The Fresh Network is the one-stop shop for all things related to raw food and holistic health. Raw food is the most natural, alive and nutrient-rich food there is and until you give your body and mind the fuel they need to thrive, there is no telling how joyful, gorgeous, confident, clever, sexy, energetic, charismatic and all-round fabulous you could be. So come on in and let us help you find out...
Let’s not lose the age old art of preserving foods by fermentation, argues Philip Weeks. It’s a brilliant way to boost vitamin C and other important bacteria
There is a worldwide tradition of eating foods, which have gone through a fermenting process. Creating fermented foods is an ancient practice. There is good reason why they have featured as an important part of almost all traditional diets around the world.
For medicinal reasons we are interested in foods that have been fermented. These foods go through transformation with the presence of bacteria, and have significant health benefits. Fermented foods are a treasure trove of beneficial bacteria or micro-flora. Although most of these support digestive functions, others actively support immunity.
Many fermented foods are high in vitamin C and have been a valuable source of nutrients. In the age before refrigeration, fermentation was a way of preserving vegetables.
The micro-flora in bacteria-fermented foods support digestive function and have other protective effects such as reducing the incidence of diarrhea.
Fermented foods also increase the absorption of minerals in food. Phytic acid, present in grains and especially in soya, prevents the absorption of many nutrients. However, fermentation breaks down the phytic acid present in soya and other grains, making them much more digestible and increasing their nutrient benefit.
Our bacteria-obsessed society is making us less prone to some infections but ultimately we are developing more chronic conditions such as asthma and allergies. Utilising this ancient food and medicine is relatively easy.
Happy St. Patrick’s Day from everyone at The Fresh Network!
We have some fabulous, easy and very green recipes to get you in the mood for your St.Patrick’s Day celebration.
Silvia Clausin came up with these ideas especially for you, so enjoy them and have fun this weekend!
½ cup buckwheat, soaked and blended 1 cup coconut flour* ½ tsp vanilla extract Pinch of spirulina ½ teaspoon wheatgrass powder ¼ cup date paste** 1 ½ tbsp coconut oil, melted ½ tbsp lime zest ½ tbsp lemon zest 2 tsp flaxmeal*** 1 tbsp honey Pinch of salt
Celebrating special occasions does not have to mean indulging in heavy foods.
St Valentines Day is quite often associated with a chocolate feast but desserts drenched in sweeteners and heavily-loaded with cacao may not be the best choices for those who have just completed a detox, are in the middle or are about to embark on one.
If in the recent weeks we managed to inspire you to take steps towards a deeper cleanse, you may be already searching for healthy alternatives to traditional Valentines sweet recipes. You can stop right there, as Silvia Clausin came up with an appropriate proposition, designed with The Fresh Network customers in mind.
Silvia’s Cherry & Orange Sponge with Kewra Cream is decadent enough to make you feel spoiled and beautifully light at the same time. Share it with your loved one, have it with a friend or … eat it all yourself and don’t tell anybody!
1 beetroot, peeled and thinly sliced (into 8 good slices, using a mandoline)
½ cup of sunflower seeds (soaked)
1 Tbsp of Miso (unpasteurized)
2 Tbsp of olive oil
1 Tbsp of rosemary (fresh)
2 Tbsp thyme (fresh)
½ cup of water
1 clove of garlic, finely grated
Process all the ingredients well except for the beetroot and a few leaves of thyme, when you have a pate-like consistency make it into 1-inch balls and place it in the middle of the sliced beetroot. Decorate with the thyme leaves and drops of olive oil.
Do you ever have moments when another salad or piece of fruit just doesn't cut it? You want something different. Something heavier; more grounding. You want comfort food, dammit. A very common craving is for something seriously crunchy - crunchy like crisps, not crunchy like carrots. If you thought that that's not an option available on a raw diet, think again.
Allow me to introduce the kale chip.
If you've never heard of the concept, you can find full explanation plus recipe here. Seriously, you have to try these.
Kale: how can a green leafy thing that is capable of single-handedly ruining an otherwise perfectly palatable vegetable juice, be so crunchily, moreishly, teasingly gorgeous when coated in a blend of cashews, red pepper, lemon juice and nutritional yeast and slowly dried until crispy.
If you live in the US you may be lucky enough to be able to buy Kale In a Crunch kale chips. If you don't, and if you don't already have a dehydrator, it is worth buying one solely so you can make these. Just do it, and then thank me later.
If there's a better snack to chow down on while chuckling over Simpsons re-runs on a cold winter's night I don't know what it is.
I'm a big fan of shakes made of frozen banana "ice cream" and nut milk. Almond milk is lovely in these shakes, Brazil nut milk is better still, but I've just discovered the hands-down winner: hazelnut milk.
Although this is incredibly quick and simple to make (we are talking under five minutes), you'll need a well-stocked raw kitchen that includes a high-speed blender, a food processor with the "S" blade fitted, and a supply of peeled bananas in your freezer. Here's how you do it:
Several hours before you want to make this recipe, measure out half a cup of hazelnuts and then fill the remainder of the cup with water.
When you're ready for your shake, remove two bananas from the freezer and place in bowl of food processor so they defrost a little before you process them.
Pour away the soak water and blend the hazelnuts with a cup of fresh water.
Strain the mixture using a fine mesh sieve or a nut milk bag so you have a creamy milk and no "bits". Pour the milk back into the blender jug.
Process the frozen bananas until they are whipped into an ice-cream-like texture. This may take about two minutes, and the mixture may go grainy first, but keep processing and those bananas will morph into something that looks and feels like "Mr Whippy".
Spoon this mixture into the blender with the hazelnut milk and blend until you have a cold, thick, creamy - and praliney, thanks to the hazelnuts - shake.
I recently discovered a brilliant and very simple way to make green juices into a gourmet treat. This is a great alternative to adding fruit – though there is nothing wrong with adding some apple, pear or pineapple to take the edge off a potent elixir of dark greens. Add the juice of a lemon too and the interplay of sweet and tart will dominate, leaving the earthy bitter of the greens as a subtle – and decidedly more palatable – background taste.
But bored of that after several years of it I started experimenting and came up with another way to make heavy-duty green juices taste good - even those with broccoli! I’m making my juices into shakes by adding nut milk, and they have never gone down as easily. Here’s an example:
200g spinach or other dark greens
1 small head broccoli
1 red pepper
3 sticks celery
Small piece root ginger
Raw almond milk
Juice the first five ingredients and pour into a glass. Then add raw almond milk to taste – I find that two parts juice to one part nut milk is plenty.
It may be just me, but I love this simple salad so much I never get bored of it. I invented it about two months ago and since then I have had it as my main meal at least five days a week. Call me boring, but it is really good!
Plus, it couldn't be easier to put together and nor could it be quicker: it takes 5-10 minutes.
It has no dressing and just three ingredients: cucumber, avocado and dulse. This particular threesome is a match made in raw food heaven. Cool, crunchy, mild and refreshing cucumber, soft, creamy avocado and salty, feisty dulse.
I really like this so I use two cucumbers, a whole avocado and most of a pack of dulse in each salad. But you may be good with half these quantities.
Peel the cucumber/s and cut into slices - you can use a spirali or food processor for this part, or just "DIY". Place the cucumber slices in a bowl and chop the avocado in 1cm(ish) cubes over it. Then rinse the dulse quickly under a tap, blot it dry and tear it over the salad.
Then? Mix it round a bit and it's done.
I have served this as a side when I have people round for lunch or dinner and it's always a hit.
And nutritionally? Cucumber is extremely hydrating and alkalizing, a great source of silicon and the best natural kidney cleanser known to woman. Avocado is packed with essential fats and vitamin E. As for dulse, it's a sea vegetable and gram for gram, sea vegetables are richer in vitamins and minerals than any other food group. And like avocado, dulse is also a great source of quality protein.
So there you go. I had to share this one with you and I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!
I have a new favourite ice cream. It's lovely, it's healthy and it's also super quick and easy to make - as long as you have a good food processor a stock of frozen bananas in your freezer (if you don't, just peel some, place them in food bags and put them in there, at least four hours before you make this recipe). A good food processor will turn frozen bananas into dreamy creamy ice cream in a couple of minutes and it's worth having one for that reason alone!
Banana maple walnut ice cream (makes one serving)
2 medium-sized frozen bananas
50g walnuts (this is also delicious made with pecans, Brazil nuts, hazelnuts, or a mix of all three)
This couldn't be simpler. You just place all the ingredients in the food processor - fitted with the 'S' blade - and process for around 2 minutes. When it's ready it will have a gorgeous creamy consistency that's full of crunchy nutty bits. If you want it to also have chunky pieces, as in the photo, hold back some or all of the nuts and drop them into the processor after you've turned the bananas into "ice cream", processing briefly.
This recipe contains maple syrup, which isn't raw, although it is a very common ingredient in raw recipes and at raw restaurants. I just happened to have maple syrup on hand when I was playing around in the kitchen earlier this week and it gives it such a nice flavour I stuck on it! But this recipe would also work well without the sweetener or the salt. Those just make it extra special for those of us who don't have the willpower to be 100% pure!
When you're making this for more than one person it is easy to double, quadruple or even sextuple the ingredients - though if you are making more than two portions you may have to process in batches. I'm not sure how well this ice cream keeps in the freezer - it's never lasted long enough in my house to find that out!