Since this is one in a long repertoire of plant-based recipes I’ve recently posted, I feel I should clarify for any new friends that I am not vegan. As you can read in more detail in my book, I eat organic meat and eggs and wild cold water fish occasionally, because after much trial and error, stubborn dedication and wild energetic fluctuations, I have learned the irrefutable truth that I feel at my best when I do. However, eating more plants where we can and not relying as heavily as we do on animal-based products for flavour and ease is something I wholeheartedly encourage and dedicate much of this blog to.
And so I humbly introduce my talented friend Rebecca from Jiva Healing‘s unbeatably creamy and vibrant raw vegan mayonnaise. Rebecca is an accomplished naturopathic nutritionist and holds conscious cooking retreats in the UK and abroad, one of which I was lucky enough to assist on recently, at my home from home, 42 Acres. We made this with a bright rainbow lunch, and I cannot imagine life without it. Infused with turmeric, apple cider vinegar, coconut milk and olive oil, it is a rich and nourishing alternative to the traditional version, which is so often filled with cheaper and heavily processed ingredients such as soybean oil, modified corn starch and glucose-fructose syrup. While this version is much richer, you only a need a little for instant flavour and visual impact.
Turmeric is such a powerful food and I encourage everyone to incorporate as much of it as they can into their diets. Its yellow pigment, curcumin, possesses powerful antioxidant properties, helping combat cellular damage from oxidation and free radicals – something we accrue from both the external environment and normal metabolic processes in the body. The more antioxidants we consume to mop up the free radicals, the lower the risk of inflammation and other physiological imbalances…. To delve a little deeper, you can read more in the Food Heroes: Turmeric section of my book. (Also featured in detail are ginger and cinnamon).
Here I used organic turmeric powder but, if you could find some fresh root I cannot even imagine how vibrant and beautiful it would be in the blend. It is vital to use organic here if you are to receive the full spectrum of healing nutrients – and as always avoid harmful chemicals and pesticides. With a rhizome / root like turmeric (and ginger), this is even more important, since it absorbs more substances from the surrounding soil in which is grows. You also want to buy organic cashews if you can – the very white ones in most shops have been bleached and we want to avoid this where at all possible.
As many of you may know, apple cider vinegar is a powerful and well priced naturopathic aid for digestion (as well as flavour) here and helps stimulate enzymes and juices, helping to optimise food metabolism and absorption in the gastrointestinal tract. A little goes a long way and it’s good to add it slowly.
Finally, you want to serve this with a fresh grind of black pepper. Curcumin’s potency is increased by up to 20 times if eaten alongside it, so don’t hold back from this potent nutritional combination.
This recipe makes a generous bowlful and you really don’t need much per serving due to the richness. Since, in my experience, cider vinegars and coconut milks vary from brand to brand, it’s good to add the ingredients slowly and be open to a little tweaking according to your preference – especially with salt, turmeric and thickness / texture.
This keeps covered in the fridge for up to five days (six if it’s very cold…)
1/2 cup coconut milk
1/2 cup extra virgin coconut oil – soft / in liquid state
1/4 cup soaked cashew halves
1/2 tsp – 1 tsp salt (or more to taste)
1/4 tsp ground turmeric (or more to taste)
2 tbsp extra virgin cold pressed olive oil
3 1/2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
In a food processor (or blender), blend the coconut oil, cashew halves salt and turmeric for a coupe of minutes until smooth and creamy. Keep the blender on and slowly drizzle in the olive oil and vinegar until everything is well mixed; it may seem little liquid but remember that it will set in the fridge. If you want it more like a paste, you can add a few more cashews; if you want it a little more fluid, you can add some more olive oil and vinegar – do this slowly and keep tasting to feel your way around the recipe yourself.
Move to a bowl and refrigerate for an hour or two before serving.