Welcome to the latest edition of my Friday Foodie series, where each week I feature my favourite health and wellness stars. Each week, they share their tips for healthy living and their favourite recipe.
This week I am featuring Kaye Waterhouse, who is a Nutritionist, Nutritional & Wellness Coach and all around inspirational woman. Kaye runs the website A Teaspoon Half Full which is full of amazing recipes and health and wellness tips.
Tell us a little bit about yourself, your family, what you do and what inspired you to lead a healthier lifestyle?
I live in rural WA, about an hours drive from Perth, with my fiancé, and my 18mth old daughter Elodie.
Many years ago I was a party animal who turned her drive for excitement and fun into a drive for the corporate life. I threw the same amount of gung-ho into late night project deadlines as very early morning dance parties. Of course, it wasn’t going to end well! I ended up diagnosed with depression, and crippling anxiety. I had never learnt the art of taking care of myself. I knew about "dieting", of course, but nothing of what true nourishment meant.
To separate myself from the 100-mile-an-hour life, I quit my corporate industry and took on a bar job. I know, that sounds counter productive, but working behind the bar kept me OUT of bars. It also opened up my days to explore the process of my healing. I went to retreats. I started hiking. I started yoga. I threw myself into cooking. And eventually, I went on to study Nutrition.
These days, Im a Nutritionist, and a certified Wellness Coach. I spend my days building my food garden, wrangling a headstrong toddler, and coaching women who have tread a similar path to my own, to learn to find their balance.
While my initial inspiration to live a healthy lifestyle was to heal the damage done from years of self-sabotage, nothing inspires me now quite like sharing homegrown food, and homemade meals, with my family. When my daughter sits amongst the cherry tomato bushes and eats warm berries off the branches, my heart feels like it will burst.
What tips would you give to someone who has just commenced living a healthier lifestyle?
Every now and then, challenge yourself to expand your repertoire! Its great if you’ve got your regular favourites, but this can make things eventually seem monotonous. Ive been making bread for a few years, but I recently created my own sourdough starter (its actually much easier than it sounds!) and now I can make authentic sourdough. I also just went to a workshop on fermenting, and got a crash course on kombucha, kefir, and sauerkraut! My first homemade yoghurt is culturing in my kitchen right now (which is fabulous, because Elodie eats it a lot!).
When we explore new things (such as fermenting, or baking), we inevitably make mistakes. We also have a chance to experiment, stretch recipes, and our imaginations. We become skilled, we make masterpieces and we increase our confidence! The more you mess up, the more you practise... the more you practise, the more you succeed!
And confidence is EVERYTHING in maintaining a healthy lifestyle. If theres something you’ve wanted to try, google a recipe, enrol in a class, or borrow a grandma!
Do you have any tips for eating well on a budget?
I have to say, growing your own food. With a vegetable garden in full swing, I only need a few supermarket staples (which I can buy in bulk at a whole foods store). You’d be amazed at the meals you can create with just a few homegrown basics and a basket of eggs! I don’t know where I’d be without chickens.
You don’t need acreage for veggie gardens (or chickens!). Plants grow excellently in pots too. Or you could do away with part of your lawn and grow something that gives back. Even fresh herbs are rich in nutrients, tastier & cheeper than the supermarket edition, and you only need to take what the recipe asks for, instead of great bunches that eventually shrivel in the crisper.
How do you deal with food struggles from your child?
Ohhhh boy, the truth actually is I actually don’t deal very well. Im a Nutritionist, and my child doesn’t eat. How terrible does that sound!? And I don’t mean that like she is fussy, or eats like a bird, I mean she literally will go days sometimes without any food except her bottle. Elodie has a food aversion and I have NO idea how it came about. Every day is a battle, three steps forward, two steps back.
All I can do is persevere, and persevere I do! I concentrate on the successes we CAN manage, even if it means she eats a punnet of strawberries for dinner. I continue to offer variety, and everything that I make, to maintain the meal time habit (even though she’s big on refusal and tantrums). And I think laterally and creatively about how to get maximum nutrients into her body if she DOES choose to eat. I shove grated vegetables in EVERYTHING I bake. I add chia seeds & hemp seeds to her yoghurt. I put flaxseed oil or cod liver oil in her bottle. I make green smoothies with oats & spinach (well hidden by yoghurt and banana) and put these smoothies in reusable food pouches, and I use distraction (usually trips down the road in the pram) so that she will eat the food pouch!
Its hard, its frustrating, its exhausting. But at the end of the day, she’s quite healthy and bright, so I must be doing something right! And I know this will not last forever - so we march on.
What is your favourite food?
It would have to be avocado. Its so versatile, nourishing, and tasty. Its a breakfast, dinner, sweets, or snack food. Its my “If you were stranded on a desert island…” food!
Who is your favourite foodie and why?
My favourite foodie is Lia from @Liasfarmlife on instagram - she’s a rural / country gal like me (although she’s actually a native Swede), is a pastry/sweets queen and she bakes some seriously naughty stuff!! >.<
What is something that you enjoy doing when you have some ‘me’ time?
I'm working towards getting my yoga teacher training qualification in September, because yoga is my guilty pleasure. When Elodie goes down for a nap, I crank up Smooth FM and roll out my yoga mat on my kitchen floor. Its very grounding and tension-releasing especially with the frustrations that a toddler can bring. Sometimes I do my own sequences, but I also love looking up yoga videos on Youtube :D When Elodie wakes up, Mama is content again!
What is your favourite recipe to cook? Can you share the recipe with us?
This is my NEW favourite recipe. Truth be told, it was one of those fluke recipes that turned into a regular. Its dangerously delicious, moist, AND it has a sneaky whole vegetable in there!
GREEN SEED SLICE
- 2.5 cups of almond meal
- 1 large zucchini, grated
- 1 cup of mixed seeds (I used pepitas, hemp, and sunflower)
- 1 cup coconut sugar
- 2 eggs, lightly whisked
- 2 tablespoons melted coconut oil
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
Place the seeds in a small bowl and cover with hot water, allow to sit & soak. This gives them lovely popping texture when they're baked.
Combine almond meal, coconut sugar, and cinnamon in a large mixing bowl
Using your hands, squeeze as much excess water out of the zucchini as you can, before adding to the bowl.
Finally, add in the eggs, and coconut oil, stirring well to combine.
Grease a loose-base baking pan. Quiche tins are ideal - that way the slice can just pop out!
Press the slice mixture into the pan with the back of a spoon
Drain the water from the seeds and sprinkle over the slice, pressing gently into the mixture to fix in place.
Bake in the oven at 170 degrees for 15 mins.
Allow to cool slightly before transferring to the fridge to cool completely, before slicing.
A little more about Kaye and where she can be found
Kaye is a passionate Nutritionist, Wellness Coach, Writer, Yogini, and Mama to one spunky little girl.
Food is her religion, and she guides women - mothers in particular - to make simple, yet life-altering changes to their lives through the healing power of whole foods. Her mission is to empower women to take ownership of their own health and that of their families, by offering them the tools and advice necessary to create their own happy, healthy life.
She believes in growing food, shopping locally, chemical free living, and fostering abundance and enjoyment of eating rather than deprivation and guilt.
Get to know Kaye better, over on her blog www.ateaspoonhalffull.com or on Instagram @ateaspoonhalffull