I did the mistake of making a Raw chocolate banana smoothie for breakfast today. I have never been 100% sure that I am “allergic” to bananas because there were always other variables to the equation when I would get my severe stomach aches. But once I eliminated bananas from my diet, I was fine. I know that is proof enough but I had been thinking of trying bananas one more time just to be absolutely sure they were the culprit. So I thought I’ll try today. Mainly because bananas are really filling and they are the perfect addition to a raw smoothie, making it creamy and thick.
For someone who has no problem with bananas, this is a great recipe and food to take for breakfast when on a raw diet. But for me, it got my stomach into knots. Not as bad as it usually is, because this time I made sure that I had a celery stick every few hours. The moment I would get a hint of pain in my stomach I would grab a celery stick from the refrigerator. Celery somehow helped calm the situation in my guts!
After my sad salad day yesterday, I decided to change things up in the kitchen. I am soooo happy for pinterest and foodgawker and the oh so many lovely blogs out there. If you are going raw, I would definitely recommend the rawmazing site. The recipe for these raw falafels is from Susan’s recipe archives.
I had sprouted some chickpeas two days back, and today they were ready. My initial plan was to make raw sprouted chickpea hummus and then eat it with veggies. But then I remember pinning these raw falafels a few weeks back when I was collecting recipes for my raw diet.
The falafels were actually pretty good. I do not have a dehydrater so I did not cook them in any way. I am sure they would have tasted better after dehydrating them. They were fine completely raw. Though since I did not cook them, and I know how chickpeas can cause gas, I made sure I ate a celery stick after eating these falafels.
Sprouting chickpeas, or any legume for that matter, increases their nutrients: proteins by about 20%, nucleic acids by 30%, and many vitamins by as much as 500%! Sprouted seeds are also easier to digest since complex carbohydrates break down into simple sugars, and proteins break down into amino acids; both are easier for the body to process and promote our ability to absorb minerals in the food. Ans since seeds use energy to grow a sprout; sprouted seeds have fewer calories than in their whole form. Go sprouts! (source and more information on sprouting chickepeas: check here)
I used my raw falafels in a collard green wrap with some pineapple, avocado, pomegranates chopped in as well with a hint of lemon. Next time I will try the raw sour cream that Susan has these falafels with. I was a little lazy this time making it, but I missed having a creamy sauce in my collard green wrap. I would have loved to make the mango pineapple salsa along with it but mangoes are really expensive here, $4 for 1 mango! Instead I just chopped some pineapples and avocado with a few pomegranates and lemon juice. The wraps were decent. I did miss a pita bread. But it was better than the salad.
These make a lot. So I fried up some of them for V. He liked the fried version of these- I didn’t make him taste the raw version, though I am sure (the health freak he is), he would have liked them.
Today’s raw food revelations and changes I have noticed:
- I am chewing my food more, you know the 50 times/bite types. I always used to eat my food really quickly. But since I have gone raw, I am unconsciously chewing more. Chewing more helps release the food’s glucose in the mouth, making the food sweet and more palatable. Plus, more the food is ground down and mixed with saliva, the less digestive energy is needed to absorb it, thus making the need for my body to work on the food less, leaving more energy for me. Probably that’s why I am more active than I thought would be on this raw diet.
- I did feel more gassy than usual (sorry for the not so pretty picture) and it definitely was the banana.
- I have noticed that going raw has given me a lighter and less painful period this time around. After I noticed, I read that going raw actually makes your periods lighter and less painful! I will research more on why this happens and fill you in.
- I have started liking raw celery. Never thought I could. But now I do.
- I definitely have an intolerance to bananas though eating celery helps in reducing the stomach cramps. Need to explore the possibility of celery banana bread!
- Dinner is the toughest meal to be raw. I somehow manage breakfast and lunch, but by dinner time I am craving cooked food. Three more days of this, that’s what I told myself today. I can do this!
RAW FALAFEL RECIPE
adapted from here
- 3 cups Sprouted Garbanzo Beans (chickpeas, I used 2 big cups)
- 1 cup Chopped Onion (used ½ really big onion)
- 2 Cloves Garlic
- 1 cup Sunflower Seeds, ground to a powder
- ½ cup ground flax seeds
- ¼ cup Lemon Juice
- ¼ cup Parsley
- 2 tbsp Olive Oil
- 2 tsp fresh coriander/cilantro
- 3 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tbsp Nama Shoyu ( I did not have this, so just did not add it)
- In a large bowl, add the ground sunflower seeds, flax seeds, ground cumin.
- In your food processor, finely chop the 2 cloves of garlic.
- Add the sprouted garbanzo beans in food processor with garlic. Process until a mash is achieved. Remove to bowl with sunflower seeds.
- Chop onion in food processor, pulsing until a very fine chop in achieved. Place in bowl with garbanzo bean mixture.
- Chop parsley and cilantro and add along with remaining ingredients to the chickpea mixture. Combine well.
- Shape into golf sized balls and dehydrate, beginning at 140 degrees for 1 hour and then reducing heat to 116 for 4 to 6 hours. They should be crispy on the outside but still a little soft on the inside. ( I did not use the dehydrater since I don't have one! They were still good raw)
CHOCOLATE BANANA MESQUITE SHAKE
- 10 ounce almond milk
- 1 frozen or room temperature banana
- 2 tbsp mesquite powder
- 2 tbsp raw cacao powder
Combine all ingredients in blender and blend on high for 30 seconds