Category Archives: BOOKS

SOMEBODY BEAT ME TO THE PUNCH!

For years, I’ve been grumbling and saying that I should write a book with recipes which require no fancier equipment than a food processor, and, maybe a blender. I had collected numbers of raw vegan books, and annotated them as to what equipment was required, so that I could avoid the things that I believe can be done without. (Don’t get me wrong: in the past I have had all of the exciting stuff: I scrimped and saved to get the $450 for a Vitamix which came with a 7-year warranty, and gave up the ghost about 3 weeks after the warranty was up. I also had a dehydrator, however, in my situation, it is not convenient to use it, so it is peacefully resting in storage.) That leaves me with a low-end food processor, and a Nutri-Bullet that my mother gave me,

I became a raw vegan when I was in college (like, maybe, 47 years ago). Back then, things were all simple: slice this up, chop this up: have food.

So, what am I talking about? I recently found this book Raw & Simple by Judita Wignall, and I am mad as a hornet that I did not put my book out when I first thought about it. This is a very nice book, and I am as pleased as can be that someone has done what I have failed to get around to doing,

This book has lots of interesting and tasty recipes, and none of them require anything more complicated than a food processor.

So, if you want “kind of” fancy, but you don’t have a lot of equipment, this is definitely for you. (If you already have all the fancy equipment anyone could dream of, this will still be a welcome addition to your recipe-book library.

REVISITING OLD RAW RECIPE BOOKS

I’ve just dug out my copy of Mattye Lee Thompson’s Frugal Raw (Raw on the Cheap at it’s Finest!), and, yes, I made a good purchase.  (the only complaint I have about this book is that there is no index, so I have to remember where I found this and such, or else annotate each page)

This is an older book, from 2008, but it is apparently so popular that hard copies are going for $40 or so.  Fortunately, there is now a Kindle edition, so, if you want to see a really good collection of raw vegan recipes, you can get it on your phone.

The only drawback I see in this book is that she has recipes that require a dehydrator, and dehydrators are notoriously expensive.

Still and all, the author has a lot of good takes on how to integrate a raw food lifestyle into a family setting (where some may not want to go raw), as well as a number of really good recipes.

(I do want to mention that I am telling you all this out of the goodness of my heart.  I am not affiliated with amazon or any other seller, which is why you don’t find any click-throughs.  If you find something you like in my post, please do your own search on Amazon)

GREENS, LETTUCE, LETTUCE, AND MORE LETTUCE: Let us think of what to do

POST #946
It looks like there are going to be a lot of lettuce-y things, greens, etc. in my box tomorrow. Shoot! I’m hungry. Oh well. I am going to eat what is there, or else, if I cannot get to it, I will dehydrate it and add it to the supergreens jar.

I do have some cashews, and I have been exploring other blogs, because my meet-up next month calls for nut and/or seed cheezes (all my fault for telling them how I got into fermenting!).

I think I’ll make some goat cheeze to go with some of these greens. I got the idea for goat cheeze from ChoosingRaw. She’s from a Greek family, so I guess she should know what tastes right. (She also has an amazing collection of recipes which you would do well to visit)

I’m also going to re-visit some of Russel James’s cheeze recipes (click on recipes and look around – he has a book on cheezes –but he has other books as well, and, from personal experience, I can tell you they are all fabulous)

I’ve just put up a new bookshelf for my recipe book library, and, since my current passion is fermenting and fermented cheezes, I’ve put all of the books that have decent cheeze recipes (according to me) together with the specific books on fermenting.  It’s a weird way to categorize, or not, but it works for me this month. (Since I have so many recipe books, I ended up having to lay the “classic” books – the old ones that I collect– on top of the ones I use often. I had to put the ones I use less often in stacks on the top shelf. Of course, I checked them all for fermented cheeze before classifying them)

Must sleep now. Work to be done, tomorrow! Thanks for stopping by!

THE LOCAVORE’S HANDBOOK

POST #943
I think I bought The Locavore’s Handbook: the Busy Person’s Guide to Eating Local on a Budget,  by Leda Meredith, by accident – I was looking for books by Wildman Steve Brill, and books on foraging in New York City. Nevertheless, I am happy to have it – I inhaled it in one day!

Meredith is a New Yorker, and she mostly gives information as to how to organize one’s life to eat local as much as possible, in order to reduce one’s carbon footprint – that said, she does give hints as to where you might look if you are in another part of the country. (The basics will apply if you live in another country, as well, but you will just have to find your own way to the resources).

I’ll admit that, on differing levels, I knew most of this information (as I said, I bought this book by accident), but Meredith addresses a number of issues which are near and dear to my heart – I live in a tiny New York City apartment, and she suggests storage ideas that I might not have thought of.

Meredith is not a raw foodist, or even a vegetarian, but I think we are all grown up enough that we can read books and get what we need from them. She talks extensively about foraging, community gardening, CSAs, food coops, food preservation (another topic near and dear to my heart) and home organization issues. In my reading, I have gotten quite a few ideas about how I can reorganize my kitchen and apartment to include more storage space.

If you are interested in eating local or organic, and/or if you live in a tiny New York apartment,  and you want to organize a locavore/vegan/raw vegan kitchen, this is the book for you. It’s really good.

CARMELLA’S SUNNY RAW KITCHEN RETURNS!

I’m happy to see that Carmella, of the Sunny Raw Kitchen blog, has come back to us, with a dynamic new website, Carmella’s Sunny Raw Kitchen.  She has some free recipes there, and she is also offering special prices on her books.

GORILLA FOOD: great new recipe book – my new favorite!

POST #904
Was POST #901
I was very interested to receive this copy of Gorilla Food, by Aaron Ash, of the Vancouver restaurant by the same name.  Oh, this book is nice! Enticing new flavor ideas, fresh innovative recipes, pretty pictures – oh my! Get this book here

This is a recipe book – you asked for raw recipes and here they are. After a two page introduction, which tells the curious how the Gorilla Foods restaurant in Vancouver, BC, Canada came into being, and shows a picture pictures of a 1960s-throwback-looking space, it launches into a clarification of terms and descriptions of the appliances and tools needed to work the magic, as well as a shopping list, i.e., all of the ingredients which will be eventually called for in the recipes.

After that come the recipes. Now, if you like more or less “instant food” (not much more than a food processor involved), and don’t like to plan a day or two in advance, many of these recipes will not work for you as they are written (many require dehydration, or include dehydrated recipes detailed on other pages), but, often, the “raw” parts, i.e., the parts before you dehydrate, are good enough on their own – for example, although the Morning Curry Crepes call for the dehydrated Ginger Tomato Crepe,  recipe would be just as good sitting in a bowl for you to spoon up.  So it goes… I see this book as requiring a bit of creativity if you are to get the most from it – just about every page has something exciting, mouthwatering, or really curious.

That said, there are some truly innovative (as in: I haven’t seen this before) recipes for vegetable mixes, sauces, cheezes, condiments, crackers/breads/wraps/chips, and desserts. If you take the often unique vegetable mix ideas, and start adding different sauces, you get altogether different and exciting experiences. If you are willing to do the dehydrated breads/crackers/chips/wraps (which you can do in advance and freeze – you knew that, right?), you expand your options exponentially

When you get to the desserts in Gorilla Food, you will start to drool. Many of the desserts just involve combining the ingredients, and voila! Of course, the really fancy-looking ones in the pictures  the use of a dehydrator, but, often, the ingredients will taste good without the dehydrator, and just will be more like goo, or something you have to eat with a spoon.

There! I’ve just taken apart Gorilla Food and digested it into a recipe book for people who only have a knife, or, at best, a food processor. You can make almost all of these things (save the breads, the chips, the crackers) in a beginner raw food kitchen.

If you are a beginner, if you are an old hand, Gorilla Food will be worth your while.  So, do check out Gorilla Food. It is so very fanciful, and just this side of very basic raw food (which you don’t see much in recipe books anymore), with a kick!

You can get this book here

SANDOR KATZ’S NEW BOOK: The Art of Fermentation

POST #860
Okay, I’ve gone and proved it now. I am a culture junkie (maybe not as much as some people, but culturing foods is high on my list of fun things to do).

Today, I received Sandor Katz’s The Art of Fermentation.  This is not a book for someone who just wants some fermenting recipes (for that, check out my list of raw fermenting/culturing books in My Raw Library . )  The Art of Fermentation is like an encyclopedia of the ways to ferment foods.  I inhaled it in one sitting (Okay, I read things I know I am interested in and looked at all of the pictures — I will go back and read bits of it as I feel the call.)  I should mention that this is not an all-raw book on fermentation, nor is it vegetarian — Katz explores all areas of culturing/fermenting/aging foodstuffs of all sorts.

What a fun book to have!
.

NEW ACQUISITION: Richter’s Nature the Healer

After I had acquired Vera Richter’s Mrs. Richter’s Cook-Less Book, I was pleasantly surprised to discover Nature-The Healer, a 1936 book written by John and Vera Ricther, for a very reasonable price on Amazon. You may recall that John and Vera Richter operated a raw food restaurant from the 1920s to the 1940s.
This book is probably not anything you need. Written in a question/answer format, it addressed a number of health issues and dietary concerns, with an eye to how they might be healed via nutritional methods. It is, essentially, the precursor of such books as Linda Page’s Healthy Healing and Phyllis Balch’s Prescription for Dietary Wellness. As I am very interested in raw vegan nutrition, this book is interesting to me because it is quite possibly the first such book written in America, and, very likely, the rest of the world, as well. Furthermore, it may well be the first known book on nutritional healing – my copy was originally owned by an MD in Los Angeles, who was, apparently, interested in nutritional healing (I am not usually privy to the names of previous owners of the books I collect, however this MD’s name and office address are stamped in several places in the book).
I am looking forward to studying this wonderful book, which Dr. Richter wrote in 1936, when he was 84, just 2 years before he transitioned.

CRAZY SEXY KITCHEN: Kris Carr’s great new recipe book

Post #852
I received Kris Carr’s Crazy Sexy Kitchen today. (I have followed Kris Carr pretty much since she started an Internet presence talking about nutrition as a way to overcome cancer, which is one of my interests as a nutrition consultant).

I was pleasantly surprised that this book contains so many interesting raw recipes that I haven’t seen anywhere else (lately, that is my new bellwether: how many times have I seen this idea with one ingredient change, or, is this something new or incredibly innovative?). Even among the cooked recipes, there is often a suggestion as to how to make them raw.

Although the book is co-written by Chad Sarno, a chef in his own wright, a number of other chefs have contributed recipes to it.

Notably, quite a few of the raw recipes look like things I can envision myself putting together in the near future (oh, if you don’t know me, that is pretty much the highest accolade I know how to give to a collection of raw recipes – I am really old school, and, also, a really lazy eater, so, if something looks enticing, and it looks like something that I would be willing to spend time eating, and I think I might actually be willing to put in the time to make it, that wins the blue ribbon). There are also a number of interesting and delicious-looking vegan but non-raw recipes, which would make this a very good book for those who might be transitioning to either a vegan or a raw vegan diet.

Aside from the recipes, one of the things I really liked about this book was the initial sections about food preparation equipment, starting from knife descriptions (this is always my favorite, as my first “food processor” was my beautiful knife, which I still have) and going through just about everything, including dehydrators; and methods for cutting (this is like a mini chef-prep course by itself).

By me, this is one of the best new vegan/raw vegan books out there. Despite my initial reservations, I’m glad I made the leap of faith and got it

FREDERIC PATENAUDE BOOKS: GOOD DEALS HERE and no endless ads

POST #851
Frederic Patenaude books are on amazon.com!

You no longer need to scroll through miles of “but wait! there’s more! Did you know? Do you want to…?”

If you already know what you want, you can go to amazon.com and pick up those books at reasonable prices.