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The Rasta Cookbook: Vegetarian Cuisine Paperback – September 1, 1989


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Paperback, September 1, 1989
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 132 pages
  • Publisher: Africa World Press (September 1989)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0865431337
  • ISBN-13: 978-0865431331
  • Product Dimensions: 7.2 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (14 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,278,903 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

"You are what you eat" this is the core of the philosophy on which the Rastafari base their eating habits and cuisine. This book presents for the first time in print, a mouthwatering collection of recipes, the best of Rasta cooking. The cultural and religious basis of the cuisine are explained in full. A review of tropical fruits and vegetables is given and along with this, vital information on whre, how to get and how to prepare the ingredients for this exotic cuisine.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

YOU ARE WHAT YOU EAT Nowhere is the belief that we are what we eat held more steadfastly than among the brethren of the Rastafari. There is good reason to shun additives, preservatives, all processed foods, all that is generally eaten which has no direct root in nature. For this reason the Rastafari always cook without added salt, a practice commonly known as 'Ital'.

TO BE IRIE IS TO BE AT ONE WITH NATURE
The state of being at one with nature, being at peace with oneself, with all the things around us is of the highest states. This is the natural high, and as it derives in music and chant, so it derives in good health and vitality, in the nature of the food we eat, the fruits and vegetables, the spices and the herbs.

ITAL IS VITAL
In Rasta cooking the natural flavour of each dish is embellished through the use of spices and herbs which compliment the natural essence of the ingredients. All care should be taken to preserve the natural purity of ingredients used in the preparation of 'Ital' food. This caring should extend from the preparation and serving, to eating. For this reason the devout brethren of the Rastafari will use only utensils made from natural materials, stone, earthenware. The matching of herbs or spice with vegetable is the result of a long and skilfully laid tradition originating from the African ancestry and cultural heritage of the Rastafari.

The herbs and spices are also fruits of the earth and are as such essential ingredients to the diet of the vital man.

The most widely used of the spices is pepper, fresh ripe peppers. The most piquant of the spices.

The most widely used herb is marijuana, use of which is prohibited by law in the UK and a number of other countries. It is, however, the strongest of the herbs, and in the tradition of the Rastafari unlimited by dish. It sweetens and embellishes all, baked, boiled, fried or stewed.

The spirit of Rasta is everywhere. As western man has set himself against the many essentials at the nature from which he was born, so he yearns to find peace with the world, to arrest the destruction of things which are natural, of himself.

Where better to halt the destruction but at the point where the body interfaces with nature, with the food we eat. Eat Rasta


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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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See all 14 customer reviews
Overall this cookbook was well worth the money.
Jeni Ensminger
The recipies are clear, easy to follow, fun to make, and even better to taste, (Yes, that's right.
"tamagne"
This book is full of Rasta "Ital" dishes, the heart and soul of Jamaican vegetarian food.
E. Rountree

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

94 of 97 people found the following review helpful By "zionsdaughterus" on April 26, 2002
Format: Paperback
Comming from a Rasta I must admit that it is hard to find books that teach u to cook vegeterian and "ital" all at the same time. All though I already knew how to do both BEFORE I bought the book, It was still a nice gesture to see the recipes ranging from all over the carribean and African Decent. Some of these recepies include but are not limited to peas and rice (made with brown rice), herb dumpling, plenty of different soups, stews, tofu patties, derserts including Ital ice creams (mango, coconut, pawpaw...etc ), Breads made with no added perservaties or dairy products (fully vegeterian), and plenty of fresh fruit drinks as well. Including carrot juice (zion juice), pawpaw, freshly homemade punches, etc....Being a cook myself I must say that i was impressed by the context. These receipies are more or less like Cousines rather then just ordinary Vegeterian food. One can make good use from it. A meal that I have often found most deseriable in the book is the vegeterian stuffed bell peppers taken from the entree catagory, peas and rice/ sweet corn and rice taken from the side dish category, and steamed callaloo taken from the vegetable and side dish category. Having it washed down with some sweet coconut water or some other kind of NATURAL fruit (taken from the juice senction ) or vegetable juice makes a deserible meal that vegeterians, non vegeterians, Rastas, and non Rastas will feel priveledged to have enjoyed.
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33 of 34 people found the following review helpful By "tamagne" on March 29, 2000
Format: Paperback
The Rasta Cookbook is the perfect collection of authentic vegetarian recipies from Jamaica for anyone to enjoy. The introduction describes some aspects of the Rastafari movement, including the importance of Ital foods. The book emphasizes 'the core philisophy on which the Rastafari base their eating habits and cuisine' in that, "You are what you eat". The author offers helpful guidelines about preparation while stressing the importance of cleanliness. I also like the fact that she suggests possible substitutes for dairy products and even a Glossary of Terms is provided for readers who may be unfamiliar with some of the more exotic ingredients. The recipies are clear, easy to follow, fun to make, and even better to taste, (Yes, that's right. Ital food can be flavorful too). I give this book a five-star rating.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Jeni Ensminger on January 9, 2007
Format: Paperback
I'm a little disappointed that this is the only Rasta cookbook out there, however I really enjoyed this one. Recipes did lack a little flavor but with a little tweaking these recipes help to create new and healthy alternatives to everyday food. Overall this cookbook was well worth the money.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Ashia Garel on July 11, 2006
Format: Paperback
This book delivered on so many levels. It provided me with quick and easy recipes, Best of all it is comletely vegetarian! This book will definately add to my favorite recipes.
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26 of 33 people found the following review helpful By jonathan dempsey on April 24, 2000
Format: Paperback
I think this book is a great book because it tells how to eat to good vegatarian food instead of the corrupted meat that is now so abdundant in the world around us. You should get this book even if your not a rasta because it is also a good cookbook.
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33 of 43 people found the following review helpful By Altso Nonaz on July 18, 2000
Format: Paperback
If you're in the mood for an occasional swing to the Rasta side then this may be the book for you. I have tried a few of the menu selections and wasn't really that impressed. The food is light and (of course) meat free, but I feel the meals lack a little in the flavor department.
The nice thing about this book is that you can create some interesting delights that are more of a conversation piece than the best food on the table. The book gives a little background on what it is to eat Rasta and the spiritual reasons for doing so. Makes for great conversation.
Although I'm not very impressed with the food itself, there are some creative dishes to be found inside. Although I don't LOVE it, I do *like* the book and feel that it is a worthwhile purchase for anyone who would like to cut meat out of their diet and/or try something new.
Irie.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By H. Quentin Morris on June 26, 2007
Format: Paperback
This book is vey informative and right on point with true Ital eating.. my only wish is that there were MORE recipes.. :-)
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