There are days that I wake up with an idea in mind that just has to happen in my kitchen. And, there are days that I stare at the food in my fridge with no idea what to do. When that happens, I grab a piece of fruit and turn to my cookbook library for inspiration.
This week, after spending of month creating recipes at the 105degrees Academy, I hit a food rut. Work was busy, I was starting a new training plan and was still trying to catch up on a long list of to-dos.
Lucky for me, there is a small stack of books waiting to be profiled here. I pulled off the top one, grabbed my post-its and started to make a grocery list.
Years ago, when I first started reading about raw foods there was one name that was synonymous with gourmet living foods, Alissa Cohen. She had a book, that pictured her high a-top a huge tomato, started a train-the-trainer model that created a huge network of raw food instructors, and managed a message board that engaged those interested in learning more. She also brought gourmet raw food to the East Coast when she opened two locations of Grezzo. I have one friend who ate there and said the experience was superior to Millennium, that’s quite the accolade. Sadly, Alissa has since closed Grezzo but we will all benefit because the best recipes will live on in this incredible tome.
Raw Food for Everyone is a comprehensive collection of recipes that truly span the spectrum of skill and foodie enthusiasm. Across the 469 pages you are bound to find something both delicious and outside your standard repertoire.
If you are just contemplating eating more raw foods this book will answer all of your question. Alissa tackles challenges with transitioning, introduces all essential ingredients, recommends equipment, and provides details for soaking, sprouting and fermenting foods.
And then you get to the 300 recipes!
Raw Food for Everyone is not a book that you turn to 20 minutes before dinner to feed the masses. Instead the recipes provide the culinary arsenal you need to destroy any existing stereotypes about boring raw foods. Alissa will send you on an amazing adventure to apply new techniques to unique ingredients that create a whole new eating experience. Just imagine the incredible cultured Nut Cheeses, Star Anise Papaya Steaks, Peach-Sage Bellinis, Jambalaya, Wild Mushroom and Fruit Salad Terrine, Maroon Carrot Bisque, Asparagus Wrapped in Eggplant Bacon, and Buffalo Lentil Tenders.
Every time I flip through the pages of this book I want to invite everyone over for a huge dinner party. But, with everything else going on and all the dishes that would create, for this review, I decided to focus on foods that I could make quickly, with ingredients I love. Luckily, this massive collection of recipes easily serves that need.
Oat Groat Porridge
Falafel with Tahini Sauce
Broccoli Salad (includes Quick Mayonnaise)
I’m happy to report that I enjoyed it all. I stuck with simple selections that came together incredibly quickly. Only the falafel and cookies required time in the dehydrator. And they were worth it. The oatmeal raisin cookies were the most like traditional baked treats of any raw recipe I’ve ever tried. Grabbing this book might be worth it for that recipe alone.
Although the title says Raw Food for Everyone, I think this book would be most embraced by those who really enjoy playing with recipes and discovering new flavours but could be a bit overwhelming to those who can’t imagine making their own almond milk.
If you’re out there reading food blogs you probably fall into the first category, so, go check it out!