Firstly, tell us a bit about yourself and what you do.
Oh, I’m such a mixed bag. I’m an artist, caterer, model and yoga teacher. As a creative I like to think that every task can be posed as an opportunity to make something beautiful. Whether it’s painting on a canvas, making ceramics, cooking up a feast or stretching on a yoga mat – there’s the opportunity to make it a sensual, aesthetically pleasing experience. So in saying that, my aim is to not only find beauty in all things, but to give back by creating beauty around me.
What got you interested in food?
My love for food is undoubtedly inherited from both of my parents. My mother is Russian and my dad is Dutch and both are incredible cooks who carry with them their cultural heritage in all that they do. As a little girl I would sit in the kitchen and watch each parent cooking, seeing how they danced around the kitchen and transformed a few spices into curries and some flour into cakes. It was like magic to me and I grew up dreaming to be capable of cooking like them. In my teens I began to feel more independent and when my parents worked I would stay at home experimenting in the kitchen. It was a self interest and I spent a lot of time reading cook books and studying about nutrition online.
Do you have a constant source of inspiration?
My mum. She is my rock! Her Russian Jewish ways have taught me so much about life and I truly look up to her and her vast wisdom. She is so balanced in her approach to life, with an attitude of optimism that can only induce happiness.
Between your art, your cooking and your modelling, what’s holding most of your attention lately?
HA! Great question. I toss between the categories so often but it’s my artwork which I’m drawn to most at the moment. Everything is turning into a painting for me – whether it be cooking or modelling or yoga or gardening etc! My dad’s side of the family are all artists so it’s in the blood. I’m actually studying Art and Design at the moment which I imagine is the reason why I’m so entwined in it lately.
You’re originally from Adelaide. What keeps you in Byron Bay?
As lame as it sounds, it’s really the lifestyle. I love how the community here is so appreciative of nature. As a Taurian I’m very into life’s earthy delights so it makes sense for me to be somewhere where I can go bushwalking, plant veggie patches and swim often. It’s been so lovely shifting from a city lifestyle to one that’s more grounded and calm. In saying that though, I’m about to go traveling! I’ll be moving to Toronto for a little and maybe even spending some time in New York. The art culture there is so rich and delicious, and I can’t wait to go gallery hopping for a while.
Is there anything you’ve read, seen or heard lately that’s really stuck with you?
I’ve always loved the quote: “whether you think you can, or you can’t - you’re right!” (Henry Ford) It’s a little cheesy but It really sits with me. I’m such a massive believer in optimism – if you think positive about any situation you’re only setting yourself up to draw in positive vibes in return.
To make 4 wraps:
4 of your favourite wraps (I used local Mumma Raw dehydrated seed and onion wraps)
1 small beetroot
microgreen sprouts, (I sprouted by own pea shoots)
1 block of organic tempeh, (I used Byron Bay Chickpea tempeh)
4 tablespoons of toasted sesame oil
3 tablespoons of tamari sauce
1 tablespoon of coconut nectar or honey
1 tbsp nigella seeds
Optional: cashew cheese or goats cheese and sauerkraut
To begin, prepare your vegetables by grating the carrot and beetroot and finely slicing the radish, avocado and cucumber. Squeeze lemon juice all over them and place in a bowl whilst you prepare the tempeh.
Heat a non-stick pan on medium-high and add the sesame oil and tamari. Let it become hot, combining with a spoon. Slice the tempeh into flat fingers and add to the sauce. Fry on each side until golden. At the last minute of cooking add in a drizzling of your nectar or honey and flip each piece to coat evenly. Remove from the heat.
Lay your wrap on a chopping board or plate, add a desired amount of your vegetables and top with avocado, slices of tempeh, sprouts, cheese and sauerkraut. Drizzle again with some lemon juice and serve warm with a sprinkle of nigella seeds and an edible flower on the side. Purrrrfect!