It’s Vegetarian Awareness Month in a few days time, and the team suggested I went raw vegan for a day. I’ve never tried it before, and it was definitely good time to give it a go. I guess you could say I’m already halfway there (I’m vegan anyway), but going raw is taking it a step further.
Why eat raw? There are hundreds of articles on the benefits of this diet, at the tip of your fingertips. It’s not an exceedingly popular or well-known diet, but it’s basically dishes prepared at 45 degrees celsius or below, to preserve the food’s nutrients.
As I plunged into this challenge with little to no idea regarding what I would eat on the morning of my day, I ended up having a glass of water for breakfast. I berated myself for being so unprepared, through the sounds of my rumbling stomach. Luckily for me, my colleague had some raw almonds on hand, marking the start of my nut-filled day.
Noon came around and I headed off to a quaint and mainly raw café along the stretch of Keong Saik Road by the name of Afterglow by Anglow. I felt excited as I slid open the doors to refurbished sewing machine tables and antiques atop unpolished wood shelves.
My thrill quickly disappeared with my first bite into a bland and stale cracker. Thankfully, the orangey cracker was crisper, with hints of paprika and was pleasantly tangy. The nut cheese was more like a really sour hummus.
Satisfaction level: 2/5
I love rice in all forms. However, this raw sushi was not filled with rice, but with nuts, carrots and blended cauliflower. The texture was crunchy, much unlike soft rolls of glorious rice. Two words: they tried.
Satisfaction level: 1/5
I ordered zucchini noodles for my main dish, simply because I’m at a raw vegan restaurant and salad just isn’t impressive enough. It was edible, but really soggy. The meatball crumbled at the slightest touch, which was bland and full of nuts. Cold and sad, the dish sure was deceiving.
Satisfaction level: 2/5
Every single dish on this raw menu contains a truckload of nuts, whether blended into a sauce or pressed into a cake crust. Outrageously sweet, this chocolate blend was smooth and velvety, and tasted a lot like chocolate mousse. Although it was the best part of this meal, it was way too sweet for my palate.
Satisfaction level: 3/5
Dinner time came around and I decided to get a simple salad instead of fancy looking raw food. Surprisingly, I wasn’t feeling hungry or bloated. But I did get a sore throat from the sheer amount of nuts I had consumed.
I ordered avocado, cherry tomatoes, zucchini, romaine lettuce and tofu, topped off with really tasty ponzu and wasabi dressing. It was flavourful and rich, with the right amount of moisture. The best part about this salad? No nuts were involved.
Satisfaction level: 5/5
Conclusion: To be fair, raw food can definitely be really tasty, and doable if you’ve got the time to prepare your own meals. It’s not readily available everywhere, and will be troublesome if you don’t have the time to commit. One thing I noticed, I didn’t have food coma – which I experience on a daily basis – because my meals lacked carbohydrates. Guess I’ll just stay vegan.