My Edesia Bowl is very special to me. A warm, veggie filled bowl overflowing with taste and texture and chalk full of whole food nutrition. Gluten free. Vegan.
I don’t think I’ve ever talked about what started me on my road to recovery from an eating disorder.
It was actually, as anti-climatic as this sounds, falling in love with the beauty of food.
Growing up, I had always been a good eater and ate whatever my parents put before me. Surprisingly, I never did much cooking. In fact I don’t ever remember cooking. When I first went away to college and found myself having to cook on my own for the first time, I remember meals of pork and beans, white rice, and meat balls with jars of sweet and sour sauce. A lot of white and brown.
Fast forward many years…
At some point in the midst of my eating disorder, I began to learn about the the beauty of real food. I was vegetarian, so I had slowly taught myself all sorts of new foods and flavors. I learned how to cook, and began to take pictures of meals I felt proud of. Doing this made me want to make those meals. Meals that I would have disowned before. I wanted to make them so I could see the beautiful colors.
Soon…. I had a an overflowing folder of food photography.
I’m not sure why I’ve never said this on here, but I actually wrote a cookbook.
Nothing huge. It was self published – just through an online publishing company. It consisted of all sorts of recipes I had compiled and created as I journeyed back on my road to loving food again. In fact, a number of the recipes I’ve brought to this blog have been ones from my book. I had taken pictures of all the recipes, and as amateur as they were, I was proud of those pictures.
I named the book, “To Us.”
Making this book is what made me want to recover.
It is what made me fall in love with food… and want to take care of myself.
I sold over a hundred copies of the cookbook and gave all the proceeds to “Sheena’s Place,” – a non-profit organization in Toronto offering free therapy for individuals and their families struggling with an eating disorder. It is a wonderful organization and if you are in the Toronto area and are looking for support, please see them out.
One of my first recipes I put into the cookbook was what I called the, “Edesia Bowl.”
Edesia is the Roman Goddess of Food and the “divine spirit of feasting.” She ensured that all the banquet feasts went well and that the food was enjoyed. Feasting was considered a magical and very important act by the Romans. The verb “edes” can also mean “to spend money on food.” ….. something I have a difficult time with.
I have a really hard time treating myself. Specifically, I have a really hard spending money on myself. I know it may not seem it if you follow my blog, but believe me when I say it is work every time. This is why I started my blog in the first place. To celebrate taking care of myself.
Ironically, the thing I have the hardest time spending money on is good food for myself. When I do choose to buy that thing I really wanted to try, or which I knew would excite me, or which costs more than my $1.99 head of broccoli, I have a lot of feelings come up. Feelings of…taking care of myself. Taking care of myself makes me feel raw. It makes me feel that strange mix of happy and safe, as well as soft, fragile and small. It feels hard.
This week I bought a number of things that told me I want to take care of myself.
Special grocery haul. I love these wraps.
Creamy, whole food goodness
Good quality chocolate.
These were things that I wanted, both for my body and soul. Things that showed myself some kindness amidst a difficult week. Things that were expensive, but that are full of so much goodness for my body.
It can even be as simple as a pint of blueberries.
But another way I can show myself love is by giving my body meals like this one.
Whole food, nutrient dense, healthy, and beautiful plates of food. They’re a gift to my body. A reminder to myself that I am worth it. That I deserve it.
I know that all sounds corny. Its “just a meal.” But something about this recipe feels very, personal, to me. I remember serving it to my family outside on our deck during my first summer stay, when I weighed a terrifyingly low amount, feeling completely lost, and was fighting tooth and nail to love myself. This was one of the meals that made me fall in love with how beautiful food can be.
How beautiful it is to fill our bodies with nutrient dense, real food ingredients.
How beautiful it is to see the bright colors of fresh produce pop and see the colors on a plate contrast each other.
How beautiful it is to eat from the ground.
To keep it simple.
To create something with your own hands.
This bowl is the epitome of all things nutritionally good. It is a warm salad, in a sense, chalk full of flavor, texture and color. And it is very customizable. Sometimes I make it with sweet potato, sometimes I make it with a grain (my favorite is wheat berries but spelt berries or brown rice would also add a nice chew). I’m not usually one that thinks warm tomato sounds appealing, but I absolutely love it in this dish. I eat it as is, or I will sometimes add goat cheese or avocado or tempeh. Whatever your body is calling for.
And a side of red is always welcome
Love your body.
We are deserving of real food. Beautiful food. A surplus of nutrients for our bodies to use and thrive. Sometimes, when we feel lost, this can be a scary thing to feel – this giving ourselves something good. But compassion is not something to be scared of. It is to be invited to the table.
I hope you enjoy my Edesia bowl
….and maybe even feel some of the love that I feel every time I make it.
My Edesia Bowl Recipe. A bowl of beautiful, whole food goodness. Because I am deserving.… Click To Tweet
What foods remind you that you are deserving?
What “treats” do you love to buy for yourself?
Do you find it hard to spend money on yourself? Take care of yourself?