Snob Essentials

Living Raw Food: Get the Glow with Recipes from Pure Food and Wine

Living Raw Food

Want a guilt-free slice of heaven? Head to raw/vegan restaurant Pure Food and Wine! I can’t stress enough how truly delicious everything at Pure Food is – and I’m not even a vegetarian. I’ve gone with female, male, vegetarian, non-vegetarian, even my meat-loving boyfriend and all have raved about how in awe they are that the food is as delicious, filling (yet light), as it is. This is particularly noteworthy as I’ve had some very bad experiences at raw food and vegan restaurants – notably Quintessence where my meal tasted like I was eating a front lawn (and those were just the parts I could get down….). My favorite savory dish at Pure is their zucchini and tomato (aka “pasta”) lasagna which has a variety of nutty sauces separating the vegetable layers. If you’re salt averse however ask for it to be light on the sun-dried tomato sauce. They’ve also go an endless variety of healthful-minded cocktails (think Master Cleanse Martini), sake, and organic beer and wine.

The piece de resistence however are there TO DIE FOR desserts. I mean BEYOND. They’re on the pricey side – most are $15-$17 (even if you get them at their to-go shop), but as I learned when skimming the restaurant’s cookbook (Living Raw Food) they’re insanely time-consuming to make. You can shop snacks and cookies on their website. The best part however is that these rich bundles of goodness are guilt-free (relatively speaking at least!). My favorite dessert is their chocolate ganache tart (above left), which is so densely delicious I could lick the above picture! But because nothing is made with egg, milk, or cooked over 110 degrees it’s super easily digestible (how do they get such a melt-in-your-mouth crust when nothing is cooked??). Also worth noting is their cholesterol-friendly Tiramisu (above right)…again no eggs, no insane amount of cream or whole milk – just a fabulous coffee and slightly creamy taste. If you’re up for gourmet-style cooking the restaurant’s owner, Sarma Melngailis, has released her second cookbook, Living Raw Food. Jump for more!

I’m not a great cook and I don’t particularly enjoy cooking, but I was intrigued by all the delicious dishes – especially the desserts – that I’ve had at Pure Food. Unfortunately the most appealing ones take equipment that I don’t own (think dehydrator), and sometimes days of prep time. If you’re up for the challenge or don’t live in NYC and are intrigued by raw food, I’d recommend picking-up one of Sarma’s books (there are plenty of pictures), but if you’re a Manhattanite or in the Manhattan-area, I’d opt to stop by and let the professionals do this complex cooking!

Have you ever been to a raw food restaurant? Attempted to make any raw food meals?


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