I recently had the privilege of interviewing cookbook author, and blogger, Lindsay Nixon. Lindsay is the author of two plant-based cookbooks, Happy Herbivore and Everyday Happy Herbivore.She is also the owner of the blog, Happy Herbivore. I think she is pretty awesome because she has helped me lose eight pounds in the last two months with her 1,200 calorie meal plans.I asked Lindsay questions that I thought my readers would be interested in hearing the answers to and maybe inspiring them to eat plant-based as well.Interview with Lindsay Nixon1)How long have you been vegan?I don’t identify as a vegan (see: http://happyherbivore.com/2011/10/im-not-vegan-anymore/) but I’ve followed a plant-based diet since December 2006.2)How do you deal with limited access to dairy substitutes and vegan convenience foods?You don’t need either of these foods to be plant-based, or vegan, and you should avoid most of them if you’re trying to maintain a healthy diet. While I think almond milk, soy milk and rice milk are fine (and both rice and almond milk can be made easily at home from rice or almonds) fake meat and fake cheese are heavily processed, often with strange ingredients and lots of fat and fillers. No one needs those things. As a treat once in a while, sure, but I’m doing great without them.3) What made you start writing cookbooks?My cookbooks are an extension of my website, happyherbivore.com. Happy Herbivore has been a labor or love — a virtual companion to my mission of showing people that eating a healthy, plant-based diet is easy, affordable, realistic and delicious.When my website grew in popularity I was presented with the opportunity to write a cookbook. I looked at it as another tool, another way I can get my message out there. so I wrote it. My first book was successful (I feel very lucky and blessed) that it afforded me to write a second book and now I’m writing my third.4)What is one of your favorite ingredients?It goes in waves. I was obsessed with hot sauce for a while, then Dijon mustard, then chipotle powder and now I’m crazy for smoked paprika.5) This brings me to my next question. What is one of your favorite recipes?Asking a chef to pick their favorite recipe is like asking a parent to pick their favorite child 🙂6) What do you snack on?I’m not really much of a snacker. If I find myself hungry between meals I’ll grab raw veggies, like carrots. I really like jicama with lime juice.7) How did you adjust to life in the Caribbean? Was it difficult being Vegan?There are a lot of challenges to living there, especially as someone who is health conscious and plant-based. For example, there were no restaurants that really catered to my diet. One luncheon place had hummus and falafel, another place offered veggie sushi, and the pizza places would leave cheese off if I asked, but that was pretty much it in terms of eating out.Then the grocery store would often run out of items for weeks on end. I can remember we didn’t have bread for a really long time, another time we had no carrots for weeks, we frequently ran out of beans. I would see sweet potatoes, then they were gone for months. Everything has to be flown in, so running out is common place.It was good for me, though, because it forced me to get creative and the “make it work” approach led to my second cookbook. Anytime someone tells me they can’t be plant-based because of where they live I want to laugh. I lived on a remote island where ingredients were often out — and not only stayed plant-based, but wrote a cookbook. If you have access to beans, grains, fruits and vegetables, you can eat plant-based and really, really well.8) Do you have any pets?2 pugs9) What do you feed your pets?they are on a home cooked plant-based diet.10) Are you active in any rescues or animal organizations?I donate to the ASPCA.11) Being vegan is more than just eating a plant based diet. How do you incorporate other vegan products in your life? i.e. beauty and personal care products, clothing, shoes, and other items.As I mentioned before, I don’t consider myself vegan; but I do make an effort to make compassionate choices as much as possible. We make an effort to only buy products that are eco-friendly, vegan and not tested on animals. Basically, if a vegan option exists, we choose that one. I believe we vote with our dollars so I try to vote for compassion as much as possible.12) How do you stick to your plant-based diet when you travel?In the past few years I’ve been to 43 states and 35 places abroad and there hasn’t been one place I went hungry. The options may not always be the most fabulous, but they always exist. It just takes a little patience.
Check out amazon.com to purchase any of Lindsay’s cookbooks. I’m so excited for her third cookbook to come out! These recipes really do make eating a plant-based diet simple and convenient.