Thursday, April 26, 2012

What do you eat every day?

Guess what: The question I get asked the most as a teaching raw food chef and culinary artist: "So... what do YOU actually eat every day?" The more I hear this question and the more I think about it, the more I am convinced that it's so worth sharing this knowledge besides inventing crazy new creations for my fancy dinner clubs and teaching the sometimes more difficult gourmet foods that are not necessarily usable on a daily basis. Now, here is a typical day from my life as a raw food chef :-)

Fruit Salad, Homemade probiotic coconut yoghurt
bee pollen, wild herbs and sprouted walnuts
Green Young Coconut Water (in the back)

The mornings, I like to start very light, mainly fruit based and foods that can be digested very easily and have a high net energy gain. Fruit have simple carbohydrates that give you immediate energy and good vitamins. They are digested in 20 minutes and therefore don't interrupt with your natural cleansing cycle. I also love young coconut water in the mornings, it's full of electrolytes and enzymes and tastes just delicious. Now for comfort and to get the feeling of fullness, something creamy nut based is nice from time to time and in order to make this work for the stomach, it's best to ferment your nuts into a healthy yoghurt. So, my breakfast of today was:

  • young coconut water, blended with spirulina, chlorella, barley grass, wheatgrass, moringa olifeira and stingy nettle (all these greens add a lot of minerals and chlorophyll and help you get the day kicked off boosting your oxygen level)
  • mixed fruit salad with homemade coconut yoghurt, local bee pollen, sprouted walnuts and fresh wild herbs
  • cappuccino (YES, the real one! I can't give up this morning ritual, lived too long in Italy ;-)
Now this keeps me going on really high energy for the whole morning until lunch time comes, when I usually have a substantial salad. Today, the base was spinach, some mizuna and other Asian leafy greens, cucumber, radishes, red onion slices and a big handful of mixed wild herbs. Now, to make sure to make this salad substantial enough to power me through the afternoon, it's important to choose your add-ons wisely. I've become a huge fan of fermentation recently, due to the high power of probiotics for your digestive and therefore your immune system. So, I came up with this super delicious dressing, which has double probiotics (from the Sauerkraut and the yoghurt), plus healthy omega 3's and great amino acids from the hemp seeds (amino acids are the protein building blocks, for those of you who still think we need to take complex proteins to build our own ;-) . Note that there is no extra fat in this dressing from extracted oils. However, I am a big fan of olive oil and do use it extensively in my cuisine and for myself. For a little sweetener, I use local honey in my salad dressing. I am totally staying away from agave, since it reacts like high fructose corn sirup and can not be considered a healthy sweetener anymore. Honey on the other hand is a complete whole food, laden with good nutrients and microorganisms and if you buy it locally can help you cure allergies! Here is the recipe for this new dressing, that I am happy to share with you today:

Cucumber and leafy greens, wild herbs,
dressed in pink probiotic power
Pink Probiotic Power (PPP) Dressing

1 Tablespoon fermented Coconut Yoghurt
1 Tablespoon Hemp Seeds
2 Tablespoons red cabbage Sauerkraut
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon honey
1/2 teaspoon terragon (or other herb)
1/8 teaspoon ground pepper
1 little piece of red onion (1/8 of a whole one)
1/3 cup of water

To finally get some more substance onto the salad, I sprinkled it with some sprouted sunflower seeds and black sesame for extra calcium and added a few strips of dulse, since seaweeds are extremely high in minerals as well as good amino acids.

Sometimes, salads can look boring, but if you do it, like I do with this recipe, you can make your salad really exciting. Not only is this healthy to the max, but lining out the cucumbers like this, placing the dressed greens that shine pink from this beautiful color dressing in the middle and having the black sesame dots and the pink peppercorn, is just a fiest for the eyes!! It's important to plate your food nicely, also for yourself, you'll eat with so much more pleasure and therefore he happier and will digest it better!
Yummy, this salad was so delicous, I wish I had another one right now, while writing it :-)

And another few hours of work seem like nothing with all those nutrients in my system that don't put high stress on my digestion and therefore would make me lethargic or tired, which would be the case with a plate of wheat pasta for lunch.

After a full day of work and having eaten lightly during the day, in the evening I usually like something a bit more filling and substantial, some comfort food. Very often , I also stay raw in the evening, but I also do enjoy a healthy cooked meal and if I cook, I usually create healthy hybrids of cooked and raw, as I do with my preferred seasonal Spring vegetable: White Asparagus.

White Asparagus, local heirloom potatoes,
fresh picked wild herbs in salted raw milk butter
 This is a German delicacy and only available for about 2-3 months of the year, so I try to have it about twice a week if I can. It's so cleansing (you can smell it in your urine after eating it ;-) and tastes just divine. I do like asparagus raw as well, but cooked, they develop this very distinct taste that I love so much. Traditionally, Germans often have the asparagus cooked with young potatoes and a creamy buttery sauce hollandaise. Now here comes my healthy raw/cooked hybrid version of it: 500g steamed white asparagus, 3 local heirloom organic boiled potatoes, 1 Tablespoon of melted raw milk butter, a pinch of sea salt AND 2 BIG hands full of freshly picked wild herbs, chopped small and mixed with the butter and a little of the asparagus steam water. Put all on a plate and cover generously with the salted wild herb butter mixture. It's SO tasty and comforting!

For me, it's not always about being 100% raw, but about getting the maximum nutrition and feeling good and balanced! Take this day for example, it's not 100% raw, but the wild herbs, the greens, the fruit, the coconut water, the seeds and all that provided a lot of fantastic nutrients!!
Now if for me, to stay 100% raw on such a day would mean, instead of the cooked meal I had for dinner, to supplement with a bunch of dried fruit and nuts, and/or have other unbalanced raw foods, that might just be a worse choice. Or compare this: a green smoothie with 2/3 fruit, amongst which sugary bananas, and 1/3 just any greens from any health food store vs. my asparagus, the organic potatoes and heaps of nutrient dense wild herbs. I don't have an answer for which one is healthier and actually, there IS no answer to this! Psychology, body constitution, life situation, and so much more factors play a role in this, it's too complex to judge! The bottom line for me is a wholesome whole food diet, full of nutrients and using nothing processed or pre made and packaged or at least don't buy more than 10% of your ingredients that come covered in plastic foil and have more than 1 ingredient listed on it ;-) Psychology is a big factor in nutrition and you need to feel comfortable. Now for me, that's my morning cappuccino, the occasional ice cream, some cooked meals from time to time, and even fish or meat if it's offered to me and made with love. I am a foodie, curious, and love to eat and try new things, discover new flavors and textures. Important is, to always know your base and come back to it. If I eat an unhealthy dinner, which does occasionally happen, the next morning, I am craving a green drink or just a grapefruit and I am back to a massive salad for lunch :-)

b.balanced - b.creative - b.alive!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

b.alive! Interview bei Claudi wird vegan

claudi wird vegan: b.alive!: Ich freue mich sehr darüber, dass Boris Lauser von b.alive sich bereit erklärt hat, mir Rede und Antwort zu stehen, über sich, b.alive und s...