I was honored to have been invited to speak on a panel with superstars (from left to right above) Rachelle Carson Begley (married to Ed Begley), Sophie Uliano (NYTimes best selling author), Izabella Miko (actress), Carly Harrill (blogger ghost writer), Karen Stewart Brown (fashion designer), Kris Willey (host of WotGG), and Alexandra Spunt (author).
The focus of this panel was how we came into our careers. I explained how I used to work in a corporate environment that was not recycling, was wasting energy, and was using styrofoam cups for one 4 ounce shot of water. I realized my raw food catering and the weekly events I was hosting (to feed myself good food) was a successful business. So, I decided to leave corporate America to focus 100% on my prepared packaged foods, catering, and events. I followed my bliss because I believed raw foods helped people feel better and healthier. It also helps us tread lightly on our Planet.
This event was held in Culver City, Los Angeles, CA on Saturday May 14, 2011. These beautiful photos are courtesy of photosbyKailas.com. Thanks Kailas!
The 1st stop along my book tour for Ani’s Raw Food Asia was at Santa Monica Place at Artisanal LA on April 16, 2011. Here are 4 short videos from my talk, Q+A, and book signing:
1) Ani’s Raw Food Asia – I love organic, local, seasonal foods
2) Ani’s Raw Food Asia – Probiotics, Happiness, Longevity
3) Ani’s Raw Food Asia – Easy ways to add more raw to any diet!
4) Ani’s Raw Food Asia – Recipe inspirations and sources for protein.
All of these beautiful photos were taken by the amazing Sherman Lee. Thanks Sherman!!
It was a weekend full of local and seasonal gourmet foods (though way too much bacon! – what’s up with bacon these days?) and great expert panels and talks.
I love this fish eye photo, it was a full crowd with great people old and new to raw foods and the raw food diet and lifestyle. Thanks to the wonder woman organizer Shawna Dawson for all her support, for announcing my talk over the loud speaker, and for putting me and Ani’s Raw Food Asia in their printed program.
Q+A is my favorite part of my appearances because I get to listen and interact with my new friends.
It’s always so nice to have my brother Max and my family with me at my events.
This lovely lady kept asking me about how to learn to make raw food. I say if you’re interested in making food, you have to learn how to make all foods first. Then you can translate it into raw food prep.
Libby drove all the way up from San Diego with her friends just to grab an early copy of Ani’s Raw Food Asia.
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.
Last week’s dinner at the Test Kitchen was a chance for me to introduce my latest Raw Food 3.0, inspired by molecular gastronomy without the chemicals, vegan and raw. My 6 courses were presented to a main stream foodie audience in a fine dining atmosphere. And it RAWked!
Smoked Anaheim Chili
Lapsang Souschong Wild Mushroom
Molten Cookie Dough
It was so much fun to get to feed everyone my new style of Gastrawnomique cuisine in such a beautiful setting with amazing staff. It was a packed house both nights. Celebrities who came to dine included Frances Fisher, John Salley, Jarad Butler, and Diane Warren.
In the kitchen were some of the most amazing chefs assisting me and making sure my dinners were successful both nights including Bravo Top Chef Alex Reznik and Next Food Network Stars Doreen Fang and DAS. I’ll post up more behind the scenes and kitchen photos next….
Generous sponsors included Excalibur Dehydrators, Earth Circle Organic, Big Tree Farms, Sunfood, Gold Mine Natural Foods, and Sambazon.
These photos were all taken by Maria Loewenstein, except for the Lapsang Souschong Wild Mushroom which was taken by Rogelio Marhx.
Today was Day 3 of food prep at the Test Kitchen. My GastRAWnomique molecular gastronomy inspired dinner is just days away. Chris Ochs and Josh from SunFood personally delivered a ton of superfoods. Diane Paylor and I were elbow deep in cacao. And Top Chef Alex Reznik was cold smoking my cashews for me.
To cold smoke, Alex uses a smoking gun packed with chips to push smoke into a sealed container of raw cashews. The cashews absorb the aroma of the smoke, but stay raw. Pretty cool. No pun intended.
Restaurant Mo-Chica’s Ricardo Zarate and I making Cheddar Kale Chips.
Richi helping me set up 8 Excalibur Dehydrators. These are my favorite dehydrators, and they come with Paraflexx reusable non-stick sheets. Thanks for sending them over to me Excalibur! So much love from the community, sponsors have been super generous and include: Excalibur, Sambazon, Earth Circle Organics, Sunfood, Gold Mine Natural Food, Frontier Natural Products Co-Op, Big Tree Farms.
Chef Seth Greenburg at the Huntley Hotel Penthouse Restaurant invited me into his kitchen where he shared with me some of his favorite molecular gastronomy techniques.
Chef Seth and I compressed melons and cucumbers, and put chemicals into water and fruit puree to create popular spheres or ‘caviar’. We even made ‘noodles’. See what could be done using chemicals got my creative juices flowing thinking about ways to create similar effects without chemicals, and instead 100% natural and raw.
Test Kitchen brings together the best Chefs in LA, and has become much like a think tank where Chefs share their creativity, ideas, and time. Great energy in this space! Chef Christian Page, a locavore sourcing his ingredients locally and seasonally, is to the left of the photo, and is about to open Daily Dose Restaurant in downtown LA in mid Dec.
Top Chef Alex Reznik (from Bravo’s popular cooking show) invited me, a raw vegan chef, into the Top Chef kitchen to assist with a celebrity chef dinner made along side Top Chef Betty Fraser and Top Chef CJ Jacobson. This event was at the Test Kitchen here in Los Angeles, where I’ll be hosting a Raw Vegan Fine Dining experience on November 17 + 18, 2010 called Ani Phyo’s Gastrawnomique. I’ll be presenting molecular gastronomy inspired techniques, without the chemicals. All natural, of course! Please rsvp asap if you can join us for this ground breaking event.
Top Chef Betty Fraser was on Bravo’s hit show season 2. She has a cute restaurant in Hollywood called Grub.
Top Chef CJ Jacobson was on season 3, and Top Chef Alex Reznik season 7. TV may make these chefs seem mean, but they’re all super cool in real life. TV=drama.
Michelin-starred Chef Ricardo Zarate had to show me how to deep fry super thinly sliced leeks so they stay green in color. The night before, Chef Alex put me on deep fryer duty (me, a raw chef…it was my first time using a deep fryer!). I found out later the oil was too hot, so my leeks turned brown. But Chef Alex didn’t say anything about my burnt leeks garnishing his dishes because he didn’t want to hurt my feelings. What a sweetheart!
Chef Alex and I plating the dish he called Cow. It was made up of beef, bone marrow, liver, and tongue.
You can see the burnt leeks…oops! This dish was inspired by Chef Alex’s Russian heritage. At least he was using every part of the cow. Definitely tested my boundaries, but I grew tons….and Kanga my dog loved the way I smelled when I got home.
There was even a bit of vegan raw on the plate….me laying down a strand of cucumber with beautiful beet puree.
A few days prior to the Top Chef Test Kitchen event at Test Kitchen LA, I got to meet celebrity Top Chef Marcel Vigneron, who was on season 2 showing off his molecular gastronomy skills. What a cutie pie.
Test Kitchen is chock full of celebrity chefs. Here I am with Chef Walter Manzke.
I’m stoked for my raw vegan dinner on November 17 + 18th, 2010. So far, Top Chef Alex Reznik and Next Food Network Star Doreen Fang have confirmed they’ll be assisting me in my un-cook kitchen creating vegan raw foods for their first time. This will be a star studded event with a Green Carpet on the first night, and we’re going to have so much fun! Hope you’ll join us for 6-courses of raw food presented in a brand new way ($55 fixe prix). Make sure to rsvp for Ani Phyo’s Gastrawnomique soon because it’s filling up fast, and space is limited.
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!!
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