Although, not too exciting, before I go any further, I must share some raw food basics. Not that I’ll cover everything in this post, but I want to explain some necessities that simplify raw food preparation.
The purpose of soaking nuts/seeds is to remove enzyme inhibitors, which hinder their digestion. I’ve mentioned in previous posts how important it is to soak and dehydrate nuts/seeds along the way rather than right before preparing a recipe. Regardless of what I plan for a particular week, when I get back from grocery shopping, I start soaking things that very night. In my home this commonly consists of sunflower seeds, almonds, buckwheat groats, and oat groats. There are no set rules, but I cannot encourage you enough to get in the habit of soaking and dehydrating nuts and seeds on a regular basis. Raw food recipes can seem like too much work if you notice a recipe that calls for 2 cups almonds which need to soak for 8 hours! If things are pre soaked and dehydrated, you can spontaneously make peach cobbler in 5 minutes. I’m not kidding.
To keep it simple, I generally soak everything overnight. However, each nut/seed is different. Some are all set with only a couple of soaking hours, while others need a couple of days. I will specify in my recipes if I don’t soak something overnight. If you are really set on knowing exact times, there are many guides online that tell how long each nut, seed, grain, and bean needs to soak for.
I used to be so overwhelmed by all the raw food you could order online, and with the price and hassle of ordering, I just didn’t. However, eager to get that tiramisu consistency in the desserts I was making, I eventually ordered Irish moss and have been buying it ever since. Irish moss is a sea vegetable, which means it contains loads of minerals that we can’t get from food grown in mineral depleted soil.
Soak dry Irish moss 12-24 hours in a glass jar. It does “grow”, so loosely fill a 1 quart mason jar and top the jar off with local spring water. After soaking, gently rinse the moss in cool water to remove sand and other ocean “stuff”. Toss the moss (hehe) into a high speed blender with 2-3x as much water and thoroughly blend. The result is a creamy jelly, and refrigerated it will become a firm gel. I use Irish moss gel in many of my recipes, including bread, so it’s pretty important in my opinion. If you need more direction, watch this how-to video.
Next week: Raspberry and Vanilla Ice Cream Sandwiches.