I was recently in Portland, Oregon on a girls' weekend where we spent several days exploring the city’s surprisingly empty streets and eating.
I had several good meals but there was one that outshone everything. It was breakfast at the Blossoming Lotus – a casual café-cum-yoga school serving raw and vegan meals. Sounds appetizing? Perhaps not for some but after several days of sheer gluttony sometimes a bowl of slow oats, rice milk and fresh fruit is what you need.
The dish I had was more of a 'breakfast dessert'. It was a cashew cream parfait served with live buckwheat, apples and kiwis. Dazzling.
On the way back to Vancouver I was mulling over in my head how to re-create it. I tried it the next day and met with success.
The best thing, apart from getting to eat this every morning for breakfast, is that it’s healthy. The "cream" is simply a combination of raw, organic cashews, water, pure vanilla extract and raw honey. I blend the ingredients until they’re smooth and resemble a silky mousse-like cream and that’s it. I’ve been eating it everyday for almost 10 days and I can't imagine tiring of it anytime soon.
The small triangular grains you see in the picture is buckwheat, and incidentally, they're actually seeds from the same family as rhubarb and sorrel. This was my first experience with whole buckwheat. I've only ever used the flour in cookies and blinis. The buckwheat seeds don't have a strong flavour, but they add a great texture and crunch with added health benefits.
Cashew Cream Parfait
(Makes 1 cup)
1 cup of raw cashew nuts
1 1/8 cup of cold water
1 1/2 Tbsp of raw honey
1/4 tsp of pure vanilla extract
10 strawberries, washed, hulled & quartered
2 kiwi fruit, skinned & cut into small pieces
1 crispy red apple, washed & cut into small pieces
4 Tbsp of buckwheat seeds
- Place cashews, 1 cup cold water, raw honey and vanilla extract into a blender. Blend on high speed for about 1 minute. Add a little more water and blend again until smooth. Taste cream and add a little more honey if necessary. If you want the cream to be a little runnier, add another 1-2 tablespoons of water. Blend for another minute until completely smooth. The cream may seem watery but once refrigerated it settles and thickens.
- Place fruit in serving bowls. Top with buckwheat seeds and spoon or pour on the cashew cream.
- Cashew cream should be stored in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 4 days.