To close out this year's Veggie Girl Power interview, I'm featuring super rad vegan superstar: Isa Chandra Moskowitz!
Four words I'd use to describe Isa: creative, fun, real and awesome. Get to know Isa!..
Isa Chandra Moskowitz is the author of several best-selling cookbooks: Vegan with a Vengeance, Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World, Veganomicon, Vegan Brunch, and Vegan Cookies Invade Your Cookie Jar.
Isa = Inspiration. For my 27th birthday a few years ago, my sister bought me Isa's vegan cookbook Veganomicon - a few months later I started my blog. Thanks for the inspiration Isa!
I remember the first recipe I made from Veganomicon was the stuffed mushrooms. I had never stuffed a mushroom in my life. But I followed her recipe and voila! Best stuffed mushrooms ever.
The best part about Isa's books is that she not only provides you with stellar vegan recipes - but she includes entertaining and quirky stories and tips that make you really enjoy learning about vegan food! Positive vibes all the way.
Isa's website Post Punk Kitchen is a vegan online mecca. I'm sure you've stumbled upon it at some point. But if you haven't, click. PPK has a vast forum, super yummy recipes by Isa and much much more.
Now onto Isa's VGP interview!!...
Veggie Girl Power Interview: Isa Chandra Moskowitz
1. DRIVE: Yawn, sunrise, what is the first food/drink you reach for to start your "Veggie Girl Power" day?
Isa: I wish I had something more interesting to say, but it's usually oatmeal and coffee!
2. SKILLS: What foods/veg products have you discovered that you simply couldn't live without?
Isa: Tahini, broccoli, chickpeas, cashews...how do you answer this? There are so many! But I think my friends (and enemies) would say chickpeas.
3. HEART: As a "Veggie Girl Power" trailblazer you inspire many girls, who or what has inspired you?
Isa: I'm usually inspired by friends, family and people I love. If they're craving something, I want to make it for them. Food is a great way to make people happy, it's a pretty simple equation.
4. EXPERIENCE: When people ask you why you 'went VEG' what is your usual answer?
Isa: My cats! Making the connection that meat came from an animal and being a crazy cat lady (even as a child!) made it pretty difficult to justify eating any animal.
5. CREATIVITY: Anyone can eat carrot sticks and hummus, but give us your most creative/oddball vegan snack idea!
Isa: Ok this is really simple and it may sound weird but try it if you're a lazy sweet tooth snacker: jicama macaroons! You shred jicama and coat little clumps with melted chocolate chips. Let the chocolate set and boom, you've got a macaroon. Keep it our little secret.
6. DEDICATION: When you first "went veg" what was the hardest part? - and how did you overcome those obstacles?
Isa: Well, going vegetarian was no problem at all. When I went vegan my biggest obstacle was probably myself and my cravings. I really craved cheese, especially blue cheese. I overcame it by learning to cook things that satisfied my umami needs, like fermented foods and rich sauces. Also, I believe that your tastebuds will catch up with your ethics. The longer I went without cheese the less I craved it.
7. WISDOM: Words to live by: what is a favorite life tip or quote of wisdom?
Isa: Ha ha, I really dislike quotes! Maybe my tip is not to live life according to quotes from French philosophers. No, but in seriousness, be true to yourself, do what you love, and the rest will follow.
8. GRACE: How do you respond to negative comments from critics, in real life or online?
Isa: It depends on how I'm feeling. Best possible scenario: ignore them. Worst possible PMS scenario: curse, scream, cry and regret it.
9. PASSION: What is the one message that you always try to project to your fans/followers?
Isa: Be awesome at all times!
10. PERSONALITY: Who would you award the "Veggie Girl Power" label to? And what have you learned from them?
Isa: Terry Hope Romero, my partner in crime! I've learned so much from working with her. There's kitchen things, like how to makes tamales. But also how to collaborate, how not to be catty and how to always be creating. We are girl power incarnate, even if that is so 90s.
Bonus Holiday Question: Veggie Girl Advice! - How do you get through the (not-always-veg-friendly) holiday season smiling and feeling fabulous from the inside-out?
Isa: I love the holidays because I love to cook and bake. If you're always baking cookies or mixing up a delicious stuffing, you'll have a hard time feeling bad about anything. If someone tries to get you down with harsh words just shove a cookie in their mouth and give them a kiss on the nose.
* Hear more from Isa on the PPK website: www.ThePPK.com
* Twitter: @IsaChandra
My new book, Appetite For Reduction.
Complete VGP Series Schedule 2010
Last Years VGP Series 2009