Cooking with Marta Verges

Cooking with Marta Verges

Marta Verges is a nutritionist, consultant and vegan chef based in Barcelona. She has travelled around the world with her philosophy of plant based cooking and spreading environmental awareness. She is focused on Healthy Ageing Living Style and consults many women in their walk towards menopause. Marta has hosted series, DILLUNS COMENÇO in TV3 and MENJA'T EL MON in RTVE. We spent the afternoon in the studio with Marta, while she made her delicious rice paper rolls and modelled garments from our Fall/Winter collection.

 

How did you become interested in nutrition? 

I started modelling when I was very young, about 17. The fashion in that moment was very hard for the models because the look was like very androgynous and skinny. It was very difficult for me and unfortunately this is when I developed an illness, when I finally asked for help, one of the things I had to do was become friends with food. I found very good doctors that inspired me to study nutrition. If I began to understand that food is something else and calories are to nourish my body, maybe it will help me too. I started studying nutrition and I was amazed at the body and how it works. 

Where did you start learning about plant-based nutrition? 

The studying in Spain is not revolved around a Vegan diet and this is why I decided to travel to LA, where I could study about plant-based raw foods. In the USA I learnt a lot about entrepreneurship too and that is where I created the concept for my brand and what I would like to take back to Spain. It was the final piece of the puzzle. 

What was your first step to create your brand? 

I started cooking. This is what I love doing, so I decided to start hosting workshops too. I included the nutritional facts too, to improve your well being. I love changing and evolving what I am doing, being creative is what makes me happy. I had a possibility to be involved in a restaurant opening in Barcelona, where I enjoyed working with the owner and developing the menu. I arrived in the right moment when people were opening up to vegan food in Catalunya. This is when I was presented with the opportunity to host a TV show. 

Can you tell us a bit about your work around supporting women through menopause? Do you have some tips to share with our readers? 

The 50s are a kind of taboo because women start menopause. This is something we may not like to acknowledge, but now women are more active, full of energy and dreams. I want to show this through my Instagram, that life does not end after 50. You have a lot of life after 50. In my private consulting sessions, this is what I talk about, not just nutrition. 

- Take professionally advised nutritional supplementation

- Eliminate sugar, alcohol, coffee, processed food, fried food. Instead eat lots of fresh vegetables, lot of water and be sure you eat enough protein. In general a nutrition that focus on better quality and less quantity .

- Practice exercise a minimum of 3 times a week

- Take care of a good sleep quality

- Minimise stress situations and learn how to deal with it

- Wear layers in order to balance the body thermometer in every moment of the day.

- If necessary, because with natural remedies and healthy habits one cannot deal with the symptons, then to find and trust a good gynaecologist to take hormone replacement therapy

Rice Paper Rolls with Avocado 

TIP

The rice paper, once wet, is quite sticky, so treat it very carefully so that it does not tear.

INGREDIENTS for 8 persons: 

For the Satay sauce:

½ cup tahini cream

juice of 1 lime 

1 tablespoon sesame oil

1 tablespoon tamari sauce

1 tablespoon rice vinegar

1 clove garlic, minced

1 small piece fresh ginger, grated

¼ cup water

 

For the rolls

8 sheets of rice paper

1/2 mango

1 avocado

1 large carrot

2 handfuls of rocket and/or baby spinach

1/4 sweet onion

1/4 red cabbage 

1 handful of coriander

1 handful of sprouts

 

PREPARATION

Whisk all the satay sauce ingredients (apart from the water) until smooth. Gradually add a little water, keep whisking more and continue until the sauce reaches the desired liquid consistency.

Prepare all the vegetables, avocado and mango by cutting them into julienne strips or thin sticks.

Pour warm water into a deep dish. Take 1 rice paper wrapper and place it in the water until it softens (about 30 seconds). With both hands, carefully remove the wrapper from the water and place it on a kitchen towel. Repeat with each of the 8 sheets of rice paper to be used.

Place some of each vegetable in the centre of the wrapper. Fold the left and right sides together, and then, keeping those ends in place, use your thumbs to fold the bottom of the wrapper over the pile of vegetables. Press the wrap down gently, but firmly, and turn the wrap up and away from you. Make sure the wrapper is tight and firm enough, with all sides tucked in, and without overflowing or splitting. It takes some practice.

Serve with the satay sauce in a bowl.

BENEFITS

Exotic anti-inflammatory cooking recipe. Very low in calories. Rich in antioxidants, fibre and vitamins A, C and B vitamins.

Find more recipes in Marta's Cookbooks.

Tips to deal with menopause: 

- Take professionally advised nutritional supplementation

- Eliminate sugar, alcohol, coffee, processed food, fried food. Instead eat lots of fresh vegetables, lot of water and be sure you eat enough protein. In general a nutrition that focus on better quality and less quantity .

- Practice exercise a minimum of 3 times a week

- Take care of a good sleep quality

- Minimise stress situations and learn how to deal with it

- Wear layers in order to balance the body thermometer in every moment of the day.

- If necessary, because with natural remedies and healthy habits one cannot deal with the symptoms, then to find and trust a good gynaecologist to take hormone replacement therapy

 

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