Friday, September 14, 2012

Welcome to the Raw Revolution!

Hey there Veggie fans!  Here we are at phase three of my journey through some of my veggie cookbooks while MSB works hard in Guinea, West Africa.

For the next five days we'll be following the meal plans in Cherie Soria's book The Raw Revolution .  In addition to the menu suggestions and the recipes for the menus and other recipes she has several chapters on the theory of the benefits of eating raw food.

Most of us have heard about the theory regarding enzymes in raw foods are beneficial for our health. Enzymes are very sensitive to heat.  Therefore raw foodists contend that food should not be warmed beyond 107 - 125 degrees.  I encourage you to read some of the ideas behind this and let me know what you think.  I know I feel great when I eat raw food and am not sure if it has anything to do with enzymes or just that the food is jam packed with all sorts of nutrients.

Since enzymes are proteins and all proteins are pretty thoroughly denatured (broken down) in the stomach when exposed to the digestive juices there that is primarily Hydrochloric acid - a pH of about 2.  Highly, highly acidic.  I've never put a huge amount of stock in the intact enzyme theory.  You have to decide for yourself.  That's just my take on it all.

So - this program is much less scripted than the ones we've done thus far.  I'm happy about this now for a lot of reasons.  First - I'm hoping to clear out some of the accumulated produce from the past two weeks that I've purchased and not had recipes for.'s nice to have some leeway when it comes to finding something to eat, especially when confronted with having a meal away from home.

MSB and I eat out a lot!  Making so many meals at home has been a real change for me but I've really enjoyed making the recipes thus far.  What I've really enjoyed most though is knowing exactly what is in each thing that I've eaten.

For breakfast this morning we were told to have a piece of fresh fruit so I had the last banana in the basket.  Then for lunch I was able to get together with a lovely woman that I met while serving in Africa last spring on the Africa Mercy .  Her husband is the head surgeon on the ship and is world renown for all the brilliant Head and Neck surgeries he's done.  They are here this week for an Oral Surgery meeting where he received yet another major award.  His wife and I enjoyed lunch at one of my favorite restaurants - True Food Kitchen
I not only had a terrific raw salad I also had some kale, carrot, apple and celery juice.  Almost as tasty as the veggie juice I make at home. They are chain restaurant headquartered in Phoenix, with several here in So. Cal.  If you have the chance to eat at one I think you'll be very impressed.

But I did make a meal today.  It was a bit of a struggle since we had record breaking heat here.  Yes, even near the ocean where it almost never gets hotter than the mid 70's and it was well over 100 degrees here.  Thousands and thousands of people could be heard doing their best Wicked Witch of the East impression of  "I'm MELTING! MELTING!"  So, once again - I'm so very, very glad that I didn't commit to blogging about a series of meals where I would be slaving over hot pans and ovens.  That would not have gone over well today at all!

Broccoli Tahiniiiiii
For dinner Cherie suggests a Broccoli-Tahini Pate with Crudites with a simple salad with some walnuts.  I made the salad with the walnuts but used some of the left over salad dressing I had from our previous menus.  The pate' took some effort as there was blanched broccoli which was then plunged in ice water so that it didn't really cook. Save the enzymes, you know. This broccoli was then added garlic, flax, mustard, soy sauce (tamari) and some tahini and pulsed to a fair thee well in the food processor.

Simple Salad
Tahini is a sesame paste that is frequently used in middle eastern cuisine.  The pate' is served as a dip for a variety of veggies.  It can also be used in a roll up as we've seen before.  Since there's quite a bit of pate' here I just opted to put a plastic cover over the plate I arranged everything on and it should be a good insurance policy for any upcoming munchies.  Keeping with the grading scheme I think this dip suffers by comparison with all the terrific dips we experienced on the Fat Blast diet.  Given the need to make a dip in the future I won't be looking for the dog ear page in this book.  Sorry Cherie I'm giving this a C.

Tomorrow should have more recipes to try.  Here's the very abbreviated spreadsheet for today.
Name Category Diet Day Page number Rating
Broccoli-Tahini Pate Dip Raw Rev one 144 C

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