I don’t like to hate. In fact, I think hating is an invitation to get struck by a karmic lightening bolt. Plus I now know enough about neuroscience (thank you John Assaraf) to understand that dwelling on negative thoughts only perpetuates a cycle of the same sort of energy that, in turn, affects all areas of your life.
But I am also aware that certain family members and close friends think that I have consumed the proverbial Kool-Aid when it comes to my beliefs about clean eating being linked to physical well being. I’ve been dubbed a tree-hugging, lettuce-licking hippie. Since going gluten-free, my best friend–a bonafide foodie most of the time–has refused to eat anything that comes out of my test kitchen, even if it’s meat. He’s convinced that over the past three years, I have just re-trained my taste buds to enjoy corrugated poster board masquerading as bread.
And still other friends elect to “pass” on the most mouthwatering peanut butter cookies with homemade peanut butter chips because I make the mistake of saying they are not only gluten and refined sugar-free, but also vegan.
Okaaay then. More sinful deliciousness for me.
So in my defense, I simply couldn’t pass up an opportunity to review a new product that I bought online at Thrive, and finally got around to trying, because it proved to me that I have not lost my culinary mind. I might snuggle the occasional cypress, but I still want my food to taste good.
Now the naysayers of anything dubbed “health food” would take one look at these raw, vegan, gluten-free wraps from Wrawp and tell me I was crazy for thinking they might be palatable.
I have had delectable wrapped sandwiches from the vegan Cafe Gratitude on more than one occasion that were mind blowing and bursting with layer upon layer of flavor! So no way was I going to let appearances dissuade me. Plus, these were labeled “spicy–” vague in terms of a flavor profile, but generally one that ensures my approval.
The pack comes with three “wrawps.” Being raw while also attempting to be bread (something that is typically cooked) means they’ve been dehydrated. I know this. And yet I didn’t really know it until I pulled a wrawp out of the package and held it in my hands in disbelief. “Ready to use straight out of the package!” the label proclaims. But surely not. Surely they have to first be gently warmed? Or soaked overnight in water? Or stomped on by a herd of elephants? What I was holding in my hands was faux leather, but not as believable. A fruit roll up with kitty litter embedded in it. A substance the texture of the scratchy underside of a Persian rug and surely not pliable enough to wrap around anything.
Slightly apprehensive, I tore off a bite. It was sweet! Examination of the ingredients list solved the mystery. Apple is listed as ingredient number two, and sandwiched between onion, jalepeno, and zucchini. Perfectly logical to have my tortilla substitute filled with savory flavors taste like dessert. Well executed!
I’m stubborn though, so in spite of all signs pointing to a culinary bust, I proceeded with my sandwich making experiment. My fillings were extraordinary: my favorite new artichoke heart and green olive tuna salad, butter lettuce, spicy cherry peppers that will burn your face off and avocado–yum! I wrestled with the wrapping of ancient & petrified faux leather around such delicate ingredients and managed to bring the whole concoction to my lips before more than half of the filling fell out. Still, I managed a bite. And it tasted like…
You think I’m being cute and picking something as a flavor comparison that is universally equated to hippie-ness. Except that I’m being completely serious. The wrap, in combo with the other flavors in my sandwich, quite literally tasted like licking the surface of one of the many incense displays on the Venice boardwalk. (Cough)
So are Wrawps my suggestion when today you feel like doing something delicious? Uhh…not so much.
And for my liver and onions-loving father deep in the heart of Texas and the handful of men I still manage to find affection for in spite of the fact that nothing green has ever passed through their lips, I hope this lends me just an ounce of credibility when I tell them that I recently ate something awesome.