Friday Night In with Ksenia from Breakfast Criminals
You can't help but stop and admire the Instagram feed of Ksenia. I once came upon her page post Hawaii trip, as Summer was beginning here in Australia and my new found addiction to Acai bowls for breakfast had me seeking out all kinds of combination ideas. Ksenia's Instagram is all about having incredibly nourishing and beautiful breakfasts (usually in a bowl). Something I wholeheartedly promote as well. You'll also find she's a real entrepreneur and passionate about change for the good.
For tonight's Friday Night In, enjoy learning more about the lovely Ksenia and then test out her breakfast recipe tomorrow - you won't regret it!
Please share a little about yourself:
My name is Ksenia, I'm 26, born in Russia, raised in Canberra, and based in NYC. By day, I'm digital strategist, story teller and fair trade activist (I'm one of the co-founders of fair trade movement #FairTuesday), and at night, I'm the human behind the Breakfast Criminals brand. When I moved to NYC, two people changed my world in a major way -Tara Stiles and David Harshada Wagner. This year, I'm doing training with both to delve deeper into the mystery of yoga and meditation.
How did Breakfast Criminals come about?
It started with a trip to Hawaii, where I had my first acai bowl at the Beet Box Cafe in Haleiwa. It tasted like heaven and left me feeling fueled with clean energy for hours! After coming back to NYC, I started making my own acai bowls, and sharing recipes on the Breakfast Criminals instagram. It grew more quickly than I could have ever imagined, and brought me an opportunity to meet and work with some of my biggest inspirations in the wellness scene. Since starting the Instagram in February 2012, I've released an ebook, led an acai bowl master class in NYC, and in October, one of my recipes and the famous heart bowl will be available at The Harvest Bar in LA. I'm on a mission to spread the power of daily superfood breakfasts prepared with love into the world!
The most rewarding part of Breakfast Criminals?
Getting messages from my followers, saying that I inspired them to eat healthy breakfast daily and undust their blenders and get creative. It's such an incredible feeling that simply making my breakfast and sharing it can change the actions of someone across the globe and make them feel a little healthier and happier.
Is Breakfast Criminals your main gig? If not, what do you do when you’re not whizzing up incredible delights for all of us to admire?
I'm a digital strategist, so brands hire me to help them optimize the way they communicate their message online. That can include social media strategy, website development, using Instagram to bring the brand to a new level, and more. I'm running Visual Therapy blog for a luxury lifestyle company based in NYC, the philosophy of which is very close to my own: it's not the dress, but what's in the dress, that matters. Clothes are fun, but unless you're happy and healthy, nothing will make you feel or look great. But I have to say, with all the directions that Breakfast Criminals is growing (including me becoming a yoga guide and leading a yoga + superfoods retreat this November), I do have thoughts of making it a full-time gig in a couple of years.
What haven’t you done yet that you wish you could?
Skydive solo. Go on a yoga journey to Bali. Get a french bulldog!
Favourite place in the world?
New York is my #1 love. Also trip to India left a very special impression on me. I was only 16 and couldn't put into words my desire to explore the mystery of life, but I felt something profound when I stepped into a 12th century temple in Dashal. Ever since, I've been wanting to come back to the Himalayas!
If you were a spice, which would you be?
Organic vanilla :)
5 things you can’t live without?
Yoga, adventures, blender, kale, leggings.
If you could choose to eat anything in the world for your next meal, what would it be?
Wow, a tough one! I'll go with a mushroom soba noodle soup that my friend My Hungry Monster made for me when she came for a visit. With bok choy and olive truffle oil. So good!
What was for breakfast?
Healing blueberry ginger oatmeal. It's one of my staples.
How would you classify your eating style?
I'm a flexitarian. I tried veganism, but that didn't work for my body. I eat a lot of vegetables and fruit - every meal is based on that, but love a great chilean sea bass with a side of coconut rice. I don't eat a lot of dairy, no processed sugar, and go for gluten-free when there's an option. For me, it's just about trying to consume whole foods as much as possible - healthy foods in their natural state, with no additives.
Your favourite way to stay active?
Yoga! It gives me freedom and makes me feel alive. Puts my body on fire too!
What are your top 3 tips for readers unsure of where to start with making a smoothie or acai bowl?
1. Start simple. My recipes are only suggestions - go with what you have, and simplify as you wish!
2. Think about what you'll need to make a week of healthy breakfasts, and put that on your grocery list.
3. Freeze! Even when I come back from vacation, I can still whip up a Breakfast Criminals smoothie thanks to frozen berries, greens and smoothie packs.
Your best advice for living a wholesome, healthy lifestyle?
Find a practice that works for you and commit to it, event if it's 10 minutes a day! Whether it's yoga, meditation, dancing or cycling - making that space to do what makes you happy daily has a huge impact on the way you feel. That's why Breakfast Criminals is part of my daily routine.
How can readers find you?
I'm social :) Connect with me!