Monday, June 7, 2010

My First "RAW" recipe book creation and a Lettuce Wrap a la Stacey

As I expected, the RAW recipe book (Trotter/Klein) provides "culinary delights".  What is a culinary delight?  My definition: when you put together foods that go beyond taste to promote the special characteristics of each ingredient.  Nothing is there that shouldn't be - nothing is missing to keep the plate from being balanced. 

This is the world of truly mindful eating.  The diner needs to be as attentive to the details of their plate and palate as the chef has been with the food's properties and essense.  If gobble down like a boarding house plate up, all the uniquenesses of a gourmet dish will be lost. 

My first recipe out of RAW

Corn, Jicama, Asian Pear. and Cucumber with Avocado Puree

As I mentioned above, each fruit or vegetable in this salad brings a special piece to the overall composite dish; either texture, heat, cool, tart or sweet.  When melded with the two sauces on the plate - a lime vinagrette and an avocado puree - the salad base blends in a very pleasing unity.  The highlight is the avocado puree.  With its creaminess, it pulls together all the parts and makes the dish sing.


Each serving is about 1/3 cup of salad.  I thought, "That's a pretty scant amount.  I don't think those water-intensive veggies will satisfy."  Was I wrong! Any more and it would have been too much.  The richness of the avocado and the tart of the lime create a pungent combination that is perfect at its serving size. 

To make the salad requires only a quarter cup of each fruit or vegetable, half an avocado, a lime or so for 4 servings.  It is a very economical salad. (The recipe is online and I attached it to the recipe title above.)

To prepare the salad, it's fairly labor intensive for a non-chef to get brunoise cuts (1/8 in cubes).  If you are good with your knife skills, this salad will be a breeze!  It took me about 35 minutes to pull it all together, that with pulling out all ingredients and having them ready on the counter.   Looking at the photo, I think they "shopped it" enhancing the yellows.  As for plating, I might need to work a bit on my technique, but all in all, I'm rather pleased with how it came out.

Bleeding Heart Liberal Wraps

My main course after the salad were lettuce wraps that I pulled together.  I've decide to call it the "Bleeding Heart Liberal Wrap" (tongue in cheek, of course), in honor of the vibrant red swiss chard stems that are nestled among all that green! (Bet'cha thought that was red pepper...NOPE!)  It's SOOOO "granola", as we used to call something tthat was very hippy-like, vegetarian, Earth Mother/Godess or "liberal".  : )  BTW, I grew the lettuce in my own garden, so guess who's the granola now??

If anyone juices swiss chard leaves but tosses the stems, you're missing out on a tasty part of that veggie.  The stems are similar in texture to celery hearts, but sweeter and less fiberous.  I save them and use them for dips and snacks if I don't run them through the juicer with the leaves.

How to make yourself a Bleeding Heart Liberal?

4 or 5 Romaine leaves (good sized)
4 T hummus (so many recipes...use your favorite one!)
4 small bunches sprouts (I used alfalfa)
4 stems red swiss chard, 1/2'ed in the middle of the stem
1/4 cucumber, english seedless, julienned
1 T Golden Elixir Dressing (or any vinagrette you have on hand will do)

Lay out 4 large, clean, dried lettuce leaves on a flat surface.  Use 2 leaves and overlap them if all you have are small romaines.  Cut off the lower, stiffer part of the stem and place in the center of the lettuce leaf. (We're not gonna waste that, ya' know!) 

Place 1 T hummus length-wise down the center of each leaf.  Top with the little sprout bundles, cucumber strips, and finally, red swiss chard stems.  Drizzle to taste a little bit of vinagrette dressing on each wrap.  Plate them by folding them up like a taco and setting side by side so they stand up holding the ingredients within the wrapping leaf.

I hope you like the food today.  I certainly did! : )  And, so did my blood sugars.


  1. VERY cool. So pretty and LOVE the names!

  2. I think its interesting to see these things you are putting together. The food sounds good, but this diet is definitely not for me, but it is fun reading about it.

  3. Hi Young'un,

    You're a free wheeling single guy, who is working a pretty health diet...for a single guy...these days. I couldn't imagine you doing this intensively. BUT, adding some raw foods to your life may give you a boost you never knew you had. I'll pop over to your MFD and give you and idea or two that are very quick and easy.

  4. Hi Lucy,

    Thanks so much! I couldn't help myself on the was just too easy to do! :) hahah