Can Cook Won’t Cook
This was the headline that I woke up to this morning:
Raw food doesn’t have to be scary
“I’d love to eat more raw food, but it’s just so complicated”.
This is a comment that I hear so often from my clients. People understand and want to enjoy the benefits of including more fresh and vibrant raw foods into their diets, but often get confused or overwhelmed by the array of gourmet raw foods recipes that are available.
And who wouldn’t be tempted by some of the raw dishes on offer. I remember the very first raw cook book that I brought, it was full of amazing sounding dishes, but some of them would take 3-5 days to prepare and require a whole kitchen full of gadgets.
The first recipe I found where I could get hold of the ingredients and had the right kitchen equipment was a raw food lasagne. It was delicious but did take three days to make. Now I know that obviously that wasn’t three days of being in the kitchen, but it was three days of being prepared and remembering to start my sprouting, soaking and dehydrating at the right time.
Was it worth it?
Yes. It was very tasty, but I have to be honest, it’s not a way that I enjoy to prepare food, I’m just not naturally that organised, and really how do I know that I want a raw lasagne in three days time.
Some raw foods recipes are like a step into the unknown, especially if you are only just starting out and yes it can be scary. First there is the wide range of food that is available:
- Many recipes ask for foods that are not found in regular supermarkets; Durian, jicama, young green coconuts, daikion, cacao, chia seeds,
- You have sprouts; Wheatberries, alfalfa, broccoli, red clover, buckwheat, quinoa
- You have sweeteners; Raw honey, agave syrup, yacon syrup, date paste
- You have superfoods: Barleygrass, lucuma, maca, bee pollen, kombucha, goji berries
Then there are the equipment and techniques:
However, I believe that raw food is the absolute opposite of scary and overwhelming.
What could be simpler than eating more fruit, for example snacking on an apple or a handful of fresh berries?
Tonight when you have your evening meal, make whatever you were going to make and then add a small salad to the side, or even if you don’t feel like making a salad, buy a bag of ready washed and prepared leaf from the supermarket and put that on the side of your meal. It will take less than 20 seconds to do.
Start slowly, this is a way of eating for life, not another fad. Don’t be concerned with percentages, just focus on finding a way of eating that suits your body and your lifestyle and then you will really begin to understand the benefits that raw foods can add to your life.
For some more tips on adding more raw food easily to your diet, click here
The Party is in full swing
The 21 day raw food celebration is still in full swing and it’s not too late to join.
The response to the recipes that I’ve shared have been amazing.
There have been juices, smoothies, desserts and of course ideas for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
If you’ve ever wondered what a raw food diet looks like there are even menu plans to follow.
The favourite recipe so far has been for my chocolate brownies, but I think some of the recipes that are coming up will give it a run for it’s money, such as my new favourite recipe my creamy Raw Alfredo.
If you would like to join us, and you will receive access to the recipes that have already been shared, just complete the form below.
Oh did I mention all this is free? This is my gift to you!
We had a great party – if you missed it, I hope to see you at the next one!
Do you have the right equipment?
Recently I was going through my wardrobe and I realised just how many pairs of shoes I have. Now I know that might come as no surprise but when you look at the variety of shoes it’s quite funny.
As you can see by the picture, the styles are quite different. The photo shows you my favourite pair for when I want to feel more glamorous and my favourite pair for when I’m rock climbing. Both have their place but I don’t need them to do either activity, but I might try and tell myself otherwise…
The same is true for your raw food kitchen.
There are loads of fancy pieces of equipment you can buy to make your raw food and your kitchen more glamorous, but if you don’t have them, it doesn’t mean that you can’t enjoy raw food.
All you really need to get started on a raw foods diet is a chopping board and a knife.
When I first went raw, I could make amazing dishes with just a few basics:
Blender (and no this was not a vitamix, it was just a standard blender that cost about £25)
Years later I have a kitchen full of gadgets, many of which I don’t use… And it’s still the basics that I go back to.
A frequent comment I have from my clients is that they believe they can’t go raw until they have a particular piece of equipment or have a cupboard full of superfoods. If you have found yourself thinking this, does this pop up in other areas of your life too?
All too often we can find ourselves coming up with excuses not to start something, perhaps you will start when you have the right pieces of equipment, when you have attended that additional piece of training, found the perfect man/house/car/job…
But in truth all you need to do is get started.
Take action and you will be surprised how everything starts to become easier. You don’t have to take giant leaps, baby steps work just as well.
If you want to include more raw foods in your diet, just adding some fruit and/or a fresh green salad to your day is the perfect start and no special equipment, techniques or hard to source food is required.
Then as you start to feel the benefits, grow in confidence and want to experiment you can do so at your own pace. This is not a race, it is not about being 50%, 75% or 100% – It is about finding out what works for you and creating a sustainable diet that will bring you the best health, vibrant energy and the ability to live a happy and healthy life, hopefully a very long and fulfilling one where you can touch your toes at 90 years old!.
I know that the idea of raw foods can seem overwhelming or confusing, but it really isn’t, so in response to client’s requests on where to begin and how to get started I have created three quick start guides that provide you with the answers to my most commonly asked questions on Raw Foods, Smoothies, Juices.
They include information on:
Learn why there is an ever growing love for raw food
Learn the essential techniques you need in a raw foods kitchen
Get clear on the equipment you need in your new raw foods kitchen
Delicious recipes to get you started
You will learn my top tips to make increasing the raw food in your diet, quicker and simpler than you would have thought possible
Discover the answers to the questions that I get asked most about raw food
These guides have been designed to show you how simple it is to add raw food to your diet, to learn more about the Quick Start Guides click here
So remember if nothing else, whether it’s raw food, or your next project, just take that first step in the direction that you want to go and everything else will follow!
What step will you be taking? – use the comment box below to make the commitment to yourself today!
7 Reasons to Love Homemade Juices and Smoothies
We all know that we should be eating at least ’5 portions of fruit and vegetables a day’, I’m still surprised that some people find this a daunting task – and ‘No’ crisps and chips don’t count!!
Juices and smoothies are packed full of vitamins, minerals and nutrients and can easily contain all of your ’5 a day’. It has never been so easy to get your 5 a day.
Juices and Smoothies are becoming increasingly popular and can often be food in supermarkets and stores, however the best benefits are gained when you make your own. Here are my reasons why:
- Shop brought juices and smoothies will have been in their bottle for at least several days
- The vitamin and mineral content will start to decrease from the moment it’s made, so homemade will contain more nutrition
- By making your own recipes you will know exactly what is in your juice or smoothie
- You can tailor make your juice or smoothie for your exact taste and mood
- You can use organic products and decrease your exposure to chemicals and pesticides
- Your homemade juice or smoothie will be free from additives
- It’s great fun to experiment get creative!
Back to Basics: Raw Food Techniques
Although on a raw food diet, raw foods aren’t ‘cooked’, that doesn’t mean that there aren’t specific techniques that are used to prepare the food.
In fact there are many techniques used that make foods more digestible and add variety to the diet, including:
- Sprouting seeds, grains, and beans
- Juicing fruit and vegetables
- Soaking nuts and dried fruit
- Dehydrating food
- Cutting and preparing fruits and vegetables
Over the following weeks we are going to look at each of these in turn to add variety to your food.
Sprouts Part 2 – How to…
Directions for growing sprouts in a jar
- Put about 1 tablespoon of alfalfa or clover seeds, or 4 tablespoons of beans or large seeds – removing any that are broken or damaged – in a wide-mouth glass jar.
- Place a piece of cheesecloth, muslin, or material suitable for straining, over the mouth of the jar. Use a rubber band or a ring lid to hold the material securely in place.
- Rinse the seeds by filling the jar with water, gently swirl it around and then drain through the straining material.
Lentils will take a lot more rinsing as they are coated with a starch.
- Soak the seeds, grains, or beans in room temperature water overnight.
- In the morning, pour off the water in the jar and rinse the seeds/beans again.Repeat the rinsing 2-3 times a day.
It is important to ensure that any excess water drains off as the sprouts should not stand in water.
- When the seeds/beans begin to sprout – usually about the third or fourth day – move the jar into the light to activate the chlorophyll and turn the sprouts green.
Coming next – Part 3: Which seeds and beans are best to sprout
Sprouts Part 1 – What you need…
How do I use sprouts?
Sprouts are excellent fresh vegetables and are ideal for use in salads, sandwiches, dips and soups. They can add great flavour, texture and colour to any of your favourite dishes.
How do I sprout?
Anyone can sprout, no matter how small your kitchen.
Sprouts can be grown almost anywhere and the best part is you only need a few basic supplies to get started. By following a few simple steps, you can grow your own continuous supply of nutritious and tasty sprouts.
The easiest method to grow your own sprouts is to grow them in a jar
What you will need
- A jar or sprouting equipment of your choice
- Fresh, clean water
- Seeds, beans or pulses of your choice
Coming next – Sprouts Part 2 – How to…