Sasha has just finished her third year at the University of Oxford studying Medicine. Half Indian and half Eurasian, she grew up in Singapore and her earliest memories centre around food – a major aspect of Asian culture. She was virtually brought up in the kitchen and comes from a family who loves to cook. She has travelled extensively in Asia and her aim is to inspire people to cook the food she loves. Her Instagram has grown fast and she is now one of the leading young voices in vegan cooking.
She was attracted to vegetarianism as a teenager for health reasons and has gradually cut all animal products from her diet for environmental reasons, although she has also found that cutting out dairy reduced her IBS symptoms. She is an accomplished photographer and takes her own photos with professional equipment in her basement student flat.
Sasha says: 'My Instagram was something I used to keep myself accountable, to stay inspired, and to hopefully inspire others. Being a medical student, my days are almost always jam-packed. Cooking is my ‘me’ time’, it relaxes me and I adore doing it. A lot of people think that in order to cook well and have fun doing it, you need a big space, tons of cool equipment and a lot of time on your hands. My kitchen at uni is tiny, with a hob that is incredibly wobbly and an oven that only heats up in one corner. My basement bedroom doubles as a photo studio, but it works for me. You make do with what you have, and you always have fun! I want to show people that vegan cooking isn’t as hard as it may seem, and it doesn’t have to be expensive or boring either. I love to cook what I know best—the food I grew up on. Asian food is so full of flavour from spices and herbs, so it really is the perfect thing to cook when you are plant-based. No obscure ingredients and nothing boring, just lovely, nourishing and inclusive meals for everyone—plant eater and carnivore alike.'
Plant-based eating is on the rise and there are now several vegan, vegetarian and healthy-eating cookbooks on the market. However, most of them offer mainly western-style dishes with a few well-known Asian dishes. Sasha Gill's first book JACKFRUIT AND BLUE GINGER will be published by Murdoch books in 2019 (and by Experimental Books in the US as EAST MEETS VEGAN), offers a range of delicious recipes for authentic (as authentic as you can be after making it plant based, of course!) dishes from south and east Asian cuisines.
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