Raw foods on the rise as clean-label consumers crave more – FoodNavigator.com

From snack bars to spreads, chocolate to cheese, the trend for raw ingredients in processed foods is spreading across Europe, says Mintel, as consumer attention goes beyond the ingredient list to look at clean-label processing methods.

The process ‘behind the finished product’ is moving into focus and becoming a premium attribute not only for the health-obsessed, but increasingly also for consumers generally looking for higher quality,” says Mintel food and drink analyst Julia Buech.

This could be seen as a natural transition from the clean label movement as consumers grow increasingly wary of additives, allergens and chemicals in food but also ken to preserve natural nutrients.

“The concept is based on the understanding that the extreme heat of conventional cooking destroys many of the food’s beneficial enzymes and renders its nutrients mostly unusable. In raw-labelled foods, none of the ingredients have been heated to a temperature above 48°C in order to preserve enzymes and nutrients.”

There are no regulations surrounding the actual definition of what constitutes raw processed food, meaning there is some variation in interpretations. According to Teresa Havrlandova, founder of raw food firm Lifefood, any food that is heated above 45°C does not qualify, while Polish company Papagrin sells“42° products made with 42° technology”, such as its bread flavoured with onion, garlic flaxseeds and unhulled sesame seeds.

The top country for raw product launches in Germany, according to Mintel data, followed by France and the UK, Finland and the Netherlands.

The market research company has been tracking the number of raw product launches in Germany for the past four years and, although still relatively niche, it has seen the claims skyrockets in the past year,
with almost half (48%) of the country’s raw launches occurring in 2015 alone.

Raw claims can be seen on a diverse range of products, featuring prominently on the product packaging if not directly in the brand name, and snacks by far take the lead, accounting for almost one third (32%) of raw launches in Germany between 2014 and 2015, such as Raw Bite’s organic peanut fruit and nut bar or Roo’bar chia energy bar.

According to the Mintel analyst, the popularity for raw, nutritious ingredients in snack bars stems from a backlash against what is seen as a heavily processed category, with four in 10 Germans (42%) saying conventional bars are too processed.

Meanwhile a raw claim on crisps can boost the healthy image that vegetable crisps already enjoy by dispensing with the frying oil. Lifefood manufactures Crawnchies vegan stackable crisps while Inspiral’s Beetroot and acerola kale chips are air dried at low temperatures for several hours.

Another popular category for testing out raw ingredients is dairy, making up nearly one fifth (18%) of raw launches. Cheese made from unpasteurised milk is gaining traction, for instance, as it doesn’t have any of the health risks associated with drinking raw milk  but benefits from added flavour, and the share of raw cheese launches nearly doubled between 2012 and 2015, rising form 5% to 9%. What’s more Mintel’s product launch database shows even some private label brands are getting on board, such as Rewe’s organic mountain cheese.  

Raw chocolate confectionery holds plenty of promise. Although it currently accounts for just 1% of total chocolate launches, Mintel data shows raw chocolate product launches increased a massive 580% between 2012 and 2015, and account for 12% of raw launches, while a survey of 1000 people  found over half (56%) were interested in trying raw chocolate.

Meanwhile there are a few categories that have been under-explored by German manufacturers, leaving other European countries to step in.

“While raw launches in Germany are on the rise, activity in the country is still under-represented in a number of categories, such as cereals or soups, for example. The white spaces offer future opportunities for both domestic and international brands,” says Mintel.

Soupologie’s raw range – such as cucumber, avocado and kale or beetroot and mint – describes itself as the UK’s first raw soup, while Italy’s Ambrosiae Übergranola is raw chocolate, goji and coconut cereal with a German-inspired name no less.

In Honor Of #NationalPoetryMonth: Your Favorite Poems About Food And Farming – NPR

Acclaimed poet Maya Angelou knew how to appreciate a great steak.

Heidi Gutman/ABC via Getty Images

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Heidi Gutman/ABC via Getty Images

Acclaimed poet Maya Angelou knew how to appreciate a great steak.

Acclaimed poet Maya Angelou knew how to appreciate a great steak.

Heidi Gutman/ABC via Getty Images

This April marks the 20th anniversary of National Poetry Month, and here at The Salt, we wanted to celebrate with a selection of the sauciest, most scrumptious verses about food.

Gastronomy and poetry are a natural pairing. After all, both provide necessary nourishment. And as poet Tess Taylor told us last week, “Food — ‘cultivation’ — is the most basic part of ‘culture,’ the art of stability, the art of civilization.” The whole process of growing and harvesting food, cooking it and savoring it has inspired generations of writers.

So, we asked you to share your favorite selections about farming and food — and we’ve gathered them up here.

Lots and lots of you recommended William Carlos Williams’ sweet and short “This Is Just To Say”:

I have eaten
the plums
that were in
the icebox

and which
you were probably
for breakfast

Forgive me
they were delicious
so sweet
and so cold

“Persimmons” by Li-Young Lee is another lovely ode to fruit:

… Ripe ones are soft and brown-spotted.
Sniff the bottoms. The sweet one
will be fragrant. How to eat:
put the knife away, lay down newspaper.
Peel the skin tenderly, not to tear the meat.
Chew the skin, suck it,
and swallow. Now, eat
the meat of the fruit,
so sweet,
all of it, to the heart …

As is Diane Ackerman’s “The Consolation of Apricots”:

… Somewhere between a peach and a prayer,
they taste of well water
and butterscotch and dried apples
and desert simooms and lust.

Sweet with a twang of spice,
a ripe apricot is small enough to devour
as two hemispheres.
Ambiguity is its hallmark …

And Matsuo Basho’s haiku meditation on melons:

Coolness of the melons
flecked with mud
in the morning dew.

And Seamus Heaney’s wistful “Blackberry Picking,” which begins:

Late August, given heavy rain and sun
For a full week, the blackberries would ripen.
At first, just one, a glossy purple clot
Among others, red, green, hard as a knot.
You ate that first one and its flesh was sweet
Like thickened wine: summer’s blood was in it
Leaving stains upon the tongue and lust for
Picking. Then red ones inked up and that hunger
Sent us out with milk cans, pea tins, jam-pots
Where briars scratched and wet grass bleached our boots …

Fruits and veg are necessary for a balanced diet — and for a taste of the latter, The Salt’s Maria Godoy loves Pablo Neruda’sOde To The Onion”:

Onion, luminous flask,
your beauty formed
petal by petal,
crystal scales expanded you
and in the secrecy of the dark earth
your belly grew round with dew.
Under the earth
the miracle
and when your clumsy
green stem appeared,
and your leaves were born
like swords
in the garden …

Of course, produce easily translates into sensual verse.

But sometimes we all crave something meatier. For that, we can turn to Maya Angelou — a woman who knew how to enjoy a good, hearty meal. (She even published a couple of cookbooks). Here’s “The Health-Food Diner”:

No sprouted wheat and soya shoots
And Brussels in a cake,
Carrot straw and spinach raw,
(Today, I need a steak).

Not thick brown rice and rice pilaw
Or mushrooms creamed on toast,
Turnips mashed and parsnips hashed,
(I’m dreaming of a roast).

Health-food folks around the world
Are thinned by anxious zeal,
They look for help in seafood kelp
(I count on breaded veal).

No smoking signs, raw mustard greens,
Zucchini by the ton,
Uncooked kale and bodies frail
Are sure to make me run


Loins of pork and chicken thighs
And standing rib, so prime,
Pork chops brown and fresh ground round
(I crave them all the time).

Irish stews and boiled corned beef
and hot dogs by the scores,
or any place that saves a space
For smoking carnivores.

If that doesn’t fill you up, here’s Shel Silverstein’s whimsical ditty on hotdogs.

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2011 Evil Eye, LLC.

And Roger McGough’s “Vinegar”:

i feel like a priest
in a fish & chips queue
quietly thinking
as the vinegar runs through
how nice it would be
to buy supper for two

As McGough so cleverly notes, food is the stuff that connects us — it carries emotion and memory. In that vein, here’s an except from Robert Hass“Meditation at Lagunitas”:

… But I remember so much, the way her hands dismantled bread,
the thing her father said that hurt her, what
she dreamed. There are moments when the body is as numinous
as words, days that are the good flesh continuing.
Such tenderness, those afternoons and evenings,
saying blackberry, blackberry, blackberry.

And here is D.H. Lawrence, who shows us the best way to enjoy an apple — or any food, for that matter — in his poem “Mystic.”

They call all experience of the senses mystic, when the experience is
So an apple becomes mystic when I taste in it
the summer and the snows, the wild welter of earth
and the insistence of the sun.

All of which things I can surely taste in a good apple.
Though some apples taste preponderantly of water, wet and sour
and some of too much sun, brackish sweet
like lagoon water, that has been too much sunned.

If I say I taste these things in an apple, I am called mystic, which
means a liar.
The only way to eat an apple is to hog it down like a pig
and taste nothing
that is real.

But if I eat an apple, I like to eat it with all my senses awake.
Hogging it down I call the feeding of corpses.

We could go on, and on and on. But we won’t — because honestly, all this food poetry is making us hungry.

If we missed any of your favorites, please do let is know in the comments, or on Twitter @NPRFood.

Salmonella infection in BC linked to raw pet food – KelownaNow

Pet owners are being warned Saturday after an outbreak of Salmonella has been found in connection with raw pet food.

As of Friday afternoon, four British Columbians who feed their pets raw food diets have all become infected with the same strain of Salmonella. The BC Centre for Disease Control said the exact source of the Salmonella is unknown, but investigations are currently underway.

Raw pet food often contains raw animal proteins like meat, bones, organs and eggs. Infections can occur in humans during the handling of raw meat, including raw pet food or from pets shedding bacteria.

Salmonella is a bacteria that infects the intestinal tract and is a common cause of diarrhea in B.C. and around the world. Symptoms can include stomach cramps, diarrhea, fever, nausea, vomiting and dehydration. Those symptoms typically begin six to 72 hours after exposure to the bacteria and can last anywhere from four to seven days. Most people recover without treatment.

The BC Centre for Disease control is reminding people to wash their hands immediately after handling raw pet food or raw meat and before touching anything else. Pet owners should also wash their hands after handling or cleaning up after their pet, especially prior to preparing their own food or eating.

Does the “Cut by Coachella” Diet Actually Work? I Tried It to Find Out – L.A. Weekly

Of course, no diet plan works unless accompanied by proper exercise

Of course, no diet plan works unless accompanied by proper exercise

Photo by Christopher Victorio

Like the persistent stereotype that everybody in L.A. is whippet-thin and Kardashian-beautiful, the notion that Coachella has become a fashionable playground where glamazon BFFs like Gigi and Kendall frolic is not entirely accurate. There are far more of us than them.

However, you wouldn’t know that from the annual deluge of photo galleries (and yes, we’re guilty of this, too) spotlighting that genetically blessed 1 percent. Thus a very intimidating myth has been propagated, and with it, a lot of pressure not only to find the perfect triangle bikini top and cutoffs but also to pair them with a Pilates-toned, raw food–fed (starved?) tummy.

That’s where the Coachella diet comes in.

Read: More Coachella 2016 coverage

Two years ago, Cristina Peerenboom and Kirsten Potenza, the boss businesswomen behind Pound, a workout that’s centered around drumming, created a 30-day plan called “Cut by Coachella.” Blogs jumped on it because yeah, the idea of whittling your body down for a music festival is just so … uncool. Still, it obviously works. I decided to give it a try.

OK, yes, I wanted to rock abs in a crop top for once in my life.

The contents of my EXPAND

The contents of my “Pound Box”

Rebecca Haithcoat

Week 1
Weight: 123
I open the box Pound has sent me to find a pair of drumsticks, six DVDs of the girls leading various workouts, a booklet describing the diet and a “fitness journal.” Peerenboom and Potenza are careful to focus on how you feel instead of how you look, which is healthy but hey, we know why I’m here. I’m immediately proud when I learn that I’ve been drinking even more ounces of water per day than they recommend. I’m such an overachiever.

The bad news is that’s about all I’m doing right. They advise eating seven meals a day, starting with a “boost” (for example, apple cider vinegar with freshly squeezed pineapple juice you drink as a shot) or just a green apple within 20 minutes of waking up. Since simply thinking about food in the morning is enough to make me nauseous, this is going to be a challenge.

Other morning recs that suck are eggs (the smell, the texture … I’m gagging) and almond milk in my coffee. My blue packets of fake sugar and sugar-free vanilla Coffeemate do not make the Pound shopping list. Generally, the exercise part seems fun because, let’s be honest, drummers are the hottest. But the diet part seems pretty complicated, a little drastic and a lot joyless to someone who is not a hippie (me) — lots of kefir, chia seeds, kale, brown rice, avocado toast. During the first week, I’m supposed to cut out coffee, alcohol and even sugar-free gum. The saddest recipe I see is for a key lime pie parfait made with Greek yogurt and no graham crackers.

On the plus side, it’s not an extreme diet like the one Brian, a 30-something creative director, uses. Stories have been written about the lengths women go to in order to look good for Coachella (this is the most recent and most ridiculous), so I wanted to find out what the shirtless bros do. Turns out it’s Spartan, but it’s also nice and simple.

“Usually I just go through an Atkins-like ‘cleanse’ so when I get there and do who knows how many drugs and alcohol, I don’t bloat up for pictures,” he writes over email. “I don’t drink for a week, stick to a low-sodium regimen of chicken, broccoli, hummus and water (no soda). Also, I run in the morning plus pushups and crunches, every day, for about a week or 10 days and lose about five pounds before the festival.”

Ugh. I wish I were doing that.

The Pound workout. Looks awesome, right? I wish the dieting part were as much fun.EXPAND

The Pound workout. Looks awesome, right? I wish the dieting part were as much fun.

Courtesy of Pound

Week 2
Weight: 121
I’m shocked to see that I lost weight, considering I could not give up my coffee or my gum. I also can’t quit real milk and carbs. I’ve lived long enough to know if I don’t just eat a damn Oreo, I’ll tear through every single mf’ing food item in the house trying to satisfy the craving for an Oreo.

I am following other parts of the plan, though, like working out and getting tons of sleep (I have the habits of a toddler and require nine hours per night). I also love making smoothies for breakfast with yogurt and frozen berries. I add ice and eat them like a slurpee because I’m a fat kid at heart. I’m also killing it at drinking water since I fill up a 7-Eleven 32 oz. Big Gulp about three or four times per day. I’m definitely taking liberties with the meals, but surely roasted salmon or peppers stuffed with ground turkey are OK.

The most startling realization I’m having is how expensive it is to eat healthily. Plenty of studies have been done on the “food inequality” problem, and I suddenly see why. Organic food is pricey. Fish is a great source of lean protein, but a pound of salmon — which feeds two people with no leftovers — costs almost $20. I could eat out more cheaply. And at least then I wouldn’t have to clean up.

One of my Slurpee-style smoothiesEXPAND

One of my Slurpee-style smoothies

Rebecca Haithcoat

Week 3
Weight: 120 ½
Like many Americans, my relationship with food can be summed up as, “It’s complicated.”

During my sophomore year of high school, I fell deeply, dumbly in love with anorexia and shrank well under 100 pounds. I recovered as much as you can when the thing you’re addicted to is also a requirement to live, but in the years since, I’ve flirted with disordered eating.

But a couple years ago, a miraculous thing happened. I began to eat as I did when I was a kid — only when I was hungry and exactly what I wanted, without keeping a constant mental tally of how many calories I’d consumed. I left food on my plate. I skipped the gym for multiple days. I bought a Twix bar without shame and ate the whole thing. I even cut out my daily habit of, like, seven Diet Mountain Dews a day and switched to water. As a result of finally, blessedly not giving a shit, I lost about 10 pounds and have maintained it without any serious effort.

Now, though, I’m spiraling back into my old obsessive habits. I worked too hard not to care, and three weeks into this plan, I care again. Overthinking what I eat doesn’t work for me. I was eating well before I started this diet, lots of protein and vegetables and fruit, but if I want a treat, I go for it. Maybe sweet potato waffles or apple slices sprinkled with cinnamon, two of the suggested snacks in the diet booklet, are a treat for some people, but nah. I need to face plant into a vat of cotton candy.

I sort of love not drinking, but I’ve found it’s harder not drinking than not eating crap when I’m out with friends. They understand being on a diet, but no one gets why you aren’t drinking. Pretty much every social thing I do revolves around drinking, and people are just baffled when I’m not. I can’t count how many times I heard, “Why aren’t you drinking?”

The only thing that lets me avoid scrutiny is sneaking up to the bar and asking for a rocks glass with water and a lime. Looks like a vodka cocktail.

Week 4
Weight: 120
I’ve never been more relieved to break a diet, including the two master cleanses I’ve done. Being on a diet is a full-time job. No wonder Naomi Wolf was skeptical — diets really do keep women so busy that we don’t have time or energy to worry about anything else.

Of course, this diet did get easier as the month progressed and I got more familiar with the recipes and ingredients, but eating seven times a day doesn’t feel natural to me. Plus, doing so is not super convenient when you’re a freelancer who is out running around most days of the week.

It’s also hard not to imagine how much easier this would’ve been if I were rich. I could afford all-organic stuff. I could hire someone to shop and cook and rustle up a halibut crudo for a midday snack.

But the main issue with being on a diet is that all I thought about was food, and that’s the exact habit I broke free of two years ago. When you obsess over food, it can only go two ways: You restrict or you binge. Neither is healthy.

So I’m going to stop thinking about food now. I’ll keep the fruit smoothies and massive quantities of water and I’ll go alcohol-free more nights than not, but I’ll also eat a sleeve of powdered donuts when I want to. I feel great, really great, about myself for the first time in years, and this diet convinced me that you just don’t fuck with that. It’s too preciously acquired.

Oh, and even though I only lost three pounds (LOL), I actually did achieve my goal: Yesterday morning I took an “after” photo and compared it to my “before,” and there they were, baby abs coming through for Coachella.

Too bad I can’t find that crop top.

How the Hell Do People Afford Coachella?
Here Are 10 Products for Smuggling Alcohol Into Concerts
Why Coachella Weekend Two Is Way Better Than Weekend One

Otto Von Schirach Is Gonna Be a Dad – Miami New Times

Wednesday, April 20, 2016 at 8:35 a.m.

Miami will soon have a little Von Schirach running around.

Miami will soon have a little Von Schirach running around.

Photo by Stian Roenning

Though Otto Von Schirach has called Wynwood home for nine years, the musical provocateur’s connection with the once-downtrodden but now-booming neighborhood goes back further. “Twenty years ago, I used to come here for Hoodstock. It was a ’90s festival held in this hard-core neighborhood, but somehow the festivals were always peaceful. I would buy records there by DJ Raw to sample, and in one of them, he talks about his corner, which is three houses from where I live now.”

That shared history makes Von Schirach a fitting and grateful Saturday-night (8 p.m.) performer for the third-annual Wynwood Life, a three-day street festival celebrating Wynwood’s art, culture, food, and music. “This is the third year I’ve played it. Every year it gets bigger. The people behind it were at Wynwood from the get-go and are strong influences on the neighborhood. They give a chance for a lot of locals to shine. Plus they get big headliners, so last year was completely slammed.”

Among this year’s acts are Atlanta rappers Ying Yang Twins, local legend DJ Laz, and two local bands Von Schirach has gotten to know well over the years, Telekinetic Walrus and Afrobeta. “For a while now, it seems like festivals always book me, Walrus, and Afrobeta together. We just did the Okeechobee Festival. Now that we’re hanging all the time, we decided to make some music together since we flow so well.” Von Schirach is unsure when that music will be released, but he just finished a demo for an untitled solo album. Much of its inspiration comes from an unlikely place for a man who sports gold teeth while dancing around massive booties, because, ladies and gentlemen, Otto Von Schirach is mere months away from becoming a father.

“Some of the new tracks I made are definitely love songs, not even necessarily love songs to my kid, but to the Earth. I’m feeling it now. You go through life and it hits you — you’re making a human. You’re giving him your blood. Your heart will be walking in someone else.”

Impending fatherhood might make him slightly anxious, but he’s trying to stay productive in the months before his bundle of joy arrives. “We just shot a video for ‘The Pee Wee Herman.’ It’s a quirky song about the Pee-wee Herman dance. I recorded the song three years ago, but his new movie came out on Netflix and I was like, We’ve got to release the song now. We got all these vogue dancers to be in it, and we might shoot more at Wynwood Life.”

His set at Wynwood Life will feature all members of his Bermuda Triangle Posse, including Notorious Nastie and Mr. Feathers. “We’re opening directly in front of DJ Laz, so we want to make a Miami bass force field of groovy Latin beats.” Von Schirach credits his ability to hype the crowd to his vegetarian, mostly raw diet, which he has promoted over the years on his odd yet wonderful Instagram account. He often posts short videos of himself paying tribute to various tropical fruits and vegetables, as well as recording ad-libbed songs about papayas and mysterious aliens.

“I have at my house a papaya, avocado, mango, and banana tree. I’ll buy exotic fruits like jackfruits and mameys from my friend in the Redland. Then Muña, a homeless guy who’s lived in Wynwood for 40 years, scores me everything. He knows all the neighborhood secret fruit trees. He gets me avocados, he’ll bring me 12 different varieties of mangoes, and right now, in my living room, I have 50 coconuts he gave me.”

Now that right there is what we call Wynwood life.

Wynwood Life with Ying Yang Twins, Otto Von Schirach, DJ Laz, and others. 5 p.m. Friday, April 22; noon Saturday, April 23; and noon Sunday, April 24, at the RC Cola Plant, 550 NW 24th St., Miami. Admission is free.

How to Love Raw Food, From a Modern Pioneer – Bloomberg

Solla Eiríksdóttir is one celebrity chef you may not have come across, but she is a household name in Iceland because of  her TV shows and four restaurants focused on raw food and vegan dishes.

If such an approach sounds a little purist, Solla, 55,  is more interested in flavor than philosophy, and she laughs a lot during an interview at Gló restaurant in Reykjavik. Sitting alongside is daughter Hildur, 36, the collaborator on her first English-language cookbook, “Raw,” which will be published by Phaidon on May 4.

“It’s a way of preparing food, not a way of life,” she says. “Everywhere in the world, people are told to eat more fruit and vegetables. What we’re doing is transforming fruit and vegetables into real dishes instead of just making salad all the time. This is just food. We love the freshest raw materials so your taste buds are screaming for more.”

Photographer: Simon Bajada

Solla is an interesting story. She was studying handicrafts in Copenhagen when Hildur was born. Her doctor told her to stop breast-feeding so he could prescribe drugs for her allergies. She said no, and on the way home stopped at a health-food store for the first time.

She met a nutritionist who put her on a vegan diet that cleared up her allergies in six months. Solla returned to Reykjavik, studying at the Myndlista- og handíðaskóli Íslands, a craft school, and working part-time as a server at Á næstu grösum, Iceland’s first vegetarian restaurant, where she helped in the kitchen and started to cook.

She went on to open her first restaurant with a friend in March 1994, selling it a decade later and going to study at the Living Light Culinary Institute, in Fort Bragg, California. She became a regular on Icelandic television, even making four programs with the country’s first lady, Dorrit Moussaieff, who has also cooked with Martha Stewart.

Solla currently owns four restaurants in Iceland and is now looking at expanding her Gló street-food concept internationally. She mentions London, Copenhagen, Stockholm and Oslo as possible cities, along with California and Germany. She also has her own organic food brand and has published five cookbooks in Iceland.

She wrote the book with Hildur so the mother and daughter could spend more time together. They also write a blog. There are 75 recipes, all vegetarian and many raw and vegan. I’ve rarely been so excited by meat-free recipes. Here are some to try.


Photographer: Simon Bajada

1 zucchini (courgette)
2 avocadoes, peeled, pitted, and cut into slices

For the Brazil nut cheese

½ cup (2¾ oz/75 g) Brazil nuts
¼ cup (1½ oz/40 g) cashew nuts
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2–3 tablespoons nutritional yeast flakes
1 teaspoon probiotic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
½ teaspoon sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper

For the green pesto

½ cup (2¾oz/75 g) cashew nuts
1 handful of basil
1 handful of arugula (rocket)
1–2 tablespoons nutritional yeast flakes
1 large clove garlic
¼-½teaspoon sea salt flakes
¼-½teaspoon cold-pressed olive oil

For the marinade

2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoons olive oil
½ teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon dried oregano

For the red pesto

1 1/4 cups (4 oz/125 g) sun-dried tomatoes in oil, drained
2 plum tomatoes, pitted
½ red bell pepper, cored and seeded
1 clove garlic
2 dates, pitted and finely chopped
1 teaspoon dried oregano
A pinch of sea salt

  1. For the Brazil nut cheese, put the Brazil nuts and cashew nuts into in a bowl, pour in enough water to cover, and soak for 2–4 hours. Drain and discard the soaking water. Set aside.
  2. For the green pesto, put the cashew nuts into a bowl, pour in enough water to cover, and soak for 2 hours. Drain and discard the soaking water. Set aside.
  3. For the marinade, put all the ingredients into a bowl and mix together. Set aside.
  4. Use a mandoline or a cheese slicer to cut the zucchini into long, thin slices. Put them into a bowl with the marinade, stir to coat the zucchini in the marinade, cover with plastic wrap (clingfilm), and let stand while you make the pesto and cheese.
  5. For the green pesto, put the cashew nuts into a food processor with the remaining ingredients, except the olive oil, and blend. The texture of the pesto should be chunky. Transfer the pesto to a bowl and add the olive oil. Stir gently to mix together. Set aside.
  6. To make the red pesto, put all the ingredients into a food processor and blend until chunky. Add a little salt, if needed, then transfer to a bowl and set aside.
  7. To make the Brazil nut cheese, put the drained Brazil nuts into a food processor with all the remaining ingredients. Season with pepper, add 2–3 tablespoons water, and blend until smooth. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
  8. To assemble the lasagna, arrange a layer of zucchini in a shallow dish, add a layer of green pesto on top, followed by a layer of the nut cheese. Add another layer of zucchini, then a layer of the red pesto and a layer of sliced avocado. Repeat until all the ingredients are used up, finishing with the nut cheese. Alternatively, you can assemble individual servings on each of 4 plates.

(Serves 4)

Quinoa Pizza Crust 

Photographer: Simon Bajada

¾ cup (4 oz/115 g) quinoa
½ teaspoon sea salt flakes
1 clove garlic
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 teaspoons dried oregano
¼ cup (¾ oz/20 g) grated vegan cheese
1 tablespoon olive oil

For the topping

Scant ½ cup (3½oz/100 g) vegan cream cheese
½ zucchini (courgette), very thinly sliced
2–3 tablespoons pine nuts
3–4 sprigs rosemary
1 tablespoon truffle oil

  1. Put the quinoa into a bowl, pour in enough water to cover, and let soak overnight.
  2. The next day, preheat the oven to 375°F/190°C/Gas Mark 5 and line a baking sheet with parchment (baking) paper.
  3. Drain and rinse the quinoa, then put it into a blender together with 1/4 cup (2 fl oz/60 ml) water, the salt, garlic, black pepper, and oregano and blend until smooth. Pour the batter into a bowl and mix in the cheese and olive oil.
  4. Put a 9 inch (23 cm) tart ring on the prepared baking sheet and pour in the quinoa batter. Bake for about 20 minutes, then remove from the oven. Wearing oven mitts, flip the crust over by covering it with another baking sheet, grasping both sides of the 2 baking sheets, and flipping the sheets with the crust between them. Bake on the second sheet for another 5–10 minutes.
  5. Remove the crust from the oven and lower the temperature to 345°F/175°C/Gas Mark 3–4. Spread the crust with the cream cheese, top with the zucchini slices, and sprinkle with the pine nuts. Bake for another 8 minutes.
  6. Meanwhile, in a small skillet (frying pan) briefly cook the rosemary sprigs in the truffle oil over medium heat. When the pizza is ready, sprinkle with the fried rosemary and serve.

(Makes 1 pizza)

Falafel With Sesame Seed Sauce 

Photographer: Simon Bajada

Do not let the long list of ingredients discourage you – this is really a very simple recipe. Falafel is exceptionally good in a cooked wrap or romaine lettuce with some homemade fermented carrots, sesame seed sauce, and fresh vegetables, such as ripe tomatoes, onions, and cucumber. The sauce is great for falafel and salad.

For the falafel

1½ cups (8 oz/225 g) almonds
1½ cups (5 oz/150 g) walnuts
½ cup (2 ½ oz/70 g) sesame seed paste (tahini)
¼ cup (1½ oz/40 g) raisins
½ cup (½ oz/15 g) parsley
½ cup (1/2 oz/15 g) cilantro (coriander), plus extra to garnish
2 cloves garlic
1 tablespoon ground coriander
1 tablespoon ground cumin
2 tablespoons coconut oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 teaspoons salt
½ teaspoon ground black pepper

For the sauce

3 tablespoons lemon juice
⅓ cup (2 ½ fl oz/75 ml) orange juice
⅔ cup (3¼ oz/90 g) sesame seed paste (tahini)
3 cloves garlic, crushed
½ teaspoon Himalayan salt or sea salt
2 tablespoons cilantro (coriander)
1 tablespoon parsley
1 teaspoon curry powder
½ teaspoon ground cumin
2 dates, pitted (optional)

To serve

10 cooked wraps or romaine lettuce leaves
Fermented Carrots with Spices

  1. To make the falafel, put all the ingredients into a food processor and blend well. Using your hands, roll the mixture into 20 small balls. Put the balls on dehydrator trays, then put the trays into the dehydrator and set to 116°F/47°C for 4–6 hours. Alternatively, you can dry the balls in a normal oven with the fan on and heated to the lowest setting.
  2. Place the balls on a baking sheet, keep the oven door open with a wooden spoon, and leave for 3–4 hours.
  3. The balls are ready when they are crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside.
  4. Meanwhile, for the sauce, put all the ingredients into a blender, add 1/3 cup (2 1/2 fl oz/75 ml) water, and blend well. Set aside.
  5. Transfer the falafel balls to a serving bowl, garnish with parsley and serve the sauce in a bowl on the side. To eat, place 2 falafel balls on a wrap or lettuce leaf with some fermented carrots and the sesame seed sauce.

(Serves 4)

Green Cake to Live For

Photographer: Simon Bajada

For the crust

1 cup (3½oz/100 g) walnuts
½ cup (2¼ oz/60 g) raw cacao powder
¼ teaspoon sea salt flakes
1 ½ cups (7 oz/200 g) medjool dates, pitted
¾cup (4 oz/120 g) raw pistachios, coarsely chopped

For the filling

1 cup (5 oz/150 g) cashew nuts
2 avocados, peeled, halved, pitted, and cut into cubes
1 handful of spinach
¼teaspoon chlorella
1 cup (9 fl oz/250 ml) almond milk
½ cup (5 ½ oz/160 g) maple syrup or coconut nectar
⅓ cup (2 ½fl oz/75 ml) lime juice
1 tablespoon lime zest
pinch of cayenne pepper
½ teaspoon ground cardamom powder
⅛ teaspoon sea salt

To serve

chlorella, to taste

  1. Line a 9 inch (23 cm) round springform cake pan or mold with parchment (baking) paper. For the filling, put the cashew nuts into a bowl, pour in enough water to cover, and then soak for 2–4 hours, or overnight, then drain and discard the soaking water.
  2. Put the avocados and cashews in a blender with the remaining filling ingredients and blend for about 30 seconds, or until smooth.
  3. For the crust (base), put the walnuts, cacao powder, and sea salt flakes into a food processor and process until the nuts are finely ground. Add the dates, one at a time, through the feed tube of the food processor while it is running on slow speed or pulse after each addition. The mixture is ready when it sticks together. Put the mixture into a bowl and combine with the chopped pistachios. Press the mixture into the prepared cake pan or mold, pour the filling over the crust until it is completely covered, and chill in the refrigerator or freeze until ready to serve. Just before serving, sprinkle with chlorella.

(Serves 10)

“Raw: Recipes for a  Modern Vegetarian Lifestyle,” by Solla Eiríksdóttir, will be published by Phaidon on May 4 at £24.95 or $34.95.

Richard Vines is the chief food critic at Bloomberg. Follow him on Twitter @richardvines and on Instagram richard.vines

Raw, Freeze-Dried and Dehydrated Food: Teach Your Customers Well – PetProductNews.com

The raw, freeze-dried and dehydrated pet food category is growing, but to convert more consumers, retailers and manufacturers must thoroughly address pet owners’ lack of knowledge about feeding these diets.

By Keith Loria

While the natural raw, freeze-dried and dehydrated food segment is fast growing, the vast majority of pet owners still are unfamiliar with this category or hesitant to give it a try. Pet owners crave information, and they’re looking for partnership, both from the retailers they visit and the brands they invest in. That’s why it’s important for retailers to engage their customers about raw food products and highlight these items in stores.

“Pet parents are transitioning to premium foods and treats, predominantly raw frozen and freeze-dried offerings,” said Lanny Viegut, CEO and owner of Vital Essentials in Green Bay, Wis. “More and more companies are adjusting their strategies and searching for ways to enter and penetrate the category, thus enabling them to cater to this rapidly growing market. Some ‘traditional’ pet food companies are acquiring raw food companies/brands, and others are exploring partnerships with existing raw food companies. There appears to be a sense of urgency for most to create an access point to the raw food category, whether it be frozen or freeze dried.”

In December 2015, Vital Essentials became the first in the raw pet food category in the U.S. to receive the Food Safety System Certification 22000, Viegut said. The company also has earned a superior rating (99.3 percent) from Bureau Veritas, an international food safety audit firm, and recently received European Union certification, permitting the import of its pet products into Europe, he added.

Katie Southard, store manager for Pet Food Center, which has locations in Kentucky, Indiana and Tennessee, said interest in raw and dehydrated food has definitely climbed over the years.

“We are in the Midwest, so it might be more popular on the coast, but it’s definitely getting more popular [here],” she said. “Before, we carried very minimal raw, and I have boosted that up; dehydrated is something we have added a lot of to our shelves. It’s more pure, more limited ingredient, so customers know exactly what’s going into their foods as opposed to a long list when they don’t know half the words on it.”

The majority of consumers might not have the resources to feed their pets a full raw food diet, but it’s important to help them understand the benefits, said Lindsay Mutschler, owner of Concord Pet Foods & Supplies, which has stores in Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

The No. 1 thing customers ask Mutschler about in this category is what the differences are between raw frozen, freeze-dried raw and dehydrated, and what the benefits of each are. That’s why she makes sure she and her staff are up-to-date with the latest news about each product.

“Obviously in most cases this category is very new to the customer, so raw definitely can be intimidating to them,” she said. “They also ask about safety and pricing. Many times it can look on paper like feeding raw, freeze dried or dehydrated is much more expensive, when in reality the benefits to your pet offset the cost a bit.”

“Pet parents are transitioning to premium foods and treats, predominantly raw frozen and freeze-dried offerings,” said Lanny Viegut, CEO and owner of Vital Essentials in Green Bay, Wis. “More and more companies are adjusting their strategies and searching for ways to enter and penetrate the category, thus enabling them to cater to this rapidly growing market.”

New in Raw Pet Food

Gregory Jemal, founder of Five Star Raw and CEO of G Mason Group, based in New York, said pet owners who are considering feeding some form of raw diet to their pets are placing a great priority on giving their pets the best food available with some additional added convenience.

“In light of recent recalls, pet owners also are becoming increasingly concerned about the safety of raw diets,” he said. “They’re intrigued by all the stories they’ve heard about the benefits but seek reassurance that they won’t be putting their pet or family in harm’s way.”

The Five Star Raw brand, which is U.S. Department of Agriculture certified and inspected, is still in its first 12 months of business, so its entire line is new, Jemal said, adding that the frozen 1-pound chubs are available in Chicken & Vegetable, Beef & Vegetable, Chicken, Beef & Vegetable, Duck & Vegetable and Turkey & Vegetable varieties.

Eric Emmenegger, senior brand manager for Instinct, a brand of Nature’s Variety in St. Louis, said the company is passionate about continuing to drive the momentum of the frozen and freeze-dried raw categories.

“We see two overriding trends in what consumers are looking for: convenience and tailored offerings,” he said. “Consumers are more aware than ever before of what they’re feeding their pets, and that awareness is driving ever-increasing demand for raw. But they’re also looking for easy ways to incorporate raw that don’t interrupt their current feeding routines. That’s why we continue to expand the Instinct product line with offerings that enable consumers to feed raw frozen in ways that work best for them and their pet.”

In February 2016, the company launched frozen Instinct Raw Boost Mixers as a simple way to add the pure, real nutrition of raw to their pets’ current kibble by mixing or topping, Emmenegger said. 

Merchandising and Display Tips

At Concord Pet Foods & Supplies, the frozen foods obviously are in the freezer, but Nature’s Variety has its own two-door freezer with signage on the front noting the benefits the food provides, Mutschler said.  

“We try not to overdo signage on the freezers because you want people to be able to see inside,” Mutschler said. “As the category has grown, we are now starting to put a second double-door freezer into our store sets so we can expand into other brands.”

As for raw-freeze-dried and dehydrated foods, over the past year, the stores have been working to create a whole section dedicated to these products next to the freezers.

“We have call-out signage where we can, and then all employees are trained on the key things in order to help consumers with their questions,” Mutschler said. 

Recently, Vital Essentials retailers were offered high-quality wooden display racks to showcase Vital Essentials products, resulting in a greater percentage of sales for the stores, Viegut said.

The company’s commitment to educating and supporting pet owners and retail partners is evidenced by raw seminars that are conducted by members of its team and its expert animal nutritionist, Dr. Richard Patton, Viegut added. 

“Web and social media is also leveraged as a vehicle to reach consumers and create awareness of the category,” he said.


This article originally appeared in the April 2016 issue of Pet Product News‘ special supplement, Natural Pet News.

Raleigh Raw's journey from delivery to storefront – N.C. State University Technician Online

Raleigh Raw is one of downtown Raleigh’s newest additions, featuring a menu of raw foods and juices. Nestled in a trendy storefront on Hargett Street, it embraces an industrial feel, complemented by bright, local artwork, bar seating and a hip-hop playlist. Raleigh Raw already has the atmosphere of a well-established, popular hub, where new customers feel like regulars and hosting comes naturally to the owners.

This environment, however, did not come without its fair share of complications. Three years ago, Raleigh Raw was only an idea.

Sherif Fouad, the founder of Raleigh Raw, was exposed to the advantages of raw foods when his father’s cancer diagnosis called for a diet change. Fouad began preparing cold-pressed juices and raw foods for his father, who noticed a vast improvement in his health.

“It’s been really exciting to see the benefits of raw foods firsthand,” Fouad said. “We felt it was important for us to bring that to more people.”

Fouad moved to Raleigh in 2013, when he began working as a bartender. He and his girlfriend, NC State alumna Leslie Woods, began pressing and processing juices from home, which wasn’t a pragmatic operation.

They later received permission to use the bar’s kitchen after closing. Typically, they would work nights at the bar and then press, bottle and deliver juice from 2 a.m. until after 6 a.m.

For two and a half years they continued like this — saving money by taking funds out of their accounts intended for rent and food. 

They sold their product through coffee shops until a mishap with the FDA moved them to an online platform.  

“We had just ordered a pallet of 3,000 bottles; it was our first major order,” Woods said. “As it arrived, and we’re breaking down the pallet and taking the sleeves of bottles one by one to Sherif’s balcony across the road, we get a call from one of the managers at the coffee shop. He goes, ‘Guys, the FDA is here, they have their badges out, they’ve placed an embargo on your product.’”

Essentially, the product couldn’t be sold through more than one retailer for liability complications. Under this pressure, Fouad and Woods developed a commerce-friendly website for local customers in just five days. Truly a mark of the times, they relied on social media as their sole form of marketing throughout their company’s existence.

“Just being [an online] juice company, we were only able to express our brand through that Instagram platform. People weren’t able to meet us in person, we couldn’t talk one-on-one about a product, it was just them getting online and seeing who we were,” Woods said.

In fall of 2014, the duo purchased their first commercial juicer. Soon after, they began distributing and stocking raw juice vending machines. The next step? Finding the perfect location in downtown Raleigh for a complete cafe.

Their search yielded a historical storefront in need of renovation. Unforeseen complications arose during the restoration process, leading to unexpected costs. Woods and Fouad turned to their customers for support, setting up a Kickstarter campaign with an impressive goal: $37,000 in three weeks. Contributions immediately rolled in from friends, friends of friends and strangers, surpassing the initial amount. Three months later, Raleigh Raw held its grand opening.

In addition to cold-pressed juices, the cafe also serves healthy meals for a fast-paced life. The star of the menu is the selection of poké wraps, which are deconstructed sushi rolls. They also serve “crack coffee,” coffee blended with grass-fed butter and coconut oil and Kombucha, a sweet, fermented tea, among other raw drinks.

“We’ve always been more about the experience,” Woods said. “We are not just a juice company, we are a lifestyle brand — we’re selling a lifestyle, not a product.”

Raleigh Raw continues to look forward. Optimally, according to Woods, the cafe will expand to more locations in North Carolina. They hope to develop shelf-stable products for commercial sale. Beyond company-specific goals, Woods wants to share her experiences with others.

“I’d like to go further into the mentoring, speaking and motivating,” Woods said. “Particularly for young women, [to help] get over the fear of going out on their own and doing something different from the norm, doing something that makes your heart sing — and doesn’t necessarily make your parents proud right off the bat.”

Woods said the struggles in the journey to establishing the cafe helped fuel their imagination. 

“Failure allows you to be creative,” Woods said. “It leads you down paths you wouldn’t have chosen conventionally, but it always seems to work out for the better.”

Raw Food Diet Weight Loss Help – TheSequitur.com

Raw food diet is a great way to lose weight. Many people all across the world are adopting a raw diet as they have realized its benefits.

Let us take a look at how raw diet actually works:

Raw food diet comprises of food derived from plants. These contain a lot of fiber and water. Therefore, you cannot over eat raw food even if you want to. Your stomach will get filled up very fast due to the presence of such high amounts of water and fiber. On top of this, the calorie count of raw food is very low. It is much lower than the calorie count of normal diet. Therefore, weight loss is brought about by consumption of raw diet.

It is always better to ear raw food as the nutritional content of raw food is much higher than normal food.

You should never underfeed yourself. It is your duty to give your body sufficient nutrition. The nutrients that are required by the body are required for several purposes. Some of the purposes being:

• cell repair,
• cell growth,
• cell regeneration,
• healing,
• metabolic processes,
• production of hormones and enzymes,
• Fighting against external invaders.

Sometimes we go on eating and eating but we still feel very hungry. Why does this happen? If you consume junk food most of the time, you are depriving your body from the essential nutrients that it requires. Most of the junk foods such as burgers, French fries, pastries contain very high amounts of saturated fats and very low amounts of nutrients. Therefore, the body is getting deprived of the nutrients. The junk that you eat will remain in your body for some hours. After that you will again feel hungry. When people feel hungry, they stuff themselves with more junk such as potato chips; all kinds of fries etc. junk foods are very addictive. Once you eat, you go on eating.

When you are on raw food diet, this does not happen. You feel hungry after a long time. When you do so, you consume healthy food which consists of very low calories.

Some of the ingredients found in raw foods are:

• vitamins,
• minerals,
• enzymes,
• Phytochemicals
• other vital nutrients

The world is inhabited with people who are fat and at the same time undernourished.

Your digestion improves remarkably when you are on a raw diet. The raw food that you consume consists of enzymes. These enzymes get destroyed on cooking. Since the digestion process becomes fast, so does weight loss.

There are plenty of other advantages of going on a raw diet. Several diseases like cardiac diseases, cancer, stomach ailments can be avoided by adopting a raw diet plan. A raw diet plan is also called a raw diet paradox. This is because in this process you eat a lot and lose weight.

Detoxification of the body is brought about raw diet plan. The toxins and other accumulations of the body are eliminated and the system is cleared. Detoxification of the body is important for weight loss.

Stock up on raw food, ethical chocolate and cruelty-free beauty at Cheltenham Vegan Fair – Gloucestershire Echo

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Cheltenham Vegan Fair returns on Saturday, April 16 for it’s second year with a host of caterers and cruelty-free skincare stalls.

From raw food to falafel, chocolate and cakes there will be plenty of tantalising treats.

Whether you are vegan or just curious, there will also be talks on veganism including:

Judy Barber – What’s so important about plant-based nutrition?

Mex Watson – Barry Horne Documentary Trailer

Ronnie Smith – Raw food in the real world

Stalls include Sharaf’s Falafel, Lakeside Ethical Treats, Mex It Up, Raw Happy, Poco Culina, Pomodoro E Basilico, Trishul Chocolates, Flamingo’s Vegan Bakery, Cococaravan and Juiciful Catering.

Other stalls include Neal’s Yard Remedies, Hempish, Nature’s Own, Henna Tattoo’s, Friends Of The Earth, Sea Shepherd UK and Tropic Skincare.

There will also be a kids’ area with face painting.

The event takes place at St Andrew’s Church in Montpellier, Cheltenham, between 10am and 4pm tomorrow. Entry by donation.