As many of you will know this site and my business has changed a lot since the start of The Botanical Chef in 2010, and so has my life.
I began my dream of The Botanical Chef in 2010 by producing beautiful, plant based dishes and cakes to local businesses with the aim of one day opening my own restaurant. I had gained a great deal of information on health and nutrition from my BSc. (Hons) Biological Sciences with Neuroscience from The University of Edinburgh (1999-2003) and wanted to use it in a positive way to help others. I went on to become a plant based demonstration chef, did a few sessions for BBC radio and began to write my first cookery book.
In May 2011 my whole life was turned upside down when I was driving home on a sunny Sunday lunchtime and was hit by another car. I broke both my hands and suffered multiple back injuries. At that time it looked like it was the end of The Botanical Chef, and to be honest it was the end as I knew it. One amazing outcome from the accident was that I found out I was pregnant and that our baby had survived. We now have a beautiful son as the newest member of our family.
How has The Botanical Chef changed? You will find me developing more edible inspirations, some of which you will find here on the recipes page.
You can find me speaking and demoing at more events and on radio. Information about this can be found on the EVENTS page.
If you would like to join me for some live culinary workshops then you will be able to do that too. See the EVENTS page for these too.
One to one appointments are available in holistic nutrition. It is true that you are what you eat. By increasing whole, plant based foods into your eating pattern you will have more energy which will give you a mental boost and increased positivity throughout all areas of your life.
I hope this blog reflects my passion for whole foods and health. The recipes and ideas you’ll find here revolve around my plant-based way of eating, and are suitable for the whole family to enjoy. Living in the UK we experience cold and extremely wet wet wet weather. So many of the recipes are warming and comforting, whilst others are 100% raw and delicious.
I'm not asking you to embrace The Botanical Chef way of eating all the time, though it would be lovely if you could. All the recipes are tasty and plant based and I know you will enjoy the wide selection, it may even give you inspiration when you visit the market or open the fridge.
What is my Education? I mentioned earlier that I have a degree in Biological Sciences with honours in Neuroscience. So I come from a health background including Anatomy, Physiology and Comparative Nutrition. Over the last 10 years I have gained qualifications in homeopathy from the Lakeland College of Homeopathy and qualifications in herbal medicine and iridology from the College of Herbs and Natural Healing. By combining all my training it allows me to see health and wellbeing in both an allopathic and homeopathic way, and most importantly for me holistic nutrition in a totally natural and great way to improving health.
How and when did I start cooking? I began cooking at a very young age with my mum. Although she won't believe it she is a great cook. She cooked all our food from scratch when we were growing up and she made sure that when we left home my sister and I could cook for ourselves. My dad is a good cook too, he is more experimental and would throw cookbooks to the wind and make up his own curry powders or casserole recipes. He still does it to this day. When I was 12 I got my very first job. It was at The Quince and Medlar Vegetarian Restaurant. Although I was young, owner and head chef, Colin Le Voi, inspired me with his beautifully creative dishes, and to this day it is still my favourite restaurant not only to have worked in (and there have been a few) but also to eat at.
What are my food loves? I love to eat. I love to cook, sometimes hot, sometimes cold. Ayuvadic cooking inspires me, macrobiotic inspires me, raw inspires me. Where possible I'm a local and organic kind of girl but first, foremost and always it has to be Botanical. Vegetables, fruits, whole grains, beans, lentils, nuts, and seeds are what I love and what I love to eat. I don't calorie count and I don't detox, and by eating this way I stay naturally in balance.
What doesn't float my food boat? I'm not a fan of food that comes processed and wrapped in plastic, I don't do fizzy drinks and anything that has a family and/or a face is off the menu.
Thank you for visiting The Botanical Chef Happy Eating Love Sarah A-V
Sarah from The Botanical Chef with husband, Andrew