At Living Light we are always totally amazed at what our graduates accomplish in the world. They are motivated, resourceful, dedicated, and ready to make a difference! Here is a sample of what two of our students, each of whom has chosen her own way of exploring our curriculum, have been able to accomplish with tools and information they have acquired at our school.
Whether you have completed all of the Gourmet Raw Food Chef Certification™ training and all of the advanced classes, or are just starting out on your raw food journey, we are proud to say that our graduates make healthy living delicious all over the world. We hope to include a regular feature on our graduates accomplishments and inspiring stories in upcoming newsletters and on our website.
Living Light graduate and Hot Raw Chef™ runner up Jennifer McClelland is a pioneer in the gourmet raw foods movement in Beijing, China. She combines her knowledge of gourmet raw food cuisine with her background growing up on an Idaho farm where fresh organic fruits and vegetables were plentiful. She is part of a new generation of “eco-chefs” who delight in merging raw culinary arts with sustainable living.
“I like to emphasize to new people that choosing a plant-based diet of natural, whole foods is not a short-term diet plan, but a lifestyle change to healthy eating and vibrant living. The art of great cuisine begins with preservative and chemical free, fresh, organic seasonal ingredients. To encourage lifestyle changes, I know that foods must be nourishing, delicious and easy to prepare.”
In 2002 Jennifer started reading about the healing properties of whole foods, and when she discovered the “raw food concept” five years later, she realized that the diet was just what she had been searching for. As she started eating raw foods, some long term health challenges disappeared, and she started to feel alive and vibrant rather than experiencing low level fatigue. She now begins each day with a fruit and vegetable green smoothie loaded with fiber, antioxidants and phyto-nutrients.
Jennifer is proud to be a part of a group of health conscious chefs and teachers who are changing the face of contemporary cuisine in China – she teaches raw food classes at the World Health Store, with locations in both Beijing and Shanghai. As a raw food advocate in the region, she does everything from training people in their own homes to working with corporations and restaurants to help them create healthy menu options with more raw vegan choices. Although she had some trouble finding ingredients for traditional raw food dishes in China when she first embraced the lifestyle, she looks on that obstacle as a “blessing in disguise”, as she started experimenting with a wide range of exotic spices, vegetables and fruits to create fantastic ethnic flavors of the region.
She is also pleased that Beijing has a small and growing community of “raw fooders’ who meet once a month for a raw food potluck and to share recipes and tips about the lifestyle. Jennifer’s cuisine appeals not only to anyone who wants to look and feel fantastic and maintain a healthy weight, but to the growing number of people who have food allergies, including gluten and lactose intolerance. She is very excited about helping families and individuals transition from a diet with lots of processed foods to more natural and life enhancing choices. Jennifer credits Living Light with laying the foundation for her extraordinary career with a first-class education:
“Attending Living Light was a life changing experience, from the incredible people I met to learning the fine art of great tasting cuisine. The Living Light experience is much more than learning healthy recipes and culinary skills, it is about gaining a deeper perspective on health and well being, and doing so in a delicious way.”
Chocolate Orange Macaroons
by Jennifer McClelland
Yield: 16-18 cookies
2 cups shredded raw coconut
1/2 cup raw honey or raw agave nectar
1/2 cup raw cacao powder
1/4 cup fresh orange juice
2 Tablespoons cold-pressed coconut oil
2 Tablespoons orange zest
1/2 teaspoon natural vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon mineral sea salt
Mix all the ingredients together. Spoon into balls and flatten into round cookies and place onto a dehydrator sheet or wax paper and dry for 5 hours. Flip cookies over and place directly onto the dehydrator tray and dry again for 2 hours. Makes 16 to 18 cookies.