The First Mess // healthy vegan recipes for every season »

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about


ON THIS BLOG
I’ll be writing about the things I love: cooking with natural foods, eating seasonally and sharing wholesome meals with the people in my life. Cooking and cuisine have always been at the heart of fine living, celebrating the community and its efforts. A meal has never been anything to take for granted in my life and this blog is a greater reflection of that simple idea.

ON ME
My name is Laura and I live in the Niagara region of southern Ontario. My home sits between a peach orchard and a vineyard–millions of peaches, wine for days, good life. I went to culinary school, but learned considerably more about food and being in the world from working in restaurants and growing up with agriculture. I have a staggering/embarrassing collection of cookbooks and food-related literature.

ON THE NAME
“The First Mess” is taken from M.F.K. Fisher’s An Alphabet for Gourmets, where she refers to the arrival of the first run (or mess) of peas in early spring as “the day with stars on it.” Her sincere appreciation and thoughtful writings on food are such a marvel to read, time and again.

MY WORK, PRESS ETC.
My stuff has been featured on The Huffington Post, SAVEUR, the Martha Stewart Living Blog, Epicurious, the Food & Wine BlogDaily CandyGourmet LIVE, The GuardianThe Kitchn, Food 52A Cup of Jo, The Food Network Blog, and a few other places. I’ve also developed recipes for Clean Eating Magazine, Food 52Wilder Quarterly, BuzzFeed, Pure Green Magazine, and the Toronto Vegetarian Association.

In 2014, SAVEUR Magazine editors selected this site as the best special diets blog in their annual food blog awards. You can check out all other press here if you like.

SAY HELLO
Want to work together or just say hi? For inquiries relating to recipe development, sponsored posts, creative collaboration and the like, use the contact form in the upper right of this page OR drop me a line at laura [AT] thefirstmess [DOT] com. You can also find me on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook too.

Brittany Pearson-Smith18/10/2011 - 7:56 pm

Tastespotting just threw me onto your blog. I love it :) Pinning 5 million of your recipes to make for later!

matt jamie04/11/2011 - 2:11 pm

Loved your recipes and photography! feeling very inspired to cook.

Fredsmom17/11/2011 - 5:32 am

Your website is beautiful! I just found it while searching for a cauliflower couscous recipe. Am forwarding your site to my friends!

vincent27/11/2011 - 8:55 am

Hello,

We bumped into your blog and we really liked it.
We would like to add it to the Petitchef.com.

We would be delighted if you could add your blog to Petitchef so that our users can, as us,
enjoy it.

Petitchef is a french based Cooking recipes Portal. Several hundred Blogs are already members
and benefit from their exposure on Petitchef.com.

To add your site to the Petitchef family you can use http://en.petitchef.com/?obj=front&action=site_ajout_form or just go to Petitchef.com and click on “Add your site”

Best regards,

petitchef.com

Ashley03/01/2012 - 1:40 pm

“A meal is nothing to take for granted.”

THANK YOU. Thank you for recognizing that food, and more specifically having *enough* food is a blessing none of us should forget about. This is why your blog is one of my absolute favorites. In each of your posts, your sense of gratitude for the food you are preparing is so apparent. I’m so glad I found your blog this past fall. I’m excited to see the creations you’ll be blogging about in 2012!

Brooke (The Flour Sack)12/01/2012 - 12:36 pm

I just discovered your beautiful blog from your guest post on Happyolks. I am in love with your photography, recipes, and food philosophy – so much like my own. I will be adding you to my “favorites” and visiting often! Thank you for the wonderful inspiration. :)

dana @ my little celebration06/02/2012 - 10:49 pm

I believe we were destined to be friends! Let’s!

Danielle07/02/2012 - 5:53 pm

Just discovered your blog and am in love with your beautiful photos and mouth watering recipes. Will be here often!!

D

Elenore Bendel Zahn04/03/2012 - 7:41 am

Oh deerie <3
I just stumbled onto your site and fell in love!
That´s all I have to say.. Now, excuse me, I have to go
browse all your posts..;)

Andreas Rapp23/03/2012 - 8:57 am

I’m speechless. This is so lovely, awesome and wonderful. You’ve just inspired me to plan the whole weekends food =)

Thank you!

Christine Smith12/05/2012 - 8:00 pm

Oh my! I have been pinning your recipes all afternoon. Thank you so much for this incredible blog. Do you have a recipe book?

Bonny Musgrave27/05/2012 - 10:05 pm

I just stumbled onto your blog by accident, although I would prefer to think it was a divine appointment! What a beautiful, and inspiring, treasure trove of ideas!

Your blog is stunning!

Christina11/07/2012 - 8:28 pm

Hi Laura! I hope someone tells you every single day how beautiful your photos are and that your site is truly inspiring! I’m truly amazed at how crisp and clear your photos are! Can you tell me what kind of camera you use and lenses or filters, if any? Thank you and please keep the photos and recipes coming!

Sincerely,

Christina

marta01/08/2012 - 4:45 pm

and so I’m adding you to my links:)

Laura08/08/2012 - 12:12 pm

Just WOW !!!

Thanks

Marina09/08/2012 - 1:18 pm

Making your summer panzanella today. Looks mouth watering!

Hi there!

I just found your blog and love it! So creative and beautiful! I love the presentation, pictures and of course recipes! ;-)

tanya @ i heart chocolate milk17/09/2012 - 11:44 am

love the blog, the design and the photography…keep it up!! :)

Christina31/10/2012 - 2:53 pm

Hi Laura,

You’ve just been nominated for the One Lovely Blog & Very Inspiring Blogger Award!

http://smallkitchenchronicles.com/2012/10/31/gingersnap-pumpkin-cheesecake-shake/

Thanks for being such an inspiration!

xo

[...] had the pleasure of meeting Laura through her blog over the summer and was instantly captivated by her honesty, authenticity, and food [...]

Ellen19/11/2012 - 9:21 am

I loved the panzanella salad. It’s the route to your blog. Thanks

Aleksandra Peyrer-Navijalic22/12/2012 - 1:06 pm

I just found your blog via Naturally Ella and am really taken by your recipes and overall am just inspired.

kiki21/01/2013 - 3:57 am

I love your recipes. They make me want to eat my own eyeballs.

Thank you so much!

love and hugs,

Kiki

Shira21/01/2013 - 9:16 pm

What a beautiful blog! I just found you via Twitter and saw that you are Canadian – nothing makes me happier than finding fellow Canadian bloggers, who happen to be amazing! Your work looks gorgeous – I have just subscribed. Thank you!

Sarah Sauer22/01/2013 - 4:10 pm

I just began my own whole foods blog and I just wanted to say yours is awe-inspiring! I hope one day mine will be as beautiful and developed as yours! Can’t wait to keep up with your posts in the future.

-Sarah

SandraM23/01/2013 - 5:31 pm

Was just on the spoonforkbacon site looking at their blog love page and came across your blog. So glad I found it. Great blog, will be coming here for inspiration.

Fran24/01/2013 - 12:05 am

You have officially been bookmarked! Honestly, a fantastic blog. Don’t stop!

Julia07/02/2013 - 1:11 pm

Hi Laura!
I’ve recently discovered your blog (via Pinterest), and I’m in love!!! Wonderful recipes with taste AND health in mind. Great stuff. I am a high school culinary teacher. I teach a program called Hospitality & Tourism to grade 9-12 students. I have sent many kids onto culinary school at Niagara College. I’m curious to know if that is where you went too?
I plan on trying your expresso scones & blueberry muffins over the weekend:)
And I just know we will be using some of your recipes in our classroom labs too! Thanks for the beautiful work. I look forward to seeing what other creative & delicious things you come up with!
Gratefully,
Julia Graham
Maxville, ON

[...] out there somewhere, but not at any of my regular haunts.  This absence of course, made making The First Mess‘ Spaghetti Squash Noodle Bowl quite a challenge.  I love a [...]

Michelle11/04/2013 - 11:00 am

Hi Laura,
I just discovered your blog through Ashley’s (Edible Perspective)instagram. All of your recipes and photos are amazing – you are incredibly talented. I just pinned a million of them and am making the carrot edamame salad with my sister tonight :)
I am also from Ontario (Toronto, formerly London) and recently started my own “whole foods” blog – The Fresh Direction. You’re such an inspiration!!
Thank you for sharing!!

Rachel Brady12/04/2013 - 3:13 pm

Hi – just come across your blog via a Tweet by someone I follow. I love it. Learning a lot about a more natural approach to food and blogs like this are really inspiring. Keep up the good work! X

Renee13/04/2013 - 2:39 pm

Thanks, just the kind of fun healthy recipes I have been looking for!

Evan O'Ceallaigh18/04/2013 - 1:18 pm

Wow!The writing is amazing, the recipes are gorgeous and the photography is by far the best I have ever seen. This blog is honestly the best I have evr seen and I am going to read this blog purely for inspiration for my own food blog. Thank you so much for inspiring me and i am already looking forward to your next post.

What a beautiful blog you have! I’m just thinking: OMG, I’ve got a lot to learn with my own green, clean blog ;-)

Yelena01/07/2013 - 12:50 am

LOVE your website! Terrific! Just came on it today and am really looking forward to trying some of those recipes.

Shayla31/07/2013 - 1:14 pm

Please write a book! I have bookmarked so many of your recipes! They are so good. Thank you for sharing your talents and your awesome palate with us!

Violonchien25/08/2013 - 12:53 pm

Nice site, congratulations! (:
Your recipes are overwhelming and delicious.

Juliet05/09/2013 - 4:41 pm

So Sweet…I’m excited to start cooking down your recipe list one whole food ingredient at a time!
Thanks for putting this out there for all us food enthusiasts.

Rachel21/09/2013 - 7:05 pm

Hey Messy,

I just stumbled upon your blog and I am so guilty of indulging in some serious food porn because of it…your photos are beautiful. I love the warm crispness to them that shed the simple little intimacies of your life. I would love to know what kind of camera you use. Thanks for being awesome!

I want to share a poem I read today (:

“Today
The vegetables would like to be cut

By someone who is singing Love’s Name.

How could Hafiz know
Such top secret information?

Because
Once we were all tomatoes,

Potatoes, onions or
Zucchini.”

– Hafiz

Barbara roth22/09/2013 - 11:39 am

Would love to subscribe to your website. Looks amazing!

Laura Wright23/09/2013 - 8:45 pm
Cindi27/09/2013 - 6:08 pm

I found my way here via Pinterest. I’m so impressed!

Sandi01/10/2013 - 4:55 pm

A long dry spell in the food inspiration department remedied by your fabulous blog and food. Thank you!

Sheila09/10/2013 - 7:05 pm

Ohhh so happy to have found my way here via The Year in Food! This is so up my alley. Looking forward to trying out some of your recipes!

Barbara Sandham-Spies17/10/2013 - 6:47 am

*boing* Found your awesome site when googling ‘funky salads’ : I needed help u see – cos we have a little salad club at the office & me not being a ‘foodie’ needed “alot” of help – your site is a life-saver & so inspiring! Thank you – all the way from South Africa! :)

Jessica24/10/2013 - 10:29 am

Your recipes will be my first dabbling into cooking for myself!

Bianca25/10/2013 - 7:40 pm

What kind of camera equipment do you use? Your photos are gorgeous!

Laura Wright27/10/2013 - 9:41 am

Hi Bianca! I use a canon EOS 5D Mark II for body. I primarily use 2 lenses: a 50 mm f/1.4 and a 24-105 mm f/4
-L

Alexandra Rijnoveanu29/10/2013 - 9:36 am

I love your blog :) Thank you for being inspiring :)

Karen19/11/2013 - 2:17 pm

Just stumbled on your site from a pintrest and WOW I have clicked on loads of recipes and have loved reading everyone of them..now on to making them

So glad your on fb too by the way :)

Have an awesome day.

Cindy02/01/2014 - 3:33 pm

Your photography is phenomenal!! What a treat!

Alexis07/01/2014 - 10:01 pm

Just want to say that I’m so glad to have discovered your site (via Instagram). I can’t wait to try many of these recipes.

francesco08/01/2014 - 9:17 am

Stunning pictures and website. Oh and the content of course… really delicious.
I’m sure I will get inspired whenever I write on my blog about running and natural foods

Jauquetta14/01/2014 - 7:03 pm

Loved the items I have found here. I’m dairy free now for over 20 years and since last Jan. 2013, have been gluten free. Can’t wait to try your recipes! Thanks ever so much for your generosity. Jauquetta

Kecia15/01/2014 - 6:27 pm

I just discovered your blog two seconds ago, through a pinterest recipe, and I’ve never been so instantly sold on and excited by a food blog!

Shanna Koenigsdorf Ward23/01/2014 - 1:25 pm

I am glad that I came across your blog, Laura. Another fabulous and fresh Canadian blog to follow. Take care, Shanna

Alicia Brum30/01/2014 - 4:42 pm

Beautiful blog and yummy recipes. Love when I add a Canadian keeper to my repertoire. Much more success and fresh cuisine to you!

THE FIRST MESS - The Lacquerie20/02/2014 - 8:05 am

[…] Laura is all about sharing the simple beauty of natural, wholesome ingredients with her stunning photos. I love how she always shoots in natural light, capturing those perfect color combos and delicate textures. The First Mess has this way of making seasonal cooking look so easy, fun and organic. Let’s just say that if I ever feel inspired enough to attempt my own kitchen, it will most definitely be with one of Laura’s recipes. […]

sasha06/03/2014 - 8:24 pm

have made loads from this site, Thank You

Marla09/03/2014 - 5:54 pm

Love your recipes!

Kate Dolan18/03/2014 - 10:16 am

Beautiful site

Veronica28/03/2014 - 3:43 pm

Thank you! I love your site! Thank you thank you thank you

Imen24/04/2014 - 8:58 am

Hi Laura,
Have just copped onto your blog via an intro from Sharon Bowers. SO in love with your work and recipes. Look forward to your book!
Warm Regards,
Imen xx

Dianne Ounapuu30/04/2014 - 1:36 am

I recently came across a small mention of you in our local Delicious Magazine. The reference to peaches and vineyards immediately took me back to when we lived in Grimsby in the 90’s. Happy days! I’m assuming you aren’t far from there.
Now I’m in suburban Melbourne, a gardener for myself and others and foodie. We inherited some aged almonds and lemons and now have added apples, quince, pomegranate, olives, cumquat, limes and a vegie patch. It doesn’t always work out but gardeners are by nature optimists.
I’ve cooked vegetarian at various times and will keep an eye on your site in future for inspiration.
Cheers, Dianne

Nicole Wright20/05/2014 - 5:17 pm

Hi Laura,

My name is Nicole. I live in an small house in an old, historic neighborhood of Vancouver, very close to downtown, with my husband and our dog and wait tables for a living in some really great diners.
I curate, illustrate, grow a veggie garden and tend house plants, and I love to eat. Justin (my husband) and I spend most of our time together eating, digesting and drinking, at home or in the various gems in this wonderful city.
I just wanted to thank you for all the wonderful recipes, The First Mess has been a corner stone in the last year of my kitchen experimentation, you have opened a lot of cooking alleys for me to adventure in, back doors to recipes I thought that I knew and introductions to ingredients I never thought I”d learn to love.
Your photos are MOST wonderful, totally inspirational, but more than anything, I wanted to thank you for the ability to share this blog with my mom. We both read it, and we have great conversations over your recipes, anecdotes, and (basically) your life.
It has brought joy, laughter, great food into our lives and has helped to bring us closer.
If EVER you need a place to stay in Vancouver we have a great yard to camp in and some must eat recommendations.

Thanks again.

Nicole

Cathleen Young22/05/2014 - 11:35 pm

I LOVE your photography. I just cut and pasted 5 of your recipes to try. The butternut oricchette, the Quinoa bake thingie, the carrot cake pancakes, spaghetti squash noodle bowl. The pictures are gorgeous and these recipes are calling out to me!

Ellie12/06/2014 - 6:30 am

Great blog! What camera do you use?

Laura Wright12/06/2014 - 9:02 am

Hi Ellie, I use a Canon EOS 5D Mark II body + mostly this lens (link).

gen05/08/2014 - 10:47 am

I just found your blog and wow. I just wanted to say you have some of the most beautiful and inspiring food photographs I’ve ever seen! You have a new fan. =)

Jenna Gross05/08/2014 - 5:05 pm

Hi Laura,
Just wanted to let you know we featured your Spaghetti Squash Noodle Bowl with Lime Peanut Sauce in a round up of low carb meals. If you’d like to check it out, here’s the link: http://www.skinnymom.com/2014/07/21/50-delicious-low-carb-meals/

Feel free to share with your readers and have a great week!

Jenna Gross
Skinny Mom
602 Main Street, Suite 410
Cincinnati Ohi, 45202

Sarah06/08/2014 - 5:16 pm

Your images are lovely! What kind of camera do you use?

Laura Wright12/08/2014 - 8:51 am

Hi Sarah, I use a Canon EOS 5D Mark II for the camera body and my main lens is a 50 mm/1.4. I edit the photos in Lightroom and use VSCO’s film emulation software as well.
-L

marpy26/10/2014 - 11:45 am

Is there a way to sign up for email updates?

Laura Wright28/10/2014 - 9:03 am

Yes Marpy, you can do that here: http://feedburner.google.com/fb/a/mailverify?uri=TheFirstMess&loc=en_US
From there, you’ll be sent a confirmation email!
-L

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