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The Ultimate Live-Food Cookbook

Written by Sergei BoutenkoAuthor Alerts:  Random House will alert you to new works by Sergei Boutenko and Valya BoutenkoAuthor Alerts:  Random House will alert you to new works by Valya Boutenko
Foreword by Cherie SoriaAuthor Alerts:  Random House will alert you to new works by Cherie Soria


List Price: $13.95


On Sale: May 18, 2010
Pages: 256 | ISBN: 978-1-55643-847-9
Published by : North Atlantic Books North Atlantic Books
Fresh Cover

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raw food (4)
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Synopsis|Excerpt|Table of Contents


Cookbooks need not—indeed, should not—involve cooking, say the authors of this authoritative, beautifully illustrated book. And they should know. Sergei and Vayla Boutenko bring fifteen years’ experience to this collection of scrumptious, sophisticated recipes and comprehensive guide to the raw life.

Fresh covers the whole range of recipes, including savory dishes, desserts, fermented foods, drinks, and wild foods. Techniques common to the recipes are introduced and clearly explained, including an inventory of uncommon fruits and how to handle and prepare them, as well as an immersion into the five basic flavors and the herbs, fruits, vegetables, and grains that help chefs bring out each flavor best. The authors introduce the three stages of adaptation to this lifestyle and provide a concise review of minimal equipment requirements and ideal appliance additions for the well-stocked raw kitchen.


From: Dare to Prepare!

SERGEI: Often, when teaching food preparation classes, I notice that most of my students cling to recipes and request exact proportions of ingredients. Even though raw-food recipes are particularly flexible and experimentation can even improve the recipe, students still hesitate to take a playful approach with food preparation. For example, when I demonstrate how to make a green smoothie, I often use a combination of spinach, mango, and water, because these ingredients are readily available and excitingly delicious. However, in one workshop I was unable to find these ingredients and had to substitute with bananas and kale. My students loved the smoothie and requested the recipe. I made a point to mention that there are tastier recipes for a green smoothie; however, it seems my words fell on deaf ears, because months later I still received e-mails from people who, in fear of trying anything new, exclusively drank the banana/kale smoothie. To my surprise, most of my students did not stray from that recipe. While I can understand the fear behind attempting something new (there’s the chance of wasting time and ingredients, and getting unsatisfying results), raw recipes allow much room to experiment, often improving the dish.

Every individual—whether man, woman, or child—is an amazingly powerful being, capable of happiness and health. We were built with a brain, a fabulous body, and an intuition to use as tools that aid us in our growth. When properly used, these tools have the power to enhance an individual’s existence in the best, most productive way. We are not taught early enough how to use what we were given, which is why we cling to rules, regulations, and expert opinions. As with any tangible, physical tool that can be held in our hands, our intangible, invisible instruments cannot help us unless we begin to use them. I propose that, together, we begin activating these powers; for they are our maps to life.

There are certain laws that we need to follow to maintain order in our lives. Likewise, there are many that can be disregarded. Changing a recipe a bit doesn’t hurt anyone. By adding one extra pinch of cumin to make a better-tasting cracker, we can practice conversing with our inner selves, thereby expanding our comfort zones. I have found that the more I experiment, the more comfortable I become with using my invisible tools, and thus the more empowered I become.

We live in a society that has either forgotten the value of empowered people or simply strives to suppress individuals from manifesting their strength. Today’s society is so destructive that people no longer feel strong or comfortable enough to rely on themselves. Our educational system has us convinced that we cannot function successfully without help from authority figures. The current educational system grabs children at an early age and begins educating them to properly conform and comply with orders from people who are older, smarter, and more experienced than they. Instead of helping our children develop a sense of independence, we hand them off to their first kindergarten teachers and instruct them to listen to the educator because he or she has many years of training and therefore knows best. Thus, we come to learn that our bones cannot be strong without milk or healthy without meat, and that chemical fertilizers enrich food quality, as well as countless other myths that we cling to until our dying days.

If we live our lives believing that we are incapable of creating even a simple raw recipe on our own, then how can we do anything that requires more responsibility? I remember one instance when I was scheduled to demonstrate how to make carob truffles but was notified moments before class that none of my recipe ingredients had been delivered. I quickly ran to the kitchen, grabbed whatever I could find, and proceeded to demonstrate making truffles with ingredients I had never used before. My heart pounded anxiously as I passed out samples to a crowd of fifty, hoping my concoction didn’t taste horribly bad. To my surprise, the room resonated with audible yum’s and wow’s. Everyone was ecstatic. The “Sweet and Sour Coconut Truffles” recipe I invented that day is in the dessert section of this book (page 111). However, don’t let this recipe limit your imagination.

Relying on yourself is fun and refreshing! The more I rely on myself, the more surprised I am at not only how easy it is but also how quickly I master things I never suspected I could. I encourage you to use the recipes in this book merely as a guide to creating your own cuisine.

Table of Contents

One: Raw Immersion 1
Dare to Prepare! 1
How We Came to Eat Raw Food 3
How Raw Food Affects Relationships 14
Helping Children Become Healthier 17
Traveling with Raw Foods 29
Benefits of Eating Green Leafy Vegetables 31
Wild Edibles: A True Superfood 36
The Ultimate Tips for Raw Gourmet Cooking 39
Understanding the Five Basic Flavors 43
Meet Your New Appliances 46

Two: Savory Dishes 55
Appetizers and Finger Foods 55
Salads 59
Dressings 71
Soups 76
Entrees 84

Three: Desserts 95
Cakes and Pies 95
Cold Desserts 103
Candies and Energy Bars 106
Cookies and Scones 116
Cereal and Granola 119
Jams, Puddings, and Yogurts 124

Four: Drinks 131
Green Smoothies 131
Smoothies and Shakes 135
Juices 143
Sun Teas and Coolers 146
Nut and Seed Milks 150

Five: Marinated and Fermented Foods 157
Sauerkraut 158
Spicy Kimchi 158
Pickled Zucchini and Eggplant 159
Raw Family's Famous Raw-ssian Pickles 160
Live Kimchi 160
Miso Mushrooms 161
Marinated Dried Mushrooms 162
Marinated Mushrooms 162
Cultured Veggies 163

Six: Travel Foods and Wild Edibles 165
Trail Mixes and Dried Soups 165
Breads, Crackers, and Chips 170
Wild Edible Recipes 181

Glossary 193
Sources 195
Bibliography 199
Index 201
Sergei Boutenko

About Sergei Boutenko

Sergei Boutenko - Fresh
At age 15, SERGEI BOUTENKO collaborated with his family on their first book,Raw Family: A True Story of Awakening; he and his sister Valya went on to coauthor Eating without Heating: Favorite Recipes from Teens Who Love Raw Foodand Fresh: The Ultimate Live-Food Cookbook. Boutenko holds a degree in communications from Southern Oregon University. A writer and educational filmmaker, he conducts seminars on healthy living worldwide. The author lives in Ashland, OR.


“Raw food makes us healthy, reverses aging, and improves our appearance, and now you are holding in your hands the proof of raw food's value in rearing exemplary youth. On every page of this book, the authors will surprise and delight you with fresh insights and deep understanding into the child-parent relationship. Their intelligence is vivid, their wisdom is astute, and their love for others is stupendous. Whether you are a parent or child, you will gain insight from this book.”
—Tonya Zavasta, author of Your Right to Be Beautiful and Quantum Eating

“Sergei and Valya share much wisdom and wit with sound nutritional guidance. They have been well taught and have a unique ability to share with others their perspective on the path to ultimate health.”
—Brigitte Mars, author of Rawsome!, Beauty by Nature, The Desktop Guide to Herbal Medicine, and Addiction Free—Naturally

“Valya's and Sergei's new book inspires and encourages people to explore, persevere, and also to be courageous and imaginative with their new way of eating. They offer helpful and practical guidance and recipes that provide a foundation for success and enjoyment on a raw vegan diet.”
—Vance M. Logan, MD

“Not only do Sergei and Valya prepare the most delicious raw foods, which is talent enough, but the clarity, wisdom, and insights they share about food and health are breathtaking. This book is a must-read for any aspiring health seeker-no question. What they teach now is unbelievably cutting-edge, and everyone should know it.”
—Karen Knowler, the Raw Food Coach

“The Boutenkos are so far ahead of their time in nutritional wisdom, but draw from the oldest and most simple, instinctive knowledge… The first quarter of [Fresh] is full of insight and information. The rest is comprised of recipes that are accessible and loosely written as to encourage experimentation.”
Eco Mama’s Guide to Living Green

“Most of the recipes are quite simple and made with ingredients that are readily available… Fresh: The Ultimate Live-Food Cookbook is a really good place to start if you are interested in exploring the world of raw food.”
Mindful Momma

“The compassion, presence and creativity one finds in Fresh will touch the lives of anyone who reads it, just as Sergei and Valya's love, clarity and maturity continue to impress and inspire in person.”
VegFamily Magazine

Fresh has many savory dishes, fermented foods, travel and survival foods, drinks, and desserts, plus an inventory of all the uncommon fruits you’ve wanted to eat, but didn’t know how to handle… You’ll find the special section that introduces foraging for wild edibles… and suggestions for ways to get kids involved in a raw kitchen.”
Vegan Raw Ranch

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