Marie Gonzalez is the founder of Kitchen Revolution, an Alabang-based gourmet food company specializing in holistic, plant-based cuisine (vegan). Marie talks with the Superfood Grocer about her inspirations on putting up Kitchen Revolution and her plans for the future.
Please talk about Kitchen Revolution. What it stands for and why you established it.
I founded Kitchen Revolution in 2008 as a cruelty-free bakery. When I was in the onset, I made it a point to arm myself with the right cookbooks and nutrition information (protein, iron, etc.) because I wanted to succeed. I’ve had my own fair share of flops, believe me – lentil longganisa just tastes like vinegar-y lentil patties – but I was determined to prove to myself and to others that vegan food was satisfyingly delicious. My work is very much tied to cooking, and I have to credit going to cooking school and working in New York for pushing me to be creative with my craft.
How do you feel teaching and living a plant-based lifestyle have benefitted you personally?
Definitely this lifestyle has benefitted me personally in so many ways. Physically, I am a lot healthier than before – my immune system is something to be jealous of, I am more energetic, I’ve been told I have great skin, and that pesky constipation problem is a thing of the past. I also don’t miss that ‘food coma’ feeling after eating a huge meal of meat. Spiritually, I love that no animal had to suffer for me to satisfy my appetite. My eating habits are now in line with my values. Teaching vegan cooking classes is so fulfilling – I am happy that I can share my passion for veganism in a very practical and delicious way.
What are your favorite vegan dishes that you like to make which people cant believe are vegan and 100% good for them?
I love a hearty bean and vegetable soup seasoned with herbs and spices and my omnivorous family does, too. I make a mean vegan pizza that people can’t believe doesn’t contain cheese. Making creamy sauces using nuts always impresses everyone and proves to them that we really don’t need dairy to make food taste rich. Bonus is, I use whole foods (wholegrains, vegetables, nuts, and seeds, etc.) as much as possible and every ingredient I use is nutrient-packed.
What are your future plans for Kitchen Revolution?
More cooking classes up north, domestic travels to share the vegan love outside Metro Manila, more artisanal vegan food solutions to make it easier for people to go plant-based.
Any tips of for someone who is just starting to shift towards a plant-based lifestyle?
Do ample research on how to feed yourself so you don’t set yourself up for disappointment and failure. Remember that there is ‘veg’ in ‘veganism’ – Coca-Cola and french fries may be vegan but they aren’t good for you. Learn how to cook and cook often. Don’t rely on restaurants and others to feed you – you need to take control of your health by way of the kitchen. Not only will it get your creative culinary juices flowing, you’ll save a lot of money, too.
For info on Marie’s classes, check out www.kitchenrevolution.ph