Meet Topaz Hooper…
My name is Topaz Hooper and I’ve been plant-based for 6 years. I am a vegan chef, founder of AfroFeministaVegan.com, entrepreneur, and traveler.
I started my plant-based lifestyle when I was 19 years old. This was necessary for me. I suffered from obesity, joint pain, eczema, mood swings, acne and low-esteem. I had a life full of discomfort and unhappiness. I thought I would live like this forever.
When I became plant-based, my life changed from that moment forward.
In the summer of 2012, I went on a camping trip with a small cohort of friends. We knew going in that anything perishable like eggs, cheese, milk and meat would not last on our journey. So we left it all. For a month I ate almost no animal products and started a meat-free journey.
When I returned from my trip. I began to notice incredible changes in my body. I had lost weight, my acne was significantly improved, my mood swings were more stable, and my joints felt amazing.
For 4 years, I remained a vegetarian. It wasn’t until 2015, when I attended a VegFest in my local city, Tampa, that I was exposed to the horrors of animal cruelty. After watching a series of disturbing documentaries, I knew I couldn’t go back to animal products. In 2015, I went fully vegan. What a wonderful decision I made.
For the past 3 years, I have served as a vegan chef for women of color led yoga retreats and high-end restaurants. I have served healthy and mostly raw plant-based foods to incredible people and have filled their bodies and their minds with new possibilities
5-ingredient Maryland-style Crabless Crab Cake Recipe
Servings: 3 crabless crab cakes
– 1 (14.5) oz can or jar of whole heart of palm
– 1 cup of Panko bread crumbs
– 1/2 cup of sliced green onions
– 1/4 cup of vegan mayo
– 1 tbs of Old Bay Seasoning (or other seafood seasoning)
– 3 tsp of olive oil
Begin by removing the heart of palm from the can or jar and rinsing them under cool water in a colander. Transfer to a cutting board and slice into 1/4 inch circles width-wise. In a medium mixing bowl, take the heart of palm and use your fingers to crush the palm until the texture resembles crab or small circular pieces. Add the vegan mayo, Old Bay seasoning, green onions, and half of the bread crumbs (save the other half for coating). Thoroughly mix with a spoon. When throughly combined, create three even patties. Gently coat each one in the other half cup of bread crumbs. Heat 1 tsp of olive oil in a non-stick skillet over medium heat. Once hot, place each patty in the pan one at a time. Flip after 2-3 minutes or until golden brown on each side. Repeat the same process for all three patties. Lay on a bed of greens or with your favorite side. For ideas on sides, check out our sides recipes. Serve warm
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