Sunday, January 19, 2014

MI RAWdyssey

It all began with smoothies; then the detox; finally raw food classes as I came across them. Recently, I took a course and became a Certified Raw Food Teacher, Coach, and Chef. I’m calling this my RAWdyssey. 

I’ve collected raw food resources from around Michigan. There are more than I thought there would be! They are below – but please read on to get there. First, what is raw food? Basically, raw food is unprocessed nuts, seeds, (including buckwheat, wheat, oats, lentils, and beans) fruits, and vegetables (including sea vegetables, fermented vegetables, and sprouts) that have not been heated above 115 degrees. Above that temperature, the food has lost its enzymes – a great part of the nutrition.

Also eaten are herbs and spices, cold-pressed oils, and sauces such as tamari or coconut aminos. The beverages water kefir and kombucha are included as raw products. There are options for sweeteners: raw honey, agave nectar, coconut nectar, and xylitol made from birch. Many people (including myself) use natural maple syrup also.

Are you intrigued or thinking “I’ll never eat like that?” Either way, I hope you keep reading, because I don’t know anyone that eats 100% raw. I don’t plan to either.

But, the people that I know that eat raw – whether it’s an experiment or a major part of their diet – all feel better when they eat this way. Maybe it’s just because they are eating much less processed foods, or maybe it’s because of the enzymes. I expect that it’s both. But, I don’t even really care, because they feel better! Don’t think that you have to become a diet label; get to know your body and eat what sustains it.

So, when I eat raw is it just salads and smoothies? NO way! It can be as simple or complex as you want it to be. There are even packaged, raw foods available. Sure, I eat salads (mostly kale), I juice vegetables and fruits occasionally, and I drink a morning smoothie.

I also make wraps out of lettuce or collard greens. I make ‘pasta’ out of zucchini and experiment with sauces. Sometimes I grow my own sprouts; not just for salads, but I made a sprouted spelt crust for raw pizza. Then, there’s the incredible ‘cheeses’ made from nuts – some aged with probiotics.

But, I’m a sugar addict, you say? No problem! Chocolate is sold in its raw form. You may have never experienced REAL, unadulterated chocolate. It’s fabulous and can be made into many types of candies and desserts. A cheesecake can be made out of cashew cream.

Below is a list of MI based sources for raw food. Also, if you are interested, Facebook message me to be added to my private raw food group on Facebook. We share recipes and experiences on the page.

Michigan Producers
Deliciosity, Grand Rapids: premium, raw desserts
Drought, Plymouth and Detroit: packaged, raw juices
Evergreen Market, Williamsburg: kale chips
Hampshire Farms, Kingston: sunflower, flax, wheat, flax, buckwheat, and oats; sold at the farm or at the Detroit Eastern or Royal Oak Farmers Markets
Jenergy Bar: energy bar
Living Zen Organics: kale chips made at the Detroit Zen Center
Raw Honey
Red Pepper Foods, Plymouth: raw crackers, tortilla chips, and sweets. Some of the ingredients are from local farms. I LOVE that their packaging is compostable!
The Brinery, Ann Arbor: raw, fermented foods - full of probiotics to promote digestive health - such as pickles and sauerkraut. Owner, David Klingenberger, said, “This is truly the way our ancestors ate vegetables in the winter.”
Wheatgrass and Sprouts, Troy: online sales of wheat grass, sprouts, seeds, and supplies

Bodylistics, Royal Oak
Camp Rawnora, Watervliet
Creative Health Institute, Union City
Heal Yourself Institute, Royal Oak
Margaux Drake, Grand Rapids: 28 day detox classes, clean start classes, and hostess of a monthly RAWluck potluck.
Peoples Food Co-op, Ann Arbor: check their calendar of events for occasional raw food classes
SIP Organic Juice Bar, Grand Rapids: check their calendar of events for occasional raw food classes
Theresa Hogerheide (me), Grand Rapids: contact me to join my raw food private Facebook page; available for classes and consultations

Happy to be Raw

Restaurants - Check menus for availability
Bartertown Diner, Grand Rapids: fresh smoothies, desserts
Be Well Liquid Lunch Café, Birmingham: fresh juices, smoothies, and elixirs
Cacao Tree Café, Royal Oak: fully raw restaurant and juice bar with specialty chocolates
Drought, Plymouth and Detroit
Edson Farms, Traverse City
Lake Street Cafe in Oryana Food Co-op, Traverse City: grab and go kale salad, fresh juices and smoothies, desserts
Natural View Market Smoothie Bar, Brighton
OM Cafe, Traverse City and Ferndale: I’ve enjoyed raw dessert from the TC location.
One Trick Pony, Grand Rapids: summer raw specials on occasion
Organic Gypsy Food Truck, Kalamazoo
Seva – Juice Bar, Ann Arbor and Detroit
SIP Organic Juice Bar, Grand Rapids: fresh juices, smoothies, and elixirs and energy bars
Sweetwater Café, Marquette: fresh carrot, orange, and grapefruit juices; the only fresh juice that I found in the Upper Peninsula
Terra GR, Grand Rapids: they will make a raw entre at your request (I usually call ahead)
The Clean Plate, Shelby Township: desserts from Cacao Tree
Total Health Foods Juice Bar, Wyandotte: fresh juices and smoothies
Try it Raw, Birmingham: fully raw, take-out concept vegan café with limited seating
Zerbo’s, Livonia: juice bar within health food store

Stores that sell raw products
Michigan grocery, co-op, and health food stores are catching on that people want raw food products. The products, in addition to fresh produce, are typically raw crackers, cookies, kale chips, and energy bars. Some stores sell raw nuts and seeds (usually in bulk) and other products such as raw cacao (chocolate) and raw nut and seed butters.

D&W Knapp Crossings, Grand Rapids: This flagship store makes a point of bringing raw food to the Grand Rapids market.
Farmers Markets: lots of fresh fruits and vegetables, year round
Food Co-ops
Health Food Stores
Nutri-Foods, Royal Oak
Plum Market, Ann Arbor, Bloomfield, and Royal Oak
Zerbo’s, Livonia

The Brinery products for sale at East Lansing Food Co-op
Cacao Tree Cafe in Royal Oak

Red Pepper Foods for sale at Nutri-Foods in Royal Oak

Raw Dessert from People's Food Co-op in Kalamazoo
Raw pizza we ate in class
Practising making raw chocolates

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