A column devoted to informative
integrative health resources on the Internet
Raw Food Cuisine — Part 1
I'm not a "raw foodist," though I will
happily describe myself as a "raw food enthusiast." I host surprisingly
gourmet (if informal) raw food potluck dinners. Folks might bring a
prepared dish or some items from their garden; Friends have also brought
fresh herbs that they've only vaguely heard of before they purchased
them. We make soups, salads, wraps, dips, desserts, and on weeks when
I can manage it I prepare flax crackers, fresh from the dehydrator.
My first bit of advice about raw food is "just try it." Participate
in local potluck dinners, try items from recipe books and online sources, invest
in your first piece of new kitchen equipment, whether a good sharp knife, or
a Vitamix. Choosing to eat raw food sometimes doesn't mean you must
give up anything dearly beloved in your diet (unless you want to). But it will
be a wondrous addition to both your palate, and your health.
Raw Vegan Potlucks
These are some good starting points to find local potluck dinners.
find one near you? Start your own!
Recipes on the Web
Okay, now you've got a potluck to attend. What to make? Honestly,
no one will mind if you bring a regular salad or fruit salad. If you
want to explore
something outside your usual fare try the recipe sites above. On my site, rawfoodwiki.org,
you can actually add your own recipes directly. (Please take care not to delete
anything.) You can also search for recipes by ingredient. On Vegweb.com, you
can submit your own recipes which will be reviewed and edited before being
added to the page. Scroll down to the raw options, at http://vegweb.com/cgi/submit.cgi
If you find a recipe that you love on one of these pages, let me know, I'd
like to try it too! My current favorites include the Cream of Celery Soup,
Tomato Soup, and Raw Apple Pie.
- Raw Family:
A True Story of Awakening
- Eating Without Heating
- Detox Your World
- Hooked on Raw
- The Saucy Vegetarian
- Sproutman's Kitchen Garden Book
These are some of my favorite recipe books. Raw
Family has only
a few (great) recipes, but it tells a terrific story. Eating
Without Heating is by the teenage
children in that family; their recipes are delicious and accessible. Detox
Your World is a superb self-published book by Shazzie. Get it directly
I once combined the last two books into a wedding present. A recent raw food
enthusiast has put together a more extensive book list,
This is an attractively-designed site to help you find "raw buddies" in
your area, no matter where in the world you live.
Before and After
My favorite inspiration to eat raw food comes from pictures of people
done it. They look great. "SAD" in the third URL stands for "Standard
American Diet." I've got a collection of more of these visual
transformation stories at http://www.rawfoodwiki.org/index.php/Photographs
Speaking of photographs, check out the Durian Palace. There's
never been a more loving tribute to a fruit. In contrast, here are
and amusing quotes about how bad durians smell, even when perfectly ripe and
ready-to-eat. http://www.confabulist.com/root?story=durian_returns (Note:
Sept. 2004, above link no longer works.)
Here's a good illustration — a man with a durian and a nose clip! — http://www.smithsonianmag.si.edu/smithsonian/issues99/sep99/durian.html
Can you guess that I'm not a durian fan? I know some people who think
it's the best food on earth! Decide for yourself. You're most
likely to find one at an Asian market.
Here are some raw tips:
1. You don't need exotic ingredients to make great raw cuisine.
Ripe, in-season, fresh, organic produce will delight.
2. You don't actually need a juicer to make juice. A blender
will do, along with a mesh bag from:
http://www.purejoylivingfoods.com/products/equipment.shtml or http://www.rawfamily.com/products.htm
(These bags can also be used to make nut milks, or to grow sprouts.)
3. If you have a Champion Juicer, you can use it to make soft ice cream.
Frozen ripe bananas plus raspberries blend into a delicious treat.
4. Salad always tastes great with the Boutenko family's "Generic
Salad Dressing Recipe." I have a copy on my website, at www.rawfoodwiki.org — the
first "hit" if you search for the word "generic," but
I recommend their books, for more great recipes.
5. Sharing food is more fun.
Special Profile — Free Alan Yurko
I look forward to sharing raw cuisine with Alan Yurko and his family
when he is free. You may remember him as the man sent to prison for
life, wrongly convicted
of the murder of his vaccinated son. The medical examiner in this case was
suspended in February 2004, after the discovery of egregious errors in the
autopsy. (He had misidentified the baby's race, age, and head circumference,
for instance, and even described organs that he never examined — they had
already been harvested for transplant.) I encourage Townsend
to learn more about Alan Yurko's story, and consider making a contribution
toward his considerable legal expenses. You could mail a check, or contribute
via the PayPal link, or get some cool stuff at the online "Yard Sale." Alan
has already been incarcerated for 6-1/2 years.
Marjorie Roswell is a web developer at
a health policy organization in Baltimore.