TGIF Local Lunch Post – Smooth to Crunchy, Raw Foods Rock!

Summertime! When the livin' is easy. And green! Life Bar raw smoothie mascot looks on approvingly.

The flavor and benefits of a raw foods regimen are delicious and positive. While freshly chopped salads, fruits and vegetables are not just plain, they are most powerful.  Holding on to the nutrition and enzymes that cooking zaps from our veggies and fruits is what a body enjoys most about a raw diet.

Whether your health is at risk, your energy needs a boost or a cleanse,  there are many ways to enjoy a zesty helping of nude food.
It’s been said that Louisville hasn’t found its stride offering a niche for a diverse raw foods lifestyle. This does not sit well with Nate Pederson who is President and Executive Director of the EarthSave Louisville chapter.
“There is momentum gaining in this area and Louisville does things in its own time and distinctive pattern,” his emailed reply began.
While dismissing the assumption there is not an active and empowered scene in place for raw foods in Louisville as far from true, Pederson is eager to promote the positive aspects of this culinary choice with the monthly neighborhood EarthSave Louisville gatherings. Nate shot a recipe segment last year using CSA bounty from Fox Hollow Farm to make a veggie wrap. Check out the raw footage!
You may also be interested in the film that is promoted on the EarthSave Louisville website,“Forks Over Knives” for a close look at this food culture revolution.
Their mission is clear in one sentence –  EarthSave Louisville educates people about the extremely powerful and documented effects our food choices have on the environment, our health and all life on Earth, and encourages an ever-transitioning shift toward a healthy, plant-based diet.


One of  Louisville’s earliest proponents of raw food, its preparation, local purchasing and recipe workshops, is Grace Carswell – who is still quite “Amazing” – long after the doors to that whole foods and nutrition grocery closed. She had a few thoughts on the raw food community and her personal favorite dishes.

“There is Paul Nison who was one of the raw foods gurus, there is David Avocado Wolfe, Steve Prussack (host of Rawpalooza: 2012 Raw Food World Summit, and a multiple other resources online for all things Raw Food. I like to make at least 1/2 of each meal raw. Remember, that could be a salad with broccoli, cauliflower, avocado, almonds, etc. Raw food has been around since we started gathering berries.  I love my yogurt and blueberries, using raw milk yogurt is great but availability is very limited.”
Are there consumers to fill seats for  raw foods establishments? As for dining options, there are many restaurants that should be flexible and have  the time to accommodate a request to present a salad, appetizer, entrée or dessert in its original,wholesome, raw state.
Having worked at Amazing Grace and now at Rainbow Blossom, Lisa Essenpreis has seen the nutritional foodscape of Kentuckiana change and grow over the years. She feels that raw foods is alive and well in the area, not just a passing trend.
“Rainbow Blossom did a Raw Foods Tasting Fair last year that was very successful,” she said, “and our raw foods book section continues to sell,” The Life Food Bar at Rainbow Blossom in St. Matthews prepares live juices and tonics and other various products made with raw cacao.  Yes, there is definitely still an interest in raw food.”
So undress your salad, invest in a new cutting board or food processor. Get to know a few farmers and do your homework on raw foods and any local, independent restaurants that will go the extra mile to learn and serve their patrons.
Here are just a few suggestions to get more fresh bounty on your plate or tumbler here in town.

Paul’s Fruit Market

The Root Cellar

Life Bar

Rainbow Blossom

Earth Save

Valu Market

Thanks  for keeping local business healthy! Send in your own dining suggestions and recipes, your favorite chefs or growers. Visit the TGIF Local Lunch Post on Facebook when you have a moment.

This installment of TGIF Local Lunch Post ran in the spring of 2011. I  hope you enjoyed the  summer re-run!