Agathe Mathieu is the chef and owner of the North Vancouver raw, vegan and organic Café by Tao. Just stepping into this café and you are overcome with a feeling of health and well-being. Next time you’re in North Van, definitely give yourself a bit of extra time to pop by their beautiful, new location overlooking Lonsdale Quay. Agathe is raw vegan, she has studied raw food at Living Light Culinary Institute, and has owned Café by Tao for 5 years now.
Agathe and her daughter Chrystelle
Let’s learn more…
What made you adopt a raw vegan lifestyle?
A friend lent me 12 Steps to Raw by Victoria Boutenko and I began eating raw the next day. I have now been eating 100% raw since August 2003!
What differences have you seen in yourself since going vegan?
· after only three months on a raw vegan diet, rheumatoid arthritis disappeared
· extra weight melted away
· floaters in my vision vanished
· my rosacea subsided
· my energy level soared and I still have a lot of energy today!
How did Café by Tao start!?
I started first with selling some items wholesale: kale chips, vegan cheesecakes, veggie burger patties, falafel patties, crackers, etc. One thing lead to another, and in March 2012, I opened Café by Tao.
You’ve moved to a beautiful new location in North Van! This must mean Tao is doing well 🙂 Have you noticed people becoming more curious about the vegan lifestyle and the foods you create?
I have definitely seen more interest in the vegan or plant-based lifestyle now than when I first began eating this way. People are more open to trying new foods and there is more emphasis now on adding more plant-based foods to your diet.
How long have you been a raw vegan chef?
5 years officially with the opening of the café. In 2007, I took a 3 week course at Living Light Institute. Being a single mother of three, I came back and continued the learning in my kitchen. My children were my teachers really telling me if a dish was fantastic or not ;o) Great critics!
What are the 3 (or 5) reasons you tell people to go vegan?
For our health, for our environment, for the animals, to create a better future for our children and our planet.
What would you like people to know about Tao ? What is your mission?
At Tao one discovers how delicious plant-based diet can be, how easy it is to prepare, feel younger and energized! Our mission at Tao is to provide a healthy option to our community and to encourage people to include more plant-based foods in their diet. Our vision is to teach “ Health and Business Training” to open ones’ own organic plant-based café restaurant in their community. How clever of Mother Earth to put the medicine in our food!
Now onto the food!
Agathe’s Raw Lemon Blueberry Coulis Cake:
This flavourful vegan cake is free of wheat, dairy and refined sugar. It’s also made with nutrient-dense ingredients that would make your mother proud.
All you need is a food processor, a blender, and a 6” spring form pan.
- 60 g pecans, soaked and dried
- 30 g raisins
- 10 g dates
- 45 g maple syrup
- 45 g of chopped dates
- 50 g lemon juice
- 45 g young coconut meat
- 140 g macadamia nuts, soaked 2 hours, rinsed
- 3 tbsp (45 g) coconut oil, melted
- 125 g fresh blueberries (if frozen thaw them first)
- 60 g dates, chopped
- Make crust: In a a food processor, mix ingredients until they form a dense ball you can fit in the palm of your hand. Mold it with your fingers at the bottom of the spring form pan to form the crust
- Make lemon filling: Mix maple syrup, chopped dates, lemon juice and coconut meat in your blender until smooth. Before you empty out the blender, add the macadamia nuts and coconut oil and continue blending until smooth
- Pour the lemon filling on top of the crust and refrigerate while you make the blueberry coulis.
- Make blueberry coulis: Mix dates and blueberries in your blender until creamy.
- Pour blueberry coulis on top of lemon filling and freeze for 6 hours, then move to the fridge.