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The Raw Deal

July 22, 2014
To heat, or not to heat—that is the question.

Raw food blogger and author Gena Hamshaw has us swearing up and down to add more raw foods to our diet after reading her new release, Choosing Raw: Making Raw Foods Part of the Way You Eat ($20).

Plus, we’ve got our own selfishly lazy motivations: Eating raw food means turning on the stove and the oven a whole lot less during these dog days of summer. Score!

Hamshaw is no hard-liner: She enthusiastically writes about the digestive and nutritive benefits of a fiber-rich, plant-based diet that includes many raw options without insisting that we all give up the comforts of cooked food forever and ever.

Her approach feels easy and refreshing, instead of intimidating. The book starts off with more than 100 pages of knowhow, including everything from meal plans to the basics of healthy vegan nutrition, before jumping into the recipes.

As tomatoes and zucchini reach the apex of their season for both flavor and nutrition, take a spin at making a raw ratatouille brimming with fresh herbs.

This flexible recipe drives Hamshaw’s fuss-free philosophy home: “Though the word ‘ratatouille’ may conjure up images of casserole dishes, roasting fragrantly in the oven, this raw spin on the French classic is surprisingly delicious,” she says. “I love it without any heating at all, but I offer up a dehydrator option for gentle heating, and an oven option if you’re craving a more traditional presentation.”

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