One Lucky Duck's Raw Vegan Snacks Will Save Your Day



embed1Photo: Courtesy of One Lucky Duck.
Even if your ideal meal involves a grilled steak so rare you could swear it just mooed for help, or your favorite thing to cuddle with at night is a barrel of Utz Cheese Balls, we bet you would still love the plant-based offerings at NYC's beloved raw, vegan restaurant, Pure Food and Wine. Yes, somehow the Gramercy spot has managed to transform healthy ingredients into totally delicious dishes, all without heating anything over 118°F — a method which helps preserve the inherent nutrients, vitamins, and enzymes in the food. For example, tree nuts and mushrooms become the best cheese and tacos al pastor that, well, aren't actually cheese or tacos al pastor.

But, we digress. This story is actually about Pure Food and Wine's incredible line of raw, vegan, organic, gluten-free snacks, which are made from natural ingredients like house-made almond flour, coconut oil, agave, and various nuts and seeds. They're available for purchase at the affiliate One Lucky Duck Juice and Takeaway locations in Manhattan, as well as online. From the new Chia Thins, which are way more addictive than their Wheat Thins archetype, to the Macadamia Cheddar Crunch chips and Chocolate Macaroons, these are the most freakishly delicious edibles that are also (holy crap) good for you. So, if you happen to plow through an entire bag, because oops, you will probably still live forever. And, how is it possible that these snacks, which lack any artificial food coloring, MSG, or "cheese seasoning," taste so wonderful? We don't know. But, we assume it has something to do with the fact that they ain't cheap. (Try $13.50 for those aforementioned items. Each.)

Fortunately, we were able to acquire a couple recipes from owner Sarma Melngailis' cookbook Raw Food/Real World: 100 Recipes to Get the Glow and start to figure out why these snacks are so good. You'll need to acquire a dehydrator (or get very creative with a large box, the sun, and/or a strategically placed fan), but that might just be worth it to you once you get your first taste. Click through to get started.



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embed2Photo: Courtesy of One Lucky Duck.
Chocolate Macaroons
Makes: 24 to 36 macaroons

3 cups dried, unsweetened coconut flakes
1½ cups cocoa powder
1 cup maple syrup
⅓ cup coconut butter
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
½ teaspoon sea salt

In large bowl, combine all the ingredients and stir well to combine. You can also use a standing mixer with the paddle attachment. Using a small ice-cream scoop, your hands, or a big tablespoon, spoon rounds of the dough onto dehydrator screens. If you are using your hands, it helps to refrigerate the mix a bit prior to forming the macaroons. Dehydrate at 115° F for 12 to 24 hours, or until crisp on the outside and nice and chewy on the inside.

For blonde macaroons: Replace the cocoa powder in the recipe above with an equal amount of fine almond flour.
Macadamia-Cheddar-Crunch-(1)Photo: Courtesy of One Lucky Duck.
Macadamia Cheddar Crunch
Makes: About three cups

1½ cups chopped red bell pepper
3 tablespoons lime juice
1½ teaspoons sea salt
1½ cups macadamia nuts
1 tablespoon nutritional yeast (optional)

In a blender, puree the red pepper, lime juice, and sea salt. Place the macadamia nuts in a food processor and pulse a few times to chop them. Pour the red-pepper mixture over the nuts and process until well combined but still a tiny bit chunky. Spread to about ¼-inch thickness on Teflex-lined dehydrator trays and dehydrate at 115° F for four to six hours, or overnight. Once the top has dried, break it into shards and flip over to dry the undersides, another one to two hours. Store in an airtight container for a few days or longer in the refrigerator or freezer.