When I went to Montreal about a month and a half ago, my sister made a delicious raw meal that I completely forgot to share with you! She got herself an amazing Vitamix mixer/blender and now she can make so many amazing raw foods.
If you don’t know what raw food is, it’s basically foods that haven’t been cooked, simple as that. Of course there is no meat or animal product whatsoever, so it is totally vegan and grain-free (gluten-free) and most of the time it’s organic, but sadly not always (I don’t see the point of going that far to be healthy and not eating foods that don’t contain pesticides or GMOs, but that’s just my personal opinion… haha). It’s based on the fact that food loses a lot of nutrients and enzymes when it is cooked at temperatures higher than 118F (48C), so by eating raw foods, you can get a lot more nutrients with a lot less food. It’s also easier to digest since it contains WAY more enzymes (enzymes are what your body needs to digest and is available in all vegetables and fruits, but get easily destroyed by heat). Sometimes people react to too much raw foods all at once because they’re not used to it, so you might need some time to adjust gradually. They think they have a hard time eating raw vegetables, but it’s actually because they are not used to have so much enzymes in their system.
Eating a ‘raw’ diet has a huge impact on the environment as well as on your health.
Although I’m not sure I could eat raw food 100% of the time, I am trying to increase the amount of raw vegetables (fruits are easy!) I eat on a continuous basis. It’s hard, isn’t it? But just like anything new, with time, it gets easier. It can be something easy like adding a large salad with every meal, having fresh fruits with breakfast in the morning, having an apple every afternoon on your way home from work, bringing some raw crudités & hummus with you at work for an afternoon snack, making homemade guacamole instead of buying greasy dips, or adding some raw vegetables on your plate at dinner instead of always cooking everything.
I find it easier to eat raw veggies in the summer than winter, of course, when everything is fresh and tastes so good, but even in the winter, it’s easy to add a few things here and there, and having a big green salad with your meals. It’s a conscientious effort, but well worth it. You’ll feel so much better! And obviously trying some raw recipes will definitely help; it’s so delicious!
So, back to my sister’s meal, she made a raw curry paste with soaked raw cashews (i.e. not toasted) and spices, then used that with julienne vegetables in a nori wrap to make raw ‘sushi’! all vegan, no fish, no animal product, and all organic! Served with a delicious dipping sauce, that stuff is totally addictive! And look how pretty it is. What a delicious way to eat more raw foods and some beneficial nori!
This recipe comes from the Crudessence “cook” book. Crudessence is an amazing raw company based in Montreal, Quebec, with a few restaurants in town and 2 main locations where they prepare raw foods to be sold in various health food stores in the larger Montreal area.
Not only content with the success of their company, the young Quebec entrepreneurs have also partnered with a local association and the City of Montreal in order to develop a ‘green roof’ on top of the Palais des Congrès (Convention Centre – all those large flat roofs are such a waste of space!) to produce vegetables that they in turn use in their own kitchen. This not only helps to feed city dwellers, produces oxygen and reduces CO2, but it also helps with the ‘heat island’ that we see in cities due to the amount of concrete everywhere that keeps the heat in, and it benefits urban honey bees; a great help for the local ecosystem. How’s that for local, fresh and organic?! Great job to them for doing this, I hope we see many more vegetable-producing roofs in the near future.
My sister and I each have their French recipe book, but they recently launched their English version! So make sure you have a look and buy it if it interests you, it’s a good purchase, their recipes are well-made, easy to follow, and very creative. I cannot wait to try more of their recipes!
My sister also made a super delicious raw ‘cheesecake’ that looks and tastes like the real thing, it’s so delicious! Unfortunately, I don’t have any pictures of that, I think we ate it too fast! 😉
here’s my translation of their recipe for the pâté used in the sushi:
- 2/3 cup raw organic sunflower seeds, soaked for 8 hours, really well rinsed
- 1 1/2 organic dates (no seeds)
- 2 tsp organic raw apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 tsp organic sunflower oil
- 1 Tbsp spring or filtered water
- 1 organic garlic clove
- 1/2 tsp unrefined fine grey sea salt
- 2 tsp organic curry powder
- 1 tsp organic turmeric powder
- 1/8 tsp organic cayenne powder
- 1 tsp organic cumin powder
- 2 Tbsp organic ground sunflower seeds
Simply put all the ingredients in a food processor (or a Vitamix-type of blender if you have one), except the ground sunflower seeds, and blend until smooth. Add the sunflower seed powder and mix it in.
Then all you need to do is spread some of the pâté in a thin layer onto a nori sheet, add some julienne vegetables like carrots, zucchinis, cucumber, avocado, red pepper, sprouts, red onion, apple and lettuce, roll like a sushi, cut and voilà! You don’t need a lot of vegetables in each one so you can roll it tight enough to cut into bite-size portions. All you need is a yummy dipping sauce like the one below.
Fat Free Tibet dipping sauce/dressing
- 3 Tbsp freshly minced organic ginger
- 1/2 cup organic lemon juice
- 1/4 cup organic tamari or soy sauce (gluten-free)
- 1 1/2 organic garlic clove
- 1/4 cup organic agave syrup
- 1 1/2 tsp unrefined fine grey sea salt
- 1 1/2 organic curry powder
- 1/8 tsp organic cayenne powder
- 1 1/4 cup spring or filtered water
Mix everything in a blender until homogenous. Done! This dressing is delicious to dip your raw sushi in or over a salad 🙂