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Everyday Happy Herbivore: Interview & Giveaway

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Today’s blog is an interview with Lindsay Nixon, Miss Happy Herbivore, who recently released her second book, Everyday Happy Herbivore. After the interview, I will post instructions for how to win a copy of this latest book.

Isn’t it pretty? Green is one of my three favorite colors, so I’m naturally drawn to the aesthetics of this book!

Lindsay is a bit of an online crush, if you will. Let me explain: I’m one of those odd people who’s crushes are generally related to talent, motivation, and the ability to make me really think. Of course, the physical aspect can come into play :)

Lindsay is one talented, driven lady, who is not afraid to live the dream. She stays motivated and healthy, and she’s committed to changing the lives of those who give her a chance to teach them about her lifestyle. Even outwardly, Lindsay is the picture of health, with her long healthy hair, a trim figure, and glowing skin. But the outside isn’t what matters when it comes to our health, and Lindsay has committed to an oil free plant based diet, which has done wonders for how she feels. And how we feel is incredibly important.

Lindsay has become a dear friend. The internet can be a wonderful place to meet like minded people, no matter where they live. Though we haven’t met, we’ve communicated online for years, and I look forward to the day when we get to meet, and have some girly drinks, while making amazing and healthy vegan food. When Lindsay posted on her blog that she was seeking bloggers who’d like to interview, I hesitated. See, I didn’t want to only interview her about the new cookbook, or about veganism alone, I wanted to ask a few personal questions. I’m lucky she was open to this! I have what I hope are some unique questions for Lindsay, and I hope you enjoy them. Please note that I will make a few comments after the answers I was given, but these comments will be in brackets, and I’ll identify myself. Don’t forget to scroll past the interview to get a delicious recipe for Sweet Potato Dal, and for your methods of entering my contest to win the latest Happy Herbivore Cookbook.

Questions:
1. What was the hardest part about making the leap from being a lawyer to choosing to live your dream?

In a lot of ways, leaving the law reminded me of a breakup I went through in college — the law was just another bad boyfriend. I knew it was wrong for me, and we didn’t work together. the law didn’t and could never make me happy, but I’d spent so much time and energy and money on trying to make it work, could I really let that go to waste? Just give up everything I’d worked for and fought for and been through? Yes. It took a little while for me to see that I wasn’t giving up but moving on, and that nothing is truly lost if it pushes you to where you’re supposed to go.

[Lacey: this is actually a wonderful comparison. Folks, I hope you're listening!]

2. How do you handle people who attempt to force their negativity onto you? What I mean is, I have noticed that while a lot of omnivores give vegans a hard time, other vegans are often more negative towards fellow vegans than omnivores are, so how do you handle this issue in a positive way?

I have found when people are so dogmatic about something, it’s NEVER about the person they are attacking. It’s about them and their own inner demons. I like that saying that the worst thing someone can say about you, reveals a little truth about them… back to that grade school, when you point a finger at someone, three more point back at you.

With omnivores, if someone is picking on you about a vegan diet, know that it’s because your mere existence makes them reflect back on themselves and they don’t like what they see. They then attack you to make themselves feel better because really, if someone was totally confident in their choices to eat animals, why would your choice not to upset them so much to the point of anger and hostility?

If you keep these points in your mind, any time someone is negative to you, you’ll feel empowered.

3. Tell me the best thing that veganism has done for you.

Aside from the health benefits, and the general happiness I experience knowing that I’m living a compassionate life, I have met so many truly wonderful people online through the veg community. Many close friendships have developed. My fans and supporters are another gift. I feel very blessed.

4. Do you get recognized often? Is it ever awkward having someone you don’t know walk up gushing “OMG IT’S YOU?!”

I just spent the last year abroad, so no one really recognized me on the street or anything, but I have gotten to meet fans at conferences. I’m such an emotional person that I cry easily, so if a fan starts crying or gushing, it’s all over for me. Tears are always everywhere.

My favorite stories, though, are the ones where people I’ve known for a long time, one of their friends suggests happy herbivore to them, and they perk up and say “oh, I like know her. in real life. we sat in geometry class together” and the other person freaks on them. I sort of love that.

5. Can you tell me one vegan food, besides broccoli, that most people seem to love that you just can’t get into? [Lacey note: I knew Lindsay was allergic to broccoli because I follow her on twitter.]

Hey now, I like broccoli. Broccoli just doesn’t like me back! I don’t do brussel sprouts. or eggplant. meh.

6. This is unrelated to veganism, but what kind of music do you like?

Classical is probably my overall favorite but I listen to most everything. On my current playlist I have Adele, Lady Gaga, AWOLNATION, Ben Folds, Muse, Amy Winehouse, Nora Jones, Florence + the Machine, Hans Zimmer, Glee, Beyonce, Jay-Z, Amy Grant, Madonna, Smashing Pumpkins, and various scores (i.e. the original score for Band of Brothers)… I also have Korean techno but we don’t need to go there right now :)

7. You’re a traveler, something that makes me green with envy at times. Can you tell me your favorite and least favorite places that you’ve lived and why?

I’ve lived in Florida (Orlando, Tampa, Tallahassee), Pennsylvania (I was born in Scranton), Boston, New York City, Los Angeles, Charleston S.C. and now Colorado… plus a year in St. Maarten (Caribbean) and two months in Europe — where I traveled to 35 cities/places (including Africa). I’ve also been to 43 states and a handful of Caribbean islands.

There are things I liked and disliked about each place I’ve lived, and even visited. I’m not sure I have a favorite anything — there are places I like more than other places, but for different reasons. I like some places for their beauty, others for their culture, or because of experiences I’ve had there.

I’m a bit of a vagabond.

8. Can you tell me which recipe creation you’re most proud of?

I’m really proud of the rum cake. I need to enter it in a contest or something.
[Lacey: I'm not surprised Lindsay created a rum cake. She lived in the Caribbean for a year recently!]

9. My last questions are about staying motivated. How do you do it? What drives you to stay on track with a healthy diet and lifestyle? What’s your secret for making healthy choices when you’re traveling and/or spending time with family and friends? Society tends to think of food indulgences as being for special occasions, but your lifestyle seems to defy that which really impresses me. I must know your secret!

My sister’s advice is “nothing tastes as good as being skinny feels” and I really like that — but I think it’s more than vanity for me. I want to live this life where I snowboard everyday in the winter, and I travel the world constantly in the warmer months, and I can’t do that without energy and if I’m not feeling my best. If I eat crap and make unhealthy choices I won’t be at my best or get to do what I want to do… so that forces me to make good choices always. It’s all about the end game for me and getting what I really want. I keep my eye on the prize.

And that sums up our interview
Now, look at this deliciousness:

Lindsay was generous enough to share the recipe for Sweet Potato Dal with us today!

Sweet Potato Dal | serves 2

This soup is Dal-icious! It’s so flavorful you’ll want seconds. and thirds!

1 small sweet potato, skinned
1 small onion, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
red pepper flakes
1/4 tsp turmeric
1/4 tsp garam masala, plus extra
1 cup vegetable broth, plus extra
1/2 cup red lentils
4 cups spinach, or more
salt

Dice sweet potato into small ½-inch cubes, and set aside. Line a medium pot with a thin layer of water and saute onions and garlic for a minute. Add a pinch or two red pepper flakes and continue to cook until all the water has cooked off. Add turmeric, ¼ tsp garam masala and stir to coat. Add 1 cup broth, uncooked lentils, and bring to a boil. Once boiling reduce to low, cover, and simmer for a few minutes, about 5. Add sweet potatoes, bring to a boil again and reduce to low and simmer, until lentils are fully cooked (they expand and the sauce thickens), about 5 minutes more. Check periodically to see if you need additional broth (I tend to add an extra ½ cup but it can vary). Once lentils are cooked and sweet potatoes are fork tender, taste, adding more garam masala as desired (I like to add another ¼ tsp but some blends are stronger than others). Add spinach, continuing to stir until spinach cooks down and softens. Add salt to taste and serve.

Per Serving: 232 Calories, 0.9g Fat, 42.2g Carbohydrates, 17.7g Fiber, 4.7g Sugar, 15.4g Protein

For the contest! Since it’s the holidays, I’m going to give you all a crazy amount of entries into the contest!
1. Tell me about your favorite healthy recipe.
2. Tell me how you stay motivated.
3. Go to the Happy Herbivore Recipe page and tell me which recipe sounds most appealing to you.
4. Like Happy Herbivore on Facebook
5. Follow both myself and Lindsay on twitter.
6. Tell me why you want to win this book.
7. Tweet about this giveaway: I entered to win the new @happyherbivore book, Everyday Happy Herbivore from @kuntrageous http://wp.me/p1otK1-hg

Please leave a comment for each separate entry. This contest is open to US Residents only. This contest will close on December 21st at noon CST. This is so that I can send it out from Amazon and still have it arrive before the holiday weekend.

About laceythevegan

I'm a reader, a food lover, a crazy cat lady, an animal lover, local shopper and local music supporter. You can find me in East Nashville most of the time, shopping, having a drink at a locally owned bar, or eating food at a local restaurant. I like cumin and smoked paprika way more than I should, winter squashes make me happy, and while I do like most fruits, I only *love* berries and mangoes. I'd rather have salty snacks than sweets, and the darker chocolate is, the better. I still think Earth Balance is the best fake butter, Vegenaise is the best vegan mayo, and Almond Milk tastes better than soy milk. Chia seeds are my favorite egg substitute for the most part, and pumpkin tends to bind better than applesauce-especially in chocolate goods. I know a lot about food and nutrition, but that doesn't mean I'm the healthiest person. I tend to avoid eating out because I know I can make food that tastes better at home.

82 responses »

  1. Just tweeted the giveaway!

    Reply
  2. Following you both on Twitter.

    Reply
  3. I want to win this book, because I am on this kind of perpetual search for a cookbook that I am completely in love with, and this seems like one that has potential to be that, finally! :)

    Reply
  4. I also like Happy Herbivore on Facebook (ok, it seriously took me three tries to type “happy” – I kept typing “habby” over and over! ;p)

    Reply
  5. I will definitely be trying her baked corndogs recipe (yeah, I’m kind of obsessed with corndogs). I was disappointed in a baked corndog recipe I found a while back (not corn-y enough, I guess – too much like just a pig-in-a-blanket style), so I’m interested to try another take on it!

    Reply
  6. How I stay motivated – I don’t. :( This is actually something I’ve been struggling with lately. Motivation has been very low the last couple of weeks. I think that making lists really helps me, ’cause I tend to get overwhelmed and then do nothing, so having a solid plan helps alleviate that! :)

    Reply
  7. What what?! This is really awesome!
    My favorite healthy recipe is homemade baked falafel. It’s always delicious without the frying!

    Reply
  8. Favorite way to stay motivated…honestly I feel like crap when I am not working out or eating healthy. I notice my muscles start to hurt if I haven’t been active for a few days, it’s weird.

    Reply
  9. I was already following you on twitter but now I am following Lindsay as well.

    Reply
  10. I want to win this book because Lindsay is awesome and always has awesome recipes.

    Reply
  11. I think my favorite healthy recipe is not so much a recipe, as a dish – and that’s just stir fry. Tons of fresh veggies, little or even no oil to cook, and a simple sauce (homemade so I know everything that’s in it!) – so delicious, so simple, and healthy too!

    Reply
  12. For my favourite healthy recipe I love making spaghetti squash. After I bake it and use a fork on it to make the noodles I had fresh chopped roma tomatoes (or whatever is available) and add fresh basil. Then season with pepper. So delicious! And you can even add cheese if you like.

    Reply
  13. I followed Lindsay on FB. Yay!

    Reply
  14. Make a schedule. Aka meal plan and exercise schedule. When you’re always looking at it it’s easier to follow.

    It’s important to actually want to eat healthy and exercise.

    Reply
  15. I was following her on twitter. Now I’m following you too. Do I get half an entry? Haha

    Reply
  16. #3 Everything on the Happy Herbivore Recipe page looks delicious. But I think I’d like to try the Hippy Loaf!

    Reply
  17. #4 I’ve liked Happy Herbivore’s page on Facebook!

    Reply
  18. I tweeted about giveaway.

    Reply
  19. @jhearts87 is following you both on twitter!

    Reply
  20. @jhearts87 tweeted this

    I entered to win the new @happyherbivore book, Everyday Happy Herbivore from @kuntrageous http://wp.me/p1otK1-hg

    Reply
  21. I’d love to win this cookbook because just from what I’ve seen on line her recipes are super delicious, healthy and they suit me. This is the kind of food I love. And I need inspiration! I just eat the same things over and over again!

    Reply
  22. I want this book because I’m trying very hard to be more vegan after almost 40 years of eating meat with almost every meal. About 6 months ago I completed the Engine 2diet which is a plant based diet. I lost 20 lbs and my cholesterol lowered to 153. Now I know that a plant based diet should be what my diet consists mainly of. I want to be an example to the rest of my family about how healthy you can be and how tasty vegan recipes are.

    Reply
  23. I think the recipe that sounds most interesting is the butternut squash soup. I love thick hearty soups in the winter time.

    Reply
  24. I stay motivated by telling people about a plant based diet. Spreading the word keeps me motivated to stay on track.

    Reply
  25. My favorite recipe is a cauliflower soup from the Engine 2 diet book. It is so hearty and creamy and low in sodium. I love it!

    Reply
  26. My favorite healthy recipe is raw chocolate pudding.

    Reply
  27. I stay motivated by wanting to set a healthy example for my kids.

    Reply
  28. There are so many recipes on that page that it’s hard to pick just one. I like the kale and yam soup, but I also love cupcakes.

    Reply
  29. I’m not on Facebook, but I follow both of you on twitter (I’m @Rawdorable).

    Reply
  30. I want this book to add to my vegan cookbook collection and serve more vegan meal options to my friends and family.

    Reply
  31. My favorite healthy recipe is homemade vegetable soup with tomatoes, onions, garlic, celery, carrots, kale, corn and barley. And I’d like to try some new recipes in the new cookbook!

    Reply
  32. How I stay motivated? Keep my vegan friends close and my raw ones closer! Staying near like-minded people helps immensely!! When friends and family don’t understand and every meal becomes a hassle, it’s time to separate when it comes to health and take care of yourself. You can’t control anyone else, and you have to focus 100% on what you can control- yourself. If you want to help others, first you have to be a good example.

    Reply
  33. The apple cinnamon coffee cake looks like the recipe I’d most like to try on the Happy Herbivore website!

    Reply
  34. I already like “Happy Herbivore” on facebook!

    Reply
  35. I’d like to win this book because I love to cook vegan and I’d like some recipes that are quick to make everyday…

    Reply
  36. Love it! I’ve also been following Lindsay for a long time, and she’s awesome. She was actually one of my first regular blog readers back in 2007, and her comments encouraged me to keep going. As for a fave healthy recipe, I love the Happy Herbivore vegan alfredo sauce recipe in her first cookbook (does this win me brown-noser points?)

    Reply
  37. I stay motivated to eat healthy most of time through my calorie-counting app, Lose It, and my regular workout routine.

    Reply
  38. From the Happy Herbivore page, I STILL haven’t tried her black bean brownies. What’s wrong with me? That’s been on my list for YEARS!

    Reply
  39. I already like the HH on the FB. Duh. :-P

    Reply
  40. And I already follow you both on Twitter!

    Reply
  41. I want to win this book because I don’t have it yet. And I NEEEEED it. I have her first book, and I’ve got her 2012 calendar on my Xmas list for my parents to buy me. But I need this too so my collection (and my life) can be complete.

    Reply
  42. Favorite healthy recipe? Probably my garden lasagna. It can easily be made vegan with vegan noodles and cheese: http://lesleyeats.com/2011/10/03/really-easy-lasagna/

    Reply
  43. It is not hard for me to stay motivated, but it is hard for me to eat vegan. I’m the very stereotypical cheese-loving vegetarian. However, I don’t eat eggs (except in baking) and meat? Ick, I’ve never really liked it. Even when I was a kid.

    Reply
  44. Man, I could really go for some pumpkin swirl brownies right now!

    Reply
  45. I already like Happy Herbivore on facebook!

    Reply
  46. I already follow both of you on Twitter!

    Reply
  47. I want to win because a) I love cookbooks and b) I’d love to make more vegan meals.

    Reply
  48. I have a recipe for an amazing hummus recipe that somehow does not use any oil!

    Reply
  49. 1. Tell me about your favorite healthy recipe.
    I’m pretty in love with Peas and Thank You black bean + pineapple bbq pita pizzas. Yummmy.

    Reply
  50. 2. Tell me how you stay motivated.
    Hmm, this is different for the various things I have to get motivated about. I give myself tiny rewards — like if I grade 10 papers, I can read a blog. Ha.

    Reply
  51. 3. Go to the Happy Herbivore Recipe page and tell me which recipe sounds most appealing to you.

    I have been eyeing the feta cheese recipe! I miss feta!

    Reply
  52. 5. Follow both myself and Lindsay on twitter.
    Done! :)

    Reply
  53. The recipes I have seen look good. Always enjoy new recipes! Would love her book!

    Reply
  54. 6. Tell me why you want to win this book.
    I’m pretty in love with the first HH book, so I would love to have volume 2! It would be great to add more weeknight recipes to my repertoire!

    Reply
  55. Smoothies are one of my favourite healthy foods! I make them ALL the time….especially postworkout!

    Reply
  56. I keep motivated by healthy living sites, by the feeling after a good workout, by beautiful fresh foods that inspire me!

    Reply
  57. So are you the former Kuntrageous Vegan? Is that what we’ve learned here?

    Reply
  58. At least I knew The Kuntrageous Vegan changed her blog name. (I don’t even know what Tumblr is. Cut me some slack). ‘Lacey Loves Food’ is certainly a G-rated name – kudos for coming up with that one.

    Reply
  59. Pingback: Oatmeal Cookies with Figs, Ginger and Chocolate « Lacey Loves Food

  60. Pingback: Gift Recipe: Crisp Rice Date Balls « Lacey Loves Food

  61. My favorite healthy recipe is a tomato sandwich. Toast spread with vegan mayo and sliced tomatoes. YUMMY!

    Reply
  62. I stay motivated by thinking of why I choose to do something or the results I will get form doing it. Think of the future!

    Reply
  63. I follow both of you on twitter already :) Yay!

    Reply
  64. Like on Facebook!

    Reply
  65. I want to win this book because I need more vegan cookbooks that aren’t baking related. Seriously!

    Reply
  66. If I had to choose one of her recipes from her site, I’d pick the Chana Palak Masala. Because i LOVE indian food.

    Reply
  67. My favorite healthy recipe is the simplest: crispy kale. Just delicious kale, some olive oil, salt and pepper, and some time on a cookie sheet. YUM.

    Reply
  68. I do have trouble staying motivated, but one thing that has worked for me is making a list of my goals and taping up in various places around my apartment (mirrors, refrigerator, etc.). If I keep my goals in sight, I’m less likely to lose focus.

    Reply
  69. On the recipe page, Cran-Orange Muffins sound most appealing to me at this moment. What a delicious breakfast!

    Reply
  70. I liked Happy Herbivore on facebook.

    Reply
  71. I’m following both of you on Twitter.

    Reply
  72. I want to win this book because I need to cook more healthfully. When I first became a vegan in 2009, I lost some weight and got in better shape. Now I seem to find myself in a vegan-comfort-food rut, eating far too much vegan mac and cheese. I want to get back in the groove of healthy living.

    Reply
  73. I tweeted about the giveaway.

    Reply

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