I was out with my mom and cousin the other day and talking up the new raw gourmet restaurant, Christopher’s Kitchen, that recently opened in the Legends shopping center in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida.
“Raw gourmet?” I could tell my mom and cousin were a little suspicious. “What do they serve there? Is it just a bunch of salad and stuff?” Oh my gosh, I thought. No, no, NO. If you read my recent article about raw food benefits you’d realize why even though I don’t eat 100% raw I still think it is important to work raw foods into my daily diet for health reasons. But health reasons aside, trust me, raw food can be very exciting from a culinary standpoint too.
Interview with Raw Foods Chef & Owner of Christopher’s Kitchen
Raw Gourmet Menu Items at Christopher’s Kitchen
When it comes to serving top quality raw gourmet (at affordable prices) in a relaxed, friendly and casual atmosphere you just can’t top Christopher’s Kitchen. Some of my favorite raw gourmet menu items at Christopher’s include the following:
- Bruschetta made with macadamia ricotta, tomatoes, olives, fresh basil
- Sushi malibu roll – cucumbers, carrots, mixed greens, cream cheese, avocado, pickled jalapenos, coconut calamari, shiitake mushrooms, sprouts
- Enchiladas made with brazil nut meat, tomato salsa, guacamole, “sour cream”, cilantro, chipotle sauce
- # 1 baja burger with pickled jalapenos, red onions, chipotle mayo, fork crushed avocado
- Mother earth pizza made with macadamia ricotta, basil pesto, mixed vegetables, thyme, oregano
And YES! They really can make a mean enchilada…..one that not only tastes outrageous but is also very satisfying. Plus of course you can get all sorts of flatbreads (the onion bread is just incredible!), smoothies, fresh juices, and salads too.
And then there’s dessert. I have a total undeniable weakness for dessert and a certain guilt I can’t help feeling every time I eat something sweet (which for me, is admittedly every day—I just feel too deprived if I cut sweets out completely—so I try to make my sweet treats small and also mix them in with lots of healthy ingredients like nuts, fruits and seeds.) Anyway, Christopher’s Kitchen makes the most incredible homemade raw desserts (so far the apple pie is my favorite), raw dairy-free ice creams (made from coconuts and cashews) and no-milk “ice cream” shakes. It’s the only place in town where I feel the least guilty eating dessert 😉
The point is, raw food doesn’t need to be bland and it’s far, far from boring. In fact, it is my prediction that in the next decade raw gourmet is going to be the next “new thing” from a culinary standpoint. It’s fresh, vibrant, flavor-forward food that is incredibly good for you and makes you feel absolutely amazing. What foodie wouldn’t love that? The thing is eating at a place like Christopher’s is really a total adventure in dining. You absolutely don’t need to be a raw foodie to enjoy the food there. If you like good food you’ll like Christopher’s. Period. For the full raw gourmet menu click HERE.
Q & A with Raw Foods Chef Christopher Slawson
Running a restaurant surely must be super stressful and I’m amazed at how Christopher seems to do it all so effortlessly and without working himself into a frazzled ball of stress.
For example, when I was at the restaurant last week Christopher was just learning that his supplier was having a hard time getting the young Thai coconuts that are used in a tremendous number of his recipes. Christopher handled the situation by telling his ultra-calm, super-friendly staff that they would all just have to work together to re-create the recipes. And he would help out too. Sure. Ok, no problem. What a great idea! I was like “WHAT!!?!? Aren’t you all going to start freaking out?”
While I feel like I have a good deal of energy I know I don’t handle stress in a calm manner like that. There must be a secret? And besides the stress and besides having to deal with a repeat of the coconut crisis on a regular basis I don’t think I could keep up the energy it requires to run and cook in a busy restaurant. There must be a secret to having energy AND staying stress-free! I’m sure it has something to do with the food. I thought I’d ask Christopher to share some of his tips…and he was kind enough to do so! Here’s what he had to say…
QUESTION: What advice would you give to someone who is not able to commit to eating a 100% raw foods diet but still wants to incorporate elements of raw food living into their daily routine (but also doesn’t have a lot of free time to make elaborate raw gourmet meals!)
ANSWER: This is a great question! Eating raw foods everyday can be a very challenging lifestyle for many people. However, I would recommend starting with a fresh organic vegetable juice as a daily routine. It’s a great way to help keep your body more alkaline. Plus, it gives your body a break from digesting food. I love to juice fresh cucumber, celery, parsley, kale, apple, lemon and a little ginger to start my day! You can get a reasonably priced juice and don’t need to hassle with all the labor involved with preparing raw food.
QUESTION: What is the most useful kitchen appliance you have to make raw gourmet food?
ANSWER: The VitaMix Blender wins the battle here. I use it every day to make smoothies, raw soups, salad dressings and of course raw chocolate ice cream!!!
QUESTION: What are your favorite 5 “must have” (but also easy to find!) ingredients for making raw gourmet food at home?
ANSWER: I think having a protein and mineral balanced raw food diet is key to keeping the body feeling amazing all the time. So I would suggest the following:
- Wild seaweed, such as dulse, nori or wakame (high in protein, iron, vitamin a, c and b)
- Avocado (healthy fats that are easy to digest)
- Sprouts (also high in protein and minerals )
- Spinach or kale (fiber, carotenoids, calcium, vitamin c and protein)
- Spirulina (the highest vegetable protein in the world, packed with minerals b vitamins)
QUESTION: What did you eat for breakfast today?
ANSWER: I had a vegetable juice, with celery, cucumber, parsley, lemon, kale, apple and ginger.
QUESTION: What is your favorite grab-and-go snack?
ANSWER: My favorite grab – and – go snack is actually Christopher’s Kitchen handmade Cranberry Granola. It’s so good and satisfying and packed with protein!
CK CRANBERRY GRANOLA Ingredients:
sprouted buckwheat, almonds, walnuts, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, dried cranberries, lemon, orange, vanilla, maple syrup, coconut palm sugar, coconut nectar, cinnamon, medjool dates and himalayan unrefined sea salt
QUESTION: Do you make green smoothies? If so, what do you put in them?
ANSWER: Yes I do and I love green smoothies. I like to call it “Superfood Smoothie” and I usually have one after a solid work out or before I start a big day.
Christopher’s Superfood Smoothie Recipe
- 1 cup juice or nut milk (be careful of almond milk or other nut milks at the grocery store, it’s best to buy raw nuts and make nut milk yourself at home). Living nut milk really only lasts for up to 4 days – anything beyond that is not fresh and most companies use preservatives to prolong the shelf life.
- 1 cup fresh organic frozen blueberries or mango
- 1 fresh banana
- 2 tablespoons Vita Mineral Green (a greens powder – packed with minerals and protein)
- 1 tablespoon Maca (great for athletes and helps circulate blood flow)
- 1 tablespoon Hemp Seeds (omegas 3, 6, 9)
- 2 tablespoons Warrior Protein Powder (a raw vegan protein)
- 1 or 2 teaspoons Spirulina (vitamins, minerals and protein)
- 1 tablespoon goji berries (anti-aging and the only fruit in the world that naturally has human growth hormone (HGH)
Where is Christopher’s Kitchen?
4783 PGA Boulevard
Palm Beach Gardens, FL
T (561) 318-6191
Tuesday 22nd of March 2011
Oh how I wish I lived down there so that I could go to Christopher's. Or maybe he would like to start a restaurant in Columbus, Ohio???
Tuesday 22nd of March 2011
You would LOVE it! I'll have to let him know you'd like one near you ;)
Oh! and did you get the email from Andy about pre-surgery nutrition?