The Raw Food Revolution Diet: feast – lose weight – gain energy – feel younger by Cherie Soria, Brenda Davis RD, and Vesanto Melina MS RD
This is my third raw food cookbook trial, but only the second one I actually want to use. The first was the Raw 50, which didn’t capture my attention, the second was Ani’s Raw Food Kitchen, which offers simpler recipes that I found some natural appeal in, and now I find myself with this book in my hands, wishing I had discovered something like it many years ago.
I don’t think I am uncommon in my foodie ambitions. I want to eat healthier, enjoy good food, and not feel too restricted by any particular diet. I am intrigued by the raw diet, but nowhere near ready to dive in head first. I currently enjoy a salad and a smoothie almost daily, but raw food is still on the lesser half of my diet. It would be great to start incorporating some more raw snacks and the occasional raw meal, but it seems many raw cookbooks are filled with (numerous) sales pitches for the raw diet and time-consuming recipes instead of practical guides and easy recipes that will safely appeal to newbie taste buds.
The Raw Food Revolution does start by explaining the health benefits of the raw diet, especially from a weight loss perspective. Yet, the book moves on to explain how to get the nutrients you need, the types of food and equipment you will use, and starter menus. All in all, the introduction is 100 pages, and well worth every sentence. Then, the recipes begin …
The recipes are very unintimidating and any potential questions that a newbie or veteran may have about an ingredient or process are addressed right then and there. But, what I found most fascinating about this cookbook is that it truly isn’t focused on being 100% raw. The authors encourage and even aid readers in easing into the raw food diet by offering “almost raw” techniques and emphasizing that it isn’t essential to demand that every single ingredient is raw, particularly when first starting out. For this reason, the recipes are not surprisingly a bit more appealing from both a taste and preparation perspective.
I just recently received the book, but have already ear-marked at least thirty recipes that I want to trial. On the tops of that list are the Mangoes in Lemon-Ginger Sauce, Basic Nut Cheese, Apples and Walnuts on Baby Greens w/ Poppy Seed Dressing, Broccoli with Bon Bon Sauce (I do love broccoli!), Figgie Nutins’ and Carob-Banana Pudding. I immediately made the Banana Endurance Drink, which according to the author balances potassium-rich bananas and sodium-rich celery (yeah, celery, but I decided to chance it) to replenish electrolytes and energize muscles. I added a generous dash of nutmeg to my servings, which I think rounded this tasty, yet simple beverage out nicely!
Though many raw cookbooks claim it is okay to gradually become raw, their recipes, tips, and pitches take on ‘all or nothing’ or nothing air. It was refreshing to discover this nutrition-first cookbook which I am sure will actually help this avid home baker to increase her raw food intake (at least a bit) rather than running in the other direction to a pile of fresh-from-the-oven cookies.
The Raw Food Revolution Diet is available on Amazon.
The above review was written by Alisa Fleming, author of Go Dairy Free: The Guide and Cookbook