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Patty’s Raw Italian Feast……we say goodbye to Mary Poppins

By Robyn Openshaw, MSW | Oct 28, 2012

As you might now, for a couple of months we’ve had the pleasure of Patty Maher living with us and working for us. She just got offered a $100k/year job here locally, and I can’t compete, so the kids are saying goodbye to our very own Mary Poppins.

You don’t have to say goodbye to her, though. She asked, as she was leaving, if she could have one of my Blendtec blenders she’d fallen in love with, in exchange for developing a recipe for my readers every week for a year, and sending photos. We struck a deal. Watch the blog for that. She’s so creative in the kitchen!

I wanted Patty to have a Blendtec anyway; it’s the most important thing to have in your whole-foods kitchen. I can’t go a day without it. And Patty had a terrifying diagnosis at the age of 40, so nutrition is critical for her.

She not only lost lots of weight eating a mostly raw, plant-based diet, but she is also now pharmaceutical-free with her Multiple Sclerosis and living an active, productive life without significant pain or disability. She used to have to take a handful of painkillers just to get out of bed.

I’m in Europe studying at cancer clinics for nearly 3 weeks of November, and home for only 5 days before doing a Vegas / St. George / SoCal speaking tour. But when I get back and my kids and I settle into real life again—WAY too much travel this fall—we have Gamelia coming to live with us. She’s another Level III Raw Chef from Berkeley, a friend of Patty’s who also interned at CHI. She, too, has a great healing story that includes losing 80 lbs. eating raw vegan, and getting off the couch where she had no energy, and becoming a runner.

Meantime, Patty has shared with us the Italian Feast that was her Level III Certification project. They aren’t the usual EASY recipes you usually can expect from GreenSmoothieGirl. In fact, this feast is every bit as much work as Thanksgiving dinner. But they’re beautiful and delicious, and the Raw Gelato is easy, at least.

Photos are by Janne Larson. Patty made us this lovely raw lasagna before she left us. We will miss her!

Patty’s Gourmet Raw Living Italian Feast

Patty’s Living Italian Bread

(serves 30-35 people)

  • 2 Cups sprouted wheat berries (allow berries to soak for eight hours, rinse and sprout them for 24 hours or until they have small tails)
  • 1 Cup almond flour (I make my almond flour by grinding in a blender the dehydrated pulp leftover from making almond milk)
  • 1 tomato chopped
  • 1 teaspoon Himalayan Sea Salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh basil
  • ½ Tablespoon organic baking soda
  • ½ Bulb of garlic cloves chopped coarsely
  • ¼ Cup olive oil


  • Process all ingredients until very thoroughly blended with no lumps (about 15 to 20 minutes, shutting off the processor for about one minute every five so it doesn’t overheat).
  • Spread out into a 1/4 –inch-high square on dehydrator trays covered with non-stick sheets, score and dehydrate at 110 degrees for about 18 to 20 hours, flipping after about 10 hours for even dehydration.
  • Break apart bread slices once garlic bread is desired consistency and brush with Patty’s Yummy Italian Butter.
  • Put bread slices back into the dehydrator for about an hour before serving and serve warm.

Yummy Italian Butter

  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 3 Tablespoons of “Sheila and Simone’s That’s So Delicious My Brains Are Going To Fall Out Parmesan Cheese”
  • 4 cloves of garlic

Directions: Blend all ingredients in a high-speed blender and enjoy.

Patty’s Rawcotta Italian Cheese

  • 8 cups of soaked and rinsed cashews
  • 1 cup rejuvelac
  • ½ cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon dill
  • 1/3 cup nutritional yeast
  • 2 teaspoons Himalayan Sea Salt
  • Pinch of black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon basil


  • Blend until extremely smooth in a high-speed blender.
  • Place in a nut and seed milk bag and hang at room temperature for about 18 hours to ferment (using a bowl underneath to catch drips).

Patty’s Raw Polenta

(serves 30)

  • Packages of organic extra sweet corn
  • 1/3 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1/3 cup rejuvelac
  • 2 tomatoes
  • 4 to 5 large cloves of garlic
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons Himalayan sea salt
  • ½ cup almond flour (see recipe for Patty’s Living Italian Bread for info on almond flour)
  • 1 cup soaked cashews


  • Process all ingredients in a food processor until extra creamy.
  • Place in a shallow bowl or pie plate.
  • (optional) Garnish with portabella mushrooms marinated in vinegar, oil and garlic
  • Warm for 18 to 20 hours in dehydrator at 105 degrees and serve warm.

Chef’s Note: I like to serve this with a side-bowl of Patty’s Favorite Italian Sauce that has been warmed for two or three hours in the dehydrator at 105 degrees.

Patty’s Italian Portabellas

  • 54 ounces portabella mushrooms
  • 1 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup water
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 bulb garlic


  • Blend all ingredients except mushrooms.
  • Pour all ingredients into a bowl with rinsed, cleaned and chopped mushrooms.
  • Marinate for one to two hours.
  • Strain
  • Place mushrooms onto non-stick-sheet covered dehydrator trays and dehydrate at 105 for 18 hours or until crispy or desired texture.
  • Use as topping for lasagna or in other Italian dishes.

Patty’s Super Strawberry-Ginger Gelato

  • 3 cups cashews
  • 4 pints strawberries
  • 1 teaspoon Himalayan sea salt
  • 2 inches fresh ginger
  • 1 to 2 cups coconut nectar
  • 6-10 cups of purified water (When blending the ice cream go slowly with adding water. How much you will add really depends upon how frozen your cashew-ginger milk and strawberries are the consistency you desire).
  • Fresh basil


  • Blend 3 cups of cashews, ginger, sea salt and 4.5 cups of water in a high-speed blender.
  • Pour cashew-ginger milk into ice-cube trays or small Ziplock baggies and freeze overnight (ice cube trays are best but cover them with plastic wrap so your milk doesn’t take on the flavors of your freezer).
  • Clean and slice strawberries and freeze overnight in Ziploc baggies.
  • Take out a large mixing bowl and a high speed blender the next day when you are ready to make the gelato.
  • Combine and blend packages of strawberries and cashew milk with coconut nectar to taste. (you will probably make 4 to six batches in your blender).
  • Pour each batch of gelato into the large mixing bowl.
  • Whisk the gelato so the batch is even.
  • Scoop into one-cup servings in clear plastic or glass cups and set on trays.
  • Garnish each serving with a small, washed sprig of fresh basil.
  • Cover tray of gelato servings with plastic wrap and set back in freezer until dinner is over
  • Serve and enjoy!

Patty’s Grape Rejuvelac Wine

  • 5- 6 Large bunches of seedless grapes (all red except one white)
  • 4 cups Rejuvelac
  • 6 to 8 cups of water
  • 4 to 6 pitted dates


  • Thoroughly wash the grapes and remove them from stems.
  • Blend the grapes in a high-speed blender with one cup of water.
  • Strain grape mixture very well through a nut and seed milk bag. It will be a thick mixture and you will have to clean the bag a few times to get all of the juice.
  • Pour 1 cup of grape juice mixture back into high-speed blender with 4 pitted dates and blend until dates are thoroughly blended.
  • Add 2 cups of Rejuvelac and blend some more.
  • Combine grape juice with mixture from blender in large bowl or jar and whisk. Add water slowly to taste.

Patty’s Favorite Italian Sauce

  • 20 roma tomatoes
  • 2 cups fresh basil
  • 2 cups dehydrated tomato slices
  • 1 Tablespoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon Himalayan sea salt
  • ½ cup olive oil
  • 1 bulb of garlic, cloves chopped
  • 2 Tablespoons Fennel
  • 1 Tablespoon Thyme
  • 1 Tablespoon Rosemary
  • 1 Tablespoon Oregano
  • 2 Tablespoons Paprika (for color)
  • Water as necessary for desired consistency


  • Wash and chop tomatoes and basil.
  • Blend all ingredients in high-speed blender, adding water as necessary for desired consistency.
  • Pour into a large bowl and whisk vigorously.

Simone and Sheila’s It’s-So-Delicious-Your-Brains-Are-Going-To-Fall-Out Parmesan Cheese

(serves 10)

  • ¼ Cup Raw Cashews (soaked for three hours to remove enzyme inhibitors, rinsed and dehydrated at 105 degrees for about eight hours until crunchy)
  • ¼ Cup Raw Sunflower Seeds (preferably soaked for six hours, rinsed, sprouted for one day until they have small tails, and dehydrated until crunchy at 105 degrees for about eight hours)
  • ½ Cup Golden Flax Seeds
  • 2/3 Cup Nutritional Yeast
  • 1 Tablespoon Garlic Powder
  • ½ Teaspoon Himalayan sea salt


  • Grind flax seeds in mixer or coffee grinder until powdery.
  • Pour all ingredients in a food processor and process on high until it looks, feels and tastes like Parmesan Cheese!

Patty’s Favorite Spinach Lasagna

(serves 12 -15)

(Comment from Robyn: I find this too rich, and would add layers of raw, thinly sliced CUCUMBERS in this dish, and a lot less of the Italian Cheese, which is FABULOUS, but save some of it for dip for more cucumbers later!)

  • 6 to 8 zucchini
  • 2 cups of coconut nectar
  • 6 cups of Patty’s Rawcotta Italian Cheese
  • 30 ounces of organic baby spiniach
  • Six cups of Patty’s Favorite Italian Sauce
  • ½ cup raw parmesan cheese
  • 5 cloves of garlic
  • ¼ cup olive oil
  • 1 cup of dehydrated, sliced tomatoes


  • One day before your dinner slice zucchini into long thin slices with mandolin (watch your fingers!)
  • Soak zucchini noodles in coconut nectar for 20 to 40 minutes.
  • Shake “noodles” in colander so they are not too wet.
  • Spread noodles on a dehydrator tray covered with a non-stick sheet.
  • Dehydrate noodles at 110 for about 12 hours, until dry and a bit crisp.
  • About four hours before dinner get ready to assemble the lasagna.
  • Brush bottom of large lasagna dish with Patty’s Favorite Italian Sauce so noodles won’t stick.
  • Put down a thin layer of noodles.
  • Spread three cups of rawcotta cheese on top of noodles.
  • Rinse spinach and place in large colander on top of larger bowl. Pour 5 cups of boiling water over spinach through the colander so spinach becomes soft and easy to massage.
  • Put softened spinach into bowl with ¼ cup of parmesan cheese and ¼ cup of olive oil that has been blended with five cloves of garlic. Massage all ingredients into the spinach.
  • Pat layer of spinach onto the cheese layer.
  • Top with another layer of rawcotta cheese.
  • Layer with dehydrated tomatoes.
  • Top with Patty’s Favorite Italian Sauce.
  • Sprinkle with ¼ cup parmesan cheese.
  • Top with dehydrated portabella mushrooms.
  • Dehydrate pan of lasagna at 105 degrees for at least two hours and serve warm.

Patty’s Caprese Salad

  • 10 tomatoes
  • 3 cups fresh basil
  • 3 cups Rawcotta Cheese
  • ½ cup Balsamic vinegar
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • Pinch of salt
  • 2 pitted dates
  • 1 Tablespoon rosemary
  • Crushed black pepper
  • About 13 of your favorite olives


  • Slice tomatoes and arrange on a large plate or platter
  • Wash and chop basil and cover tomatoes with it, leaving a ring of about ¼ inch red tomatoes on the outside.
  • Mix 3 ¾ rawcotta cheese with rosemary.
  • Plop teaspoons full of rawcotta-rosemary cheese onto each tomato at the outside of the plate and then working into the center of the dish on some of the tomatoes forming a nice circle of tomatoes that have cheese on them (probably about 2/3 of the tomatoes will have cheese).
  • Make a simple dressing in your high-speed blender with garlic cloves, vinegar, ¼ cup of rawcotta cheese, pinch of salt and two pitted dates.
  • Drizzle the simple dressing over the dish.
  • Place olives on some of the tomatoes that have cheese.
  • Grind fresh pepper over top of dish.
  • Serve and enjoy!

Posted in: Nutrition, Recipes

8 thoughts on “Patty’s Raw Italian Feast……we say goodbye to Mary Poppins”

Leave a Comment
  1. Anonymous says:

    Hi, this looks yummy . I was wondering if you make the rawcotta cheese or buy it ?

  2. Anonymous says:

    A question to Robin: I love to read and research about good nutritional practices and incorporate them in my family life as much as possible. Lately I come across an article/s which discusses about the effects of oxalic acid on health, especially kidneys, and the plants with high oxalate content. It just seems like most everything I deem healthy and try to include more in my diet have high oxalate content–berries, nuts, leafy greens etc. Different articles offer different solutions: cooking will remove some of the acids; the raw vegans will have a say that raw oxalic acid is safe etc. I am so interested in what is your take on this?

  3. Anonymous says:

    WOW, thanks for sharing all of these recipes! I’m excited to try them. Mmmmmmm.

  4. Anonymous says:

    Someone told me awhile ago that sprouted wheat is gluten free. Do you know if this is true?? I saw the 1st recipe called for wheat berries soaked then sprouted.

  5. elizabeth says:

    Hi Patty,
    I had the pleasure of meeting you at CHI over a year ago when my sister-in-law and I completed my Level I raw chef certification.
    I accidentally stumbled upon seeing you here on this blog!! Too funny. So awesome about your new job. All the best to you as you continue this journey.
    Peace and Raw Health,
    Elizabeth in Naples

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