Summer lunch- Raw Eating Recipes

I had lunch with my friend Jul today. Jul is a goddess of many talents but lately she has been eating mostly raw and let me tell you, she is making it look really good. She served this simple summer lunch today:

Lentil salad with red peppers, tomatoes, basil and olive oil.

Mixed sprouts: garbanzo, mung bean, radish

Raw dressing from cafe gratitude recipe

Dollop of kim chi on top

it was just want the doctor ordered. Try it, you won’t regret it.

Mojo Recipes- kimchi, rhubarb and more!

I have nothing but great things to say about Marcie Goldman, local nutritionist and her Mojo Mastery program.  She guides a dozen adults two or three times a year through an adventure in mindful eating.  She looks at the source of many post modern ailments such as food or stress, she does a toxin cleanse and really zeros in on causes of our malaise she spends valuable time coaching her Mojo Masters in simple life skills to make sure that we all get the nutrition we need out of our daily routine and she teaches the priceless skill of listening to our bodies, tuning in so we can truly know what doesn’t always serve us.

I guest cheffed for the last three Mojos and I wanted to share with you some of the no nonsense downright good for you recipes that we covered.  I should preface my recipes with the assurance that my amounts are guides. As always I urge you to feel your way to a delicious dinner…  if you have a certain amount of something maybe that is how much you should use.  Freewheeling is always more fun besides you can dance a little when you don’t have your face stuck in a book.

Nut Free Nettle Pesto 

3cups stinging nettles, 3 tbs Lemon Juice,  1cup roasted carrots (or other veg), 1clove fresh garlic or more if there are vampires afoot, 2 tsp honey (optional I just have a sweet tooth), 1/2 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Salt to taste.

Blend. Note: always good to start with denser and wetter ingredients and add leafier and drier ingredients as you go. Get ready to enjoy a tingly tongue 🙂

GadoGado with Boiled Chicken

In Hawaii they say “food so nice you gotta say it twice” Gado Gado is from Indonesia and this recipe is kind of a take on it.  We make the dressing from zuké and leave some things out and put some things in.  Hows about I just list all the things you COULD put in this dish, list the dressing and leave the rest up to you.

Boiled cabbage, blanched cauliflower (same as boiled really but went to a posh school on the east coast), fresh bean sprouts, fresh dark leafy greens, sliced carrot and cucumber, sliced tempeh, twice cooked tofu, nuts like peanuts or sliced almonds, shrimp chips (not for me unless I want to keel over), boiled chicken, (take big ole chicken breast…  boil in “surprise” boiling water for 10 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 170 degrees…  rest for 3-5 minutes then chop it into your salad.) and other stuffs (plural because I know that your creativity knows no bounds).

THE DRESSING so good it will wave it’s finger, shake it’s head and belt sass at your greens.

Blend zuké kimchi with nuts and olive oil. I used hand ground cashews but you could use peanut butter, almond butter, a handful of soaked brazil nuts, planter’s mixed nuts…  you get the idea, go nuts, use what’s around, wear a monocle, embarrass your kids.


Rhubarb is so NOT a one trick pony. I love to see this spring vegetable in savory applications.

There’s only one way to cook a very sexy piece of meat. The fancy work has already been done, pasture fed, played to sleep every night by silver fox cowboys on banjos, butchered lovingly by a katana wielding poet.  It would be a disservice to put too much clothing on such a nubile steak and so mostly naked it _must_ be.  Seared in good oil (or animal fat) with salt and pepper, then topped with lemon and extra virgin olive oil to serve.  Think of this rhubarb topping as the neglige, serving the same purpose as some sauteed mushrooms or shavings of very expensive cheese they accentuate, leaving a little bit of space for you to discover and uncover, but unobtrusively.

2 Stalks of Rhubarb, 1/2 onion, Balsamic Vinegar, Lemon Juice, White Wine (optional), s+p, Olive Oil.  Saute onion first on medium heat.  If you insist on using the beef pan I won’t fault you. When onions start to brown add rhubarb, season with salt and pepper.  When rhubarb starts to soften you can deglaise the pan with white wine, or just add the balsamic vinegar and lemon juice.  Remove from heat, finish with good olive oil.  Dress your pretty steak.  Blow kisses at it.  Devour.

Mojo Graduates… If there are any other dishes that I didn’t cover that really inspired you let me know.  I would love to continue this foodie discourse with you.  <3 mara

Bloody Maria meets Dear Leader


Holiday hangover? Cure it quick with Pete Gugni’s morning reviver.

We started serving brunch about four months ago, which gave me a great excuse to experiment with breakfast cocktails. When I paired tomato juice with kimchi, a spicy Korean side dish that mostly consists of fermented Napa cabbage, the flavors just harmonized. This is kind of like a cross between a Bloody Mary, which is made with vodka, and a Bloody Maria, which uses tequila. But instead of tequila, I use a barrel-aged version of its smokier cousin, mezcal. The finishing touch is a little bit of Edmund Fitzgerald Porter, a beer from Great Lakes Brewing Company that has a strong coffee flavor. So even if you start your day with a cocktail, you can say you’ve had your morning coffee too. Pete Gugni is the chief mixologist at The Bedford <>  in Chicago. 


1½ ounces vodka

½ ounce Don Amado reposado mezcal

5 ounces kimchi tomato juice*

1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

1 teaspoon hot sauce

1 dash pepper

1 dash celery salt

1 ounce Edmund Fitzgerald Porter

celery stalk

lemon wedge


1. Combine ingredients in an ice-filled mixing glass. Shake, then strain into a 14-ounce glass over ice.

2. Stir in the beer, then garnish with a celery stalk and lemon wedge.

*In a blender, purée 3 parts tomato juice with 1 part kimchi.

Kimchi Potsticker Recipe


Willow and I did a cooking demo at Alfalfa’s this Sunday.  The Kimchi dumplings that we made on site were a big hit, everything that went into them we grabbed off the shelves at the store.  I hope you enjoy this interactive dinner (kids love to try their hand at dumpling wrapping the results might not always be pretty but I can assure you they’ll be fun and yummy!)

1lb of stuffing makes about 50 dumplings.  i think that’s about one packet of wrappers though it does depend how thick the dumpling skins are.

Recipe for Kimchi Dumplings

1/2 lb Minced Pork or Roasted Yams with skins removed
1/2 lb Kimchi
50 dumpling wrappers
Sesame Oil
Soy Sauce
Some kind of Sauté Oil


– strain and squeeze Kimchi, reserve pickling liquid.
– chop Kimchi into little pieces…  take your time to do this by hand for a better texture
– mix Kimchi pieces with pork or potato.  use chopsticks or a wooden spoon and stir vigorously, use a little bit of pickling liquid if needed, but make sure that mixture is not too wet.
– mix in half a teaspoon of sesame oil
– wrap dumplings (wet edge of dumpling wrapper, don’t over fill, make little pleats or you can simply fold the dough in half and seal the edges)
– if freezing for another day freeze flat on a tray then when frozen you can store in a container or baggie.

to cook
– heat oil, add dumplings and saute on medium until bottoms of dumplings are brown (about five minutes).  add 1/4 cup water and cover for another five minutes

to serve
– make a sauce using reserved pickling liquid, soy and sesame oil