STACEY Roberts is a mother, foodie and home cook who enjoys the simple pleasures in life.
And if art reflects life, then Stacey's blog, Veggie Mama, certainly reflects hers.
The journalist, university tutor and 32-year-old mother from Maroochydore has her hands full as Veggie Mama gains momentum in the world of blogging.
With one-year-old Abby by her side and another baby due, she enjoys nothing more than to be in her home kitchen, whipping up vegetarian delights and sharing them with the world.
Stacey decided two years ago, when she was a full-time journalist, that she needed a different direction and was pondering the question: how am I going to spend the rest of my career?
YourLife first talked to Stacey about her blog in its infancy more than two years ago.
Her love of food and passion for writing have kept her on the blogging path and she has not looked back since.
The site boasts more than 200 recipes that will tempt even the most dedicated meat-eater away from their steak dinner.
The blog includes whimsical musings by a "modern mama".
"I just write in my own voice," Stacey said. "It's like writing in my diary. It' just an extension of that."
A recent coup for Veggie Mama was a partnership with Gourmet Garden, the Sunshine Coast-based business that produces fresh herbs in convenient tubes.
Stacey creates recipes using the Gourmet Garden products and posts them on her blog, as well as being a featured chef on the company's website.
The Veggie Mama also has scored herself a job as a contributor to the eco-friendly fashion magazine Peppermint.
Her blog was spotted by the magazine and after being asked to be on the magazine's blog-roll, her fresh and funky appearance netted her a spot on the front cover.
"It's an exciting time to be a blogger. It really is," Stacey said.
She says she is not quite sure why her blog is so successful.
But readers no doubt will know: her distinctive writing style and beautiful, eye-catching photos are probably the reasons she is garnering 30,000 hits per month and the blog is gaining popularity despite the millions that circulate in cyberspace.
An advocate for sustainable living and eco-friendly eating, Stacey pushes the simple life message in her blog to the point where she also includes what she describes as nana crafts (crocheting and knitting).
She finds her role as a blogger is more conducive to motherhood than a traditional job, with the ability to better schedule her work around her parenting responsibilities.
Her husband of six years, Matt, is supportive of her new career and a willing guinea pig for her vegetarian-meal experiments.
Although the blog has developed into a committed job for her, Stacey enjoys every moment of it, and every curve-ball that is thrown her way.
Perhaps one day Stacey will have some competition if her "veggiebabies" decide to pick up their own kitchen whisks.
- half-cup butter
- half-cup sugar
- 1 egg
- 70ml milk
- half-cup ground rice/rice flour
- 11/2 cups plain flour
- 2 tsp baking powder.
- raspberry jam
1. Cream butter and sugar, add the egg and the milk.
2. Then add the flour and baking powder, and mix into a fairly stiff paste.
3. Roll into small balls and hollow the centre of each.
4. Insert a little raspberry jam and close up. Dip into the white of an egg and put on a greased tray.
5. Bake in a quick oven. They will crack during the baking and show the jam.
Stacey says: "They are so nice, a lot like a jam drop, but with the jam inside. I found it much easier to pat them into discs and pop the jam on top, then pinch closed and form into a ball from there. But that probably means the jam stayed more inside the bun, much like a donut and not a cracked-open jam-filled delight. It's up to you! For me, the quick oven was 250C for 20-30 minutes."
BABY BEET AND FETTA SALAD
- 1 large can of baby beetroots
- 1 can of chickpeas
- large handful of mixed lettuce
- 1 small block of fetta cheese
- 2 tbsp red wine vinegar
- 2 tbsp olive oil
1. Chop the beetroot into quarters.
2. Throw them in a bowl with the drained chickpeas, lettuce and crumbled fetta.
3. Mix through the vinegar and oil and sprinkle with salt and freshly ground black pepper.