Planning My Future & Raw Strawberry Tart

Good morning and happy Monday! I hope you had a fun weekend. I did…look what I made!

Yum, yum! What? You don’t think making delicious treats is a good way to spend the weekend? Well, I suppose that makes me different. Ironically, it was after spending 4+ hours in the kitchen on Saturday afternoon making this tart along with a giant vegetable soup, I felt a lightbulb of inspiration that cooking healthy food is my passion. Yes, I do love studying nutrition and public health, but I am the happiest and most inspired when I’m working with food.

You see, this realization is important as I think about my future career plans and what I want to do after I finish my degrees. I’m no young pup (I’m well into my 3rd decade on the planet) and it’s taken me almost this long to figure out what I want to do with my life.Β I don’t have regrets for the other avenues I’ve pursued and the fact that it’s taken me so long to be happy, but I’m so grateful and thankful that I’m there, or at least on the right path.

What does this mean? Well, I likely won’t become a registered dietitian, but I will become a dietetic technician instead (saving me from 1,200 of supervised, unpaid clinical hours). I will finish my masters degree in public health nutrition, but I won’t be pursuing a traditional job in public health or nutrition. Instead, I’m going to stay focused on food and wellness and inspiring people to cook health-promoting meals at home, through my blog, my writings and whatever other avenues develop.

Thanks for letting me pore my heart out, but I’m so ecstatic to feel alive, motivated and connected.

Now, back to the food. Remember when I wrote about this strawberry pie I had at a local vegan restaurant on my anniversary last week? It looked like this:

It was very, very good and Alan made the brilliant suggestion to use Gena’s raw almond cookies as a base in replicating this at home. I’ve adapted her cookies a little bit such as including a cup of gluten-free oats and a few other changes, but this is definitely still her recipe and I am so obliged to her for posting it.

To start, I simply food-processed the oats and almonds into a flour-like consistency:

I then added the raisins and all the other goodies to make the “batter:”

I’ve been slowly cutting back on the maple syrup (Gena used agave in her recipe), but it still needs just a tad to keep in together. I might even try using water at some point because there is plenty of sweetness from the raisins and currents in my version.

I pressed the mixture into a tart pan; it comes apart when the tart is ready to be served:

I used one pint of fresh strawberries for the tart and another pint for the sauce which was made simply by mashing up the strawberries in a bowl and adding just about a teaspoon of ZSweet (you could use regular sugar or stevia if you prefer).

This process is called maceration. Anywho, it makes for a nice sauce on the tart. If I had some xantham gum or corn starch, I probably would have added a teeny bit to help thicken the sauce, but it is not necessary.

So after I pressed the dough into the tart pan, I sliced a pint of strawberries and then poured over the sauce. I let it chill in the fridge for a few hours and it turned out so amazing. The crust was delicious and the filling was divine:

Alan and I nearly half of it for dessert on Saturday night, this is a photo of 1 of about 3 slices I had:

Here’s the recipe:

The last of my exciting news is that I’ve updated my blog’s design! You can see it on my home page by clicking here. What do you think? I love it; it still looks like “me,” but it’s been updated to be more user-friendly. What do you think?

How do you feel when thinking about your current life’s situation? Are you doing what you love or at least making changes to get there? For the longest time, I wanted to make changes but I didn’t know what my interests were. Do you have any tips for finding your passion in life?

Have a great day and I’ll see you back here on Wednesday with yet another exciting announcement that can include YOU!

Note: This recipe was submitted to Gluten-Free Fridays and Healthy Vegan Fridays!



  1. says

    Wow, the tart looks really beautiful and I imagine its perfume and sweetness. Summer on a crust!

    I have been ‘following’ you for a while now and I must say, your new blog style, the openess, your new profile pic, all add up to something really sweet. Well, sweet probably is not the word but it feels like you’ve softened and found YOU and you (and we) like what we see. Does that make ANY sense at all? I am very happy for you that you’ve ‘found’ your niche. May it bring you joy and success, and lots of happy belly’s! x

    • says

      Thanks, India, I really appreciate the nice comment and for your support and interest. I’m so glad you like the new look of my blog, I felt it was time for a refresher. Hugs to you!

  2. Gina says

    Hi Carrie. I love the new look of the blog! And I’m loving your enthusiasm in this post. It’s great to see your excitement over what you’re doing and it really does spill over onto all of us who read your blog. Keep up the awesome work!

  3. says

    Carrie I love the banner! The site looks awesome and very user-friendly- nice job!

    Good for you for recognizing your passion! I’ve followed your blog for a long time and think it makes so much sense for you to continue to write about food and wellness. You’ve inspired me and countless others I’m sure. Good luck with the upcoming adventures πŸ™‚

    Lovely strawberry tart too! I just thought I’d add- I’ve used water in raw recipes before to help everything stick together and it works great! No need to add more sweetener which is great. And don’t worry- I think a weekend spent cooking up delicious food is so fun and time well spent. You are not alone πŸ™‚

    • says

      Thanks, Gabby! And, I do appreciate the confirmation that water can be used to help stick together raw ingredients. Now I’ll just cross my fingers that my husband doesn’t notice the lack of maple syrup in these cookies that he’s now addicted to. πŸ™‚

  4. barb says

    love the new look, so happy for you, love your blog. Your new design made me happy instantly. Great job

  5. Robyn :) says

    Have you thought about writing a book? Maybe a combination of an account of your road to becoming a vegan mixed with recipes? Kind of like Bethany Frankel’s first book. I know you have inspired me more than you know and you inspire others as well.

    I like the new look of your website.

    I am happy with my current life situation. I have a job that I love and we are looking for a house to buy. Also thinking about trying to have a baby. I have no advice for following your passion as it was very serendipitous how I found my job.

    • says

      Hi Robyn! Thanks for the awesome comment. Yes, I have thought about writing a book but you know I also have my secret project going on that should launch early fall, so I will see where that takes me. Thank you for saying that I inspired you, it made me feel really good. I’m so happy for all of the great changes you’ve made and that you are content. Good luck with all of your projects, big and small! πŸ™‚

  6. Paula says

    It is just wonderful reading how happy you are and how you found your calling. Congrats. You’re an inspiration to all of us who follow this blog. I love the recipes you share and reading so much positive here it really has made me feel more positive in my own life. If you do decide to produce a cookbook, I sure would be one who would buy it.

  7. says

    I love the look of that pie…making me so hungry right now! And I love the look of your new blog layout (your new picture at the top is really cute!).

    I share your same passion for food, specifically healthy food. Ever since making the decision to return to school last year to pursue my interest in nutrition, I found my real passion when I started my blog earlier this year. My passion for wholesome, healthy food has really come to shine by my blog posts and the research that goes into them, and all the hours I spend dreaming up recipes in the kitchen. I find my “zen” when I am knee deep in a mess of healthy food in my kitchen…and thats about the only place I can handle having a (temporary) mess! I knew there was a reason I felt so connected to you! Not only do we share similar passions for healthy food, but we also have similar career paths. This fall should be my last for the DTR program I’m in, so we’ll see where that takes me!

    Hmmm, and I wonder what your announcement may be on Wednesday…?

    • says

      Hi Shelby! We definitely have a lot in common and I’m so glad you’ve found your passion, too. I love your explanation of finding “zen” in the kitchen, that’s exactly how I feel, too. πŸ™‚

  8. Marilyn says

    Agree with all of the above! I love the new look of the blog. You know, there’s a new up and coming vegan show in September.

    I’m happy that you’ve found your calling. Isn’t that what we all want? How to make this world a better place?

    Your recipe looks way too complicated for me. I just don’t cook but I think you should consider a cookbook. Maybe incorporate some of that “uncluttering” you learned from those two books (name escapes me) and how people can incorporate that into their kitchen to unclutter their health and their meals and their bodies!! something I’m still learning despite just starting my 5th decade on this planet!

    I know whatever you do, you’ll be great! Lots of luck to you!

    • says

      Thanks, Tara! You’re right, there is something really special about putting your plans out there and then moving toward them, along with enjoying, relishing and honoring the present moment. I love reading about the coaching work that you are doing, it sounds like you’ve found your calling, too.

  9. says

    Carrie, glad to hear you figured out what you really want to do in your career and have a plan to put it in action! I think the toughest part is figuring out what you actually want/like/enjoy doing for a career and then finding a career field that involves your interests.

    BTW, the pie looks gorgeous! Fresh strawberries from the market?

    • says

      Thanks, NutriWife, I do appreciate your nice comment. I was never one of those kids who knew exactly what I was good at and how to put it into good use, perhaps I’m still figuring that out. But, I’ll try to have fun in the meantime. And, yes, I did get those berries at the market, I got 6 pints on Saturday and finished off the last one yesterday. Time for more! πŸ™‚

  10. says

    Congrats on finding your direction and passion. As they say, nothing worth doing comes easy. I only decided over a year ago to pursue nursing and won’t be finished for another 4-4 1/2 years, which will put me in my mid 30s.
    And that pie…juse awesomeness. I’m pinning it right now!

    • says

      Thanks, Reia, for your kind words. Nursing is an excellent field, I wish you the best of luck. I totally agree with you that it takes hard work to reach goals and, for me, it’s been about finding the right goals. It sounds like you found your passion, too, and that can never come too late. πŸ™‚

  11. says

    So much to catch up on!

    First, I love the new blog look πŸ™‚ Second, I’ll mention that, a few months ago, you reminded me on CR that, no matter what health care path I choose, it’ll be the right path. I have the very same thing to say to you: whatever you do with your dietetic education, you’ll be doing the right thing. So, kudos to you for following your heart.

    As for the tart, how beautiful! It never occurred to me to use my cookies for a pastry like that: the wheels are now spinning πŸ™‚

    • says

      Aww, thanks Gena! Also, I had forgotten about the comment I had made to you about pursuing a health career. Perhaps it was prophetic because I’m definitely feeling burned out now and really questioning what I’m doing. But, I don’t have to make any decisions at this point about which direction I’m going to go, so I suppose I’ll just take it one day at a time and let things work themselves out. Thanks for the reminder, I needed that. πŸ™‚

  12. Lilly says

    Love the perky, healthy new look of your blog, Carrie. Following your heart is the right thing to do. It’s exciting to see you discover your nutritious self. I learn from you and am inspired. As always, love your blog and recipes.

  13. says

    You sound so much like me! I too love nutrition, but do not want to be a “clinical dietition.” I am contemplating going to an alternative nutrition school here in the UK. Decisions, decisions… it can be challenging trying to find the right career path.

    Yum, that strawberry tart looks delicious!

    • says

      Thanks for the really nice comments, Vicky. It’s good to hear from someone else who has a similar dilemma in not wanting to go the traditional route in nutrition. I’m still not sure what I’ll end up doing, but I do know for sure that I love cooking and eating healthy food and trying to inspire others to do the same. Good luck with your future plans, let me know what you end up doing! πŸ™‚


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