M & E: What drew you to food as a career path?
Diagnosed with a hole in her heart, Tian Evans endured heart surgery before the age of 30.
The experience was confronting yet ignited a further passion for health and wellness that, thankfully for us, has resulted in luxury food catering and curation with the season: Sage.
Here, Tian talks about eating with abundance, the spirit of sharing good food and her must-cook recipe for entertaining season.
TE: My ever-evolving health journey, and relentless search for the hole in my heart intertwined with my BIG love for good food.
I was on my own journey with food, trying to figure out why my body was starting to shut down and why everything I ate was affecting me in such a big way. This fostered a sense of creativity to cook food that was healthy but still felt indulgent. Sage began to organically grow and everything started to align.
Overtime I have become really passionate about nourishing our bodies from the inside-out and I am very mindful that true health comes from the body, mind and soul. I am now so passionate about inspiring others to live a healthy, wholesome and balanced lifestyle and this shines through in everything that Sage is.
M & E: How would you describe your food creations?
TE: Ooo, my food is definitely very creative. I love expressing myself through beautiful things and I find it so easy to make food pretty.
We are incredibly lucky to have such an abundance of beautiful produce so readily available, and Mother Nature is my biggest inspiration. The whole process is special. Each meal has so much love and care strung through it. From planting, tending and harvesting from our local farmers, into my kitchen, and onto someone's plate - every bit is filled with an essence of love, and that is what makes it so much more special.
M & E: What ethos drive your sourcing process?
TE: Highlighting locally sourced, organic, whole foods is what I always come back to.
I believe eating with the seasons and as close to the source (as possible) is the healthiest way to eat. Buying produce from our local farmers and supporting small local businesses feels like the most natural way for Sage. You will always find me down at the Farmers markets, chatting with each farmer and choosing the best quality, most abundant ingredients at the time.
M & E: how important are quality ingredients to a successful dish?
TE: Using quality ingredients will give you the most nutrient-dense and flavourful dish. The freshest produce is rich in beauty and beaming with colours, which will elevate whatever you decide to create.
M & E: What is about sharing a meal that lifts the human spirit?
TE: I believe sharing food creates connection and community. When we share a beautiful meal with loved ones or even a stranger, it gives a sense of belonging and creates a deeper connection to ourselves, others, and to Mother Earth. Food is so joyful and sharing that experience with others is a really beautiful thing.
M & E: You were born and raised in Byron. How has this wonderful landscape - rich in all Mother Nature has to offer - inspired Sage?
TE: born and raised by this land and sea will forever replenish my mind, body and soul. For me, I feel most connected to Mother Nature when I am walking the lighthouse. There has always been something so powerful about looking across the water to Julian Rocks. Each morning I walk and feel incredibly inspired by the beauty that surrounds me. The raw textures of the rocks, the deep red and yellows of each sunrise, the dolphins surfing in the morning light... It feels so magical, and I can carry this through my day and into everything I create.
M & E: Are you a 'three meals a day' person, or how do you approach your daily food intake?
TE: honestly, my approach to food is forever changing. I am constantly learning, growing, and evolving and with that comes new shifts in how I approach food. I am finding that a diet rich in protein, salads, and vegetables is working best for me. I do eat 3 meals a day (with snacks) but over the years I have simplified and stripped back what I eat. Eating organic wholefoods that are sourced locally and sustainably has grown to be one of my biggest values and it is definitely giving me a glow from the inside-out.
M & E: What ingredients are currently in season and how are they represented (where will we find them) through your menu(s) at Sage?
TE: summer fruits are in abundance now we are in the warmer months. Big, juicy heirloom tomatoes are in season at our local Farmers Markets. I have been making the yummiest (and prettiest) salad with mixed heirloom tomatoes, local mozzarella, cherries, pistachio, basil, oil and fresh herbs served with an organic ciabatta. The seconds make great cooking tomatoes as well!
M & E: A dinner is best served...
TE: Outside, a table dresses in linen, music playing, joy and laughter shared with loved ones.
M & E: Favourite breakfast spot in Byron - and best place for a cocktail?
TE: my favourite spot for breakfast would have to be Bayleaf or High Life. Bang Bang is always a vibe for a few cocktails and some yummy food!
M & E: It's entertaining season! Can you share your favourite summer recipe when hosting friends?
TE: yes I would love to! This is a new dish I have just started cooking for our private dining experiences and everyone is loving it. It is so beautiful and tases amazing.
Whole baked Salmon, cooked with lemon and butter, macadamia and herb crust, fried capers & pomegranate.
I have just released my ebook 'Heart Food' which has a collection of my most favourite recipes for hosting. You can find it on my website www.sageevents.com.au
Follow sage on IG @sage.eventsbyronbay