. I am not sure what prompted this latest round of self-reflection (let’s face it, I do a lot of self-reflecting), but this one has been a little harder to get past. I think that it began for me when I was taking photographs of my boys while they were putting on one of their famous family reading parties a few weeks back (more on this next week). We were having a great time: food, books and fun all around, when my oldest son Jacob began to tell me that perhaps he should stand in a certain way for a good photo, or we needed to put the food on the bed for a prettier shot. It hit me in that moment that he knew where these photos were going, and rather than just enjoying the moment, he was staging the event to seem better than he thought it was.

I was so taken aback. Over the past few months I had begun to have concerns about the level of exposure that I was giving my children, and if that was really fair, but this was something I did not see coming.

I began this blog (5 years ago!) as a way to document our day-to-day life for our family and friends, and over time it has morphed into a space where I have explored my love of crafting, homeschooling, and exploring with my children (and a bit of yoga here and there). This has been an intensely personal space for me, and one that has never been a burden, but always a place where I found a sense of peace.

The one thing that I have always taken seriously is keeping an authentic voice in this space. I hope that one day my boys look back on my writing and feel as though they have a history of all the cool things that we have done together. For me, this is where the good stuff gets documented, the truly sweet stuff in our lives that I want them to remember forever.

I think that is what made Jacob posing for the picture so tough for me. When they look at the photographs that I have taken, I don’t want them to see a staged event, I want them to see us living. I want them to know how important their yoga practice was to us, and how much we loved to cook. I want them to see the way we valued art and the journeys all around our beautiful state we took. I do feel strongly about the subjects that I have written on, and I hope to spend a good part of my life writing on them in greater detail, but I still want that to always be real for them. I never want them to believe that we did what we did for a blog post, but rather that we were lucky enough to live in a time where our lives could be shared with others.

So that is where I have been, some where deep in my head pondering the issues of childhood and blog writing. I wasn’t sure where to go with all of this, or even if I should. I feel blessed to have Rhythm of the Home as a project that fulfills me, and I wondered if it was time to let that be my main source of writing. I am completing an amazing project with my friend Stacy that has me filled with gratitude, and the Rhythm of the Home book is a blast to  put together. It should be easy to let this space go, right?

Apparently not. Every time I thought about saying goodbye, my heart dropped. I have come to rely on this space, and it just isn’t the right time to let it go.

It is, however, time to get back to my roots, so expect some crafty goodness and lots of food to be coming soon.

Now, I promised you pie.

I have written before on the changes that we have made as a family over the past few years, and our recent dive into Heather’s Whole Food Kitchen course. Through that course I was introduced to a heavenly treat that has now found its way onto our table at least a few times a month: Raw vegan pie. Somewhere around the 7th week of the course, Heather introduced a raw chocolate torte that was truly heaven. I made it right away, and lots since. It is simple, and creamy, and not too sweet.

I have a pie kind of family, and I really thought that my husband, whose addiction to chocolate cream pie is legendary, would be totally put off by cashews, dates and cocoa powder. To my surprise, he fell in love as well.

That one slice of pie has transformed our kitchen, and given us yet another set of treats to indulge in without sugar. The kids have loved coming up with new combinations, and we have been playing around with different crusts and fillings. One recent success was a raw strawberry cheesecake with a simple strawberry sauce (when I say simple, I mean put strawberries into a blender and add agave. I can’t claim credit for that one). The ingredients are simple and clean, and the taste is refreshing as strawberries find their way into season.

Raw Strawberry Cheesecake

Ingredients

Crust

1 cup walnuts
1 cup almonds
1 cup dates (pitted and soaked for 20 minutes)
1/2 cup shredded coconut
1 tbsp agave nectar

Filling

3 cups of whole cashews (soaked overnight)
1/2 cup agave nectar
4 dates
6 cups slices strawberries

Directions

Place your nuts in the bowl of a food process and process until finely chopped. Add your dates, coconut and agave nectar and process until combined. Press into the bottom of a 10″ pie plate or free form pan and freeze while putting together the filling.

For the filling, place all of the ingredients into a high powered blender and process until smooth and creamy. Add to your crust and freeze until desired firmness.

We enjoy this pie with the simple strawberry sauce mentioned above, or for some added yumminess, this simple raw chocolate sauce.

Raw vegan pie is easy to put together, a great source of vitamins and protein, and a really great way to end just about any meal. My boys would encourage you to play around with whatever fruits, nuts and extras you have in the house. Up next, they have asked for lemon cream pie with a blackberry sauce. Stay tuned.

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