I kicked off my SF book tour at the Ferry Building Farmers’ Market yesterday. It’s sunny and warm here in San Francisco, and the market was packed with people shopping locally and seasonally. This has got to be the best farmer’s market in the country. I found amazingly sweet peaches and beautiful heirloom squash that are only available 1-2 weeks a year. What a treat!
I spoke to a full house about the benefits of raw food, weight loss, natural living, happiness, and my new book Ani’s Raw Food Essentials. I demoed a recipe for TOMATO AND TARRAGON BISQUE, page 137, and STRAWBERRY KREAM PIE, page 266.
Sarah, who organizes the chef demoes, helped me portion and pass out samples. Most people in the audience were already familiar with raw foods, but it’s always fun to watch their reactions when they taste one of my raw recipes. Of course, folks loved the soup and dessert. You can see Barry Jan behind the camera on the left, and you’ll find a couple of his photos in Ani’s Raw Food Essentials from last year’s farmer’s market talk and demo.
This may have been my longest line for book signing yet. Patient people stood in line for 50 minutes to meet me and to have me sign their books. What a huge honor for me that folks would wait around so long. I love meeting people, hearing their stories in person, and feeling the love they share with me. This bright energy is what keeps me doing what I do…it fuels my soul.
It was lovely to see many long time friends, like Dr D, and old friend from LA who now lives in Thailand. He happened to be in town, and brought me a moss monkey that’s the cutest plant I’ve ever seen! He’ll have to care for monkey while I’m in Florida since I don’t think it would make it on the plane.
Another long time friend and two lovebirds Jeff, who took all these photos for me, and Frog.
Hanging out at this awesome farmers’ market on a warm, sunny day was the best way to spend my Saturday. From here, I headed to Napa next….
For weeks, friends had been calling to say they saw a poster of me on Beverly Blvd. Now I can see why. Erewhon is the greatest store in the world for everything raw. Juan Hernandez has been the Erewhon force behind this great raw department. I’m holding a print gift from Tyler Golden, my food photographer, of my Mandu Dumpling recipe from Ani’s Raw Food Essentials. I love it!
Another photo in front of my poster, this time with one of my favorite actors and directors Vincent Gallo. He directed and acted in Buffalo ’66 (1998) with Christina Ricci, who I love too. I attended high school in Buffalo, and enjoyed watching this film years ago. Buffalo ’66 was the first time I saw the camera effect when the set stays still and the camera pans 360 around the characters. This was a year prior to the same effects in the Matrix film.
It was another packed house on a beautiful Saturday afternoon at Erewhon in Hollywood. I demonstrated how to make my Strawberry Kream Pie using dates, cashews, vanilla, and strawberries. The lovely Christy Morgan (in purple) volunteered to help me portion out the tastes and get them into the crowd. Everyone loved the dessert, it was fast and easy to make, and tasted delicious.
I talked about the importance of probiotics in our diets. In America, we take antibiotics, which kill off all our healthy intestinal flora. Probiotics will help us to regain balance in our digestive tract. My new book includes a chapter on probiotic drinks including kefir and kombuch, and another on probiotic pickled vegetables inspired from my Korean heritage.
I always love signing books after a talk and food presentation. It’s when I really get to connect with people and hear their stories. These two lovelies are getting married soon, and told me they’re planning to have 3 raw cakes at their wedding.
I had previously met Dana at one of the Community Services Unlimited gardens, where she was elbow deep planting greens in the dirt. Her garden is beautiful, very well maintained, and full of the most delicious plants. Read my post on the CSU, Inc gardens.
Thank you to Juan for hosting, Christy for helping, Tyler Golden for taking photos, and Raw Sangha’s Brother Echo for filming yesterday’s event. Brother Echo said he’d have a video up that I’ll link to in a day or so. Thanks everyone for joining me and celebrating my new book!
Friday evening was the first stop along my book tour for Ani’s Raw Food Essentials. Book Soup arranged a special and very early drop shipment of my books to be delivered 3 weeks early. Official sale date isn’t until June 1st. So, Book Soup is where I got to see my new book in person. It’s always super exciting to hold a copy in my hands. And the book looks great. Hard cover, 2 color with beautiful color food inserts taken by Tyler Golden.
Tyler brought me a gift! A large print of my Mandu Dumplings framed. I love it!
I talked about my goals for Ani’s Raw Food Essentials, which is to strip away the misconception of raw or healthy being expensive or time consuming. I hope to make raw food preparations easy and accessible to everyone. I begin with stripped down BASIC recipes, then build up from there to create variations and different, new flavors.
Minah is a fellow Korean American who lives near Pasadena and goes to college in NYC. Check out her book on my lap. It’s dog eared, marked up, and worn. I love this! A sign that Ani’s Raw Food Kitchen has been put to good use. Minah shared with me how my raw recipes feed her, gave her mental clarity and focus, and charged her through school. Bravo!
Belita, to the left in the above photo, is a mother who I had a discussion with about how her little girl gravitates to fresh fruit while her boy reaches for vegetables. It’s natural for kids to love whole, fresh fruits and vegetables. After all, candy colors are inspired by fruit and vegetables. In the center is Tyler Golden, food photographer, and then Minah.
To the right is Kurt, who I discovered works in South Los Angeles (which used to be called South Central LA) with kids. He lives in Venice, all the way West at the ocean, and takes public transit downtown daily to work and back. I’m very impressed! He found his way to Hollywood from downtown via public transit, and luckily got a ride back to the west side from Belita. It’s rare to meet people who don’t drive their own cars here in LA.
I’m now working with Community Services Unlimited in the same neighborhood as Kurt, so we’ll be seeing more of each other this summer through our gardening, cooking classes, and fund raising dinner events for kids and the community in South Los Angeles.
The lovely Thea took these photos for me, and unfortunately, we didn’t get a photo together.
Professional photos taken by Tyler Golden from last weekend’s kick off book tour events. The first two are from Book Soup in Hollywood on Friday May 7, 2010.
The following images are from Saturday May 8th at Erewhon in Hollywood.
More photos were taken and a video was shot by Brother Echo of RawSangha. Check out photos here, and video coming soon.
I’m stoked Sambazon asked me to be a part of their new campaign. I had so much fun on the photo shoot last Friday in Hollywood. Sambazon draws together the most amazing people from pro surfers, mountain bikers, photographers, and artists, and I’m proud to be added into their mix.
You can see Kai Lai and Kato Banks in the reflection of the mirror, and me having my makeup put on.
Jeremy Black is the co-founder, along with his brother Ryan, of Sambazon. Jeremy looks like a Ralph Lauren model. Both he and his brother are the sweetest guys, plus handsome and radiant. Must be all that antioxidant rich acai.
The photographer JP Greenwood and the digital tech John Shin….celebrating after a long day. JPs other assistants, not in this photo, included Carlos Rios and Glen Chivens. JP was great to work with. He made sure I struck the right poses and made sure I looked gorgeous in all the shots. Magic of a good photographer and makeup!
This new campaign launches early June, and I can’t wait to see the photos from the shoot.
I’m excited about my newest book Ani’s Raw Food Essentials, available everywhere by May 3rd. It’s a huge hard cover book with over 250 recipes. It’s printed in 2 color, like Ani’s Raw Food Kitchen. My goal is to make my books accessible, and get these recipes into your hands so you can enjoy making healthy treats with them. By printing in 2 color instead of full color, the book only costs $27 rather than $45. There’s gorgeous color inserts, as you can see from the photos above.
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The sun was out for Day 1 of Expo West, and I was happy it was warm outside for the folks visiting from colder climates.
My first stop was the Sequel booth, where I found my good friend Brendan Brazier. He’s the formulator of Vega. He has a new Sport line out for pre and post workout fueling. Brendan’s the author of Thrive and Thrive Fitness books. I love Vega drinks and bars.
Next stop was the Ohgave booth, where I found Matthew Kenney with his new raw agave product. Matthew’s latest restaurant, 105degrees, is opening up the world of raw food to mainstream America in Oaklahoma City, of all places. Matthew’s the author of numerous cookbooks including Everyday Raw, which I’ve often found my Ani’s Raw Food Kitchen book sitting next to on store shelves. What a cutie pie.
Excited by the huge jump in new raw products at this year’s Expo West, I forgot to take anymore photos after this point, and got carried away into the thousands of booths and new products. I found several raw kale chips, tons of raw chocolate, a couple raw kombuchas, new raw bars, and several flax crackers. The raw food explosion was quite a sight to see.
I had my preview copy of Ani’s Raw Food Essentials with me, and folks were stoked to see a sneak peek at my new book. In addition to several awesome meetings, I was also video interviewed for VegNews and Delicious Living Magazines. I’ll make sure to post up the videos right here as soon as they are live.
I’ve been voted Sexiest Raw Vegan Woman 2009 by the raw community again this year, but by default. Alicia Silverstone actually won the votes, I came in 2nd place. But she doesn’t consider herself raw anymore. What an honor! Plus, Steve from Sacred Chocolates sent me a congratulatory package of his delicious chocolate hearts…yummmy.
Last year, I was surprised that I was awarded 1st place for Best of Raw 2008:
2nd place for Favorite Educator
Listen to my interview from last year on Raw Inspirations Radio where I chat with lovely host Laura Fox about my history, inspirations, and what the future holds.
“Ani’s Raw Food Essentials” is now available in soft cover, as of May 1, 2012!
In this book, I break down recipes to the simplest of ingredients. Then, I show you how to build from there to make variations and different flavors. I hope you’ll enjoy my new raw food book! Can’t wait t hear what you think about it.
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