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Natural Awakenings Dallas -Fort Worth Metroplex Edition

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Festive Healthy Fare for the Holidays

Every year we promise ourselves we won’t overindulge, we’ll limit our intake of rich food and we’ll eat and drink in moderation, but after the holidays, those extra pounds and uncomfortable feelings often bear witness to our broken resolve. For most of us the holiday festivities include fellowship and lots of feasting. The answer is to dine on healthy, nutritious foods that are still as festive as any holiday table has ever seen.

As an example, consider what is served on Thanksgiving at Be Raw and Juice restaurant, in Preston Center. The organic, live, vegan and gluten-free cuisine restaurant offers its delighted customers kale walnut cranberry salad, butternut squash chowder and chocolate cheesecake as part of the special dinner. In addition to being delicious, the meal was healthy, ideal for people on a weight-loss diet and a treat for both eyes and palates.

Be Raw co-owner Paula Sepulvado says, “A raw dietconsists of fruits, vegetables, nuts, grains and legumes, none of which are cooked, so you retain more of the nutrients. Raw chefs perform magic, using dryers and soaking ingredients to transform them into surprisingly rich dishes.”

Proof of the broad appeal of the healthy fare Sepulvado and her staff prepare is the popularity of the restaurant and their cooking classes conducted every other Sunday. The most recent class taught how to make beautiful raw cookies, almond balls and brownies, all of which are great for holiday entertaining, whatever the dietary preference.

Sepulvado says that whatever the main dish, we can makeour special holiday meal a healthy, nutritious one without losing out on flavor or a festive and appetizing appearance by surrounding it withthe kind of dishes offered at Be Raw without feeling deprived.

Sepulvado shared the following recipes for a soup, a salad and a couple of sweets that can complement the centerpiece of any dinner, be it turkey or stuffed portabellas or ham or soy loaf.

Butternut Squash Soup

3 cups raw almond or cashew milkButternut Squash Soup
3 butternut squash chopped
½ stalk celery chopped
1 Tbsp agave
⅛ tsp curry powder
⅛ tsp cumin
Dash of cinnamon
1 clove garlic
Dash of tamari
Sea salt and pepper to taste

Blend all ingredients in a high-powered blender until smooth.

Kale Walnut Cranberry Salad

Yields one serving

2-3 cups kale, hand shredded
2 Tbsp olive oil
¼ cup hemp seed
¼ cup nutritional yeast flakes
¼ tsp sea saltKale Walnut Cranberry Salad
¼ cup fresh lemon juice
Walnuts and dried cranberries for garnish

Tear the kale into bite-size pieces. To tenderize it, massage by squeezing until the fibers are broken down. Gradually work the ingredients of the dressing into the kale while massaging it. Garnish with walnuts and cranberries.

Be Raw Brownies

8 cups walnuts
½ cup raw cacao powder
4 tsp vanilla
6 Tbspcoconut oil
½ cup agave syrup
Pinch of sea salt

Process all ingredients in a food processor until well blended. Spread evenly into a brownie pan. Refrigerate. Yields 15 to 20 balls.

Almond Ball Cookies

4 cups almondsAlmond Ball Cookies
4 Tbsp raw cacao powder
½ Tbsp cinnamon
15-20 dates (or more to taste)
2-3 Tbsp vanilla
2 Tbsp coconut oil
¼ tsp sea salt
½ cup shredded coconut

Process all ingredients except the shredded coconut in a food processor until well-blended, but still very grainy. Take a heaping tablespoon of the processed ingredients and roll into balls.Sprinkle with shredded coconut.


Be Raw is located at 6005 Berkshire Lane, Dallas. For more information about the restaurant or the classes, call 214-234-0106 or visit BeRawFoodAndJuice.com.

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