“Although the raw food movement hasn’t quite gathered momentum in Jakarta, you can still easily create delicious raw and/or vegetarian food at home,” says Petty Elliott.
Raw and vegetarian food has gained much popularity in recent years, most notably among the health conscious and adventurous eaters of the US and Europe. Although there is a large community here in Jakarta favouring vegetarian or raw diets for health or religion reasons, there still aren’t many restaurants offering this kind of cuisine.
There are many innovative ways of enjoying raw food; from raw fish to vegetables, such as sashimi, ceviche (a Peruvian dish of raw fish marinated in a tangy broth of citrus juices, chilli and salt), ikan gohu (Manadonese or Moluccas style sashimi) salad, rujak (tropical fruit salad), raw gado-gado (mixed vegetables with raw peanut sauce, chilies with tamarind or lime juice) and raw soup, but it is quite challenging to create raw and also vegetarian food at the same time.
By no means am I dedicated to raw and vegetarian food, but I do think it’s beneficial to enjoy raw and vegetarian food from time to time as it is easy to prepare and healthy. Serious raw food followers believe that the human body is not designed to eat cooked food but they do permit heating the food to below 40 degrees C (to avoid enzymes disrupting the ingredients).
A couple of weeks ago, I gave a cooking demonstration and created around 10 different dishes using local ingredients for a very special event, the pre-event of the 7th Women’s International Conference to be held in Bali from 4 to 5th April, organized by International Association of Human Value and The Art of Living Foundation. I am sharing with you three simples and delicious raw and vegetarian recipes from the event. Enjoy!
Beetroot, Coconut and Spice dip with Vegetable Sticks
I adore the vivid colour of this dip. It is also delicious!
400gr raw beetroot, peeled and cut roughly
100ml freshly made coconut cream
1-teaspoon coriander seeds, finely ground
2 fresh red-bird eye chilies, sliced finely (optional)
1-tablespoon lime juice
A small bunch of fresh mint leaves, chopped finely
Salt and black pepper to taste
100 gr fresh carrot and celery
1 or 190 gr red and yellow paprika,
150 gr cucumber200gr zucchini,
1 or 190 gr jicama (bengkoang)
- Wash all the vegetables and dry with kitchen towel. Peel carrots and jicama. Cut all the vegetables into long sticks (around 10cm in length). – Set aside.
- To make 100ml fresh coconut milk: Grate ½ mature coconut flesh and add 50ml warm water and mix well. Squeeze the coconut for around 5 minutes and squeeze and strain the liquid. Set aside.
To make the beetroot dip:
1. Simply put all the ingredients into a strong blender except the fresh mint leaves and process until you have a silky and smooth thick sauce.
2. Season with salt and black pepper. Check the final tasting.
3. Transfer the mixture into a bowl. Chop the mint before serving. Add half and mix well.
4. Add the rest for garnish. Serve with the vegetable sticks.