Monday, October 27, 2008

Matthew Kenney's Lifestyle

From the very beginning of my personal raw food journey, I've been inspired, delighted and stylishly well feed on the culinary brilliance of chef, restaurateur, caterer and food writer, Matthew Kenney. Kenney became a notable and celebrated chef/author in the cooked food world well before he was indoctrinated into raw foods, with his initial passions directed towards the light yet intense flavors of Mediterranean cuisine. In the summer of 2002, after having created and operated a number of successful gourmet restaurants, Matthew was introduced to the splendor of raw food, being struck by how alert, open-minded, energetic and very clear he felt after eating such a meal. It didn't take long for him to realize that this way of eating was something he needed to learn and explore for himself. Since that night, over 6 years ago, Matthew Kenney has been one of the key players in changing the way the world thinks of and enjoys raw food. If you have had the pleasure of dining in one of his restaurants, or if you have perused the pages of either of his masterfully done raw books, Raw Food Real World or Everyday Raw, you quickly come to understand that raw food isn't just a pile of celery, carrots and lettuce.

Currently Matthew is involved in a number of personal and professional endeavors, and is presently away in Spain, traveling for business. Recently I've had the fortune of communicating with Matthew, and have found him to be a rare combination of gracious generosity, humility and tremendous creativity in motion. In my observation, until the release of his most recent book, Everyday Raw, it seemed that Matthew had been keeping a relatively low profile for the last couple of years. However, I learned that he has passionately and diligently been working on a number of professional projects including a new recipe book, Entertaining In The Raw, due to be released in early 2009 and is involved in the launch of several new restaurants (La Mucca - Madrid, Cafe' 118 - Florida, and Freefoods NYC - in Manhattan).

One of the projects that I'm most excited about is the recent birthing of Matthew's new online magazine, Matthew Kenney Lifestyle. In this currently bi-weekly publication, Matthew shares a more personal, transparent side of his otherwise professional life. It's an intimate look into his currently beloved recipes, interests, travels, as well as a place in which he will feature restaurant reviews and guest editor profiles. If you haven't visited his initial issue, you'll want to do so right away since his 2nd issue will be up this coming Monday, in which Matthew will include material from his European travels. This stylish, fresh and inspirational e-zine will be bi-weekly through the end of this year and will go weekly at the start of 2009.

Matthew was kind enough to allow me to share with you his feature recipe from Issue 1. I can't wait to warm and tantalize my friends and family on Halloween evening with this gorgeous, decadent, yet healthy, version of a timeless classic:


Serves 4–6

Graham Cookie

5 cups cashew flour

2 1/2 cups oat flour

3/4 cup water

1 3/4 cups maple syrup

2 tablespoons vanilla extract

1 teaspoon sea salt

2 tablespoons cinnamon

Cookie Instructions

Mix ingredients in medium size bowl by hand. Spread flat on dehydrator screens, about 1/8″ thick. Dehydrate at 115 degrees for 4 hours. Make an incision with the back of a knife for six rectangles. Dehydrate another 6 hours and separate the pieces. Keep well sealed, at room temperature until ready to serve.

marshmallow crème

2 cups cashews, soaked

1 cup coconut meat

1 tablespoon vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 cup agave

1/4 cup coconut oil

1 small bottle Lorann Marshmallow Concentrated Oil

Instructions for Creme

Blend until smooth in Vita-Mix. Pour into plastic lined half sheet pan; refrigerate overnight or freeze if prepared 1–2 hours prior to serving.

Dark Chocolate Butter

4 cups maple syrup

2 1/2 cups cocoa powder

2 cups coconut oil

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon salt

Butter Instructions

Whisk all ingredients in large bowl. Blend in batches in Vita-mix. Pour into half sheet pan and store in freezer.


2 tbs. cinnamon

Bring Crème to room temperature at least 20 minutes prior to serving. Warm chocolate and grahams slightly in dehydrator.

Lie one graham on a plate. Carefully spread a generous amount of marshmallow crème on top and pour an even more generous amount of chocolate over that, allowing it to slightly run off onto the plate. Set another graham on top, but off center, exposing the crème and chocolate. Sprinkle the plate with cinnamon powder.

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