Rollin With The Homies- Rice Paper Rolls

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Do you remember that part in Clueless when Ty hits her head on a light at a party and Elton helps her feel better by singing “Rollin with the Homies” to her? She sings it back to him and creates a wave like motion with her hands. Its the moment when Ty totally falls for Elton. Everytime I make rice paper rolls this scene runs through my mind and then I really want to watch Clueless. I sort of feel like Clueless is the 90’s cult classic that Mean Girls has become of the early mellinial. It’s one of those films that resonates with us Generation WHY-ers and reminds me what a special place in time we all grew up in. 

We have more freedom than any generation before us and an abundance of information is only a touch screen away. I also think about how lucky I am to have an abundance of healthy food available almost all the time. Maybe that readiness of organic vegetables is unique to sunny California where farmers markets occur daily but instagram sure makes it seem like organic veggies are accessable around the globe all the time. Either way, I am so grateful everyday for it; Healthy food is the key to a healthy life. 

So getting back on topic: Rice Paper Rolls…

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Rice Paper Rolls are like a more healthy and trendy version of a sandwich. Everything taste good and makes sense between two slices of bread just as everything tastes good and makes sense in a rice paper roll. Seriously, think outside of the box and put sweet potato in a rice paper roll and chances are I am gunna say “cool, I want to eat that.” Heck, I do want to eat that. If you want to put doritos in the rice paper roll more power to you. (I don’t actually eat doritos but who remembers those kids at lunch who put french fries and chips in their sandwiches? I can’t be the only one who had friends who did that)!! Anyways, I have become obessed with these things. Anything that is mean’t to be eaten with your hands is a favorite food of mine.

rice paper rolls
 This post is an ODE to the Rice Paper Roll!

Lets be real though, rice paper rolls are gluten free, lower in calories and carbs then a slice of bread. They might not have the nutritional value of some whole grain, sprouted varities but the ingredients inside can surely make up for it. These little guys are gaining traction and I sware it is only a matter of time before they are available next to the egg salad sandwich at 7-Evelen. Ok, that might be a stretch but it’s totally possible.

Some of my favorite rice paper roll ingredients:
The Greens: Romaine, Spinach, Red Lettuce, Micro Greens, Sprouts
The Veggies: Cucumbers, Avocados, Carrots, Beets, Jicama, Sweet Potatoe, Zuchinni , Bell Pepper
The Grains: Quiona, Rice noodles, Brown Rice
The Herbs: Basil, Mint, Cilantro
The Protien: Tofu, Shrimp

My Favorite Dipping Sauce:
4 Tbsp tahini or raw peanut butter
1 Tbsp raw honey or agave
1 tsp sesame or peanut oil
1-2 Tbsp boiling water
whisk vigorously until emulsified

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Neapolotian Ice Cream Cubes & My FIrst Recipe Feature on Empowered Womens Channel!

 

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It is with great excitement and joy that I write this post.  Today, for the very first time, a recipe of my mine is featured on another site (not including instagram). I am so happy to finally share this recipe with you all! Its one of my favorites.

Empowered Womens Channel has a mission and vision similar to that of my own. I want to inspire women (and men, heh) to live a life that they love where they are free to fully express themselves. I want to inspire people to treat their bodies with care and love making sure to feed it with beautiful, whole foods. Neapolotian Ice Cream Cubes fits the bill for the mission wholeheartedly! It is a fully raw, vegan, gluten free & paleo recipe that will not dissapoint.  You and your body will smile as you eat it.

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Grilled Peanut Tofu & Cabbage Salad- Vegan, Gluten Free

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Without doubt I have more friends, family and colleagues born in the month of August than any other month. I mean that does make sense if you think about it. Subtract nine months and you get December aka the holidays aka parties and alcohol and love and other stuff. So over the last few weeks we have had many birthdays to celebrate and that mean’t cake. Lots and lots of cake. Jaime, my pastry chef of a man friend agreed to make some beautiful cakes for some VIP’s in my life so I wanted to make him a healthy and light dinner to enjoy after licking several bowls of cake batter clean. I came across this recipe on Food52 and thought it would be great. I made slight variations that I think improved upon it massively. Its sweet, salty, tangy, and refreshingly delicious. We enjoyed it outside with some wine as the sun set over the pacific ocean.

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Grilled Peanut Tofu and Cabbage Salad
Serves 2 really hungry twenty-somethings


What you need:
Two 12-ounce packages extra-firm tofu
1 tablespoon dry sherry
1 tablespoon peanut oil
1/4 tsp chili flakes1/4 cup tamari
3 tbsp peanut butter
2 tbsp raw honey or agave
2 tbsp peanut oil or sesame oil
1 bunch cilantro
1/4 cup tahini
2 garlic gloves, chopped
1 lemon, zested and juiced
1 head napa cabbage, thinly sliced
1/2 head red cabbage, thinly sliced
1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced
1/2 cup fennel, thinly sliced
1/2 cup leeks, thinly sliced
1/2 cup green onions, thinly sliced

1 persian cucumber, thinly sliced
1 avocado

Method:
1. Drain the tofu, wrap it in a layer of paper towels, and press it with heavy objects, I used a bowl and a book, while you prep the other ingredients. Chop the garlic, add it to a blender with the tamari, peanut butter and honey/agave, the sherry, and the peanut oil. After the mixture is well blended, add the chili flakes and blend. Add a handful of cilantro to finish.

2. Slice each block of tofu into 1/4 inch thick pieces and add it to a plastic bag with the marinade and put in the fridge while you make the cabbage salad.

3. Make the dressing first by whisking together the tahini, lemon zest, lemon juice, more honey (to your liking). Drizzle in 2 tablespoons of boiling water while whisking. Drizzle in 1/4 cup of sesame oil while whisking vigorously, until everytihng is emulsified.

4. Cut the cabbage into thin slices and slice the onion very thin as well. Slice the herbs and add eveything to a large bowl.

5. Remove the tofu and place on a medium-hot grill (or grill pan). To avoid the tofu sticking it might be a agood idea to light brush the grill with oil. Grill for 2 minutes on each side. Combine the cabbage with 3/4 of the dressing. Arrange the avocado in slices on top and then drizzle the remaining dressing or save it for later to dip veggie sticks in. Topp of the salad with the grilled tofu and any extra marinafe on top. Dig in and enjoy this insanely delicious salad!

xoxo
-Cara

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Monster Chocolate and Vanilla Cream Fudge- Raw, Vegan, Gluten Free, Paleo

Monster Chocolate Cream bars

Oh Crap. These are good. I mean like really good. Its funny how you can taste all the ingredients individually and all at once with one bite. The coconut hits, then the macadamia nuts, them the chocolate, woah. Party in your mouth. Anyways, the boyfriend and I were experimenting in the kitchen together coming up with recipes for his new resturant which is opening up later this summer (stay tuned)! Although, he and his chefs decided this recipe still needs work for the cafe, I think it is wicked good and perfect for the bloggy blog! I would love to know your thoughts on it should you recreate it. As I am writing this my stomach is growling so I think I better wrap up and go eat one. nom nom.

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Superfood Energy Bars- Gluten Free, Raw, Paleo

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Portability of food is a very attractive attribute in my opinion, so these superfood energy bars are freakin sexy if you ask me. I love having healthy snacks that I can grab quickly since I am always on the go. Not only are these bars extremely healthy for you but they are so easy to make and taste great! It was a typical Tuesday at my apartment, the man and I were in the kitchen whipping up goodies galore and we hapened to make these antioxidant loaded bad boys! Feel free to make them for yourself and bring them on your next adventure!

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Strawberry Basil Ice Cream with Balsamic Reduction and Grilled Peaches. Vegan, Gluten Free, Paleo

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Strawberry and basil go together so well. In fact I think basil goes well with almost anything. Maybe that’s the Italian in me but I can’t agrue with anyone if they want to add basil to a drink or dish. I bought some new plates this past weekend and they have really raised the bar in terms of what I want to create in the kitchen (the plates and maybe the fact that my boyfriend is a professional chef and he is inspiring me to step outside of my culinary comfort zone…?). hah. This dessert or light meal for an raw foodie/vegan/801010 is summer time bliss if you ask me. Backyard BBQ, anyone? Its super easy to make and is made with 100% whole pant food, oh boy!

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Kiwi & Lime Cheesecake- Raw, Vegan, Gluten Free, No Sugar Added

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I am always happily suprised when I get a sudden surge of inspiration. As we go through our day to day lives it is easy to fall in to a pattern of doing the same things over and over again not making time for what we love. It hadn’t dawned on me until I was looking at dishes at Anthropolgie on Saturday morning that I couldn’t remember the last time I made a raw, vegan cake, something I love to do. As I stood upstairs in the sale section with a lovely orange plate in my hand a bolt of excitment rushed through my viens and I almost did a happy dance! I immediately knew I was going to make a green cake of some kind to photograph on that darling plate. Who knew that standing in the middle of a store I would be reminded of what makes me happy. Saturday was a reminder to break up my routine and to always remain open to new possibilities because you never know when creativity and inpsiration are going to hit you.  

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Vegan Mango Salsa Avocados- Gluten Free, Paleo, Easy Summer Recipe

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Oh, heck yes. This is magic, literally, if an avocado stuffed with mango salsa is not natures magic then I don’t know what is. (drooling). The color and flavor combinations are really supreme and I invision this being the perfect appetizer for an outdoor dinner party on a warm summer night. Here in Los Angeles we have an abundance of those nights but a serious shortage of backyards…, oh apartment living (sigh). I am manfesting the perfect house with a lovely backyard and communal table that I will call home, perferrably in 2016 at the latest, so I can have all the dinner parties I want. I reccomend serving this with an ice cold cerveza. Cheers to that. CHOMP! xo

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The Best Vegan Burgers – Recipe Feature by Jaime Craten

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Um, HELLO? Doesn’t this burger look amazing? It’s Vegan and possibly mind blowing. I mean, its hard to miss a beef burger when you have this mouthful looking right-atcha. I don’t eat burgers (vegan or not) that often, I am, ya know, a salad girl but when your soon to be boyfriend (we seeled the deal post consumption) offers to make vegan burgers, whats a girl to do? say no. um no. The answer is always yes.

The recipe is long with many ingredients but do not let that discourage you, the time invested is well worth it and consider doubling the recipe and freezing the rest of it so you can have sexy, mouthwatering veggie burgers whenever you want over the next three months. This has a umami, asian style kick to it so consider topping it with sauteed mushrooms, sliced chives and some terriyaki sauce. Or you can keep it old school like we did and top with sliced red onions, tomatoes and avocados. Be creative, you know what you like.

This recipe is shared with the CaRawrs family by Jamie Craten who is a talented chef specializing in pastries but is one hell of a savory chef if I do say so myself. xo

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