When I returned home from the hospital last week, I was seriously bummed out. Sad. Disheartened. Frustrated. Angry.
And to top it all off, I had to miss out on a girls weekend of shopping in Seattle (boo!).
I wondered, was the raw food healing challenge over for me? Should I throw in the towel and try something else?
No. I haven’t travelled far enough down this road to know if I’m headed to the right destination.
To put things in perspective, I thought about the years I spent filling my body with poppy-seed bagels, chocolate rosebuds, Swedish berries, hunks of cheddar cheese, Dairy Queen blizzards and more.
I can’t expect to cure Crohn’s disease in a week with a raw food diet, no matter how motivated I am. Folks, I’m going be horribly cliché: these things take time.
For the next couple of weeks, I have to pay close attention to my body. Listen to it. Feed it what it asks for. There is healing power in the enzymes of raw food, so I’ll likely be consuming plenty of smoothies, sprouts and soft fruits and veggies. But I’ll also give myself the permission to savour a cooked soup, applesauce or plain veggie broth if I need to.
A return to solid food
After several days of nursing my blues with smoothies, soups and raw almond crackers, yesterday I felt ready to venture into solid foods again.
I had dehydrated pizza crusts before I went into the hospital and was disappointed that I didn’t get to eat them. Thankfully, they kept well in the fridge, so I was still able to enjoy them.
What I’m liking about raw food preparation is that it leaves a lot of room for interpretation and substitutions (unlike baking, which needs to be precise). Don’t like sunflower seeds? Use something else. No celery in the fridge? Try zucchini. Had enough garlic today? Leave it out. You get my drift.
This crust has a lot of liver-loving foods like onions, garlic, beets, carrots and lemon juice. And after my jaunt in the hospital, my liver needs all the support it can get.
I topped my pizza with chopped sunflower sprouts and green onions; my husband enjoyed his with beets and pineapple. It’s open season with the toppings, so get creative!
What would you add to your raw pizza?
This post is part of a month-long series about exploring the raw food lifestyle. With the help of holistic nutritionist Jennifer Trecartin, I’m doing a 28-day raw food healing challenge to improve my Crohn’s disease. At the end of the month, I hope to transition off my medication, which I have been taking since I was 18.
Click here if you’d like to check out other posts in the series. And if you don’t want to miss a post, please consider subscribing to my blog, either my email (at the top right of this page) or in a reader.
Raw Pizza Crust
From My Edible Advice
1 cup sunflower seeds
1 cup flaxseeds
1 tbsp raisins
1 tbsp lemon juice
¼ cup water
3 cloves garlic
3 green onions
½ cup celery, cut into chunks
3 tbsp Italian spices (or herbs of choice)
dash of cayenne pepper
1 pound carrots, cut into chunks
1 medium-sized beet, cut into chunks
Soak sunflower seeds for four to eight hours, then drain and rinse.
Grind flaxseeds and dump into a large bowl.
Process sunflower seeds, raisins, lemon juice, water, garlic, onion, celery, spices and cayenne in food processor until fine. Add to the bowl with the flaxseeds.
Process carrots and beet. Add to the flax mixture, combine well and let stand for 15 minutes so the flax will bind the dough together.
Form dough into circles that are 1/4-inch thick and place on mesh dehydrator trays. Dehydrate at 105 degrees F until crusts are completely dry – eight to 12 hours for large crusts, and six to 10 for small ones.
Allow crusts to cool, then place in an uncovered container. Keeps well in the fridge for over a month.
Herbed Cream Cheese
Adapted from The Complete Book of Raw Food
1 1/3 cups Brazil nuts
1/3 cup water
¼ cup olive oil
½ tsp salt
1 tbsp lemon juice
large handful of dill (or herb of choice)
pepper to taste
In a food processor, blend the nuts, water, olive oil, salt and lemon juice until creamy. Mix the dill and pepper in by hand.