#096 – Dr. Beth Ricanati: The Transformative Power of Challah & One Woman’s Journey to Wellness

  • December 18, 2018


Dr. Beth Ricanati is a physician, mother, and the author of Braided: A Journey of a Thousand Challahs. Dr. Ricanati’s debut book chronicles her journey creating a thousand challahs, showcasing a woman’s quest for wellness and peace. She has created a career focused on bringing wellness into women’s everyday lives, especially busy moms juggling life and children, but her book is meant for anyone who is carrying a myriad of responsibilities and rarely takes even a few minutes to stop and smell the rising yeast.


“For the first time, I made challah and the most incredible thing happened: I just stopped! When you’re standing at the kitchen counter and your hands are in a bowl of dough, it is just wonderful.” –Beth Ricanati, MD


Braided is a meditation on how Dr. Ricanati found a few moments of peace one Friday morning, when it was unclear whether or not she was going to be okay, and how making challah every Friday sustained her for ten full years (and still sustains her to this day). It’s not just a recipe for making the bread – although you’ll be able to knock out a killer batch after reading it – but also a lesson in taking the time you need to be truly well.


“Whether it’s challah or any other activity, we live in a crazy, busy, stressful world and I think it is imperative to have mindful activity in our lives to manage our stress.” –Beth Ricanati, MD


We also discuss:

  • Becoming a practicing physician & mother of three
  • Trying to do it all… and not doing it well
  • Transforming herself and her life through the medium of Challah
  • How challah enriches us spiritually
  • Learning to appreciate the mindfulness & wellness aspect of cooking
  • How holidays and rituals help us
  • Food as medicine
  • Integrating a mindful activity into your life, whatever it is
  • Navigating food tribes
  • What Beth is learning from challah, 10 years later, and what she learned from writing the book
  • We’re never too late to try something new, even if it’s completely out of our wheelhouse




Beth Ricanati’s Bio:

Beth Ricanati, MD, has built her career around bringing wellness into women’s everyday lives, especially busy moms juggling life and children.  She received her medical training at Case Western Reserve University and New York-Presbyterian/Columbia University Medical Center. She was a practicing physician for over ten years at both the New York-Presbyterian/Columbia University Medical Center’s Women Health Center in New York City, the Cleveland Clinic’s Center for Women’s Health, and the Cleveland Clinic’s Wellness Institute. She now lives in the Los Angeles area with her family and challah-loving dog.

Search All Episodes

Listen on Apple Podcasts
Stitcher Button
Listen on Spotify
Listen on Google Play