This is not my kitty, but isn't he cute? I passed him as I walked down a street some years ago when I took a trip to Lisbon. I don't have much for you today, but hate to let the days roll by without posting something. We started our new raw foods module today. So interesting. If you aren't very familiar with the Raw food craze it is actually a dietary lifestyle that started many years ago. Some of the food pioneers in raw foods began their work in the early 1900s. I thought it was a recent thing but seems not. Most raw foodists are vegan, although there are some out there that eat raw eggs and dairy, and even raw fish or meat. Most eat mostly fruits and some vegetables, nuts and seeds. Some eat only fruit and are called fruitarians. They only eat foods that don't kill the plant when you harvest/eat it. (You know, you eat the apple and the tree is okay. You eat a potato and the plant is pulled and gone so not good…) A little too extreme for me! Some people who eat raw strive for 100% raw food but many are somewhere between 75-90% raw. This means that the bulk of the food you eat has never been heated over either 105 degrees or 118 degrees. (There are two schools of thought on that.) So out goes really hot soup, baked goods, roasted foods, etc.
We did a test today where we dipped our finger in a mug of water heated to 118. It is actually pretty hot. Too warm to comfortably leave your finger in there for more than a few seconds. So you can eat some warm soup or oatmeal that is a bit warm. Crackers and breads are all made through dehydration. The health benefits are many. Eating a good vegan diet is healthy whether you eat raw or not. (Not a junk food vegan….you know cupcakes and the like can be vegan!) More fruits and vegetables is a good goal for everyone. Obviously, a raw diet means all processed foods, fast foods, junk foods are out. Clearly that is a good thing. Raw food is also very high in nutrients as none are damaged or lost through cooking. For example, if you boil vegetables, some of the nutrients are lost in the cooking water. Raw foods retain everything. Also, raw foods maintain all their natural enzymes that help you digest and absorb all the nutrients. Most tend to be lower in calories, help you lose weight, and have good water content. So many reasons to eat raw food.
A few years ago, I went on a little vacation to a spa in Quebec, about an hour or so outside of the city. It was a beautiful setting, with lots of hiking, great pools and hot tubs, wonderful spa treatments. It was a great vacation. One of the best parts was the food. Every night they had a raw food choice. I only got it one night but it was the best meal I had. Unbelieveably, it was a "hamburger." It was some kind of nut patty with dehydrated bun and home made raw condiments. It was delicious. Usually for me at home, raw foods can be boring and bland. Salad again? Plain raw fruit? Carrot sticks? In looking at our syllabus, we are going to make all kinds of delicious sounding, pretty complex foods. Tacos, oatmeal, crackers, soups, salads, desserts...I can't wait to see how they turn out. I'll share them as I can. It will be good for all of us to learn how to eat more tasty raw foods!
Since I always seem to talk about the weather, it is crazy here. The usual thing in Texas…if you don't like the weather, just wait, it is soon to change. Sure enough we had a cold 50 degree raining Saturday, and a sunny 70 degree Sunday. Back to 39 this morning! I went for a really nice walk on Sunday around Lady Bird Lake with one of my classmates. Here are some photos I took….
Aren't those turtles fun? There were so many of them out and about, sunning themselves. And last but not least, here is a photo of the Indian snack food I made for the superbowl. It was really pretty tasty. Really different. Puffed rice with peanuts, roasted chickpeas, curry leaves, mustard seeds, cumin seeds, cayenne pepper, salt, cilantro, tumeric. I will definitely make it again although I think some tweeks are necessary!
Hope you have a good week. I am working at school on Tuesday night so will be back later in the week.