There is a Raw Chef in all of you!
There are 5 fundamental flavors to any good dish, and there is one very important “Arm” which carry these flavors into the foods to enhance its taste and texture.
The 5 Fingers
1) Acidic: This flavor is sourish, and breaks down the tough fibers of tough foods (especially cruciferous veges like cauliflower and broccoli), making them more palatable as well as digestible. It also complements the other 4 “Fingers” to bring out a bouquet of flavors.
2) Salty: Any dish void of this flavor, cannot help but taste bland. Especially for somebody who’ve just transitioned onto living foods, their taste buds are still programmed with the heavier cooked foods flavors (usually with oils, table salt, artificial flavorings etc) , and they are going to find it even more tasteless. In raw foods preparation, we use sea salt, organic shoyu and sometimes miso to achieve this flavor.
Besides flavoring, salt can also assist the acids in breaking down food fiber.
3) Sweet: The moment we add sweetness into any dish, we find that the taste is enhanced greatly. It compliments the saltish and acidic flavors, making them more intense. When we eat them, the combination makes it into an enjoyable experience where different parts of our tongues registers the various tastes all at the same time, making it a great dish. It also balances the sourish and salty tastes.
4) Spicy: This may not be the dominant flavor in the dish, unless it is a curry, salsa, chili etc recipe where people would expect spiciness to be the key flavor. In all other dishes, just a hint of it simply works wonders. You can achieve this flavor with chili powder, curry powder and pepper (some of the more common ones).
5) Bitter/Pungent: Sounds unlikely? Wait till you add in a little of this bitterish taste, and you find that the whole dish tastes heavenly. Some common options include garlic, tumeric and onion powder.
Why is it called the Arm? Because it is indispensable! The Arm is simply a fat. Any raw fat like virgin seed/nut oils, avocados, sprouted raw nuts/seeds can be used to hold the 5 “fingers” above. Fat carries the 5 flavors mentioned above into the fibers of the foods (for eg the salad veges in a salad dish) and accentuate the tastes).
Although these are good tips to use as a guideline for making awesome raw dishes, please bear in mind that these are culinary tips; in other words the objective is to make a raw dish tastes flavorful and delicious. If your objective is to lose weight, or you have a certain fat content to watch, simply integrate your own guidelines whenever you are making food for yourself by using common sense.
I hope these shall be useful to you; cheers to the Raw Chef in You!
© Copyright Linda Loo, Light Love Laughter