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Raw Hardcover – October 29, 2003

4.1 out of 5 stars 55 customer reviews

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Near & Far: Recipes Inspired by Home and Travel by Heidi Swanson
"Near & Far" by Heidi Swanson
A deeply personal collection of over 120 vegetarian recipes with from all around the globe from a bestselling author who loves to cook and travel. Learn more | See related books
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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

If you think "raw food" means carrots and alfalfa sprouts, Raw will astound you with its elegance and inventiveness. It's a combination no-cook book featuring gourmet recipes using raw and dehydrated vegetables, and a gorgeous, eye-popping, food photography book. The large, glossy book is beautifully designed, with well-arranged recipes, presentation notes, elegant language, and full-page, bigger-than-life photographs of exquisitely arranged food. Each recipe is introduced by an enticing description, e.g., "…the juxtapositions of the crunchy peppercorn pieces and the creamy cheese [made from cashews], the crispy smoked almonds, and the chewy dried apricots, the erotic gooeyness of the honeycomb mounds and the elegant crispiness of the thyme spouts…." This is for special meals, not everyday--the recipes are not quick to prepare, and many include references to other recipes. Authors Charlie Trotter and Roxanne Klein are master chefs at two internationally acclaimed gourmet vegetarian raw-food restaurants--Charlie Trotter's in Chicago and Roxanne's in California. Photographer Tim Turner turns food photography into contemporary art. Wine notes by Jason Smith give the final touch of elegance. Highly recommended for the adventurous, gourmet cook willing to go the next step in vegetarian fine dining and anyone-- cook or not--who appreciates food photography. --Joan Price

From Publishers Weekly

Ever trendy, raw food is crunching its way into the mainstream-and this book by celebrity chef Trotter (Charlie Trotter Cooks at Home) and Klein demonstrates how appetizing it can be. The collection of vegan recipes, all cooked at temperatures below 118°F, is decidedly gourmet. Dishes worthy of dinner parties include Three Peppercorn-Crusted Cashew Cheese with Honeycomb and Balsamic Vinegar, Salsify with Black Truffles and Porcini Mushrooms, Portobello Mushroom Pave with White Asparagus Vinaigrette, Indian Red Peaches with Vanilla Ice Cream (made with almond milk) and Banana Chocolate Tart with Caramel and Chocolate Sauces. Wine notes with each recipe remind readers that raw food can be complemented by a fine vintage without breaking any rules because "wine, at its most basic, is also an unadulterated creation, never rising above 118°F during its production." The recipes tend to be labor intensive since the taste, textures and flavor of sophisticated raw food can't be bought pre-packaged at the supermarket. But for those who want to reap the reported health benefits of raw food without sacrificing the luxurious taste of fine cuisine, the effort required for these recipes is worthwhile.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 216 pages
  • Publisher: Ten Speed Press (October 29, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1580084702
  • ISBN-13: 978-1580084703
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 0.9 x 11.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.9 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (55 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #123,338 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Aceto TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on May 16, 2005
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The ratings for this book are all over the place. Although I am giving it five stars, I do not disagree with those in the two and three camp. Their remarks are largely true. The important thing to remember is not to buy this one unless you have your eyes wide open. The mechanics of preparing this food is heavily dependant on both machinery and motivation. When Trotter says you need a dehydrator (or live in Phoenix), a HEAVY DUTY juicer, HIGH SPEED blender and an ice cream maker, he means it. For me, it was a dang good excuse to triple my capital budget for the kitchen. Second, the complaints about his ingredient list are valid. Short of 'eye of newt', he is really pushing it. But once you get through the technical side, you can make viable substitutions. And the stuff such as 'celtic' sea salt, and 'Manodori' balsamic is more to make you aware than to be a requirement, same as the wine suggestions. You can use English sea salt (which has the highest nutrient count) or any balsamic at least sixteen yrs. old. The value of this book is that these dishes work very well. My test cases (read: guests) responded very well in every instance. This stuff tastes good and feels good to chomp on. If you are concerned about nutrition and health, it all seems good on all counts. This is food you cannot make any other way without brute force and primitave tools. While the photos are good for coffee table art, the real value is to people like me, who have no sense of presentation and sling hash as a Jackson Pollack (sic, my heritage) imitation. If you are so inclined to spend the time and cash, you will be pleased.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Raw food diet has saved my life. For those of us who really must "stay raw" in order to have happy and healthy bodies "or else," a book like this is a great inspiration. No, I can't find a lot of the ingredients. I never even *heard* of white or red baby carrots before, or yuzu citron juice, or white truffle oil, dragon chile, tamarind juice, and many other ingredients. If I did know what they were or knew where to find them, chances are I could not afford them. But that's okay. This book expands my horizons. I can try to understand the visual and flavors of such ingredients, and if I can't get the actual ingredients, I can substitute with something else. That's one of the great things about raw food preparation -- substitutions are pretty easy and fun to do!
I had to learn how not to take a raw food gourmet book "too seriously" when I first got Juliano's wonderful "Raw: The Uncookbook." One recipe might list 30 ingredients, five of which were too expensive and more that I could not find at all -- but then learned, with inspiration from other "raw foodies," that such recipes can be used as "raw inspiration." By following the basic concepts of a gourmet raw recipe, I can substitute and alter to fit my own tastes and pocketbook and come up with some "way cool" gourmet treats! My main problem is that sometimes they come out so super good that I want to fix them again -- but didn't write down what I did, haha!
For those who enjoy the creative art of raw food cuisine, this book has many wonderful ideas in flavors, textures, colors and more.
I really appreciated Roxanne's introduction too. It's great.
This is one of the raw recipe books that proves you *don't* have to be a puritan or a monk to enjoy raw food cuisine.
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Format: Hardcover
As other reviews suggest, this cookbook is filled with complex recipes that frequently call for out-of-the-ordinary ingredients and food preparation techniques such as soaking, dehydrating, blending and sieving. Yet the results are worth every bit of the effort.
In exploring living foods, I've found other chefs' approaches to be too raw (salads, salads and more salads) or too intent on emulating cooked foods (nut loaf, seed cheese, sprouted breads). Frequently raw chefs deliver recipes that are variations of these same basic themes. This book transcends all of that.
Even when I'm preparing something that resembles a raw food basic, e.g. a soup made from fruit/vegetable juice, the results when following Charlie and Roxanne's recipes are completely different than expected, complex, layered, with lots of nuance to appreciate. The asparagus soup is a delectable example of this. Another is Roxanne's signature appetizer at her restaurant and opening recipe in this book, the Wakame Sushi Rolls. Many people dabbling or dedicated to living foods will likely have seen raw sushi rolls, in which soaked crushed nuts or ground root vegetable take the place of the rice in the roll. In Roxanne's version, the spice/vinegar/honey addition to ground parsnips is truly unique and lifts the raw sushi roll out of the reliance on nuts.
The most relevant grumble I have with the book: there are several dishes which require the preparation of four to seven distinct recipes. The Wakame Sushi rolls consist of four recipes plus the dicing/slicing of roll veggies. The Tacos Three Ways is the most egregious example I've noticed, with eight recipes in total to deliver the dish as written. Still, there are several dishes that are a straight, single recipe or two.
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