Why "Raw Versions" will Never Catch On
I'm weird, and I've never had "cravings" for traditional "comfort" cooked foods in the traditional sense. I remember my poor friend Stacy, one time when I was suggesting that she could create a raw substitute for a craving, trying to get it through my head that "raw pizza isn't pizza!"
Well, if a dedicated raw foodist felt that way, what about a person who has no interest in focusing on raw foods at all and thinks the whole idea is a crock, but is open to tasting the concoctions his odd partner creates?
Phil's reaction to the "parsnip pilau" recipe (shared below): "It's nice, but the texture's not my favorite. It's all chopped down, sort of like rice, and I prefer vegetable salads to have more texture."
You see the problem?
It'll still be a vegetable salad, no matter how you dress it up, no matter what fancy name you give it. The fact that it was "like rice" was actually a negative for Phil, because to him, it was still a vegetable salad. The same held when I brought a raw lasagna to a gathering one time. Everyone adored it, and everyone referred to it as "a salad."
For me, this isn't a problem. For me, "a rose by any other name..."--I don't care what you call it so long as it tastes good. But for people who are used to eating "anything and everything," it seems things need to live up to the billing established over a lifetime of knowing, for example, what "carrot cake" is supposed to be like.
Yes, even the wonderful carrot cake didn't meet with Phil's discerning texture sensor. That nut milk pulp: it's fattier than regular flour, but maybe it's also more fibrous. He complained of a fibrousness in the texture, said it felt like "eating chaff!" More for me, I guess. But otherwise, raw desserts are the only exception, in that people do recognize them as desserts, as genuine "pies," etc. Although as you'll recall from my "Grover Pie" post, even the desserts are subject to misnomers...
For people who eat a diet centered around grains and meat and dairy, vegetable and nut-based concoctions are never going to fool them.
My response is to be more careful with what I call something, and I'm also looking for ideas on how to make raw cakes less "pulpy" (when I can, I'll experiment with a food mixer and see if that helps).
We all love parsnips here, and the last time I roasted some, I nibbled on the raw ends and thought it would be lovely to make a raw "rice." Organic parsnips don't exist here, but when I got some in my Full Circle box, I thought it would be a great opportunity to do it raw.
Of course, I couldn't resist including a carrot in there too!
Parsnip-Carrot "Pilau" (raw, vegan, light)
2 medium parsnips
1 large carrot
Chop the veggies into large pieces, and process them in a food processor with the "S" blade until fine.
Put in a bowl and set aside.
1/2 cup nut milk
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon flax seed meal
1 inch fresh ginger, grated
1 tablespoon curry powder
1 teaspoon miso
1 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon cardamom
1 teaspoon melted coconut oil
1 tablespoon lecithin granules (or teaspoon liquid lecithin)
1 teaspoon maca (optional)
1 teaspoon cayenne (optional)
Blend everything together--the nice thing about this sauce recipe is that you can do it fine in an underpowered blender. I did it with my little immersion blender.
Pour over the veggies and stir well together. To make even more "pilau" like, consider adding raisins, pistachios, almonds, pine nuts... (I didn't, but it would be good that way too.)
the eggplant dip I made a while back.
What do you think? Will "raw versions" ever catch on? What should we do about it if not?
And any nut pulp/chaff suggestions welcome too!