Why are there so many macrobiotic desserts in our recipe corner? Perhaps desserts allow us to dazzle our guests and demonstrate our macrobiotic virtuosity. Perhaps refined desserts, as we know them in western civilization, are a recent historical invention and aren't grounded as well in old world balanced cooking styles. A natural foods pastry chef once complained that you're not called a "pastry chef" in traditional French restaurants unless you cook with eggs and dairy- no matter how fine or creative your cooking. Macrobiotic, vegan and vegetarian desserts always seem to get compared against a lower "good for what it is" standard. What is unsaid is that "it's not as good as the sugar/dairy/eggs/refined flour creations (the real desserts) but for being healthy, it's not terrible." Hoping to dispel that myth that healthy food is somehow inferior or a pale substitute, here are a few of our favorite macrobiotic recipes.

feast from Valentines day cookie swap


Chili Cornbread Casserole

Serves 8

Chili Layer

  • 4 cups pinto beans, cooked or 4 (15 oz.) cans kidney or chili beans
  • 2 medium onions, minced fine
  • 1 medium tomato
  • 1 red pepper, cut into fine strips
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, minced
  • 1 1/2 cups corn (about 3 ears)
  • 4 cloves garlic,minced fine
  • 2 tsp. cumin
  • 2 tsp. oregano
  • 1 tsp. red wine vinegar or mirin
  • Cornbread Layer

  • 2 cups cornmeal
  • 2 cups soy milk original flavor
  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 4 T canola oil
  • 1 T maple syrup, optional
  • 2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp. aluminum-free baking powder
  • Preheat oven to 375°. In a large casserole dish, layer the beans, onion, tomato, peppers, corn and all of the seasonings. In a bowl, combine all of the dry cornbread ingredients. In a liquid measuring cup, stir together the soymilk, oil and maple syrup. Pour the liquid into the dry ingredients and stir just until blended. Pour the batter over the bean mixture. Bake until a cake tester inserted into the cornbread comes out dry, about 20-25 minutes.



    This unusual and DELICIOUS recipe was shared with me by Dragana Sudzum of London, England on
    one of her visits to Winter Park years ago. I was shocked to see how each layer married themselves
    and how the pie was removed from the stove as a moist, steamy and savory dish. This is one that the
    whole family will enjoy and really is a quickie! I make it for breakfast, lunch or dinner (and often add
    other kinds of root veggies or greens to the bottom layer). Enjoy!

    Layer 1

    Heat oil in large skillet on medium heat. Add the vegetables and sauté lightly. Pour water over them. Remove from heat.

    Layer 2

    Combine all of the above in a suribachi and mix well. Spread mixture completely over layer 1.

    Layer 3

    Slice the mochi into triangle wedges and then laterally slice into very thin wafers to use as a soft crust-like topping for the pie. Sprinkle with nori flakes or seeds. Lay out the thin mochi triangles over the entire surface of the tofu layer to create the assembled pie. Cover with a tight fitting lid and resume cooking over very low flame for 20 minutes or until the mochi crust is melted and bubbly. It is steam action that cooks this dish. Make sure not to have it on too high of a flame or else the veggies will burn.


    Portabello Wrapped Sandwich

    Here's a Recipe from Harriet's Kitchen. This was taught in the "It's a Wrap!" and was a big hit. Hope you like it. It's great for quick, fun meals.

    Lay out each piece of flatbread and construct your wrapped sandwich, layer by layer, horizontally across the middle First dressing, then mushrooms, green veggies, onions top with carrot and roll, folding in sides first, and roll up nice and tight. Pick up and enjoy, or slice and serve.

    Lemon Garlic Dressing

    Mix in a blender until smooth. Adjust the flavors to suit.



    Cranberry Shortbread Wedges

    These little treats are great to make for your Valentines sweetheart! To add a tinge of pink to the cookies, add a bit of fresh beet juice (grate 1/2 a beet and squeeze out juice). Children love to make this shortbread as well when the dough is rolled out flat and cut into shapes with a heart cookie cutter.
    1. Preheat oven to 325°.
    2. In a small mixing bowl, combine the oil with the maple syrup and vanilla until well blended.
    3. In a food processor, grind up the oats and almonds together to a fairly fine meal. Add to the oil mixture, along with the sifted flour and stir until well combined. (If the dough is a tad on the sticky side, add a touch more flour). Add cranberries and combine well.
    4. To make the cookies, divide the dough into 3 balls and roll each ball flat to 1/2 inch thickness. Then cut like a pizza into 6 wedges.
    5. Bake at 325° for 25 minutes or until the edges of the cookies are golden brown.
      Makes 18 wedges

    Colored Mini-Marzipan Fruits

    Here’s another simple recipe for some creative Valentine’s Day treats. Although technically Marzipan is defined as sugar and almonds, sort of like how only the sparkling wines in the champagne region of France can be called champagne, we could make a nice Marzipan substitute without the traditional sugar.–

    For coloring:

    Boil the almonds in water for 3 minutes (blanch). Drain, rinse with cool water and then rub them between the palms of your hands to remove the skins. Mix the blanched almonds with the rice syrup and extract in a blender or small food processor until the paste is smooth yet firm enough to form into small shapes.


    Set aside 3/4 cup of the soymilk and dissolve the Kuzu in it. Heat oil in a pot. Add the fresh bananas and sauté for 2-3 minutes until they just start to get soft. Sprinkle them with the cinnamon and pour the maple syrup into the pot and continue to cook until the syrup starts to bubble. Then pour in the soymilk and vanilla. Stir well and as the mixture starts to simmer, add in the dissolved kuzu mixture. Keep on stirring well!!!

    The pudding will start to thicken. Once it has, remove pot from stove, let cool for 5 minutes and then pour the contents of pot into a glass dish to cool and set in the refrigerator. Let it firm up for about 1 hour in the fridge, then take it out and let stand at room temp for a few minutes before serving.


    Who could forget this one?! This is a delightful dessert with many layers. It is somewhat time-consuming to make, but is a very special occasion celebration cake. You will delight your guests with this absolutely scrumptious and mouthwatering recipe. Thank you to Harriet, whom lives on in our hearts and mouths every time we savor and share one of her specialties, such as the trifle.


    1. Sift together dry ingredients in a bowl.
    2. In another bowl whisk together wet ingredients until emulsified. Add the dry mixture slowly to the wet mixture, incorporating until smooth & light.
    3. Oil and flour three 11x16 glass cake dishes and pour batter into them evenly.
    4. Bake at 375° for about 20 minutes.

    Sato's Tofu Whipped Cream

    Put all ingredients in blender and mix till smooth. Will take at least two-three minutes and alternate very fast and slow.

    Rum Custard

    1. Put all but 1/4 cup of soy milk in pot with agar and slowly heat to dissolve agar. Should take about 5 minutes.
    2. Dissolve arrowroot in 1/4 cup soy milk.
    3. Slowly stir into pot till thickened.
    4. Stir in maple syrup.
    5. Put into freezer or refrigerator to cool and set.

    Assembling your Trifle

    1st cake layer :

    1. Break up 1 cake layer into small pieces and lay in bottom of bowl.
    2. Spread with raspberry jam.
    3. Put in layer of whipped cream
    4. Sprinkle with 3/4 pt. fresh raspberries

    2nd cake layer

    1. Place another layer of cake in whole on top
    2. Sprinkle with 1/4 cup sherry (if desired)
    3. Spread out the package of defrosted frozen raspberries
    4. Spread a layer of whipped cream

    3rd cake layer

    1. Place the last layer of cake in whole on top
    2. Sprinkle with 1/4 cup of sherry
    3. Press down as much as you can and let sit for 5 to 10 minutes
    4. Spread out Rum Custard
    5. Spread last layer of whipped cream
    6. Garnish with rest of raspberries and some mint if you like.

    Pear Millet Surprise

    This is a great sweet treat and comforting warm dessert for these cooler autumn evenings that everyone in the family will enjoy. Pears are just starting to come into season, so pick out a few golden beauties and simmer away!


    Combine all ingredients in a heavy saucepan with a lid. Bring to a boil. Cover and simmer, stirring occasionally until all liquid is gone (watch at the end to see that it doesn't scorch.) Portion into serving dishes and let cool. Sprinkle with browned almond garnish.

    Almond Garnish

    Chop almonds, sauté in canola oil lightly. Add vanilla and rice syrup powder, stir well until crispy. Top individual portions of pudding with nut garnish.



    May this kitchen be so filled with peace
    that all who eat food prepared here
    receive peace.
    May this kitchen be so filled with happiness
    that all who eat food prepared here
    receive happiness.
    May this kitchen be so filled with good will
    that working here is a joy.
    Bless this kitchen
    Bless all who work here.
    Bless the food that is prepared here.
    May this kitchen and the work done here
    be a blessing to all who live.

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