We sat down with Michelle Yandle, an ex-pat Canadian nutritionist living in Plymouth, NZ. She's an author, founder of the Empowered Eating Centre, and recipe-maker who recently fell in love with the Vegepod! Her work focuses on simplifying nutrition while not depriving yourself of the foods you love. Have a read about Michelle's top tips for nutritional eating and her perfect-for-summertime, simple-yet-delicious recipe for a Roasted Beetroot and Greens Salad.
What inspired your love of gardening and nutrition?
To be as honest as possible, my love of gardening has only started since I got my Vegepod! I was a terrible gardener having lived most of my life in the city in Canada where not only did I not have any outdoor space but the conditions were just a bit too cold for half the year. I'll admit, I was intrigued about gardening when I first moved to New Zealand but it was so new to me that I quickly gave up. Plus, there were all the bugs and things not only creeping me out but eating my plants as well! Since getting the Vegepod it's been easy! And being a nutrition coach, I've always knows the benefits of growing and eating fresh foods. Some of my guiding food principles are eating locally and seasonally because not only does it mean the nutrient quality is denser but also the flavour is far superior. I've been into nutrition for as long as I can remember and thanks to my Vegepod, inspired to grow my greens as well!
Wow, that's incredible. We always love hearing when the Pod gets someone into gardening! How did you find using the Vegepod for your recipe?
It was so very easy! I can't believe how quickly everything grew and my beetroots were massive! I literally just walked out to the Vegepod, snipped off a bit of parsley and greens, pulled out a few beetroots and voila! Ready to chop. Honestly, it's been so great having an abundance of fresh veggies within arm's reach for all my cooking and fresh salad making.
So as an experienced nutritionist, top tip for beginner gardeners looking to cook more nutritious meals everyday?
My top tip is definitely to keep it simple! There are some very creative yet laborious recipes online and in books, these days and these can definitely overwhelm those wanting to cook more healthily. Healthy food, however, is actually really simple and starts with getting as many vegetables as you can with good sources of protein and some wholegrain carbohydrates. If I can be so bold to offer another tip, it's something I recommend to everyone I work with and that's the concept of 'crowding in'. There are so many diets out there telling us what we should take away when really we should flip it around and look for creative ways to add in those foods we know make us feel great. That means there's still room for the fun stuff but regardless we're getting more nutrition by simply filling our plate up with as many nutritious ingredients as we can.
Thanks Michelle for your time and delicious recipe - we look forward to more #podtoplate recipes with you in the future! If you'd like to check out more of Michelle's work please follow her at michelleyandle.com.