Friend of Graza: Remy Park

Friend of Graza: Remy Park

The vegan chef and author behind Sesame, Soy, & Spice on her love of funfetti, the biggest misconceptions around vegan cooking, and her new matcha endeavors.

Q: How do you describe yourself?

R: I am (newly) a vegan cookbook author, content creator, matcha enthusiast and wannabe bicoastal human.

Q: Finish this sentence: Cooking for me is __________

R: Healing! Growing up I had a really bad relationship with food and it wasn't until I adopted the vegan lifestyle and had to learn to start cooking for myself in college that I found purpose through my choice in food. Spending time in the kitchen helped me to find appreciation and love for food instead of fearing it.

Q: You've built a name for yourself in the food world as a vegan chef. What's the biggest misconception people have about cooking without animal products?

R: People often think that vegan food is bland, or that all you can eat is salad and grain bowls but it's all about treating your veggies and grains as you would meat! Seasoning is so important and you can apply a lot of cooking techniques to veggies to make them more exciting. When I became vegan, I actually started eating a much wider variety of fruits and veggies!

Q: You're the author of Sesame, Soy, & Spice. What spices (and favorite forms of sesame and soy) do you use almost every day? What other pantry essentials do you always reach for?

R: I love cooking with miso in place of just salt because it adds so much depth of flavour and umami. Scallions are one of my favourite garnishes and I cook with a lot of tamari, toasted sesame oil and rice wine vinegar. As a vegan I also always have nutritional yeast, dried mushooms and dried kombu for cooking too.

Q: Do you think you're more Sizzle or more Drizzle?

R: Lately I've been more Drizzle. As it gets hotter, I'm craving more cold dishes and no-cook meals. I love spreads and dips, crudité and dressings/vinaigrettes made with Drizzle!

Q: What is your favorite birthday dessert?

R: I love anything funfetti!!! Sprinkle cookies are great but I love a good funfetti angel food cake too.

Q: What’s one hosting or cooking tip you’d give to 2014 you?

R: One cooking tip I'd give to my younger self is not to shy away from salt and fat. Both unlock so much flavour in cooking and can make all the difference.

Q: What's on the horizon for you!

R: Lately I'm spending most of my time in the matcha world (I just launched Frauth, a matcha brand). I am also determined to adopt another cat... but we'll see where that goes!