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10 questions with Deliciously Ella

posted on Thursday, 1st September 2016 | find under Nutrition, Behind the Scenes
Sweaty Betty is excited to announce that The Mae Deli will be providing delicious and nutritious salads, juices and healthy sweet treats at Sweaty Betty Live on 17 September. Before the big day we caught up with its famous founder Ella Mills, aka Deliciously Ella to talk all things food, starting a business and working out. Get your tickets for the day here.

deliciously ella interview

Tell us about the Mae Deli? Where did the idea come from?

My husband and I wanted to create a place where everybody to go to enjoy healthy, delicious food in the most accessible, fun way. It’s been quite an adventure but I’ve loved every minute of the challenge and nothing makes me happier than seeing customers enjoy our food. We’re opening our next deli towards the end of September, which is exciting. 

What is your favourite dish from Mae Deli?

Oh my gosh, there’s too much, I love it all! I think my favourite things at the moment are the sun-dried tomato falafels with butterbean hummus; sweet potato and courgette curry with brown rice; our new energy balls especially the Hazelnut and Raisin flavour; and our signature Mae Cake, which is a twist on a Victoria Sponge. 

How do you maintain your energy levels running a business?

Sometimes I do find it hard and when I look at my calendar and can’t see any free space for months, so I try not to look at it like that! I take each day at a time, which makes it less intimidating, and when I can I try my best to keep weekends free (although I’m not doing very well at that at the moment!). I also book in regular workouts, mainly yoga and pilates, which help me release stress.

Where do you like to workout?

I am a morning workout girl and love yoga at home, Psycle for spin, Heartcore for Pilates, KOBOX for boxing and training sessions in the park with my trainer, as well as walks with my dog Austin! 

What do you like to wear when you exercise?

Fun leggings and a vest top! I love my printed Power Leggings at the moment. 

What do you eat to fuel your workout?

I don’t get too focused on that, I make sure I’m nicely satisfied from every meal. I love brown rice pasta with vegetables or homemade pesto; smoothies with frozen banana, hemp seeds, almond butter and almond milk; quinoa bowls with veggies, beans and hummus; and my energy balls if I’m on the go. 

Do you have a failsafe 10 minute dinner recipe?

I have lots but my favourite at the minute is my Easy Pasta Arrabbiata from my second book, it’s so simple to throw together. 

Any store cupboard essentials?

Nut butter again! And things like olive oil, garlic, tamari, tahini, apple cider vinegar, tins of beans and tomatoes, rye bread, brown rice pasta and dates, so there’s always staples to add fresh ingredients too. 

Top three tips for everyday self-care?

Do your best to be kind and understanding of yourself, don’t constantly compare yourself to others and enjoy all your food – eating should not be about guilt, restriction or deprivation, but instead about feeling good. 

What’s next for Deliciously Ella and the Mae Deli?

We’ve recently released our energy balls into shops, which is so exciting so there’s lots of work around that. We’re also opening our second deli in the autumn, I have a third mini book coming out next month called Smoothies and Juices and another big book in January – so lots to keep me busy!

Come and try The Mae Deli's delicious dishes at Sweaty Betty Live on 17 September get your tickets for the day here, Find more information on Deliciously Ella here
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