Syracuse Food Writer and Local Restaurant Team Up for National Eating Disorder Awareness Week

Feb 7, 2018

Rochelle Bilow holding up the dish, Nutty by Nature
Credit Eric Hinman

A Syracuse-based food writer has teamed up with a downtown restaurant to create a special menu item to raise money for eating disorder recovery support.  It’s called Nutty by Nature, and will be available at Original Grain through the month of February.  A portion of the proceeds will be donated to local non-profit Ophelia’s Place and Circles of Change.  Rochelle Bilow talked about her collaboration with the restaurant.

“I was thinking I wanted to do something big and make a large impact for National Eating Disorders Awareness Week, and rather than just writing on my blog, which I’ve done in the past, I thought, ‘How can I reach this community as a whole?’ and I was pondering this question as I was having lunch at Original Grain, which I do every day and it just kind of came to me.”

Original Grain co-founder Chris Bily shared the story of how Nutty by Nature came to be:

“She had an idea. She’d seen something. She’s like, ‘Ah, carrot butter!’ We’re like, ‘Alright, interesting. Maybe we can make carrot butter.’ And that was that. We had some ingredients in house and we had this great banana bread that we used that laid the perfect blank canvas for anything, really. You want to put it on top and it tastes good. So, Chef Steve and I came up with a cool little toast that we thought would work and we were like, ‘Alright, let’s go with it.’”

The Nutty By Nature sign at Original Grain.
Credit Scott Willis/WAER News

Rochelle Bilow, on the impact food has had in her life:

“Food has been a huge part of my recovery journey. After I recovered from my eating disorder I went to culinary school and I worked in restaurants and I became a food writer. So, I realized that food was always going to have to be a part of my life. I had to make peace with it, so instead of just accepting it and just eating, I decided to make every meal a joyful experience.”

Rochelle Bilow’s temporary menu item is available all month at Original Grain to support Ophelia’s place, which provides recovery support for those with eating disorders.  More information is at National Eating Disorders Awareness Week runs February 26 through March 4.