It is not always an easy thing to do turning up somewhere as a complete stranger, so I make sure to Always have a back up plan that Always happens to be more important and I Always have to be at exactly 2 hours after the start of the gathering. But after meeting some of the nicest people and trying some of the most incredible dishes, I was suddenly ashamed of considering a get away before I even arrived, however I must've also forgotten about any such ideas pretty early on because I ended up staying the entire Five hours!
The photos unfortunately don't do the dishes any justice, especially since most of the best ones are still in their containers, but here is an idea of what a group of 35 people brought to the table:
My personal favourite, brought by Dina and her little angel Lydia is a recipe from Russell James's Raw Thai recipes ebook. It may have been a matter of only an hour after seeing Dina's email with this recipe pop up in my mail box, that I was at the shops for a couple of spices I was missing to make these myself. Here is what mine turned out like and the recipe too:
THAI NORI BITES
4 x raw nori sheets
2 x C sunflower seeds,soaked for 4 hours
1/2 x C fresh coriander(cilantro)
1 x Tbsp fresh basil
2 x Tbsp lime juice
1 x Tbsp agave nectar
2 x Tbsp tamari soy sauce
1/2 x tsp cayenne
1/2 x tsp chilli powder (I used mild)
3 x tsp cumin
3 x tsp onion powder (I used flakes)
2 x tsp garlic powder
2g x Kaffir lime leaves(I used 1g or 10 leaves)
1 x tsp ground ginger
1 x tsp turmeric
1 x tsp oregano
1/2 x tsp salt
1. Grind all ingredients except nori to a paste in a food processor
2. Spread paste approximately 3mm thick evenly to each edge of a nori sheet
3. Place another nori sheet on top of the paste to make a ''sandwich''
4. Cut into 2cm squares with a sharp knife
5. Dehydrate squares for 4 hours.
Note: The original R. James version had 1/2 cup water added to the paste and dehydrating was 8 hrs. Dina didn't use water and neither did I.
You can also make these without the nori sheets, which I worked out when I had some paste left over. I did however dehydrate the 'crackers' for an extra 4 hours to make them crispy:
Jill Swyers from the Hippocrates Health Institute was also there providing a talk with lots of interesting and valuable tips. I was particularly excited discovering that she personally knows Victoria Boutenko. Victoria, afterall 3 years ago was the introduction and the inspiration for my entire family to this wonderful world of Raw Living Foods.