Thursday, April 9, 2009

Down Right Raw (collard vegetable wrap)

When I was in school, I attended a Raw foods preparation class (dare you say cooking). This class got me turned on to all the fun ways foods can be prepared without actually raising its temperature, and how delicious and beautiful some of the dishes can be. There are all trains of thought when it comes to eating raw. Some people are more diligent about it than others, some are a big fan of dehydrating while others say keep the water in the food where it belongs, some won't let food cross their mouths or enter a recipe, which has been raised above 110 degrees at any point in its life time (this includes pasteurized foods), while others eat raw till dinner and then have something cooked at suppertime. Whatever the argument is, I agree that incorporating more non-cooked fruits and vegetables into your diet is a great way to increase over all health and well being. Whether that means eating a salad when you otherwise wouldn't, serving some chopped raw veggies as a snack, or creating one of the more elaborate Raw dinners from any of the awesome raw cookbooks (see side panel).

Since we have been on the topic of greens and I showcased collard greens yesterday, I have decided to give you one more variation of the collard green wrap. This is a raw recipe, actually one that I originally learned at that Raw class, although I have changed it and made the recipe fit what vegetables I had on hand. You can do this too, at any time with any of the recipes you find here. Most of them I just make up anyway, so have fun with it and make cooking (or not cooking as the case may be) as easy for yourself and your family as you can.

S0 I've de-stemed the collards (see previous post) and actually decided to lightly steam them. I heated about a 1/2 inch of water in a shallow pan and layed them in the water one by one for less than a minute each. You can actually see the color brighten and feel them soften to know they are done (takes about 20 seconds).To keep with the "raw preparation" I've sliced some crimini mushrooms (baby bella's as they are sometimes called) and I am marinating them in a little Braggs liquid amino acids (this is a soy based non fermented liquid sauce containing 16 essential amino acids. It is gluten free and a great replacment for tamari or soy sauce, and it's raw.)If you have a food processor with a grate attachment, grate a carrot, beet, turnip or any other similar root vegetable that you'd enjoy not cooked. I used a carrot and a golden beet, although did not have my grate attachment so did it by hand (just what you can do, sans food processor). After grating in the FP you can then make the Guacamole (less cleaning if you do it in this order). For the Guacamole I food processed 2 cloves of garlic till diced, added in 2 avocados, a little lime juice, salt, pepper and a little plain yogurt. I would have added tomato, onion or cilantro if I'd had it, but hey this is make-shift. I'm lying about the cilantro, by the way, can't stand the stuff. Here is the layered soon to be wrap. I have to admit I used a little too much spread, see the far side of the collard, you can probably do without all that. I spread some hummus, then the guac, layered on the mushrooms, grated veggies, and then added some escarole (not seen here). Simpler alternative could be: hummus spread and sliced avocado save the guacamole step, although it is delicious.
Role it up and enjoy while making a goofy face.

Since we are still on the collard tip, I wanted to give you one last "collard tip". This works with any green. To cut easily, roll it up like a cigar and slice. Saves lots of time in wrestling with the big huge leaves and cutting yourself in the process.


Alicyn said...

Love the quick blanch tip, love the collards in my fridge in a whole new way, love the goofy face.

Hannah said...

love the guac!