For the dough
In a food processor, combine the bananas, spirulina, vanilla, coconut, sesame seeds, and salt and blend for thirty seconds on high. Blend well until it’s much like cookie dough.
The author uses two large bananas. If your bananas are rather small, you might need three.
Spread the mixture on Teflex or dehydrator sheets to about ¼-inch thick. Dehydrate for 12 to 15 hours or until crisp.
“Raw and Radiant — 130 Quick Recipes and Holistic Tips for a Better Life” contains creative, healthy raw vegan recipe beginners and experienced raw foodists.
OverviewRaw and Radiant by Summer Sanders contains simple and fast recipes which offer proof that healthy food is delicious and easy to prepare. The recipes don’t require any cooking, and you will only need a few pieces of kitchen equipment. Strictly speaking, some of the recipes are not 100 % vegan because they call for honey, while others are not strictly raw vegan because they use cashews and/or soy sauce. Most of the recipes use basic ingredients, with some calling for the addition of protein powder, superfood powder, and probiotic capsules. Raw and Radiant offers a large variety of creative, healthy, raw vegan recipes. Both new and experienced raw vegans will find plenty of delicious recipe ideas.
SummaryRaw and Radiant: – 130 Quick Recipes and Holistic Tips for a Better Life contains a large variety of raw vegan recipes that are prepared without using heat. About one-sixth of the dishes contain ingredients that are technically not raw because of the processing method used. These include cashews, soy sauce, and vanilla.
Although it is used in only a few recipes in this book, many feel that honey has no place in vegan cooking. It can easily be replaced with other sweeteners if desired. Despite a large number of recipes, the author has included photos for most of the dishes. You will be impressed with the exclusive use of fresh ingredients, as the author refrains from using prepared foods. Some recipes, especially in the Breakfast and Smoothies sections, include additions such as protein powder or other ingredients like mesquite powder and tocotrienol (a form of vitamin E). These ingredients make it more difficult to prepare the recipes since these are not commonly found in many kitchens. This could also leave cooks with the impression that these items are required for raw vegan cooking. It is always preferable to use only unprocessed ingredients.
You will appreciate the fact that the addition of sweeteners and oils is significantly reduced and kept to a bare minimum. Summer Sanders prefers using olive oil for savory dishes and coconut oil for sweets. It would have been preferable to see the use of healthier oils in these cases. Cooks may choose to use different types of oils according to their preferences.
Summer Sanders proves her point in Raw and Radiant that healthy raw vegan food can be easy to prepare, which is why she avoids the use of time-intensive practices like dehydrating and long soaking periods. It would be nice for planning purposes if the preparation times were included, along with clearly marked waiting times.
Raw and Radiant: – 130 Quick Recipes and Holistic Tips for a Better Life by Summer Sanders is a cookbook with many health tips and an extensive collection of recipes. With its large variety of raw vegan recipes that are, for the most part, easy to prepare, both new and experienced raw vegans will find plenty of delicious recipe ideas.
About the authorSummer Sanders lives in Sedona, Arizona, with her husband and her son. She is an advocate for untreated, organic raw foods but does not follow an exclusively raw diet. Sanders is the founder of an all-organic cold-pressed juice bar and superfood kitchen located in Arizona. She is also a health coach and blogger.
ContentsRaw and Radiant is divided into four sections:
I. BasicsThis includes chapters like My Food Philosophy, Why Raw Food?, Supplements + Healthy Tips, and Eating with the Seasons.
II. RecipesThe recipes are divided into eight chapters:
Breakfast:Recipes for breakfast puddings and different types of granola are included in this section. Many of the recipes include superfoods and protein powder. An example of the types of recipes in this section is The Best Açaí Bowl Ever, which includes açaí, banana, avocado, almond milk, protein powder, coconut, bee pollen, and more.
Nut milk:A wide array of nut milks is presented here. The impressive selection includes among others almond milk, hazelnut milk, walnut milk, and sesame milk, and they are all enhanced with sweeteners, vanilla, and/or other ingredients. A good example is the recipe for Sunflower Hempseed Milk, which includes vanilla and dates.
Smoothies:Many of the recipes for smoothies include protein powder, probiotic capsules, and superfoods. An example is the Citrus Flax Cleanser.
Soups & Salads:Two-thirds of the recipes for salads include only fresh ingredients. A recipe you might like to try is the Watercress and Fresh Fig Salad.
Dressings, Sauces & Sides: This section includes recipes for dressings, pestos, dips, and small snacks like the Spicy Pico de Gallo.
Main Dishes:This section includes an assortment of Asian, Mexican, and European dishes, including quite a few vegetable pasta choices like the Maple and Sage Infused Sweet Potato Ravioli, and other dishes like the Coconut Curry Bowl or the Simple Tostada. The ingredients are always fresh; processed ingredients or supplement powders are never used.
Sweet Treats:This chapter focuses on cakes, cookies, and snack bars. The recipes have minimal amounts of sugar, while the amount of oil is reduced but not eliminated by any means. Powders, for example, protein powder, is only used in a few recipes. One example is the recipe for Spirulina Sesame Bars.
Juices:Most juice recipes in this book contain both fruits and vegetables. The juice recipes call for fresh ingredients only and do not contain any added powders or sweeteners. An example is Recovery Greens, where the recipe calls for kale, Swiss chard, celery, and lemon.
III. The CleanseThis section begins with an introduction about cleansing — what it is and why we should do it. A 5-day plan is provided with six drink suggestions for each day.
IV. Becoming Strong and + RadiantThe last section of the book covers the keys to a holistic lifestyle and focuses on the steps you can take to achieve that healthy glow. Summer Sanders provides helpful mantras to keep you centered, recommends that you take time to nurture your passions, and has a short discussion about why activities like yoga and running are designed to keep you moving and healthy.
The Appendices include information on Soaking, Sprouting, Making Flours, and Favorite Reading & Resources. Raw and Radiant finishes with an index of recipes and metric conversion charts.
Raw and Radiant by Summer Sanders is currently only available in English. You can order it through Skyhorse Publishing and Amazon.
Book review by Dr. med. vet. Inke Weissenborn
Spirulina Sesame Bars with Bananas and Shredded Coconut are a high-protein snack that is rich in calcium and selenium and perfect for before or after a workout.
Vanilla extract: Vanilla extract is usually an artificial ingredient that contains the flavor compound vanillin as the primary ingredient. It is commonly used in the United States, whereas ground vanilla and vanilla sugar are more popular in Europe. Pure vanilla extract is made by soaking vanilla bean pods in a solution of water and about 35 % ethyl alcohol. Since vanilla bean pods are blanched at a high temperature after harvest in order to stop the ripening process, commercially available pods are not raw. Furthermore, vanilla bean pods sold in stores are usually “fermented” vanilla since the precursors to vanillin are converted into the aromatic vanillin through the drying and fermentation processes.
Bananas: Bananas provide a balanced combination of carbohydrates but do not contain the fats that are important for your nerves and brain. However, these fats are found in the sesame seeds called for in this recipe.
Sesame seeds: Sesame seeds are originally from South Asia, where they have been used for about 5,000 years. The gluten-free seeds of this pseudograin contain 50 % fat — 44 % of which are polyunsaturated fatty acids — and only 18–25 % protein. Sesame seeds are one of the foods richest in selenium and also contain a considerable amount of calcium. Those who are sensitive to sesame need to be careful, as it is a strong allergen.
Spirulina: Spirulina is a species of cyanobacteria that is used as a dietary supplement. It is cultivated worldwide in factories and open ponds and then spray-dried at hot temperatures of at least 135 °C (275 °F) in order to produce powder and tablets. As a result, spirulina is not raw. It can also come into contact with toxins during the cultivation process. Since spirulina is classified as a dietary supplement in the United States, its production is not regulated across the industry and no safety standards exist to ensure its purity. Although some people claim otherwise, spirulina supplements are not considered to be a reliable source of vitamin B12. Spirulina predominantly contains pseudovitamin B12, a biologically inactive form of the vitamin that even blocks the natural receptors in humans.
Summer Sanders: I love these bars as a pre- or post-gym snack!
Vanilla: The best variety of vanilla available is dried natural vanilla bean pods. However, you will need 1–2 bean pods or rather the vanilla pulp found inside in order to replace the intense, concentrated flavor of vanilla extract.