Savory Water and Celery Juice—This Chef’s Morning Is Built Around Joy and Gut Health
Camille Becerra’s blissful routine.
Published Mar 24, 2019 7:00 AM
What if you began your morning by luxuriating instead of rushing and fulfilling obligations? Allow Domino favorite contributor and beloved chef Camille Becerra to inspire you to start your morning off with a bit more intention. Her entire a.m. routine (and tbh, the rest of her day, too) is built around pleasure. From laying in bed for 30 minutes to sipping a cleansing juice to whipping up a smoothie that actually tastes like a vacation—Becerra’s mornings are #goals. Here’s how she begins her day blissfully, all in the name of setting a foundation of joy from the moment she wakes up.
Wake Up, Then Chill
The first thing Becerra does when she wakes up is… absolutely nothing. She likes to lay in bed for a half hour. “It sets the tone and pace of my day,” she says. That time includes a mix of mindfulness, meditation, looking at inspiring images on Instagram, and setting intentions for the day. No matter how early she has to get up, she’ll always allot for those precious 30 minutes in bed.
Juice, Juice, Baby
The wellness industry is abuzz with the benefits of drinking celery juice, and Becerra is singing its praises too. “It’s super powerful,” she emphasizes. She prefers to juice it using an entire bunch.
Becerra says she can “1000 percent” notice the difference since drinking it every morning on an empty stomach: “It has these salts that don’t really break down and act as a cleanser.” Celery juice helped her get over chronic bloating, caused by constant traveling. Ever since, the chef religiously drinks a glass a day.
Vacation in a Glass
When thinking of a smoothie, you might be picturing a moss green–colored juice packed with adaptogenic mushrooms and probiotics. But Becerra prefers for hers to spark joy, enjoying a mixture more inspired by the tropics than featuring unflavored superfoods. That’s not to say it has zero health benefits, though.
Becerra calls her morning papaya and dragon fruit smoothie a “conscious gut health drink,” noting that the seeds in both fruits act as a cleanser for your gut. To make this tropical mix at home, take half a dragon fruit, a cup of papaya, and coconut water, and blend them together. Add more coconut water as needed to get the thickness of smoothie you prefer. (Becerra warns that adding more than half a dragon fruit could upset your stomach, so watch your portions!)
Wellness and Savory Waters
Water is pretty plain by design. It’s meant to hydrate, but we don’t usually focus on accentuating it with any flavor. Some like to spike it with mint leaves or fruit, but leave it to Becerra to shake things up. After her smoothie, she drinks either a turmeric-spiked sparkling water or a cold-brewed, savory saffron water, or sometimes both consecutively.
Becerra prefers the turmeric mix when she’s been out late at dinner the night before and is feeling a bit swollen and slow-moving. She’ll pour sparkling water into a glass and add a few drops of a turmeric tincture—powdered turmeric is a bit too chalky-tasting in this water, she says—then sprinkle in some freshly ground cracked pepper (to absorb turmeric’s benefits) and a squeeze of lemon to balance the pH. While Becerra doesn’t love the sweetness of honey, you could stir in a locally made variety for flavor, or to help with allergies.
When she’s in need of a brain boost, Becerra drinks a small glass of what she calls “savory water”—saffron threads soaked overnight in water. But don’t be fooled by the simple ingredient list; this colorful spice is now being linked with brain health and even with boosting happiness.
Smash 10 to 15 saffron threads and add to one liter of water, letting them soak for one to two days in the fridge. (Ensure you grab high-quality saffron; Becerra likes the kind grown in Iran or California, especially from the farm Peace and Plenty. Or if you’re in New York, head to SOS Chef, where she loves to shop for spices.) Saffron is expensive, she warns, but you’ll only be using a small amount with each batch. This savory water is potent, so four ounces each morning is all you need to feel its benefits.
A morning that actually makes you feel happy? Finally, something worth getting out of bed for.
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