Yesterday I attended a raw food cooking class in Austin Texas taught by Dr. RitaMarie Roscalzo. She titled the name of the show "Magic in the Kitchen" and gleefully donned her favorite wizard tee for the occasion. :)
Wait, what do you mean, Raw Foods?!
The raw food diet is a diet based on unprocessed and uncooked plant foods, such as fresh fruit and vegetables, sprouts, seeds, nuts, grains, beans, nuts, dried fruit, and seaweed.
Heating food above 116 degrees F is believed to destroy enzymes in food that can assist in the digestion and absorption of food. Cooking is also thought to diminish the nutritional value and "life force" of food. Typically, at least 75% of the diet must be living or raw.
Proponents of the raw food diet believe it has numerous health benefits, including:
Increased Energy, Improved Skin Appearance, Better Digestion, Weight Loss, and a Reduced risk of heart disease...
The raw food diet contains fewer trans fats and saturated fats than the typical Western diet. It is also low in sodium and high in potassium, magnesium, folate, fiber and health-promoting plant chemicals called phytochemicals.
These properties are associated with a reduced risk of diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. For example, a study published in the Journal of Nutrition found that consumption of a raw food diet lowered plasma total cholesterol and triglyceride concentrations. Source: Cathy Wong
I believe eating more raw foods will help you live as lucid as you can live. The ingredients are fresh & alive, not burned or on fire. But what the hell is a raw foodist supposed to eat then? No bread. No pasta. No tofu chicken. No nothing? No.
BACK TO CLASS
Before the event Dr.Ritamarie asked us to clean out our refrigerators and bring in items (still fresh) that might typically be found in our homes. I brought in rainbow chard, fresh spinach, a yellow bell pepper, a large juicy mango, cilantro, fresh ginger, and lemons. Her mission was to take our grocery bags full of.....whatever we stuffed inside of them, and show us how to turn them into a quick healthy "raw" meal. What followed was the tastiest Thai "Soup" ever.
If you have a food processor or high speed blender this can work for you to. Try it.
Chop one large mango and lemons and add to blender to form a juicy base. The lemon juice counteracts the bitterness of some greens. Chop or tear pieces of rainbow chard, spinach, cilantro and add to blender. Add chopped yellow bellpepper and a good size chunk of fresh ginger. In come the secret ingredients: Add about 2 tsp of coconut butter, 3/4 tsp tumeric, and 1/2 tsp dulse (optional). You can also add a kefir lime leaf or lemongrass for the ultimate thai flavor. Now all you do is Blend It until you reach a desired consistency and enjoy. It is so savory and deliciously Green! As Green and Simple as it gets actually.
With what was left of the greens I brought in, she made a simple salad. She chopped the rest of the rainbow chard and spinach, added lemon, and then massaged the greens with her hands. Finally she added olive oil and a lil sesame oil to give that Asian flavor, tossed on some sesame seeds and passed the salad around for us all to partake. A few women suggested adding ground nuts or ginger juice to top it off. It thought it was great as is. I never realized how easy it was to make a soft Asian salad.
Did I mention we also learned how to make the most delicious chocolate frosting in the world AND also witnessed a fabulous recipe redo: lemon fluff delight. Yeah, you can have it all raw. It is amazing how much creativity goes into this way of preparing food and the joy you get when eating it. With all the right equipment, and information abut what ingredients you will need to have in your kitchen, you will be all set.
If you are at all interested in learning more about raw foods, I highly recommend a visit to Dr. Ritamarie's website and blog. It contains an awesome collection of FREE articles, e-books, green cleanse videos, and all the inspiration you need to transition to living a healthier lifestyle. Also, if you are in Austin, consider attending a raw food POTLUCK.
One farmer says to me, "You cannot live on vegetable food solely, for it furnishes nothing to make the bones with;" and so he religiously devotes a part of his day to supplying himself with the raw material of bones; walking all the while he talks behind his oxen, which, with vegetable-made bones, jerk him and his lumbering plow along in spite of every obstacle. ~Henry David Thoreau