“I truly believe food is the best medicine you can get your hands on. To me, I think its super important for people to be conscious of what they fuel themselves with, because your food can influence how you feel so much.”
Cocobella Ambassador Ella of @pompomwilderness loves fashion and food in equal measures, which is evident in her pretty and inspiring Instagram feed. From smoothie bowls to make-up tutorials and style inspo, Ella believes feeling good from inside out is key to living a healthy and balanced life.
We chatted to Ella about what inspires her cooking and creativity here, enjoy!
We love your feed Ella! You’re a lover and a maker of sweet and savoury vegan dishes which are totally drool-worthy. Where do you draw your inspiration from when it comes to creating new recipes?
When it comes to creating new recipes I just experiment! As someone who used to follow recipes perfectly, I initially found it quite hard to do this, but it has really helped me to learn new things through (a lot) of trial and error! I normally just take a few ingredients that I love, and make up a recipe that includes them all… sometimes it’s terrible, but sometimes the yummiest meals are made!
Your feed is a plant-based vegan dream! What led you to pursue this lifestyle choice?
Although I am not strictly ‘vegan’, I have the upmost respect for those who are, and most of what I eat happens to be vegan. However, I do follow a mostly plant based diet. After going through years of low body confidence, restrictive eating and finally a fully-fledged eating disorder, I started trying to find a style of eating that made me feel amazing both inside and out. That’s when I came across the plant-based lifestyle, and it just clicked. When I ate well, I felt well, and for me that was something I had never experienced before. It just made sense for me to carry on this way!
Why do you think it is important for people to be conscious of what they fuel their body with and engage in a healthy balanced lifestyle?
From someone who hasn’t always looked after their body, I truly believe food is the best medicine you can get your hands on. To me, I think its super important for people to be conscious of what they fuel themselves with, because your food can influence how you feel so much. When people talk about being ‘conscious of what they eat’, I think the majority believe this is another way of saying “don’t eat too much / don’t eat this / don’t eat that”, but it’s the complete opposite! It’s not about rules, it is instead about listening to your body and giving it what it needs (and occasionally what it wants!). A healthy balanced lifestyle is exactly that – healthy but also balanced. I know lots of people follow the 80/20 rule (where you eat healthy 80% of the time, and treat yourself 20% of the time), and if this works for you, then great. But to me, ‘balanced’ is learning to eat intuitively and really focusing on your own body and its wants and needs.
What essentials make their way into your grocery basket each week?
I always make sure I have soy or almond milk, super ripe bananas and sweet potatoes. Some other essentials would include spinach leaves, peanut butter, cherry tomatoes and dark chocolate.
When you’re not creating in the kitchen, where do you like to go out for breakfast in your hometown, Sydney?
I love eating out in Sydney because there are SO MANY great places!! Some of my favourites around Sydney include; Bent Fork in Freshwater (best zoodles) , Bare Naked Bowls in Manly and The Smoothie Shack at Glebe Market every Saturday morning (THEY ARE SO GOOD).
If one of your followers came to Sydney for 24 hours, which foodie spots would you recommend they visit?
I would recommend any of the local farmer’s markets- not only do they have a huge array of food to eat, but they have heaps of fresh fruits and vegetables for super good prices. It’s so easy to wake up a little bit earlier on a Saturday morning and take a basket to fill, plus you meet some pretty cool people.
What is your quick and easy brekkie for those whirlwind mornings?
If I’m in a rush in the morning, I usually try to make bircher muesli in a jar the night before, so that I can run out of the door and eat it on the bus. My recipe is super simple, just add ½ cup oats to ½ cup Cocobella Straight Up coconut water, add in berries, maple syrup, coconut sugar (if you want it extra sweet), nuts and seeds, and then put it in the fridge over night. So easy! But if I haven’t my go to is toast with either crunchy peanut butter or smashed avocado.
What is your favourite recipe you’ve ever created?
I think it may actually be the muffin recipe I created for Cocobella! They are just so yummy and moist, and I am not even embarrassed to admit I ate three (!!!) after they came out of the oven… see people – BALANCE! ?
Your Instagram feed is bright, colourful and inviting. What camera and software do you use to achieve your signature look?
I’m super impatient when it comes to things like photographs and editing, so I like to keep it as uncomplicated and simple as possible, but still get creative. This means I take the majority of my photos on my iPhone 5, and edit them using the VSCO cam. My favourite filter right now is A5.
Working towards your dream career as a stylist, keeping up to date on your social media and studying, it sounds like you must be super busy! Do you have any tips for your followers when it comes to staying organised and healthy?
Yep, life is pretty crazy right now – but my number one tip would be to love everything you do. As cheesy as it sounds, I really believe it is true. If you love something it doesn’t feel like work, so put your time and energy into the things you want to do, and the rest will sort itself out. Another thing I do is use my phone calendar, something I didn’t really do up until the start of the year. It makes life so much easier when you have everything you need to do written down and available to you at any time, plus it’s fun to tick things off your to-do list, so go crazy and write as many as you want.
Could you share your top five Instagram accounts you love?
Ooh this is hard! Right now I am loving:
@oohcouture for the most amazing travel photos
@frommybowl for the best looking breakfast bowls
@fithealthyproject for all round feed goals
@songofstyle for all things fashion
What is your favourite thing about sharing your culinary creations with your Instagram community?
The people I’ve met. It’s amazing how easily you can come across like-minded people when you share a snippet of your life online. It always makes me so happy when I get to talk to people and learn about experiences we have both been through, it’s just the little things that make the whole Instagram community so amazing to be part of.
Do you have any new and exciting projects on the horizon that you would like to share?
I have a few things, but nothing to share just yet!
Thanks Ella, it’s been a pleasure!