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 Loveday Why from wild-and-good.com. Loveday started her website to share her knowledge from healing herself from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Loveday also coaches women and families on nutrition and spiritual wellness, as well as running Wildwood Ecoforestry with her husband Kris. Loveday's website has to be one of the prettiest that I have come across. It is stunning!
Tell us a little bit about yourself, your family, what you do and what inspired you to lead a healthier lifestyle?
I live in Dunedin, on New Zealand's South Island with my husband, Kris, 6 week old baby daughter, Sol, and a handful of chickens. Kris and I run Wildwood Ecoforestry, a native and edible reforestation service and I coach women and young families towards nutritional and spiritual wellness at Wild and Good. I'm also studying for a PhD in ecopoetics. I started to explore healthier eating and mindfulness as a way to recover from 10 years of digestive related CFS. It was astonishing the difference eating straight from the earth made to my gut and my whole life state. Now completely healed, I love sharing the knowledge I gained on my journey to wellness.
What tips would you give to someone who has just commenced living a healthier lifestyle?
Be kind to yourself. It takes a while to readjust eating habits and if you start to beat yourself up, things won't integrate. Love has to be present. My advice is to crowd out the foods you're not getting along with - typically sugar/wheat etc - with glorious healthful and delicious foods so you never notice any lack.
Do you have any tips for eating well on a budget?
Grow your own. Even if you don't have a garden or are convinced you don't have a green thumb, herbs, tomatoes and salad leaves are simple to grow in pots by the window. These are the premium items at the supermarket, so you'll save well and enjoy the process of growing. We also like to forage when we can and just got our year's supply of walnuts from wild trees up in Wanaka. If you live in a city there are always plenty of roadside fruit trees such as plums and apples that you'll start to spot all over the place once you train your beady eye. Wild foods are more healthful and tend to be more flavourful as they have escaped being sprayed by pesticides.
How do you deal with food struggles from your family?
My husband caught typhoid while surfing in offshore Timor a few years ago and is still slowly rebuilding his stomach lining so we have pretty weird food habits in some respects, particularly when I was 100% raw vegan! We'd work it by taking a sharing plate of salads, dips and veg crudites along with a dessert item like bliss balls to parties. Pretty soon after that, our gatherings evolved into pot lucks. It's more of a Kiwi thing anyway - the shared kai - I really love it and it means you get to try lots of dishes.
What is your favourite food?
Coconut! I think if I was stranded on a desert island with only one food it would be coconut, for its oil, milk, flesh, water, cream, flour - delicious and so good for you! And you can make a nifty instrument from the husk...
Who is your favourite foodie and why?
I love Nigel Slater's simple, beautiful recipes and the considered way in which he writes. Jamie Oliver's 'Naked Chef' was the first book I ever cooked from - his energy is unstoppable and his ethics are very inspiring too.
What is something that you enjoy doing when you have some ‘me’ time?
Oh, beach days for sure! Winter or Summer - playing, swimming, dancing, writing, meditating - the ocean is so restorative and expanding. Sol has already visited 3 beaches in her little life. I guess now, though, I never get total alone time as Sol sleeps with me and is always in a sling or near me, but I do particularly love the peace of the night feed when it's just she and I, silently communing.
What is your favourite recipe to cook?
These fish patties are fool proof. So flavourful and simple to whip up and you can use any white fish on hand. They are great to share at a barbecue.
(makes 12 small patties)
- 250g blue cod or other white fish fillet
- ½ cup oats
- 1 egg
- 2 garlic cloves
- ¼ red onion
- ¼ teaspoon cayenne papper
- ½ teaspoon chilli flakes
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- ½ avocado
- handful of parsley
- handful of coriander
- juice of 1 lemon
- generous grind of himlayan salt
Add all the ingredients to a food processor and blend until it holds together but remains slightly chunky. You don’t want a paste consistency. Form into small balls, press flat into pattie shapes and refrigerate for a couple of hours. Fry in olive oil until crispy and golden on the outside and only just cooked in the middle – about 2 minutes each side. You’ll be able to tell they are ready to flip when the white colour of the cooked fish has nearly reached the middle of the pattie.
Enjoy with a big green salad and herbed garlic mayonnaise.
A Little more about Loveday and where you can find her
Loveday lives in Dunedin, on New Zealand’s South Island, where she runs a native and edible reforestation business with her husband and coaches women and young families towards full, creative, earth-based lives at wild-and-good.com. Loveday’s poetry has been published in print and online journals and her chapbook Chillida and the Sound was published in 2012. Inspired by other artists, dancers and makers, she loves to collaborate. Loveday is currently studying for a PhD in contemporary ecopoetics and has joyfully just welcomed her first baby into the world.