November 16, 2011

Recipe - Ani Phyo's Raw Sweet Corn and Cashew Chowder

Oh my goodness, it's been too long people! The good news is that my back feels MUCH better. I still have no real answers as to what happened or why I was in so much pain, but I am very thankful to be able to move again and breathe without wincing. 

The last few weeks have been busy with social activities, working out with my new personal trainer (oh, my aching muscles) and flying home last week for my sister's wedding! She awesomely included lots of vegan options on her Lebanese-themed wedding menu like spinach afthiad (olive oil pastry stuffed with spinach and onions), garbanzo bean stuffed cabbage rolls, and hummus/ babaganoush with pita chips. My mom, dad, aunt and brother helped her cook the gigantic feast and every bit of it was so delicious! You could really taste the love. 
Early morning cactus. So pretty. 
Back in Tucson, I had so many people come up to me and tell me that they read and enjoy my blog. What a huge surprise! I often forget that what I write gets sent out into the universe for others to read and getting so much positive encouragement motivated me to get back to posting. I have lots of yummy foodstuffs to share with you. I'd like to kick things off with a simply scrumptious soup I made a few weekends ago. I followed this recipe by Ani Phyo who is a rockstar in the vegan/raw world. I'd never tried anything by her before, but I must say, this soup made me a fan! 

I'm not much into raw foods as my body simply seems to respond better to gently cooked foods. But I do like to add in some raw recipes and meals every now and then. The benefit is that so many of the vitamins and nutrients that would typically be lost in the cooking process stay intact with raw foods. I was a bit afraid that a soup with a base of raw corn would be way too starchy, but it wasn't at all. It was crisp, refreshing and nourishing. It's probably more suited for a hot summer day, but it did make for a perfect light lunch on an unseasonably warm autumn afternoon. The markets around here seem to be selling off the last of the summer corn for cheap, so it's cost effective, too!

I made a few changes to the recipe to cut down on the fat (reflected below) and added in some delicious fresh tomatoes. If you try out this recipe, be sure to use a blender and not a food processor if possible. I don't have a blender and my food processor ended up leaking out 90% of the water I put in. I just processed what stayed in and then added in water once it was in a bowl. You could also try using an immersion blender. 

Ani Phyo's Raw Sweet Corn and Cashew Chowder
Based on this recipe
Serves 4

3 ears of yellow corn, kernels removed
1/2 cup raw, unsalted cashews
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 small garlic clove
1 tsp sea salt
1 cup water
fresh cilantro, chopped
1 tomato, diced
freshly ground black pepper

In a blender, combine 3/4 of the corn kernels, cashews, olive oil, garlic, salt and water and process until smooth. Divide the soup into four bowls and garnish with the reserved corn kernels, cilantro, chopped tomatoes, and pepper. Serve cold. (Can be chilled overnight.)