Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Raw Roasted Pepper Pizza Recipe and Fragrant Vanilla Cake Sweet and Savory Book by Amy Lyons: Book Review


Fragrant Vanilla Cake; Sweet and Savory!

I'm a big fan of Amy Lyons' raw food blog, Fragrant Vanilla Cake and have been for a long time. So much so that I asked her to contribute a recipe to my own book, Easy Affordable Raw (Quarry Books August 2015). Amy's desserts are amazing and visually stunning. So I was excited to learn she has a new book out now ... Fragrant Vanilla Cake Sweet and Savory.



http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1500195502/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=1500195502&linkCode=as2&tag=lisvig-20&linkId=O7PLTEQ27T2YGWFR


It's a beautifully done book, with beautiful full color photos for almost every recipe ...




Amy has organized her book well and the introductions to each recipe are unique and engaging.






Included are over 100 recipes for both sweet and savory dishes, such as ...


Raw Kabocha Squash and Apple Soup



Macadamia Nut Chevre






Fragrant Vanilla Cake: Sweet and Savory has over 100 recipes ... including the basics, like almond milk and almond butter, as well as more involved recipes. And, of course, there are desserts!

You can see the recipe index and buy Amy's book at Amazon HERE.


Q&A with Amy!



Q. Why the name, Fragrant Vanilla Cake?? I've always wondered!

A. I chose the name Fragrant Vanilla Cake, because to me the smell of vanilla cake being made is one of the best aromas in the world.  It reminds me of childhood, comfort and something I love.  Plus vanilla cake has always been one of my favorites.  


Q. How did you get started with raw foods and are you 100% raw?

A.
I started out with raw food back in the summer of 2012 when a friend asked me to make him a dairy free, gluten free cake.  He ate mostly raw food, so I made a raw cake.  At the time it intimidated me, but I went for it and it was so good I decided to experiment more with raw desserts.  I started making savory items as well and loved them so I wanted to try being raw for a while.  I loved how I felt so I stuck with it.  I am not 100% raw anymore (more like 85%) but I eat a high raw diet with some cooked foods (mostly when I go out to eat once in a while).  My Body feels more balanced that way.  I still get the benefits of raw foods though even if not 100% raw, and that is what I try to tell others who are skeptical about adding raw foods into their diets and don't want to jump in completely. 

Q. And how do you feel you benefit from raw foods?

A.
I benefit from raw foods in that they give me more energy, I sleep better, and my skin is nicer.  My stomach is happier as well.  

Q. What inspired you to write the Sweet and Savory book? 

A.
I wrote this book because people often ask me what I eat on a daily basis or what savory items I enjoy since I have a mostly dessert blog.  I wanted to share with my readers everything I enjoy from breakfast to dinner (as well as desserts because I couldn't leave that out).  

Q. What do you do to save money on a raw or high raw diet?

A.
I save money on a high raw diet by buying from farmer's markets in the warmer months or buying things that are in season because they tend to be cheaper.  Also I buy in bulk.  

Q. How do you come up with your amazing recipes?

A.
I come up with my recipes by making what I am craving at the time, or using ingredients that I happen to have at the time.  I try to think of things that I haven't seen raw before, or new flavor combinations. 

Q. What do you hope for in the future for you and Fragrant Vanilla Cake?

A. I hope to inspire more people to enjoy raw foods!


Enjoy this recipe from the book!



Raw Roasted Pepper Pizza 
By Amy Lyons
at Fragrant Vanilla Cake Blog






Makes 2



Crusts:
  • 2 medium eggplants, diced 1/2 cup ground flaxseed
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp dried basil
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 garlic clove


Macadamia Ricotta:
  • 1 ½ cups raw macadamia nuts, soaked in filtered water for at least 4 hours, drained
  • filtered water as needed
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 garlic clove 
  • 1 red bell pepper

  • 1 yellow bell pepper, sliced
  • 1 orange bell pepper, sliced
  • 1 red bell pepper, sliced
  • 1/4 of a medium onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 Tbsp tamari
  • 1 tsp dried basil 

  • A handful fresh spinach
  • fresh basil, cut chiffonade


For the crusts, combine all ingredients in the food processor and process until smooth. Spread out onto 2 lined dehydrator sheets in circles (but not too thin) and dry for about 16 hours until crisp (flipping once).

For the macadamia ricotta, combine the macadamias, 2 Tbsp water, and lemon juice in a high speed blender or food processor and process until smooth (adding a Tbsp of water or two if needed) to create a ricotta like texture. Remove 1/3 of it and Refrigerate until ready to use (this you will scatter over the pizza). Add the garlic and red bell pepper to the rest of it, and blend until smooth. Place in the fridge until ready to use (this you will spread over the crust).

For the veggies, combine the peppers, onion, garlic, olive oil, lemon juice, tamari, and herbs in a bowl, and toss to combine. Spread out onto a lined dehydrator sheet and dry for 3-4 hours until the veggies are tender and "roasted".

To assemble the pizzas, spread the red bell pepper macadamia ricotta over both the crusts, then a few spinach leaves, then top with all the veggies, and sprinkle with the reserved plain ricotta and fresh basil and serve!





Amy Lyons is the blogger and recipe writer behind Fragrant Vanilla Cake, a blog featuring raw and vegan desserts as well as a few savory dishes. She is also the author of Rawlicious Desserts published in 2013. She graduated from Bethel University in 2007 with a degree in Studio Art, and has a passion for creating beautiful things and helping others eat healthier.


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