Dereme Church & Blazej Mikulicz of Cru Cacao Print E-mail
Written by RawGuru   
Sunday, 26 April 2009

1. What are some rawfood staples in your current diet? Are you 100% raw? How did you start?
Some of the staples in our diet are raw chocolate, dark leafy greens, avocados, fresh fruit smoothies, hot peppers, fresh herbs, heirloom tomatoes, and watermelon. Yes we are 100% RAW! We started to go raw by experimenting with recipes and trying a variety of different raw food at home and at restaurants. We started with a fast and then moved on to a liquid diet of green juices and raw soups and smoothies, followed by more solid foods. After a couple of months we progressed into eating more gourmet raw food. We love to be in the kitchen - cooking is one of our main passions!

2. How did you and your wife start Cru Cacao and what does the name mean?
We started Cru Cacao by first experimenting with chocolate and giving away truffles as gifts during the holiday season. Everyone loved them and couldn't believe how delicious they were! No one believed they were raw and actually good for you! When we finally explained the science behind raw cacao to our family they were totally stoked! That is when we all came to the agreement to start Cru Cacao and offer our truffles to the world. Cru Cacao means raw chocolate or single origin chocolate, which is exactly what we make, so we thought it would fit perfectly. Our best friend and business partner Mike Sertic helped us to come up with the name.

3. What are some of the exotic ingredients you use and favorite truffles?
We use spices from around the globe, such as muchi curry; hungarian paprika; pasillo, guallio, morita, ancho, pulla, arbol, and cascabel chiles; wild crafted maca and mesquite; tarragon, balinese long pepper, achoite; organic rose oil; red alae Hawaiian salt; and bolivian rose salt.

4. What was it like being on the Food Network? 

The Challenge on the Food network was definitely one of the hardest things we have ever done in our lives. The pressure and stress of being filmed, plus not knowing who your partner would be was super intense. It was a great experience and we've both learned a lot from it. We now know to prepare better, get plenty of rest, and be as mentally and physically healthy as possible. Proper planning, extreme organization, and practice runs are a must. Keeping your design clean and simple and not going to huge is also key. We can't wait to be on another challenge, and to WIN next time!

The Food Network Challenge is airing the following times :
Sep 07, 2008 8:00 PM ET/PT
Sep 07, 2008 3:00 AM ET/PT
Sep 10, 2008 7:00 PM ET/PT
Sep 13, 2008 2:00 PM ET/PT
Sep 14, 2008 7:00 PM ET/PT 

5. Can you share a favorite raw food recipe?

Raw Vegan Egg Salad with Garlic Aioli 

*5-6 Thai young coconut meat / finely chopped
*2-3 TBS raw grain mustard * -1 cup of raw garlic aioli
*4-5 celery stalks / finely chopped *1 bunch of scallions
*1 sweet onion / finely chopped 
*1-2 TBS turmeric powder *1 handful of parsley / finely chopped *salt, pepper & paprika to taste.

Garlic Aioli
*2 c. of pine nuts (soaked for 12 hours) 
* c. agave nectar * c. apple cider vinegar 
6 cloves of garlic c. of olive oil
water salt to taste

1) Mix all ingredients in a bowl
2) Add desired amount of garlic aioli
3) Garnish with paprika and fresh herbs
4) Serve wrapped with swiss chard and tomato or raw bread. 

6. What are some quick tips or hints for raw newbies?
The best advice we could give to newcomers to the raw food lifestyle is to keep your mind open and do as much research on the subject as possible. Really dive into as many raw "cook" books as possible. Learn about flavor combinations and try using lots of fresh herbs and spices. Use the best organic ingredients you can find - hit up your local farmer's market. You can never go wrong with top quality fruits and veggies. Try to incorporate all of the flavor profiles your body needs to feel properly satiated, including different textures, temperatures, and flavors - crunchy, chewy, smooth, spicy, bitter, salty, sweet, acidic/sour, pungent, cold, and warm. Incorporate plenty of raw healthy fats such as cold pressed olive oil, olives, coconut oil, avocados, and raw cacao. Experiment and get creative, your body will thank you for it!

7. Do you have any dental problems on the raw diet?
We do not have any dental problems whatsoever. We brush our teeth with organic peppermint or clove oil and a little bit of baking soda. We floss regularly too. Good oral hygiene is paramount no matter what you eat!

8. Do you have any major influences?
Our main influence would be Mother Nature! We love our planet and want it to be beautiful, healthy, and appreciated. We have been inspired by many people and cultures from our world travels, food, art, music, and literature. We feel everyone has something to share and teach, so it is best to keep an open mind - anyone or anything could inspire you!

9. Where do you see the raw food movement heading?
We strongly feel that raw food is the future of the culinary arts! The better we can take care of our body, mind, spirit, and each other, the better choices we will make. In turn, this will help us to take better care of the planet. We believe raw organic vegan food helps you to take more positive actions with the least negative impact on our environment by consuming less processed foods, reducing waste and energy consumption, and using less chemicals and fertilizers .

10. Can you please tell us about some of your current projects you're working on or developing?

We are coming out with a new line of raw chocolate bars and a savory flat bread! Like all of our products, these are raw, organic, vegan, and oh so delicious!!! We are also currently in the process of redesigning our packaging.

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Last Updated ( Thursday, 07 May 2009 )
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