Sara & Shiso Delicious
Sara Kiyo Popowa is the artist and photographer behind the colourful, plant based Instagram account Shiso Delicious @shisodelicious. She is author of An Opinionated Guide to Vegan London (Hoxton Mini Press, 2019) and author and photographer/stylist of Bento Power: Brilliantly Balanced Lunchbox Recipes (Kyle Books 2018). She lives and works in London.
Shiso Delicious started as an online identity and is now Sara's full-time work and a creative outlet which combines all of her skills and passions to date: as a multicultural cook with strong health and environmental interests, a visual / performance artist and a graphic designer. Shiso Delicious keeps evolving and growing and currently works across projects ranging from creating imagery for well-known brands to running workshops in London and beyond. Shiso Delicious photographic work is represented by Social Pictures.
Sara was born and brought up in Sweden with Japanese and Bulgarian roots and studied in Japan before settling in London. After a few years of creating and selling her own clothing line at London street fashion markets and working in an organic produce shop she went on to study Dance and Visual Art at Brighton University. Throughout this time she explored the healing potential of whole and natural plant based foods and overcame an eating disorder. She went on to have an active art practice for several years, producing and performing nationally and internationally whilst also working as a graphic designer for the health foods and arts industry.
After a newly wed trip to Japan, Sara started her Instagram account @shisodelicious which quickly grew as she started uploading the bento boxes she made to rescue her husband from sad lunch options at work. Bento is a Japanese-style packed lunch: rice plus several small side-dishes packed neatly in a bento box. Sara's bento were inspired by her time in Japan, particularly a year with a Japanese host family who had made her daily bento for school. She had loved the concept but found typical bento too meat-and-grease-heavy (and too time consuming to make). So, in her own bento she incorporated ingredients and techniques she had picked up over years of cooking a spectrum of whole, raw and plant based foods. The resulting recipes and bento-making principles are collected in her first cookbook Bento Power.
To read more about Sara's story: