Cocobella Ambassador Cherie Tu lives a plant-based lifestyle that is anything but boring. We are always super impressed by Cherie; posting delicious and healthy recipes on @thrivingonplants, creating a scrumptious raw treat brand all whilst studying. Wow! — what a busy lady!
We chatted to Cherie about some of her culinary inspiration below, enjoy and happy reading!
Hi Cherie, thanks for chatting to us! Your feed is so colourful and happy. What is your favourite thing about connecting to like-minded followers on Instagram?
No worries, thanks for having me!
My favourite part about connecting with my Instagram Community is that there is a strong sense of belonging, almost like we have known each other for quite some time. It is wonderful be surrounded by inspiring people and to discuss and support one another through each unique individual journey.
We can see you stick to a vegan diet. What led you to this lifestyle choice?
When I first came across Veganism at the age of 15, I thought it was just another kind of diet fad. I saw so many vegans out there eating in abundance while still being so lean, healthy and happy. I thought, I have nothing to lose if I try it so, why not just go for it? Later down the track, when I looked further into it, I realised that Veganism is in fact a lifestyle. It’s better for the animals, the environment— the health aspect really is just an amazing added bonus. I’m honestly so grateful for finding this lifestyle, it’s changed me completely. Physically and mentally, I’ve never felt so good.
What is your favourite savoury dish to cook for your family?
Nothing beats a veggie and tofu stir fried rice noodle dish! Quick, easy and packed full of flavour.
Do you have a favourite local café in Sydney?
I absolutely love Speedos Café in Bondi. They aren’t a completely vegan café, but they offer several vegan options which are mind-blowing!
Your photos are always bright and cheerful, what camera do you use to achieve such a high quality image?
I honestly have no clue when it comes to cameras! I’ve been using my boyfriend’s camera to take all my photos (Canon EOS 600D) and it seems to get me by somehow!
What’s your go-to recipe when friends pop over for an after-uni snack?
Bliss balls or any sort of raw or no bake treats definitely the speediest option. My favourite bliss ball recipe uses peanut butter. To make, process some peanuts, chopped up medjool dates, rice malt syrup, vanilla and a pinch of salt. Next, roll the mixture into balls. So easy, healthy and delicious!
Do you have a number one dish that although challenging, is always sure to impress?
Some of my favourite recipes are a little more time-consuming, but are definitely sure to impress, like Korean stir fried glass noodles or a lentil or mushroom shepherd’s pie.
Could you share your top 5 Instagram accounts when it comes to sourcing inspiration for your own baking?
In your opinion, what is important to keep in mind when engaging in a healthy and balanced lifestyle?
Do what feels right for you and your body. Don’t feel the need to do exactly what someone else does, what works for them may not work for you.
For instance, in terms of eating, in the vegan community there are some who are raw vegan and some who go by a starch-based diet. This all depends on where you live, how accessible and affordable certain foods are and how your body reacts to them. There is no point in forcing yourself to strictly eat a certain way just because someone else does it.
Same goes with exercise—personally I love weight-training at the gym. However, if you prefer going out for runs/bike rides or doing home workouts, you do you! Ultimately this is what will keep you motivated, consistent and happy.
Check out Cherie’s recipes for Pancakes with Caramelised Bananas and Caramel Sauce and Choc Mint Cheesecake Bites.