Tuesday, August 10, 2010

RAW-some food!

I have been exploring the concept of raw food for some time and finally took the plunge and bought a few simple recipe books.  I am loving the way it feels to eat mostly raw all day!!  The recipes are so easy, we are making easy tasty dips, creative salads, dressings and snacks that the kids love and ask for.  We never plan to be 100% raw, because I do believe in animal protein, although it is from natural, organic and grass fed sources only, especially for growing children.  Here are some pictures of my newest raw fun foods.

These look like cookies, but they are power bars made from nuts, seeds, dried fruit and honey, then placed in the sun to dehydrate a bit.  The kids want these every chance they can get!  Oh and that is my home made hemp milk (from a previous post) in the background.

This is one of the many dips/dressings we have made using cashews and spices.  It is a ranch dressing believe it or not!  This one disappeared faster than I expected, and a few others have followed, a garlic pesto made with sunflower seeds and sweet mustard dressing.  The ranch dressing actually encouraged my very picky veggie-hating two year old to gobble down TWO, yes you read that right, two bowls of salad for dinner!!

This morning I made a "cereal" out of pears, walnut pulp (after making and straining walnut milk), cinnamon and honey.  We have even been sprouting, the kids actually sit and eat sprouted lentils like they are M&Ms!  No joke! 

It's easier than I thought to get raw foods into the kids, most of the recipes involve throwing some ingredients into a blender, I can do that!!  Make it look like a cookie and they are fans!  ha ha ha

Here are the recipes for the two pictured above:

Raw ranch dressing:
‎-1 cup cashew butter (I just blended 8 ounces of raw cashews with some grapeseed oil)
-1/2 cup water
-3 Tbsp lemon juice (fresh squeezed, about half a lemon, but I think it needs more)
-1 tsp raw cider vinegar
-pinch of salt
-1 tsp Italian seasoning or dried dill
-1 clove garlic
-1 stalk celery

Blend until smooth and creamy.

Raw energy bars:
Choose a combo of up to any five seeds/nuts and use 1 cup of each (mine are: sunflower seeds, almonds, pumpkin seeds and sprouted lentils) other options are pine nuts, soaked buckwheat, walnuts, cashews, and so forth. Blend in a powerful ...blender like the Blend Tec or Vitamix, just enough to chop them up into a thick powder.

Put the mix into a bowl, add a 1/4 of agave or honey with some water to moisten them for stick-factor, add in dried berries of some sort like goji, cranberries, mulberries, raisins, currants, etc.

Then you can make very compressed balls out of them and press them flat with your hands or use cookie molds so they can be pressed firmly into the mold. I laid them out in the sun to "dehydrate" a bit which firms them up and gives them a harder texture. That's it! 


Amy in Idaho said...

Do you have a recommendation for a cook book for raw 'cooking'?

Jessica said...

I haven't found any one book that has it all, but I have been using a handful and I find that I am opening three of them more often then the others. There is enough variety in each that they don't overlap at all. They are called Alive in Five, Raw Foods for Busy People and Raw in Ten Minutes. They are simpler recipes, I wanted fast, easy foods that wouldn't take a long time to prepare. Perhaps I will move on to more complicated recipes when I feel like I have gotten these down.

Amy in Idaho said...

Thanks! I picked up a couple of used books at my local bookstore but I'll look for these as well. I'm hoping I can create some crunchy, non-processed foods that the kiddo will eat (and if it's made from flax, even better).

Jessica said...

I just bought another one I actually really like for snacks and dips/dressings - The Everything Raw Food Recipe Book. It has 300 recipes and they all look fairly easy! There are some great books out there, but many can have cumbersome steps that I just don't have time for. Most require some form of sprouting or soaking of some sort, but that can be done just before going to bed, in most cases.