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Chioggia Beet Salad With Pomegranate, Arugula, and Quinoa

chioggia beet salad with pomegranates, quinoa, and arugula // gratitude and greens // #vegan #vegetarian #plantbased #recipe

chioggia beet salad with pomegranates, quinoa, and arugula // gratitude and greens // #vegan #vegetarian #plantbased #recipe

A few days ago someone commented on one of my Instagram photos saying they’d written a blog post about my blog, and of course, I went to check it out. She had some very kind words about my blog, but mentioned that she also experienced jealousy when she first stumbled across my site. After reading her post, I felt compelled to write about the topic of “Internet jealousy,” a feeling, I’m sure, that most of us have experienced. For me, this usually happens when I find a blogger who seems to have their writing style and voice down pat or an Instagram account with gorgeous photos. While social media and the Internet makes it easy to compare ourselves to others, I want to take a moment to remind everyone that it isn’t worth it. And Hannah, the blogger, recognizes this.

She writes, “The prevalence of social media… creates the perfect storm of conditions for comparisons. We’re supposed to desire what other people have- we’re supposed to believe what we have isn’t good enough.” After letting her thoughts settle, Hannah realized her reaction wasn’t a true reflection of how she actually felt and who she was as a person. Instead of comparing, she says, “we should learn and share and grow together. We should celebrate the magnificent capabilities of one another and learn to work through our emotion[al] reactions in ways that support one another. For every instance of comparison where we feel like someone else has ‘succeeded better’ than us, there is someone out there with the same opinion about what we’ve accomplished.”  I couldn’t have said it better myself.

chioggia beet salad with pomegranates, quinoa, and arugula // gratitude and greens // #vegan #vegetarian #plantbased #recipe

chioggia beet salad with pomegranates, quinoa, and arugula // gratitude and greens // #vegan #vegetarian #plantbased #recipe

I think it’s also important to remind ourselves that what we see on social media isn’t really what’s happening in real life. Jealousy is a completely normal and legitimate feeling, but we need to remind ourselves to take a step back and think about how we are only seeing the beautiful, curated results of a finished product. Rarely do we see the behind-the-scenes struggle: it can take up to 30 minutes to style a photo or a week to write a blog post. It’s really hard work to produce work that you’re proud of, and something I find especially challenging is sitting down to write something that not only reflects who I am as a person but will also resonate with others. No one ever sees me struggle with writers block or wonder why I can’t write like someone else, but it happens. And when those moments happen, I know that comparing myself to others accomplishes nothing.

As I said, jealousy is completely normal. Is it worth it, though? No. And I think it’s so important to ask ourselves where its roots are, knowing the boundaries of where it begins and where it ends, and not allowing it to overtake our lives. Everyone is unique and comparing ourselves can be motivating, but it can also stop us from maximizing our potential and hinder us from doing our best work. Hannah, I’m so very flattered you found my blog inspiring and I’m glad you wrote a post about your feelings because it got me thinking about my creative process and inspired me to write about it on the blog.

Today’s recipe: a chioggia beet salad with pomegranate, arugula, and quinoa dressed in an olive oil and pomegranate syrup dressing. I had a bottle of pomegranate syrup sitting in the cupboard and decided to experiment with it; it’s a little bit sweet, a little bit sour, and a whole lot of sticky. Other than this fesenjan recipe I shared last year, I’ve only used pomegranate syrup to marinade vegetables for roasting and wasn’t sure how else to use it, but salad dressing seemed like a good bet.

chioggia beet salad with pomegranates, quinoa, and arugula // gratitude and greens // #vegan #vegetarian #plantbased #recipe

chioggia beet salad with pomegranates, quinoa, and arugula // gratitude and greens // #vegan #vegetarian #plantbased #recipe

CHIOGGIA BEET SALAD WITH POMEGRANATE, ARUGULA, AND QUINOA
Yields 2-3 servings.

INGREDIENTS

  • 4 small chioggia beets (278g)
  • 3 cups (84g) arugula, washed
  • 1 cup raw quinoa or 1 1/2 cups (231g) cooked quinoa
  • 1 large pomegranate, around 2 cups (464g)

For the dressing:

  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon pomegranate syrup
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • fresh ground pepper, to taste

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Rinse the quinoa and bring 2 cups of water to a boil. Add the quinoa, reduce the heat and allow the quinoa to simmer for 20 minutes until the quinoa is tender and fluffy.
  2. While the quinoa is cooking, wash and peel the beets and slice thinly with a mandolin. Toss the beets with the pomegranate and arugula. Prepare the dressing by whisking the olive oil, pomegranate syrup, salt, and pepper together.
  3. When the quinoa is done, allow the quinoa to cool. Once cool, add the quinoa to the salad and toss with the pomegranate dressing.

Your edible plant enthusiast,
Gen.

<< don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good + spring equinox bowl

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recipes you might like:
spring gratitude bowls | the lazy girl lunch bowl: quinoa and mung bean salad | not your average slaw: vegan purple cabbage slaw in my favourite almond butter dressing

16 Comments

  1. Rebecca @ Strength and Sunshine
    April 11, 2016

    Social media will always bring jealousy and uncomfortable feelings. That’s why we should spend as little amount of time on it as possible (something I really struggle with). There are some good people and aspects to it, but the toxic and negativity is so overly saturated and hides the good most (all days) for me.

    Anyway…LOVE beets <3 Love these beautiful beets and just love everything about this simple salad! xoxoxo

    Reply
  2. Gina
    April 11, 2016

    I heard an interesting podcast episode about the “emotional labor” that goes in to curating blogs and social media accounts, that I think very much relates to this post and the topic of ‘internet jealousy.’

    FYI the podcast is Stuff Mom Never Told You :)
    Here is the link to the episode I mentioned: http://www.stuffmomnevertoldyou.com/podcasts/the-hidden-lives-of-fashion-bloggers/

    Reply
  3. Sarah | Well and Full
    April 11, 2016

    Internet jealousy is the worst. I was actually feeling it the other day when looking at another blogger’s instagram, full of stunning photos. But I kind of realized what it really was I was doing (being jealous), and after I went through some of the recipes on my site and tried to look at them with an outsider’s eyes. And I thought, wow, my stuff is pretty good too! And it’s okay to admit when you’ve done something nice or beautiful that you’re proud of – to celebrate your own work. And you definitely have work worth celebrating, Gen. This salad is absolutely stunning! Thank you for being such a great inspiration in your own right <3

    Reply
  4. dixya @food, pleasure, and health
    April 11, 2016

    these last couple of months, i have been reading a lot on internet jealously and not feeling adequate about our work..its really a struggle for bloggers because we spend so much time on social media and its a creative field, so theres that. i have read ahmazing article by Lindsay from Pinch of Yum and Lindsay from The Cotter Crunch to let go of internet comparison and focus on our journey. i absolutely can relate to your post and really appreciate how you honed on the idea of sharing, learning, and appreciating.

    Reply
  5. Alexandra | Occasionally Eggs
    April 12, 2016

    Thanks for talking about this. I constantly feel like what I’m doing isn’t good enough compared to peers, especially on social media – but then I wonder how on earth people find the time to style their breakfast every morning and it doesn’t bother me any more ;)

    This recipe is beautiful and springy and I love it.

    Reply
  6. Rachel - The Castejons
    April 12, 2016

    I think I was needing to read something like this, especially when you are starting out in a world where there is already so much talent (chefs, food bloggers, photographers, writers, etc). It’s hard to think that you’re good enough. I try to consciously tell myself often that “one person’s success is not another person’s failure”. Great message! Your blog is beautiful :)

    Reply
  7. Farrah
    April 13, 2016

    So very much agreed on this! Sometimes I wish I had more time to spend on my blog or that I could take better food photos, butttt I also recognize that since my intended career path is rather time-consuming, it’s not very realistic or practical for me. I love it as a hobby though, which is why I keep doing it! :] I like to think of social media (especially instagram) as a “best snapshot reel” of a person’s life. :]

    Great post, and that salad looks amazingg! <3!

    Reply
  8. Tessa | Salted Plains
    April 13, 2016

    Thanks for writing about this, Genevive. It can be really hard not to compare yourself sometimes, with blogging and everything else! Such a different world than the one we grew up in, isn’t it? I am loving the colors in this salad! So fresh and spring-y! xo.

    Reply
  9. Rebecca
    April 15, 2016

    What a gorgeous salad, Gen! I’m definitely going to try it as I also have a slightly neglected bottle of pomegranate molasses. It’s such good stuff. And thank you for calling attention to comparison and our age of internet perfection. We all need a good reminder that what we see is not real life.

    Reply
  10. Amy | The Whole Food Rainbow
    April 15, 2016

    Hey Gen, thanks so much for sharing this and the link to sparkadventuresaroundtheworld.com too. We’re all human and all feeling the same, it’s so good to know! I love her distinction between the reaction and the real you, that’s so valuable. And your words on how much hard work goes into a blog post is so true. It hurts me to type because I have a hand disability, it can take a long time to write a post, often I dictate to my husband who helps me, or do it one piece at a time, and the photos and cooking and technical side of things, and the improvements that need to be made and things learned, it’s HUGE! Thank God we love it so much!! :)

    Reply
  11. MB @ Bourbon and Brown Sugar
    April 17, 2016

    Genevieve… Just discovered your blog, and love it! The beets in your salad are simply gorgeous! Wonderful thoughts on jealousy. I agree, Internet jealously isn’t worth it…But while I try to be motivated by the mind-blowingly gorgeous posts/photos of the great blogs out there in cyberspace, some days I just turn pea-green with envy :)

    Reply
  12. Sonali- The Foodie Physician
    April 17, 2016

    Another beautifully written and thought provoking post- thanks for sharing Gen. When I first started out on social media, feelings of jealously definitely crept in (they’re so hard to avoid) but it’s really such a wasted emotion. There’s always going to be better writing and better pictures out there, but nowadays I’m comfortable with where I’m at. But speaking of jealousy, I’m seriously jealous that you got to eat this dish and I didn’t!! It has everything I look for in a salad! Have a great day :)

    Reply
  13. This Week In Food and Sustainability -
    April 17, 2016

    […] << why internet jealousy isn’t worth it + chioggia beet salad with pomegranate, arugula,… […]

    Reply
  14. Happy Belly Smoothie | Well and Full
    April 20, 2016

    […] ending tomorrow, where would you spend them?” Where WOULD you spend them? (P.S. Thank you to Genevieve for directing me to this […]

    Reply
  15. Sarah @ Snixy Kitchen
    April 22, 2016

    I love the words you say about jealousy. It is definitely hard to refrain from comparing yourself with others in this social media-saturated world! I also love this salad – and I’m jealous that I don’t have these beets in my fridge right now;)

    Reply
  16. Lisa
    April 27, 2016

    I couldn’t have read this at a better time. I can completely understand how Hannah feels because something similar happened to me earlier this week. I’ve been fooling around with some food art this past month, and I’m so eager to grow my presence in that space quickly. Then, earlier this week, I noticed a big social media account featured someone else who does awesome food art. I admired that artist’s work very much, but I also couldn’t help but feel incredibly envious that I wasn’t getting the same amount of attention. I wouldn’t say that I felt jealous, but it sure as hell sparked a competitive fire in me, for the wrong reasons. (It also brought back flashbacks to the worst parts about law school.) I had to take a step back and ask myself why I couldn’t just appreciate a growing interest in food art among the general public, and more importantly, why I couldn’t just appreciate someone else’s work for what it is. My husband definitely had to give me a pep talk about calming down and letting me know that my time will come, too. After this self-reflection, I think I’m more at peace about this. Okay, I feel like I’ve rambled long enough! Now that it’s lunch time, I need to dig into this salad!

    Reply

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