I have been through raw cleansing, met people that have lived fully raw, read a lot of things about it and greatly enjoy making salads and raw sweets. The past 4 weeks I spent on an organic permaculture farm in the Southern part of Costa Rica. While I did not actually learn as many raw food creations as I was expecting too, I fine-tuned my creativity and created a lot on my own. The kitchen here is very very basic as the owner supports mostly mono-meals and kind of lives on a constant detox, for health reasons.
So, imagine mainly fruit and vegetables. For real. That’s it. And salt and pepper. Wild basil in the garden. So first of all, there are no nuts and seeds in the house, or dried fruit for easy raw dessert creations. Second of all, there are really not a lot of herbs and spices present, either! We actually had dates once and our pantry grew with Cinnamon, Mustard and Soy Sauce. Of course every now and then we have cilantro in the house so we can guac’ it up with those mega jungle avocados. We bought Cacao, Oats and Vanilla on our own to create some starchy and sweet fillers and binders. There actually is vanilla growing in the amazing garden but it wasn’t time for it yet :) Other things that you can find while stumbling through the lush colors of the vibrant garden:
3 types of delicious bananas
Tiny red peppers
Spicy red pepper
Different types of Spinaches
Plenty of healing leaves
…. and I am sure I just forgot a bunch of others!
So our main staples are usually papaya, mango, pineapple, watermelon, citrus fruit, carrots, cucumbers, squash, onions and avocados. Most people here start getting super frustrated with the food as they have never been raw before and of course the body will first respond with shock, strong detoxing signs like tiredness and a lot of cravings. I tried to help while I was there and we had a few really great dinners. Simple. Raw. Vegan. Nut Free!
Raw Eden Curry
This is probably my favorite and I am going to make it very often the next summer of my life. Extremely healthy and so refreshing!
– Blend the following:
2-3 cups Soft meat of young coconut
A few cm of fresh turmeric and ginger
Garlic leaf of Garlic Clove as desired
A handful of Cilantro
A tbsp. of Curry Powder if available
A teaspoon of mustard
Ground Salt Pepper and Coriander
Chili or spicy pepper if desired
If you want it really nice and creamy tossed up with vegetables like squares of squash and grated carrot, add just very little water for blending. 1/2 cup maybe. Serve on the table with sliced vegetables so everyone can create their own curry!
Raw Eden Lasagna
Pick either a very round squash or a long and even Zucchini. With a round squash you can build individual round lasagna towers, a long zucchini sliced the long edge will look more like actual lasagna/pasta sheets.
Slice squash as thinly and evenly as possible. Set aside. Prepare the fillings!
1st Layer: Guacrema
Blend: Avocado, wild chive or onion, lime juice, garlic (leaf) and salt and pepper. Sorry, measurements are up to you here ;). Be careful, taste, adjust!
2nd Layer: Pesto
Blend or Process: Your herb of choice (ex. rosemary and or basil) with garlic, wild chive, salt and pepper, a few oats, olive oil if in your diet, and tiny bit of red pepper if available. Depending on how much water you needed to add for it to combine, add in more oats after if it is too liquid.
3rd Layer: Tomato Sauce
Blend: Tomato, Mustard, Salt Pepper, Onions and Oats. If too liquid, stir in oats after and let it thicken up.
4th Topping: CREAMY POWERDRIZZLE
Blend Sauerkraut, Oats Salt, Pepper, Coriander and Garlic until you have a really nice creamy sauce. Drizzle over top of your lasagna towers :)
Slice off the head of the peppers, take insides out. Set aside.
Blend: Soaked chickpeas with basil, lime juice, garlic, onion, salt, pepper, coriander, soy sauce and mustard. Add in a bit of avocado if you want it extra creamy and change the color a bit!
Process a cup of dates with 5 tbsp of cacao. Blend with 1 c of oat flour, 5 tbsp of coconut oil and 1 tbsp of liquid sweetener. For the frosting, mix 2 tsp of coconut oil with 1 tbsp liquid sweetener, 1 tsp of vanilla and 2 tbsp of cacao. Fill in a tray with aluminium foil or baking paper, drizzle frosting on top and grate some fresh coconut on them. set in the freezer until solid. Thaw slowly in the fridge and slice when the knive goes through easily. Eat immediately or refreeze the individual pieces to eat whenever a choco craving pops up :)
Blend Bananas with cacao, vanilla, coconut oil and if available, peanut butter! OMG !
Banana Ice Cream
The quick fix for a sweet craving! Blend frozen bananas. That’s it ;). Do not add any water. The more bananas the easier, cause you can just poke the mixture from the top to keep blending without catching the blades. Add in whatever flavors you like, and if you have access to colorful fruit, throw it in for a change of flavor and color!
Overnight Oat Delight
For a group of 4: Mash 4 bananas with 1 tbsp of cinnamon in a small pot! Fill pot 3/4 with Oats, add in slices of fresh young coconut meat. Top up with water, Stir, cover, refrigerate and enjoy in the morning. These feel sooooo good in the stomach!
Papaya Ice Cream with Cookie Dough
1 cup frozen bananas, with 1/2 cup frozen papaya and 1/2 cup guayabana. Blended with lime, ginger and vanilla. Top up with cookie dough balls! To make raw cookie dough: Add coconut oil to oat flour with cinnamon and a touch of coffe until you can roll the dough in your hands without it sticking to it :). Pull and roll little pieces off.
One more thing: I do not preach for a fully raw diet. I advise you to include as much raw fruit and vegetables in your day as you possibly can. Especially in the summer months. But I advise balance. Currently, I am very interested in the new ‘RawTill4’ trend and will think about implementing some of it in my life. Of course, I am for Veganism. And clean food. Homecooked. Without preservatives. These 4 weeks felt intense at times, my body sure did appreciate them and look at all those beautiful colors!
Okay everyone :) Check other posts of mine for raw recipes and of course stay tuned for the vegan news, thoughts and recipes! Also, check out my favorite recipe blog: thisrawsomeveganlife.com for much more inspiration.
VEGAbonding’s first issue as an online magazine is also in the works and I will hopefully be publishing soon. The issue will be all about Canada, mindful (Vegan) Traveling, Soul matters, Spiritual trips, living the roadie life, and of course, FOOD! :)