I have sat down to write this post several times. To talk about how amazing 2014 was, and how this year is shaping up to be even more incredible. January is barely half over, and my year is already filled with travel plans. Tulum in less than a month. Workshops near and far. I want to tell you how excited I am for all that. Because I am, truly, beyond excited. But before I do, I would like to talk a little about anxiety and fear.
I am, by nature, a comfort zone–loving introvert. I am most at ease spending my day alone, focused on work with minimal interruptions, then retiring to the couch with an evening glass of wine and my far-away best gal friend on the phone. And amazingly enough, that is what my life is like most days. I have worked from home for over five years. I have spent the past year answering only to myself and the clients I choose. It has been awesome. But existing in this environment—the environment that nurtures my solitary, creature-of-habit tendencies—has also made stepping outside of that comfort zone feel exceptionally daunting. I like control and certainty. When I have to deal with the unfamiliar or the unknown, I get totally high-strung and nutty. I lose my appetite. I have stress dreams. A couple weeks ago I dreamt that everyone showed up for a workshop Eva and I were hosting and I couldn’t find my pants.
Stepping outside my comfort zone has brought nothing but wonderful experiences. It allowed me to finally quit the job that drove me crazy, and instead do less of the same work for more money. It gave me the opportunity to work with the awesome food and creative crews at EatingWell magazine. It led me to hosting a workshop last fall with Eva in upstate New York, which has been one of the most fun and rewarding experiences of my life to-date. In this past year I’ve realized that I will probably always be somewhat prone to stress, but I refuse to let it keep me from doing awesome, slightly scary things.
All this is important for me to acknowledge here because fear and anxiety are something we all experience, and to present one side of the story without the other would feel like a half truth. Yes, I’m a little freaked out by 2015. I’m apprehensive about my first tax season as a freelancer (::groan::), balancing my usual work with travel plans, and trying to organize my life in a way that makes all these things doable. But I’m also SO excited for everything this year will bring. Margaritas in Mexico with my best friend. Workshops all over the darn place with Eva Kosmas Flores. It’s going to be awesome, you guys. If you can, you should absolutely join us! I promise I’ll wear pants.
I am so thankful for a wonderful and talented friend like Eva to inspire me to do things, because I, the comfort zone–loving introvert, would have never thought about hosting a workshop on my own. Our first one was amazing, and we have so many more planned for 2015! Our collaborative effort is called First We Eat, which is derived from one of my favorite M.F.K. Fisher quotes, “First we eat, then we do everything else.” Our first workshop of the year will be in Asheville, North Carolina, and will take place on the 6th–9th of March in a beautiful lodge on Cold Mountain. There will be fishing, exploring, and tons of good food (including delicious things from the forthcoming Genius Recipes, which I have been looking forward to for.ev.er.). AND we’ll be joined by my favorite North Dakotan/overall-wearer/maker of tiny cakes/marzipan master Molly Yeh!!
The workshop begins on the morning of Friday, March 6th, with breakfast, photography lessons, and then a trip to local antique shops for a little prop hunting. We’ll spend Saturday morning styling and shooting, followed by a fly-fishing lesson in the afternoon (and eating what we catch for dinner!). There will be more hands-on styling and shooting on Sunday along with a lesson on post-processing in Lightroom, and then a special farewell dinner hosted by Jacob Boehm of Snap Pea Catering. And then we’ll say our goodbyes Monday morning over breakfast before departing at 10:00am. All lodging and meals are included in the cost of the workshop, so it’s basically a wonderful little weekend getaway in a beautiful location. We’d love to have you there, and you can register here!
And now, just a little bit about this recipe. Being a creature of habit, I eat the same breakfast pretty much every day. I could totally sell this to you as a resolution-friendly dish, but it’s really just my favorite breakfast because (1) it’s simple, healthy, and delicious, and (2) it’s how I justify eating cookies for lunch.
Miso Veggie Breakfast Bowl
1 medium to large beet, peeled and grated
2 medium carrots, peeled and sliced
3–4 brussels sprouts, thinly sliced
2 large kale leaves, rinsed, stems removed, and chopped
a few handfuls of chickpeas
1 tbsp olive oil
1 1/2 tsp miso
1 tbsp water
a couple handfuls of pomegranate seeds
2 spoonfuls of pickled mustard seeds
1/2–whole avocado (depending on how much you prefer), sliced
Whisk together miso and water in a dish and set aside.
Warm oil in a pan over medium heat, then add the beets*, carrots, brussels sprouts, kale, and chickpeas. Saute for several minutes until the kale just begins to wilt, then stir in the miso mixture. Cook for another minute, then remove from heat.
In another pan, fry the eggs. While the eggs are cooking, divide the cooked veggies between two bowls. Stir in the pomegranate seeds and pickled mustard seeds, then top each with an egg and avocado slices.
*Cooking the beets along with all the other veggies is usually how I prepare this, but it also turns everything in the dish varying shades of pink. If you’d like to preserve the colors (as I’ve done for these photos), cook the beets in a separate pan.