So you want to be a #Girlboss. You’re poised to Lean In, and all geared up to Thrive. Why, good for you. 👏 We’re rooting for you. But first, breakfast. Yes, breakfast. You know, the most important meal of the day? It’s the morning kick-starter for all the power women we admire — from Michelle Obama (turkey sausages with scrambled eggs and a grapefruit) to Diane von Furstenberg (fruits, yogurt and black coffee) and Alexis Horowitz-Burddick (bulletproof coffee).
If you want to get shit done like these women, our first advice to you would be: Start your day right. And if it’s not already a morning ritual for you, well, it’s a new year, it’s time for a new you. In case you needed a little more inspiration, we spoke to a few of our own girlbosses — TV presenter/yoga instructor Denise Keller, Angela May Food Chapters‘ chef/partner Angela May and the co-founder of The Supermarket Company, Sue-Shan Quek, about eggs, toast, avocado and of course, coffee ☕ !
WHAT DO YOU LIKE TO HAVE FOR BREAKFAST?
Angela May: EVERYTHING! I wake up hungry. I fluctuate between eating chia pudding or a smoothie to shoving cold roasted chicken straight from the fridge into my mouth while standing over the sink.
Denise Keller: I usually start with a big dose of Combocillus, a nice army of probiotics to keep my stomach in check for the day. I make sure that this settles with no food for an hour. Then my real breakfast begins.
Sue-Shan Quek: Typically a low-fat cappuccino, and occasionally a dou sha bao (red bean bun) if I’m having kopi (local coffee). A new stall called Bao Huat just opened at Amoy Hawker Food Centre. The dou sha bao there is amazing — moist bun with a finely ground red-bean paste which oozes out. Recently, I have been into vegetable juices, too, so I’d do a blend of carrot, orange, ginger and celery. When I’m travelling, I tend to have what the locals have for breakfast, or eggs and pastries at the hotel.
WHAT’S YOUR IDEA OF A POWER BREAKFAST?
Angela: Hmm… roasted tomatoes with fluffy toast together with any green salad and a cashew milk.
Denise: Power breakfast to me is (organic) eggs — in any style, I don’t discriminate — and a massive portion of avocados. I have stopped all things caffeinated and replaced my caffeine fix with Moroccan Mint tea. I love juices, but unless they’re cold press, I probably won’t drink it if it’s not fresh.
Every day is a new possibility of delicious things.
I let my craving take me where the wind blows.
Sue-Shan: Nothing less than 8 ounces of coffee with perfectly steamed milk, and 30 minutes of the morning news.
DO YOU TEND TO HAVE THE SAME THING EVERY DAY?
Angela: Nope. Every day is a new possibility of delicious things. I let my craving take me where the wind blows. I did get stuck for a week of just eating croissants and my chocolate hazelnut spread. OMG, it’s so addictive.
Denise: Not always. There are days when I only have a cup of tea because I like to fast from time to time. The body can only handle so much food, and I know when my body has been overloaded with stuff that shouldn’t be there. I try to keep my breakfast clean — minimal salt, zero sugar, but I love a good sprinkle of Sarawakan black pepper on my eggs.
Sue-Shan: Yes, I alternate between a cappuccino and local kopi. I’m not typically a breakfast person when I’m not travelling and prefer an early
lunch which could consist of breakfast food like an egg omelette with ham, cheese and mushroom or granola with yogurt.
WHAT ABOUT A “WEEKEND SPECIAL”?
Angela: Actually, now that you mention it, I often make scones on the weekend. But then I continue to eat them throughout the day because who can resist freshly made scones?
Denise: I might sneak in a decaf coffee on the weekend, just to have that flavour in the mix, but overall it’s pretty standard.
IS THERE ONE INGREDIENT THAT’S ESSENTIAL?
Denise: I like a sprinkle of pink salt on my breakfast.
Sue-Shan: Milk in my coffee!
WHAT’S AN IDEAL TIME FOR YOU TO HAVE BREAKFAST?
Angela: Right after coffee. Never before. It’s too dangerous to cook before coffee.
Denise: Usually an hour after I’ve taken my probiotics, and definitely before a workout. It varies from 5am to 11am.
Sue-Shan: Nothing later than 9am.
WHEN WAS THE LAST TIME YOU MISSED THE MEAL?
Angela: Oh if I’m in a mad rush, which happens regularly, I grab a handful of raw almonds. I need fuel or I become murderous.
Denise: Today! I had a bit of pre-Christmas celebration over the weekend (which had lots of red wine) and I always like to cleanse my system after a heavy food load.
Sue-Shan: There was once I tried not to have a morning coffee and I just couldn’t stop yawning throughout my meeting. It was embarrassing!
LIGHT BREAKFAST OR BIG BREAKFAST?
Angela: I lean towards the lighter side on most days.
Denise: I’m generally a grazer and love to eat slow. This allows me to enjoy my food and the time I have for my food. I don’t like being disturbed at breakfast.
Sue-Shan: I enjoy my dinners too much, so a light breakfast in the mornings will do.