Foodie Friday: Paul Jarvis + Win a Copy of Eat Awesome!
Every now and then I come across someone on the internet that I just know I would be great mates with if we met in person. Paul Jarvis is one of those people. Paul caught my eye when someone tweeted something about his about-to-be-released recipe e-book on Twitter. It’s called Eat Awesome, and ‘awesome’ is quite possibly my favourite word to use. Paul finds nut jokes hilarious, he is vegan, preaches whole foods, and he and his wife have an adopted pet llama named Starman, who lives on a rescue sanctuary in Washington. He’s also a website designer, yogi, minimalist and touring musician.
Everyone, meet Paul, my very first dude Foodie Friday star.
What was the catalyst that turned you into a healthy foodie?
To be honest, there wasn’t one thing. I just kept noticing that I felt stronger, had more energy and could perform physical activities better if I properly fuelled my body with plant-based, whole foods. So it was slow and gradual for me.
I’ve always been a bit of an experimenter/mad-scientist, especially with food. So once I realised that eating well was helping in many ways, I took to task creating lots of dishes that were both simple to make and tasty as all get-out.
Getting down to the basics has always appealed to me, since I like to know how everything works. In relation to food, that’s starting with a base of only whole foods. It’s not enough for me to combine processed ingredients together to make something – I’m more interested in combining whole foods to make dishes.
What are your non-negotiables when it comes to your diet?
I’m vegan (because that’s what works for me) – so I don’t eat meat, dairy, honey … basically anything with a face, that poops or has a mum.
I’d love to just eat organic, ethically sourced and fair trade foods – but that’s not realistic (yet). If that’s an option though, that’s what I’ll get every time. In the future – if more people vote with their wallets to buy foods like that – the market can shift, accommodate and offer those options more frequently.
If you were trying to convert someone to your dietary philosophy, what would you make for them?
It might be shameless self-promotion here, but I’d make them something from my ebook, Eat Awesome (launching 1st April). I wrote it based on meals I’ve made many times for omnivores that might think there’s no options if you’re vegan.
A favourite go-to of mine is always Mexican. Who can resist freshly made corn tortillas with beans and guacamole or hot tamales right out the steamer? Mexican is a great option since using beans instead of meat is fairly common and tasty.
How do you stay healthy while travelling?
I’m lucky because my wife and I mostly travel in an Airstream RV! So I get to bring a small kitchen with me. If we’re not in the Airstream, it just requires a little of planning ahead and/or knowing where the good vegan restaurants are (there are iPhone apps for this).
If we’re just travelling for a day or two, I’ll whip up hearty salads (like bean salads or quinoa salads), homemade energy bars, kale chips or even hummus and sliced veggies.
What are your go-to meals and snacks when you are super busy?
I’m a big fan of making a lot of something when I’m not busy, so when I do get busy, all I need to do is heat it up (or just eat it). So I make things the salads above, curries or stews, dips, etc. That way I can be eating something within a couple minutes of being hungry by heating it on the stove.
I’ve found I can make 5-6 dishes in a couple hours (on a Sunday afternoon for example), and then have enough food for most meals for a whole week.
Juices or smoothies: Which do you prefer? What’s your favourite combination?
Smoothies. Simply because I have a Vitamix and it’s awesome! With a little bit of water, it creates almost the same consistency as juicing. My favourite combo lately is kale, pears, ginger and carrots. It’s a great combo of sweetness and greens. The ginger also gives it a nice warmth.
What’s the biggest nutrition misconception you are always having to clear up for people?
That the only things I can eat are “air and good intentions”, neither of which have any protein.
I find it curious that protein is such a stopping point for a lot of people eating a more plant-based diet. I am very active and have never had a protein deficiency. I’ve also never known or even heard of anyone in the western world having a protein deficiency. I do hear a lot about things like heart disease and diabetes, which have been linked to meat and dairy consumption and are potentially lethal.
There’s lots of protein in whole foods (beans, nuts, grains, soy) – and it comes without the bad fats or cholesterol that meats have.
If you could prepare a meal for anyone (dead or alive) who would it be and what would you make?
Probably Thoreau. I feel like him and I could be homies. He was apparently into a mainly plant-based diet and liked simple, natural things. Plus, he was a bit of a loner, so he wouldn’t overstay his welcome or want to crash on the couch.
I don’t know what I’d make for the meal, but I know I’d make him some raw cheesecake for dessert – since that’d probably blow his mind.
What does being a Wellness Warrior mean to you?
Eating and living in line with what makes my body and mind happy. So plant-based whole foods, lots of yoga and surfing, and listening what my body tells me. I also think offering and sharing knowledge to those who ask (in a non-preachy way) is part of it too.
A Recipe From Paul:
Cashew cream is easy, versatile and tasty. This is my go-to cream sauce for everything from salads (I add a bit of vinegar and oil to thin it into a dressing) to pasta with tomato sauce, to a topping for fresh tacos.
Add other flavours or even other nuts to create your own variations. I’ve used macadamia nuts, and even added sun-dried tomatoes or pesto to the mix. Thinly slice zucchini or beets, and spoon cashew cream in to make raw pasta (like tortellini or cannelloni).
You can make a dessert topping version by omitting the salt and nutritional yeast and adding a touch of maple syrup to the blend.
What you’ll need:
Nutritional yeast (optional)
What to do:
1. Soak 2 cups of cashews for an hour, then drain and rinse.
2. Put cashews in a blender with the juice of 1 to 2 lemons, salt to taste, and a couple spoonfuls of nutritional yeast.
Blend until mixture is creamy and smooth.
Connect with Paul on …
WIN A COPY OF EAT AWESOME!
Paul has been kind enough to let me gift five of you with a free copy of his brand new e-book. Eat Awesome: A Regular Person’s Guide To Plant-Based, Whole Foods. All you have to do to win is leave a comment below and answer this question:
What are three benefits of switching to a plant-based diet?
Positive affirmation for the day: This moment is all that matters.
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