One of my favourite movie episodes is from ‘Runaway Bride’, where Julia Robert’s character is recovering her sense of self by making the time to try every kind of egg possible. When I first watched this, it really hit home for me, because, just like her character, I didn’t know what kind of eggs I liked, and was just going along with whatever the friends or boyfriends around me were having. And as you can imagine, it wasn’t just about the eggs.
Making time to know yourself and what you like, don’t like, want, need, and desire is super important in reclaiming ourselves. It’s the critical first step in having relationships with others that respect each person as an individual, maintain balance with each other, and thrive.
And what better place to practice exploring what does and doesn’t work for you than in the kitchen?
For the past year, I’ve been using coleslaw as my experimental recipe, seeing what ingredients and flavour combos I do and don’t enjoy. Coleslaw is a great place to start because, one, it rarely turns out not edible, and two, the anticipation of what flavour combo is going to be created each time is so much fun!
Practicing playing with new and different flavours and combos has had it’s ripple effect in my life, and I find I’m more willing to try something new, and also more empowered to say, you know what, Cumin AND Ginger essential oil on my coleslaw [or whatever other scenario life presents] really is not good for me. Thanks anyway.
Here’s some ideas to get you started making your own unique version of a coleslaw (and life) that works for you.
- Choice #1: Do I want to use a food processor to slice and dice ingredients, or do I want to chop by hand?
- Choice #2: Do I want thin or thick slices, or other shapes?
- Choice #3: Which kind of cabbage do I want to use today? White? Purple? Pointed? Savoy?
- Choice #4: What other fruit or veg do I want to slice up with it? Green apples? Carrots? Raw Fennel? Raw Celeriac/Rutabaga? Raw Broccoli or Cauliflower stems?
- Choice #5: What kind of subtle flavours do I want peppered throughout? Raw garlic? Raw ginger? Raw onion? Shallots? Spring onion? Radish?
- Choice #6: What kind of dressing do I want today? A mayo-based? Olive-oil based? Do I want to make it from scratch or from a bottle? What could I mix with olive oil to give it some punch? Fresh squeezed lemon juice? Apple-cider vinegar? Balsamic Vinegar? Red-wine vinegar?
- Choice #7: What kind of seasoning am I in the mood for? Fennel seeds? Cumin seeds? Fresh ground coriander seeds? Black pepper? Salt? Are there any food-grade essential oils I want to try instead?
- Choice #8: What about fresh herbs? Can I get my hands on any fresh mint, parsley, basil, rosemary, lemon balm, dill, or anything else? Are there any food-grade essential oils I want to try instead?
- Choice #9: What about seeds? What would it be like with some sunflower or pumpkin or chia or flax seeds? Do I want them in there whole, or ground up first?
You get the picture?
Instead of just going along with a recipe, use these prompts to guide you towards ingredients and flavours that you want to try for yourself. You might love them or hate them, and that is all OK.
The fact that you’ve tried it for yourself is the win. See how many different combos you’re willing to try over time, without attachment to the outcome, just for fun.
Here’s an example of how one of mine came out. This is from last summer and from what I can tell, I used a combo of white cabbage and savoy, green apple slices, chia seeds, radish, and my guess is it had some raw ginger and garlic in there with olive oil and lemon dressing.
Let us know what combo becomes your favourite! – Kendra