dineLA Restaurant Week is a 2-week dining event created by the Los Angeles Convention and Visitor Bureau (aka LA, inc) to introduce diners to hundreds of neighborhood restaurants throughout Los Angeles County.
:: Check out my dineLA Vegetarian Roundup – my top 10 picks for restaurants who have vegetarian and even vegan items on their dineLA menus.
To celebrate, dineLA hosted a party at the W Hotel in Westwood last week on Jan 11th, 2012 with flowing scotch, champagne, beer, and wine. Though I’ve taken a break from drinking, I had to have just one scotch because it was Highland Park 12 year, neat with one ice cubes on the side please.
Chef Jason Fullilove from The Tar Pit has the best last name ever! He may look familiar because he was on the 1st episode of Chef Hunter on Food Network last month. Keep a look out, as he’ll soon be on Cooking Channel too. Finally, diversity on TV, yeah! Chef Jason’s food is yummy. For dineLA, you will find 2 vegan dishes on his vegetarian menu including a Roasted Vegetable Terrine, Winter Root Vegetable Pasta, and a choice of 3 decadent desserts.
Executive Chef Chris Morningstar from Ray’s and Stark Bar, hailed by Esquire Magazine as “One of the best new restaurants of 2011″. Bravo Chef Chris! Chris and I first met while we were both preparing for our Test Kitchen dinners as Chris’ dinner was the night following my 2-nights of Ani Phyo’s Gastrawnomique. His menu was completely opposite mine….all animal products vs. my vegan raw. I get a kick out of the fact his last name, Morningstar….it’s the brand name of popular vegan and vegetarian breakfast sausages….though Chris’ expertise is with meat. Ray’s and Stark Bar is a Patina group restaurant, and I was super stoked when Chris told me his boss and Master Chef Joachim Splichal had given him a copy of Ani’s Raw Food Essentials to use while creating menus and recipes for Google campus.
Exec Chef and owner Kerry Simon from Simon L.A. is offering several vegetarian items on his lunch and dinner dineLA menus including Market Roasted Vegetable Kale Salad, Fennel Pollen, Sherry Vinaigrette (I love kale!), Spinach Salad with Dates and Persimmon, plus desserts that look amazing like a House Made Kit Kat. Yum! Chef Kerry is very accommodating, is happy to let you order items from the dineLA menu, plus is fine with you making substitutions and requests. So just ask, and you shall receive!
dineLA asked artist Phil Lumbang to illustrate chef characters that were being silk screened onto canvas dineLA bags for everyone. What a fun idea, and very cool bag. Chef Chris Morningstar had a character screened onto his chef jacket, super cute!
Shana Wong (LA Magazine), William Karz (LA, inc), Shelley Leopold (LA Weekly), and I watching the screening of characters onto the canvas bags.
Our hostess Stacey Sun is red. She makes dineLA happen. Thanks Stacey! Excited to check out new restaurants beginning next week!
This recipe offers another great way to enjoy greens, and boy do I love dehydrated salad! As a matter of fact, that was exactly how I first discovered Kale Chips, back in Portland, OR, in 1995 or so. After a big catering gig, I had so much marinated kale salad remaining, it would have been a shame to throw it out. Usually, I feed leftovers to Kanga, my pooch, but too much kale’s been known to make her poot (stinky!). Instead, I put all the salad into my dehydrators, and was stoked by what I found the next morning! Kale Chips!! It makes me happy to see Kale Chips have gone mainstream today. Finally, a healthy snack enjoyed by the masses!
The texture of these chocolate coated collard leaves is much like the texture of dried cashew cheddar, from my traditional Kale Chips on page 110 of Ani’s Raw Food Essentials. (Signed copies of Ani’s Raw Food Essentials are available at GoSuperLife.com). Delicate mouth feel, and amazing flavors.
Thanks to everyone for being patient with me, waiting for me to post this recipe after I’ve completed my next book! Enjoy xo
In high-speed blender, blend all ingredients (except collards) until smooth.
Place collard half leaves into a large bowl, pour chocolate sauce over leaves. Coat each leaf completely.
Place leaves in dehydrator at 104 degrees. Dehydrate for 4 to 6 hours, until dry.
Watch my debut on Los Angeles TV with ABC 7′s Health Coach Lori Corbin. I show her 5 raw food recipes that have gone mainstream including my Zucchini Pasta (featured in Food Network Magazine), Nut Mylks (like Almond Milk), Green Smoothies, Kale Chips (from Ani’s Raw Food Essentials), and Seaweed Chips (from Ani’s Raw Food Asia).
Watch the 3-minute video, and learn how raw foods helps with weight loss too!
Vitamix hosted a Mix + Mingle reception at Expo West where I signed another 100+ books in the evening. Earlier, I had signed 200+ books at the Vitamix booth.
These photos were all shot by the amazing talented Sherman Lee….love his photography!
They had the bartender make up my blended frozen Raspberry, Orange, and Lime mocktail.
Ken Spector of LivingEco.com has been a host for years, interviewing hundreds, if not thousands of people.
The beautiful Elenia Love, a long time friend.
Carolyn Scott, the Healthy Voyager. Look at her skin glow.
Debbie Merrill is super fit, and a rollar skating pro!
Bob Linden, host of Go Vegan Radio.
The Vitamix team that made this all happen. xoxo
Vitamix invited me to sign books for 2-hours at their booth on Day 2 of Expo West. We had a line that was so long the other vendors complained our fans were blocking their booths. Hum…I would have thought they’d be stoked to have a captive audience to sell to.
Even the fire marshall was called in because our line was too long. A good problem to have! I signed 200+ books in 2-hours! (Plus, I signed another 100+ at our reception later that eve.) Thank you Vitamix for generously gifting these books to our friends and fans.
This is the amazing Vitamix team that made this all happen. You can see the video of my 60-minute DVD they’re including with the TurboBlend-VS playing in the background.
I love Expo West because I get to connect with old friends I haven’t seen for a while. Here’s Elizabeth Castoria from VegNews Magazine. Their booth was just down the isle from Vitamix.
I found the beautiful fitness model Koya Webb. I love how ripped this girl is…so pretty.
This was the most brilliant display at the Expo. GoRaw simply hydrated their bar, and set it to sprout over time. Perfect demonstration of why raw….raw generates more life. Now, try that with processed cooked food.
Eric Botner is an amazing man helping make superfoods available to the mainstream. Earth Circle Organics was one of the generous sponsors for my Gastrawnomique dinner event last November. And, they have a cacao and cashew crunch that is sweetened with coconut syrup (the latest in low glycemic sweeteners) that is to live for!
Chris Ochs at Sunfood was another generous sponsor for Gastrawnomique.
After a day of being inside a huge convention center under fluorescent lights, I needed an oxygen infusion. Luckily, I found an oxygen bar, AirHeads, at the Seventh Generation booth, and plugged in for several minutes to recharge.
I ran into many, many other friends including Ryan and Jeremy Black from Sambazon, Frederick from Big Tree Farms, Jane Kim from Sea Tangle Kelp Noodles, my friends at Sequel, ….but unfortunately didn’t get photos with them.
Next…photos from the Vitamix Mix + Mingle with moi later that evening.
BBC Good Food interviewed me for a feature on Raw Foods in their Feb 2011 issue. Very cool, take a peek!
I was invited to the VitaMix headquarters in Cleveland, OH to shoot a 60-minute DVD that will be included in their latest VitaMix Turbo Blend Variable Speed blender. This was a huge honor for me, as you all know how much I love my VitaMix. My family had an early model in our kitchen from the 70s, so I’ve used the VitaMix my entire life.
The production was shot in a big stadium kitchen where the production crew and VitaMix employees including chefs, food scientists, marketing, and product development filled the stands. I think we shot about 14 or 16 segments in just 2 days! The owner of VitaMix is vegan, so all the recipes are free of dairy and animal products.
Bob Stefanov, the director, was a joy to work with. We had loads of fun and made sure to laugh a lot.
The wonderful team at VitaMix. I am so eager to watch the videos, haven’t seen them yet, and friends were telling me they watched it at the VitaMix booth at Expo West last weekend up on a big screen TV. We’re planning a big launch at Expo West, so make sure to look for me at the VitaMix booth in March in Anaheim, CA.
The new TurboBlend Variable Speed will be available at natural food stores including Whole Foods Markets. So excited to help launch this new product with VitaMix!!
I made several smoothies in San Diego on FOX TV including an Almond Buttered Banana Freeze.
Almond Buttered Banana Freeze + Açaí Recipe (adapted from Ani’s Raw Food Essentials) Makes 4 servings
Almonds provide calcium, protein, and vitamin E, bananas are loaded with potassium, and açaí is full of antioxidants and healthy omegas. This easy smoothie is a great post workout fuel – it helps increase circulation and blood flow to stressed muscles, while building lean tissue.
Combine the banana, almond butter, and organic Sambazon Açaí Juice in a high-speed blender and blend until smooth. Best served immediately, but will keep for a couple days in the fridge.
I was invited onto FOX in San Diego for a 6-minute segment on the benefits of the raw food diet and to talk about the Sambazon Warrior Up Campaign. I made host Raoul Martinez a few smoothies including a Banana Butter Breeze with Cacao. I planned to make him a Tomato Tarragon Bisque, but ran out of time.
Almond Buttered Banana Freeze + Açaí (adapted from Ani’s Raw Food Essentials)
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