Summer

Conscious Cuisine - How to Infuse Your Food with Love!

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On the longest day of the year, it’s customary to celebrate the light of summer which guides our way with food festivities within our communities. Gratitude plays a big part in marking the achievements reached at mid-year, and the sacred element is often equally as important in how to prepare, share and receive the nourishment of food as part of the communal celebrations.

The longest day occurs when one of the Earth's poles has its maximum tilt toward the Sun. It happens twice yearly, once in each hemisphere (Northern and Southern). It is a time when many communities practice ancient rituals and in many countries, herbs are harvested on the solstice evening, especially those believed to have potent medicinal properties, such as St John's Wort.

The concept of conscious eating is now quite familiar to many people, this is especially true at times when you want to ground yourself in the lifestyle beliefs and practices you have chosen to commit your life to.

For me while growing up, the sacred practice of sharing ‘Prasad’ was a familiar experience in the Indian side of my family. Prasad or Prasāda is a devotional offering made to God. It typically consists of food that is later shared among the people gathered. It is vegetarian food that is a religious offering in both Hinduism and Sikhism. Sometimes this vegetarian offering may exclude ‘prohibited’ foodstuff such as garlic, onion and roots etc. simply because of their stimulating properties.

There are many forms of sacramental food offerings practised across the world, such breaking bread together and receiving during holy communion. ’Prasada' literally means a gracious gift, it is a way of infusing food with sacred love. This concept is a wonderful way to think about how you can add positive energy to your food, making the shared experience even more precious with those around you.

The food is blessed as part of a sacred ceremony and consumed with reverence and gratitude. As a child I always looked forward to the receiving my little portion of delicious sweet tasting Prasad at the end of devotional prayers. Traditionally Prasad dishes are a small serving of cooked home-made Indian sweets or savouries, or a piece of fruit, which is served after devotional rituals like communal songs and prayers.

Providing communal offerings for your guests or group on the summer solstice or mid-summers day (June 21st in 2019, in the northern hemisphere), is a lovely way to get closer and more connected to family and friends, while you feed into the solstice energy provided in the ripening summer harvests you are about to consume.

Your simple bite size raw plant-based dishes could consist of things like:

-2-3 plump soaked almonds (soak over night for 12 hours)

-savoury (laddu) or sweet bliss or energy balls

-stuffed olives or dried prunes

-plantain or cucumber bites (slices topped with hummus or guacamole etc.)

-bite size summer berries

When offering Prasad, it is the attitude that matters, it is one of complete love and reverence. Remember to bless your food first before consuming it, being grateful for the energy that has gone into providing and preparing it will make it taste all the better. Usually only small portions are shared and eaten, allowing for easy digestion and absorption of the nutrients.

Wishing you a wonderful mid-summers day!


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WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR E-ZINE OR WEB SITE?
You can, as long as you include this complete statement with it: Anita McKenzie, is a Raw Soul Food and Holistic Health Lifestyle Mentor, she is founder of the brand "Sistahintheraw" and "Raw Soul Food" and a leading authority on Raw Food Life Success. If you're ready to jump-start your life, make healthier choices, and have more fun and joy in all that you do, get FREE success tips from Sistahintheraw now atwww.sistahintheraw.com

Medical Disclaimer
Sistahintheraw.com provides information on this website as an educational service. This website does not provide medical advice. The information and reference guides in this website are intended solely for the general information for the reader. The contents of this web site are not intended to offer personal medical advice, diagnose health problems or for treatment purposes. The products is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. It is not a substitute for medical care provided by a licensed and qualified health professional. Please consult your health care provider for any advice on medications and medical conditions.  

Summer Raw Soul Food Social

Do you love the summer months? I do, and the summer is a great time for enjoying delicious raw food with your family and friends. There is so much more gorgeous fresh juicy fruit and vegetables available during this period, that you can feel spoilt for choice about what to eat. 

When you live in a cooler climate, the summer months provide the promise of brighter illumination, longer light-filled days, the magnificent colours of nature, and it encourages you to chose more light and healthy food. You look and feel your most radiant best for summer, and natures invitation to abundant clean eating means that you can also feel comfortable in your summer outfits too... Plus we all love summer parties, don't we? This is a time when sharing special times with your friends and family can make entertaining feel all the more fulfilling.

Recently, I've been teaching groups and individuals how to make tasty raw food dishes and we always find that although the process is good fun and very informative, the best bit of all is of course putting all the dishes together and then sharing what we've made by eating it all together. So new this year, if you live in the UK, you can book Sistahintheraw for a special appearance, for an interactive, clean eating session in your own home, to share with your buddies, for some raw soul food fun. (If you live outside the UK, I'm certainly open to traveling to where you are located...smile).

We all want to feel our best from within, with this reflected on the outside too. Are you interested in maintaining a healthy weight, increasing your energy levels, having beautiful glowing skin, nails and hair and feeling sexy and self-assured? I know from experience what it feels like to be consistently energised, drop enough weight to feel good in my clothes and the confidence that it can create within you. I also know the other of that side too, how it feels to be addicted to sugary foods and the lethargy, weight gain and the discomfort that it can create.

The beautiful thing about sharing this kind of social sharing is that you can have it tailored for a select group of people whom you share similar interests with, while sharing the joy and fun of interactive learning and eating delicious, healthy raw plant-based food. How inviting does that sound to you?

Entertaining is a biggie for those of you that love to bring people together to share time, space and cuisine. There's an art to it too, the welcome, the vibe, the surroundings all form part of it, especially if it's in your own space. Inside or outside, it's nice to get creative and adorn your space, but it's not strictly necessary. With healthy eating, your focus will be on the raw food in front of you. You will definitely feel energised and satisfied, but not overly full.

Many of you may experience a challenge when it comes to combining socialising and a raw vegan lifestyle. Often times, restaurants don't seem to cater to our culinary requirements and friends may feel awkward about knowing how and what foods are suitable for your needs. That was a biggie for me too and I worked out some simple strategies to keep everyone happy.

Here are a few ideas:

  • Offer to bring a vegan dish, your host will be really appreciate this
  • Prepare and take with you your most favourite dressing or dip to jazz up any restaurant salad
  • Dehydrate a big batch of raw crackers or cookies, take some with you when visiting, bag some up as a gift for your host to share with other guests. Raw crackers & a dip with salad is a lovely meal
  • Carry a flash of your favourite summer drink and decant into a cocktail glass, to give it an added specialness
  • Carry a small ziplock bag with fresh chopped herbs to add a zing to a restaurant salad
  • Always have eating-on-the-run backup food with you, like fruit, nuts, trail mix etc
  • At a restaurant, bring raw, dehydrated nuts or seeds for your protein
  • Prepare a double batch of smoothie and take half to the office for your morning break
  • Talk to the restaurant ahead of time when booking to see if the chef can prepare something fresh for you
  • Carry a few herbal teabags with you, just add to hot water
  • Share your vegan recipes with your friends and family
  • Host a raw vegan food preparation party for your network
  • Get into the habit of preparing nut milks, pates, yogurt and porridge the night before you require them, so your time is free and clear in the morning and you can grab-n-go if you need to
  • Don't try to impose your 'right' lifestyle on others, it puts people off and can alienate them from you

The more you include these can-do strategies the easy and more naturally they will become part of your 'normal' lifestyle. Remember to that if you are transitioning into this new raw food lifestyle, you can order some cooked quinoa or baked sweet potato to accompany your meal.

When I host a gathering for friends and family, the majority of the food is vegan, both cooked and raw. Its a way of introducing people I love to new, interesting and delicious food that they may not have tried before. I don't make a big deal out of it either, no need to place emphasis on 'raw vegan' as this in itself can be enough to put some guests off.

I find that when people taste devious food, the experience speaks for itself. A range of flavours, textures and colours, nicely presented works really well too. The most important ingredient is the love you infuse into preparing your dishes for your guests.

A bit of planning with raw food may be necessary for any dehydrated you want to include, and of course this is where creating a shopping list based on your selected dishes and time-tabling your preparation during the week leading up to your gathering can really pay off. Draft in some help if you need to. 

Remember that summer cocktails made with fresh juice and spices, infused water with essential oils or fresh fruit and veggies, finger foods and buffet style menu's work really well. For summer recipes, join our Raw Soul Food community here, to receive your free weekly catch-up email, including a recipe each week.

In choosing to book a Healthy Eating & Lifestyle Summer Party, I'll teach you and your mates how to tap into your inner foodie wisdom, with self-loving appreciation and how to make delicious healthy raw soul food summer meals. Your chosen group will enjoy making and sharing the food together. To find out more, click here. (Note: Limited availability, terms and conditions apply).

Remember to, the wonderful benefits of raw plant-based food, from anti-aging to weight control, your friends and family will love learning about those too. If you're unable to book a healthy eating & lifestyle summer party, then consider joining one of our online programmes, or working with me one-2-one and learn how to maximise these dynamic benefits for your own wellbing.

Finally, if you haven't tried raw food before and you've got some questions, send me an email,  and I'll be happy to answer your query.

www.sistahintheraw.com/summer

www.sistahintheraw.com/summer

Sources and Research:
http://hippocratesinst.org/transitioning-to-raw-and-living-foods
http://hippocratesinst.org/the-benefits-of-living-foods-nutrition

 

WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR E-ZINE OR WEB SITE?
You can, as long as you include this complete statement with it: Anita McKenzie, is a Raw Soul Food and Holistic Health Lifestyle Mentor, she is founder of the brand "Sistahintheraw" and "Raw Soul Food" and a leading authority on Raw Food Life Success. If you're ready to jump-start your life, make healthier choices, and have more fun and joy in all that you do, get FREE success tips from Sistahintheraw now at: www.sistahintheraw.com

Medical Disclaimer
Sistahintheraw.com provides information on this website as an educational service. The information and reference guides in this website are intended solely for the general information for the reader. The contents of this web site are not intended to offer personal medical advice, diagnose health problems or for treatment purposes. It is not a substitute for medical care provided by a licensed and qualified health professional. Please consult your health care provider for any advice on medications.