Friday, March 15, 2013

Raw Vegan Vegetarian Brunch At Lake Worth Green Market, Fla.

Lake Worth, Fla.—Chef Rita Romano delighted all with a raw vegan vegetarian brunch. The event was held at the Saturday Morning Lake Worth Green Market.

Raw-vegan vegetarian chef Rita Romano at
Lake Worth Green Market Brunch, Fla.
“Would you like the mango chili sauce or the cilantro ginger on your spring roll?” Judy Haggas asked as she prepared the first plate of the raw-vegan vegetarian brunch.

People pulled jackets tight, put on hats, and huddled close together at the Raw Brunch as Haggas and Teresa Mertz, a fellow booth helper, got plates ready for the salivating audience.

Churning waves of intracoastal waterway crashed against the sea wall just steps away from the booth. Wind screamed across the market blowing plates off tables and signs off booths.

“It was bitterly cold this morning at six, “said Peter Robinson, market manager and founder of the Lake Worth Green market, “so a lot of vendors left.”

But this did not stop a healthy number of people from gathering for their $40 a plate brunch of fresh vegetable spring rolls with a choice of mango or cilantro sauce, nut pate stuffed sweet pepper halves, aromatic Thai salad with choice of two types of dressing, and a dessert of mango mousse, delicious lemon cream, and fresh strawberry.

Raw-Vegan vegetarian brunch of vegetable
spring rolls, nut-meat stuffed peppers, Thai salad,
marinated cucumbers, mango mousse, lemon cream,
and herbal tea at Lake Worth Green Market, Fla.
The theme for the day’s food was local ingredients prepared Thai style with a generous use of coconut, Kaffir lime leaves, and chili peppers. “I love chili peppers,” Romano said with a smile. She sourced her greens from QV Farms of Loxahatchee, Florida.
Originally from Brooklyn, New York, Romano is a descendant of Ellis Island Italians immigrants. She grew up eating very healthy foods, “I don’t remember my parents having anything made with sugar in the house.”

She has a long history as a raw-food vegetarian chef, having set up the Hippocrates Institute kitchen in the 1980s where she wrote her book, “Dining In The Raw.” In the 1990s she moved to Key West where she set up a school and a deli for raw-food vegetarian.

Last year, she moved back north, “I’m loving Lake Worth. It’s a cosmopolitan Key West,” she said.

In January this year she opened, The Institute for Culinary Regeneration, in Lake Worth. Here she teaches people how to become a raw-food vegan vegetarians. She also holds monthly raw-vegetarian food cooking workshops, “I am an Italian mama and I don’t want anyone to leave hungry. So the $40 a plate price implies it is all-you-can-eat dinner.”

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