Today I am chatting with the lovely Emily Von Euw, who is a vegan blogger from Vancouver, Canada.
Her very popular blog, This Rawesome Vegan Life, is the winner of The Vegan Woman’s Vegan Food Blog Award and named one of the Top 50 Raw Food Blogs by the Institute for the Psychology of Eating. She is the author of the best selling cook book, Rawsome Vegan Baking, and 100 Best Smoothies, Juices, and Snacks. She will have her third book published this December.
I am 21 now, I went vegan when I was 16… so nearly a quarter of my life! Being vegan just makes sense, it was a choice for compassion, health and environmental responsibility.
2. When did you start your blog, and what inspired you to do so?
October 2011. My parents finally got me to start my blog after always trying my raw vegan dessert creations. They would usually react, “You NEED to put this on the internet!”
The near lack of cognitive dissonance. I say near because being vegan doesn’t mean living 100% cruelty-free; there are all sorts of human rights issues involved in farming (ex. banana farming) and the clothing industry (ex. sweat shops).
4. You not only promote veganism, but you also speak about other social rights movements. Can you tell me a little bit about your passions and why you feel so strongly about them?
I feel strongly about a lot of things and always have. Basically any group working to live in justice and some kind of freedom is one I want to help. Whether their unfair histories are grounded in skin colour, sex, gender expression, animal rights, environmental responsibility, workers rights, international issues, corporate corruption, political corruption… I mean there are serious, systemic issues in nearly every facet of economics, society, culture, industry and politics! So we cannot ignore them. We need to help them move in the right direction (that is, in my opinion, towards social justice for all). I am a highly privileged person and so is lot of my readership as well as the community I have wound up being a part of; we should not ignore our privilege and we should not assume everyone else gets to experience the comfortable lives we do. We need to recognize most of the world is living in a completely different system that often oppresses them for the sake of maintaining OUR privileged lives. We gotta even this shit out.
Me, if I am being honest. I don’t like relying others for things. But at the same time, most of the folks Rich Roll interviews on his podcast are really inspiring and make me wanna work even harder. And people who run animal sanctuaries.
6. What are your top five favourite meals?
Oh they are always changing and lately I have been really boring: rice and potatoes with tomato sauce. *smh* But when I want something more colourful: greens with shredded beets and carrots plus a ginger tahini dressing and tomatoes from the garden with corn from the farmers market.
Long story short trying to eat all raw developed into multiple eating disorders, deepened my body image issues and worsened my chronic depression. I didn’t eat enough calories even though I was always exercising, and I was convinced all cooked foods were poison. I was 16 at the time and pretty easily influenced by some books which led to this crazy thinking. Eventually I grew a brain and realized, hey, steamed broccoli is NOT bad for me! Over many years I have mostly recovered from these issues and make sure to eat enough everyday. I like eating raw all day ( fruit smoothies ) and then having cooked veg and rice for dinner.
Erin Ireland (she’s not totally vegan but her photos are lovely and she is vegan-minded)
Our Food Stories (same deal with this couple, stunning photography)
Anniskk (same deal… lots of smoothie bowls)
Tasty as Heck (cute stuff)
Brewing Happiness (ALSO NOT VEGAN, but the pics always look so good, and the feed is like 90% vegan)The Minty Anne (and yet again: I am here for the photos, people)
Oh that was six so I will stop.
9. How many cook books do you have and how did you first get published? Congratulations on your new book that is coming out later this year by the way!
Two are out right now: Rawsome Vegan Baking and 100 Best Juices, Smoothies and Healthy Snacks. My third one is coming out in early December: The Rawsome Vegan Cookbook!! I’m gonna be real: this is my best book yet, and you should go pre-order it right now on Amazon, B&N, The Book Depository, etc. Just SAYING. Kay. Um my publisher found me via my blog and offered me a good book deal which I took, then they offered me another one, then another! Thank you, internet. 10. What is your advice to youths who want to become vegan?
Get educated. Read all the books and docs about the subject (I have a comprehensive list on my blog under the Resources tab) and help educate your fam too. Once you know what’s really up, the only smart move is going vegan. To get the family on board (and romantic partners), set up a dinner and movie night. Find an easy, fool-proof, comfort-food vegan meal recipe and dessert recipe, make them as a family or pair; then sit down together and watch Forks Over Knives. All in one night everyone realizes: vegan food is simple, quick, easy and delicious to make/eat. Oh and hey- it is the also the healthiest way to eat (as long as you eat a whole foods diet) and it’s best for the animals and the planet! HMMM.
11. What would you say to parents who don’t approve of veganism?
Take your children to a slaughter house and show them how wonderful not being vegan is. Then you will realize veganism IS actually wonderful and eating meat is a little creepy (living in a more developed country with the food system we have, there is often no need to get our calories by killing others; we can eat vegetables, fruits, rice and beans and THRIVE. Of course this depends on your location, schedule and income because for working families living in a food desert on welfare… it’s gonna be a lot more challenging. This is when veganism intersects with human rights issues). And do your research; all kinds of regional and federal authoritative sources on nutrition advise that eating lots of plants is a great idea, and that a vegan diet is healthy at all ages. I have heard stories of some kids who had chronic skin issues and allergies; their parents took dairy out of the diet followed by other processed animal foods and processed foods in general, the kids got better.
The farmers markets, underground music shows, mountains and water, and vegan eateries.
13. Favourite place to travel to, and if you could go anywhere in the world right now, where would you go?
Portland? Alaska? Japan? I DUNNO AGH. Actually, probably Wells in the interior where Jack’s fam has a little house built in the 40’s. So peaceful.
14. Three tips for food photography?
1. Natural lighting, I like cloudy weather.
2. Don’t try too hard to make the set-up perfect, I like things a little rugged and messy.
3. Get a good editing system (I use Adobe Lightroom and love it).
It is the platform for living happily.
16. Favourite quote?
BE HERE NOW.