Thursday, April 29, 2010

raw onion bread

For the past couple of weeks, a special schedule of Mysore-style ashtanga yoga classes was offered at our yoga studio Ki-Atsu, and Stefanie and I attended as many as we possibly could. The teacher was the proprietor Ki's son Olivier, who had spent a total of five months over the past year studying yoga intensively in India, with most of that time spent in Mysore. These classes were excellent. Olivier was very attentive and provided wonderful adjustments and helped me with some bits of instruction that I was lacking. And I enjoyed the atmosphere he created in the room with a mantra box and incense.

After class one day last week the three of us met for lunch at the Go Raw Cafe. I don't remember how the subject came up, maybe we mentioned some raw flax crackers that Stefanie and I made recently, but Olivier told us about the onion bread served at his favorite raw restaurant in the world, Euphoria Loves Revolution in Santa Monica. Conveniently, the cookbook: RAWvolution: Gourmet Living Cuisine by Matt Amsden was on the shelf nearby. We pulled it down, and were immediately impressed by the recipes and photography. The Onion Bread looked fabulous, and we made it ourselves a couple of days later. It is an incredibly simple recipe, and tastes amazing. The following is our version of the recipe, which we altered slightly from the original:

3 lg yellow onions
1 C flax seed, ground in a high speed blender
1 C raw sunflower seeds, ground in a high speed blender
1/3 to 1/2 C nama shoyu, depending on the level of intensity you prefer
1/3 C olive oil

Peel and halve the onions.
In a food processor, cut the onions with the slicing disk.
Transfer to a large mixing bowl, add the remaining ingredients, and mix until all are thoroughly combined.
Spread 2 cups of mixture evenly on a dehydrator tray with a teflex sheet.
Repeat until all the mixture is used. Dehydrate at 100 for 24 hours.
Flip the crackers onto a tray with mesh only and remove teflex.
Dehydrate another 12 hours. Once dehydrated cut into 9 equal pieces.

We love this bread and plan to start making it regularly. We used 1/2 cup of nama shoyu, but next time we'll try 1/3 cup because it was a little bit too salty.

This was my first time hearing about nama shoyu. I do not care much for regular soy sauce and was surprised by how much I liked the taste of this kind, which is the only raw unpasteurized soy sauce available, meaning that it is replete with the healthy enzymes and the beneficial bacteria found in other properly fermented foods.

Stefanie's note: You can find ground flax seed (also known as flax seed meal) at most supermarkets with a health food section; however, we strongly recommend buying the seeds in bulk and grinding them as you need them. This is because the seeds begin to lose their nutritional value over time once you grind them. Katherine and I use the Magic Bullet blender with the flat blade to grind our seeds, and it works beautifully.
Working the batter onto the teflex sheets takes a little practice to get it spread thinly and evenly, but after you do it once, you'll be a pro.
This recipe reminds me very much of a healthy version of the scallion pancakes you might find in most Chinese restaurants. Everyone who tried this "bread" thought it was delicious, myself included!

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