My name is Simon Hall and I live in Melbourne, Australia with my lovely wife Jaime Hall. I currently work in finance but my passion is cooking and creating for others. My wife Jaime is the co-founder of Venue Insider (www.Venueinsider.com.au) and a web design company Popsicle Designs (www.popsicledesigns.com.au). She is very talented. We started Messy Veggies (www.messyveggies.com) when I was diagnosed as a celiac and also when Jaime and I turned to a vegan lifestyle. It has been quite a journey over the past 12 months and we love our lives so much more now.
What was the moment you realize that you wanted to go vegan?
It was over the course of a few months for me. I used to eat a lot of meat and think that it was quite important to consume copious amounts of protein to be healthy. I then was told by a friend to watch a documentary, Forks over Knives, which gave me some insight into what I was doing to my body. I then did further research into the diseases that are caused by consuming animals and realized that I didn’t want to do this to myself. I then discovered in my research the way animals are treated before and during the process from field to shop and how disgusting it really is. That was it for me. A life of compassion fits in line with my mentality and that is what I strive for now.
How long have you been Vegan?
I have been vegan for almost a year now.
Why is being Vegan important to you?
It is important to me because there is unnecessary suffering in this world. If my actions can help ease that, then I will do what I can to bring compassion in all aspects of my life.
Any recommended Vegan books?
This book is not strictly Vegan but it is called Eating on the Wildside by Jo Robinson. It’s a history of vegetables and which ones offer the most nutrition to us.
Any recommended social sites, Facebook Groups or other?
Do you have a favorite movie or videos or your own media that you want to share?
Do you actively promote veganism? How? Please share any stories you would like.
Absolutely. Although veganism has a reputation of being very in your face, which I believe is only because people can’t seem to get there mind around not eating meat. I do actively tell people my story and why I turned vegan. I try however to let people make up their own mind about it. It is a personal decision, which I believe is made easier through knowledge. So I encourage people to read and do their own research to make their own decision.
Do you miss any non-Vegan foods?
None at all. I actually think that if I went reverse I would miss the food I eat now. I know for a fact that it is so much more delicious now than it has ever been.
What is your favorite Vegan stereotype? If someone asks you a question about it, how do you respond?
Hahaha. Where do you get you protein? I swear the powers that be have spent so much time and money on making people believe Carbohydrates are bad and Protein is good. I generally respond by saying, you know plants have protein right?
What’s your favorite Vegan restaurant?
Matcha Mylkbar in St Kilda, Australia. My god, it is delicious and it is all completely vegan. They are doing revolutionary things at this restaurant.
What’s your favorite recipe?
I would have to say that this Vega Yellow Curry is my favorite. I have trouble not serving myself 3-4 times over.
What is the one big stereotype you hear about Vegans that you want to dispel?
That we are all tree hugging hippies. Seriously, people need to wake up and realize that this is a movement because people are becoming educated and the veil is being lifted.
Some encouraging words for new Vegans?
It’s not as hard as you think and never be afraid to ask is restaurant can make it vegan.
Are you a cruelty-Free vegan?
Yes, I am.
What are you favorite Vegan non-food products or companies?
We have a friend who is just launching her skin care range called Meili Skin Solutions, which is amazing for you.
Talk about a time when you struggled with your Veganism?
I honestly haven’t struggled with it. Which is kind of weird considering how I used to think and act. But I just say big thanks every day to all of the factors that lead me down this path.
What kind of recipes would you like to see?
We are always looking to make it easy for people to be vegan and one way is knowing what you can cook. So getting feedback on the types of recipes is really important for us to create what people want.