Well folks, I'm down with the sickness again. Unlike last time, this sickness required a visit to a clinic (an awful clinic at that - two big, sick thumbs down for Walgreens Take Care Clinic!) and because there ain't no rest for the sick-ed, this is my first day to actually rest, despite the sickness starting over the weekend. So, I'm taking it easy and sharing a little guest post with veg-blogger, Lindsay Nixon of Happy Herbivore. In celebration of the release of her first cookbook, she's embarking on a "virtual book tour," via - where else? - the blogosphere. I loved that idea and was happy to have her make a stop here.
When did you go vegan? What is your vegan story?
I went vegan in Dec 2006 while on vacation in San Fran. I'd been
vegetarian for a while and had been toying with the idea of going
vegan. I'd heard that it could help with weight loss, acne, digestive
issues (and it did!); but it seemed so restrictive. I figured being in
a vegan-friendly city was probably the easiest way to try it out. I
felt so good that I stuck with it when I went home and after reading a
number of books (like Skinny Bitch) I knew it was a lifelong
What is your favorite thing about being vegan?
I wake up every morning with a sense of happiness knowing that I'm
making a difference (and so effortlessly!) Being vegan is like having
a constant warm fuzzy, you're making so many positive impacts -- you
are benefiting your health, the environment, farm animals, humanity...
When and how did you come to start your blog?
I started my blog in Oct 2007. I was in law school at the time so it
was a great "outlet" but the real purpose was to share information and
connect with other vegans. Blogs were still so new back then (it's
amazing to see how much the blog world has grown!), veganism wasn't as
mainstream as it is now, and there weren't many vegan cookbooks,
either, so I wanted to put recipes and information out there -- to
share what I'd learned on my journey.
What are your main motivators for your blog?
Happy Herbivore has changed a lot over the years -- in the beginning
it was mostly a food diary, and then it morphed into a recipe website;
but the mission has always been the same: to bring healthy, but
delicious food to others. To show that eating vegan can be easy,
affordable, approachable and really tasty.
Describe the best vegan meal you've had thus far.
When I was in England I had this sort of veganized "Bangers and Mash"
dish: vegan homemade sausages with mashed potatoes and gravy (I love
mashed potatoes and gravy!!) except the potatoes had cabbage in them.
It sounds weird b[ut] my goodness, it was amazing.
What are your Top 5 favorite recipes in your new cookbook?
I'm guessing you mean my current cookbook and not the cookbook I'm
currently writing =)
I really love the nacho cheese, queso, cornbread, chili sans carne and
What are your vegan travel tips?
Research ahead -- check online sites to see where the health food
stores are, where vegan-friendly options exist at restaurants and
bring snacks with you, particularly for plane rides.
In your opinion, what is your favorite veg-friendly city?
LA. Even though New York City has this great reputation because it has
so many vegan restaurants, what I love about LA is in addition to
having tons of amazing vegan restaurants, almost every restaurant has
vegan options. My favorite place to eat in LA (Swingers) was actually
a non-vegan restaurant, but their vegan menu was incredible! Now I'm
Lindsay S. Nixon is a rising star in the culinary world, praised for her ability to use everyday ingredients to create healthy, low fat recipes that taste just as delicious as they are nutritious. Lindsay's recipes have been featured in Vegetarian Times, Women's Health Magazine and on The Huffington Post. Lindsay is also a consulting chef at La Samanna, a luxury resort and four-star restaurant in the French West Indies. You can learn more about Lindsay and sample some of her recipes at happyherbivore.com
Here's a recipe from Lindsay's new book, shared with permission from the author.
Quick Queso (makes 1 cup) - It's okay to go at this sauce with a spoon. I won't judge.
1 cup non-dairy milk (such as fat-free soymilk)
1/3 cup nutritional yeast
2 tbsp whole wheat flour
1 tsp granulated onion powder
1/2 tsp granulated garlic powder
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp chili powder or cayenne (optional)
1/4 tsp salt, or to taste
Whisk all ingredients together in a sauce pan. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring often until thick. Serve immediately.
Note: Gluten-free flours or blends may be substituted, such as chickpea flour. Also, add a 1 10-ounce can of Rotel tomatoes with green chilies for a Mexican Queso twist.
So, in true book tour form, shall we open up the floor for Q&A? Got any questions for the Happy Herbivore?