Wicked Chats with Rebel Recipes

Plant-based food writer Niki Webster on where she’s happiest, why she’d tell her younger self to worry less and why Dill the kitten is the love of her life.

Niki Webster, AKA Rebel Recipes, is an award-winning blogger, cookbook author and podcast host. Niki started her journey celebrating wholesome simplicity, vibrancy, flavours and colours of vegetables. She launched her blog Rebel Recipes in 2015, and now reaches an army of food-based fans across the globe and has four plant-based cookbooks: Rebel Recipes, Be More Vegan, My Vegan Year and Rainbow Bowls.

What’s been your worst job? When I was a teenager I actually had a lot of unusual part-time jobs. I worked on a market stall, as a petrol pump attendant and chambermaid. But the worst was working in a meat factory for a summer when I came home from university. I desperately needed the money but it wasn’t a nice job at all especially given that I was a vegetarian. It really showed me that I had made the right choice in my lifestyle and wanted to share super simple but delicious ways to help other people make the transition.

Favourite late-night snack? I don’t typically snack at night but if I did it would probably be toast with olive oil, hummus, olives, sea salt – yum. And a glass of wine!

Where are you happiest? Not surprisingly…in my kitchen, listening to an audiobook or music and just cooking all day, then having my friends over to eat it all. The deal in my house is ‘food for feedback’; it works out well, especially when I’m recipe testing for books.

Your biggest fear? Time running out and not doing everything I’d love to do. Travelling, work projects and discovering new food, just to name a few.

What’s your pet hate? My pet hate is meanness. I think it’s a very unattractive trait; I think it often comes from defensiveness about the idea of being treated badly. I believe that you get back what you put into the world. Give little and meanly and that’s what you will get back. Be generous and courteous and that will come back to you also.

One piece of advice you would give your younger self? Stop worrying so much, trust your inner voice more and try to be a bit kinder to yourself.

What’s your ideal day, including food, place and activity? My ideal day would be going for a huge hill walk in the morning, then stopping off for a big late lunch at a county pub with lots of friends, drinks and chats (and of course, all the food – ideally in lots of picky bowls so we can all share), before coming home for a hot bubble bath and snuggling with my kitten on the sofa.

Most embarrassing moment? Probably doing something silly or reckless on a night out. It doesn’t even bear thinking about it.

Most treasured possession? She’s not a possession, but my kitten Dill. I’ve had her for five months and I’m in love.

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