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Posts Tagged ‘taste’

The finished product with my friend Sachiko

Christmas is not a big holiday here in Japan. I mean the country is primarily those who believe in Buddism & Shinto,  so although they love the decorations of a tree, snowflakes, reindeer and such, everyone works on Christmas day, just like any other day. The 23rd is big – the Emperor’s Birthday (although it’s not really) and then New Years Day is huge. I fully admit that I forgot it was xmas until about 11 in the morning when my class started. They wished me all a Merry Christmas

Class in Kamakura on Christmas Day

then laughed at my surprise. It happens to me when I travel. I usually always know the date – especially if it is a travel day.. but hardly ever know the day of the week. It really doesn’t matter in my world, I work when I need to work, any place, any time, anywhere. That’s the beauty of being a freelance tv person and a raw food chef. Both really allow me to schedule as I please. To me, it was a no brainer choosing to come to Japan instead of staying home for the holidays. That’s another thing about me, I’m not a really huge holiday person either. I think that stems from always having to work on the holidays. That’s what happens when you are a tv reporter and trying to work your way up the ladder. You move constantly – pretty much every two years which means you are the lacky at the bottom of the totem pole.

Kirsten making Autumn Spiced Carrot Cake

Class was held in a traditional style Japanese meeting room, complete with low tables, cushions on the floor and sliding paper doors between the rooms. It was gorgeous and it really got me into the swing of things. The sun was shining, it was cold and windy outside and warm and cozy inside. If you are a teacher, this is the perfect scenario all you have to do is woo them with  a great dish. I decided to make my Autumn Carrot Cake again since it was such a big hit at the party in Tokyo. I had about 16 students who were on the edges of their seat. (more…)

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Daiutsu of Kamakura, Japan

I’m out of Tokyo. While it was good fun, I started to feel a little claustrophobic. There are billions of people living in a very small area… and in complete harmony no less. All the concrete was bringing me down, so heading to Kamakura came at the perfect time. Masae helped me through the massive subway system to Shinguku station, one of the busiest places in Tokyo. This station is not only subway but the major hub for al

I have no idea where we are!

l the trains heading out of Tokyo in just about every direction. We had all my gear with us which consisted of two large carry-ons  and a big ass suitcase. I’m not sure how many ups and downs we did in the station but it seemed like overkill to me to get to our track and I was so glad to have my friend at my side. I have lived in New York and am really versed in trains and subway.. but this station was complete sensory overload way too early in the morning.
My train ride wasn’t on the bullet train as I had hoped, instead I took a local train which was much like a subway car.. a full one. For the first 20 minutes I had to stand in a corner hovering over my bags as we weaved through the outskirts of the city. Then it cleared out. I had about a two hour ride south to the town of Kamakura, famous for its’ Daibutsu.. the “big budda” shrine. It’s just south of Tokyo and on a sweet little bay. It’s also known as a big

Look mom, I'm famous in Japan!

surf town get away, although it’s winter and there’s no way I would get in the water at the moment. I was coming to town a day before my class to do some sight seeing and to shop for ingredients. Sachiko, a student I know from both LA and Tokyo classes, was my host and I was honored to teach her students on Christmas day.
She picked me up at the train station, we hopped into her car and turned up the music. Sachiko is a young 25, a little hottie

Lunch with my friends in Kamakura, Japan

hipster who is just starting out in her career as a raw foodie. Her energy was a welcomed change and I fed off her playful and flirty ways. Her English is not great but we found a way to hold conversation non-stop trading names in our native languages. At our first stop – a health food store in the middle of the center of town, she had a little surprise… my very own (more…)

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Raw Cranberry Mint Torte

Teaching raw dessert classes is one of my favorite classes to teach. Here you are – a raw food chef who’s made the choice to rely  on vegetables, fruits and seeds as nutrition – and now you get to say the magic words all your students wait for -“dessert, yes you can have it too. Learning how to make healthy choices and realizing you truly are what you eat can intimidate many people. What, give up what I love??? In actuality, eating raw is eating what you love in its’ most natural state, then adding flair. You’re not giving up anything, especially when you experience first hand how nice and balanced you’ll feel after a raw dessert, not jacked up on some sugar rush!

Dishing out secrets to making raw chocolate

I always find reward in those shocked faces who think if they have a sweet tooth, they can’t follow a healthy raw diet – again I echo, it’s all in the choice of ingredients. I like teaching raw desserts as one of my first classes because it seems like the easiest, logical, back door way to start into a life of raw foods. Guys like it, girls are glad they don’t have to abandon their indulgences and well, let’s face it, raw desserts, good ones, impress friends and bring smiles all around.

Japan is not the biggest chocolate consumers but I find myself yearning for something sweet after a plate of sashimi, so I thought, let’s

Proud of my raw creations!

teach how to make quick and easy chocolate truffles. The recipe is one a friend passed along, then a changes some ingredients to satisfy my taste buds. I happen to bring along just the right amount of

Happy Raw Food Students

molds so that each student could choose their shape and fillings inside. I really feel student involvement is a necessity in all raw classes – if you can’t feel, smell, taste and participate, you just won’t remember that clearly when you got to make it again. The chocolate recipe is so easy, you could teach it to a 5th grader. Just 5 main ingredients and a few tricks. The students went nuts with all the choices and were laughing and giggling on like little school girls… and there was a lot of licking extra helpings of chocolate off (more…)

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Getting ready to eat Durian

Getting ready to eat Durian

Are you with me? Do you know about Durian? Well you should. It seems you either love it, or you hate it. Durian is an oval spiny tropical fruit with a creamy middle. Sounds delicious right? I mean, I love tropical fruit. Visions of pineapple, bananas, mangoes filling up your head? Yea, this is nothing like it. Durian has a destinct smell which in some countries is illegal to eat in public places! I’m not joking. In a lot of asian countries there are signs near subways and such that have a picture of Durian with a slash through it. Mostly because to many, the smell of this odd looking fruit, smells well like a possible gas leak and causes fear in crowded places. I think the damn think smells like dirty socks and ass crack all rolled into one. I can’t stand the smell. I have a strong stomach, can eat most anything, but this stuff causes the old gag reflexes to go.

Still, I think it’s important for me to understand why some people like it. I also will try it again and again to see if something in my body changes. Maybe it’s an aquired taste. My raw food instructor Cherie Soria didn’t like it at first, then she became obsessed with it. She describes eating it as pure (more…)

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DSC_5823Ok, I just had a croissant. It’s been at least a year or so since I tasted the buttery, doughy goodness. It was fabulous. I couldn’t stop eating it. My plan was to only have half… but then it was melting in my mouth, my mind was yelling no, my devilish sweet tooth side was screaming “yes!!!”. I ate the whole thing. Do I beat myself up the rest of the day? Well, that remains to be seen. I’m pretty good at the guilt trip, especially when I’m in one of my “gotta get disciplined” mode. I think I will just counter act it and eat an apple now. Once it’s past your lips (more…)

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