New vegan cookbook breaks away from stereotypes


It’s a non-vegan world that Danielle Arsenault lives in, so when the worldly chef created her newest cookbook it highlighted the versatility of the lifestyle.

Arsenault’s Heal and Ignite: 55 raw, plant-based, whole-food recipes to heal your body and ignite your spirit was launched at the end of April and offers a culinary experience of the raw food chef’s knowledge and recipes from her time in the Great White North to her travels to over 30 countries.

“Heal and Ignite is for anyone not afraid to try something new and be pleasantly surprised it was delicious,” said Arsenault, who founded Pachavega Living Foods Education.

“The cookbook breaks stereotypes and I’m really happy to prove that this kind of food can be extremely delicious and very healthy.”

For the raw food chef, and other vegans like her, her journey into veganism began as a constant hunt for the freshest foods, and an education behind preparing them. It required a lot of patience along the way, she said.

“I wanted to show the versatility of the lifestyle and break those stereotypes surrounding it,” said Arsenault. “It’s encouraging the opposite of you shouldn’t do this or that – the last thing I want to do is sound righteous.”

Heal and Ignite, she said, has recipes for spreads, meals, smoothies and desserts, and became an extension of the raw vegan culinary school workshops and courses she runs in Canmore.

The popular culinary courses are quick to fill up, so Arsenault opened up eight additional spots for Nov. 10-19.

“For students to take the course, about 90 per cent of the cookbook came about from (these courses) – I already had the recipes and photos,” said Arsenault.

“A lot of it is from travelling … it’s about adapting and adopting the culinary secrets in of that culture.”

Arsenault’s frequent flyer miles are well used, and the chef and occasional overseas English teacher said, surprisingly, the meal staple in most cultures revolves around a plant-based food.

“What I discovered is that for the majority of the world, the majority is plant-based meals,” said Arsenault.

Heal and Ignite presents more than just a traditional cookbook with recipes. Aspects Arsenault incorporated into the cookbook include an explanation on how food in certain recipes benefits your health. It also has short historical stories, such as of Ann Wigmore, a pioneer of using wheatgrass.

Plus, Arsenault includes an all-natural bug repellent concoction she experimented with during bushwhacking adventures.

Heal and Ignite can be found online at, and will be made available at Canmore’s Toniq. Paperback is $22.99 and hardcover is $35.99.

For information on Arsenault’s raw vegan culinary courses, visit

As a bonus, Arsenault offered a recipe from her cookbook to Outlook readers.

Black pepper truffle cashew cream, Arsenault said, can be added to crackers, a scoop on a salad, pasta or even from the jar.


One cup raw cashews, soaked overnight and rinsed (you can also try pumpkin or sunflower seeds for a nut-free option)

cup sauerkraut juice (speeds up the fermentation process)

2 tbsp nutritional yeast

1 tbsp truffle oil

tsp onion powder

1 tsp pink salt

1 drop black pepper essential oil (optional)

Combine all ingredients into a high-speed blender and blend on high until smooth and creamy. This versatile dip can be used on any dish.


Crushed peppercorns for garnish and serve with kale curry crackers. Voila.


About Author

Rocky Mountain Outlook