Where do I begin talking about this beauty!? Candice and I met a few years ago and insanely connected via our passions ... her's being food and mine being fitness. The minute you meet Candice you cannot help but be happy, her smile and energy are contagious. She's one of those people you immediately feel connected to and are not afraid to open up to. She's like every girls' best friend. But, most importantly, I love Candice because she values friendship. That quality to me is super important, especially in a space where women can be super-competitive with each other.
Candice is obsessed with avocados, coconut and matcha! I mean ... how can you not love this girl?? However, I am obsessed with her dark chocolate truffle balls ... we made these amazing delicious balls at her press event last month in NYC. They honestly blew my mind!! Candice's cooking is my favorite, but let's not forget, this rock star is a 5x best-selling author and is coming out with her highly-anticipated book on the art of Japanese wellness (dropping this Winter)! I CANNOT wait! She has tested a few of the recipes on our NYC "girl gang" and everything was so freaking good!
Today, I am pleased to be sharing Candice with all of you, my NUFit SQUAD! She is the "real deal" and someone I look up to in so many ways. I always tell her, you are the hardest working chick in the biz! So take it from Candice, keep working hard and chasing those dreams, because you only got one life to live so .. go GET it!
LOCKER ROOM CHATS X CAndice kumai
candice kumai is a badass b in nyc. wellness + food writer/director, best-selling author, journalist, chef
NICKNAME: "the golden girl of wellness" - Elle "The clean queen"
1. what's your why? i can only say, i'm following my life's compass. I have no idea, but it feels right.
2. three qualities that have made you successful? humility, kindness, diligence.
3. moment you felt like you made it? like never! i live by #kaizen, so my life is all about continuously improving! maybe moments of wow -- back of kashi cereal box, when my japanese mom told me my first book "wasn't as bad as she thought it was going to be" lolz!!! ... signing with adidas, working with beauties like natalie, kathryn b, michele p, and keri g!!
working with chanel was pretty badass, shooting a four page feature with elle japan was so honourable + having elle, cosmo, wall street journal, dr. oz, e news all share my work, is always always humbling ... but never ever have felt like i have made it. i feel that i am just getting started!
4. first big break into the biz? top chef, season one. and A hosting gig at hsn when i was 25! judging on iron chef america in my twenties was kinda insane, too. my first book deal at 25.
5. change you would like to see for women in our industry? to stop the judgement of others. to stop comparing. to start loving and supporting, more!
6: the moment you almost quit? when a big network passed on my food pilot//show we had shot for 9 months. that was brutal. when i was pulled off a tv series bc i was "too thin, too cool and too pretty to show women how to cook." -- then 6 months later, they called back ... but i never quit, i simply re-direct my sails, and say "fuck em" in my head ... politely of course ... and move along with grit, resilience and kaizen ...
7. what age did you get into the business? modeling: 15, tv/media: 23, publishing/book/mags/directing: 24
8: what's your favorite quality about yourself? i am a geek. i love being silly.
9: top beauty secret? sleep, water, matcha, workout, girlfriends
10. what's one piece of advice you can give to the next generation of female rock stars? be you, and radiate. stay kind and graceful in all that you do. choose wisely.
don't ever change for anyone, leave a legacy, not just a pretty instagram. never sell out, because as soon as you do, there's no turning back.
embrace change, adapt well, work with diligence. nothing but the best shall do + dude, have fun.
Candice's highly anticipated book on the art of Japanese wellness, drops this winter! These are just a "teaser" until then.
Makes 4 servings
Satsuma Orange-Ginger Vinaigrette:
- ¼ cup reduced-sodium tamari soy sauce
- 1/4 cup rice vinegar plus 2 tablespoons
- 1 tablespoon toasted sesame seed oil (goma abura)
- ¼ cup satsuma orange juice (we can juice together)
- 1 ½ teaspoons fresh grated ginger (we can grate together)
- 1, 8-10 oz package soba, cooked, cooled, and drained
- 1 cup snap peas, thinly sliced on the bias
- 1 to 1 1/2 cups fresh baby arugula
- 1 package, 6 oz, Savory baked tofu, cut into thin slices or cubes
- ½ cup satsuma orange segments
- 2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds, divided
- additional satsuma orange segments (optional)
- In a large bowl, whisk together the ingredients for the dressing. Gently add the cooked and cooled soba noodles and toss well to coat with the dressing. Add in your snap peas and toss.
- Mix in the arugula, toss well to coat. Plate up noodles into four even portions, top with savory tofu, satsuma orange segments and toasted sesame seeds.
- Enjoy immediately, at room temp is delish and even a few days later, chilled—this salad holds fabulously well overnight in the fridge!
"We live to inspire a whole new generation of wellness lovers, creative artists, fitness gurus, and cooks in the kitchen. We work with honesty, integrity, and sincerity. We create meaningful, honest, trustworthy + useful content to evoke emotion, and inspire our audience to take action. Your health, wellbeing, and your best interests come first."
Makes: 12 dozen truffles
- 1 ½ cups almond meal flour
- 1/3 cup unsweetened almond butter + 2 tablespoons
- 2 tablespoons rice malt syrup//brown rice syrup
- 2 tablespoons unsweetened dark cocoa powder
- 3 pitted dates
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 2 tablespoons, dark 60% cacao chocolate chips
- Maldon salt (optional)
- For Dipping:
- 1 cup dark chocolate chips, 60% cacao chocolate chips, melted
- Add all ingredients carefully into a food processor and pulse until a finely incorporated meal appears. Do not pulse too much or you will create a paste. Carefully, stop food processor, unplug.
- Using clean hands, roll firm bites/balls into 1.5 rounds. Be sure that the mix if firmly pressed together.
- Dip into melted chocolate, coat well, line up neatly onto a parchment lined sheet tray, top each truffle with a touch of Maldon salt (if using), place into the refrigerator for 10-15 minutes or in the freezer for 5 minutes, just to solidify.
- Place solid truffles into small craft paper boxes, line with white tissue paper, add in truffles, top with orchids or save in an airtight container for up to 3 days. So beautiful and so delish!!
These are honestly the best things EVER!!! I literally ate the whole tray. #sorrynotsorry.
Make sure to stay tuned for the release of Candice's new book dropping this Winter!