July 9, 2020

Cover Charge: Curcuma founder Rachel Musquiz

3rd + Lamar
Curcuma Kitchen
Rachel Musquiz
Curcuma founder Rachel Musquiz. Courtesy of Rachel Musquiz.

Thanks to inspiration from a prickly pear cactus, former Vanity Fair producer Rachel Musquiz moved to Austin in 2016 after a stint as a chef at an artist’s residency in Abruzzo, Italy.

Without a clear plan for her future, Musquiz stumbled upon a food truck on South 1st St. and bought it for $13,000.

Two weeks later, she launched Curcuma, a food truck, which later led to a plant-based product line called Luna Fixa.

Hear from Musquiz on her approach to business, her philosophy on food, why she thinks Austin is great for entrepreneurs, and more.

Listen to the podcast episode below. Subscribers can check out the full transcript of our conversation. For past “Cover Charge” episodes, click here.

Cover Charge: Episode 7 Transcript

[restrict] Nick Schenck: [00:00:00] Welcome to the latest episode of the “Cover Charge” podcast. I’m here with Rachel Musquiz. I want to make sure I pronounce that right. Rachel is a chef, an herbalist, an Ayurvedic chef, and she’s also the owner of Curcuma and Luna Fixa. So Rachel, thanks for joining. And also, just explain what all those things are.

Rachel Musquiz: [00:00:22] Yeah. So I’m an Ayurvedic chef, which means that I use an approach of healing through food. And so I really think of food as medicine in the kitchen. And so I have created my menu based on that idea, and for my menu at my food truck, which is Curcuma, and then I’ve also studied herbalism. And from that, I’ve also started a product line called Luna Fixa, which is really inspired by things that I do in the truck and also have a wider body of knowledge when it comes to healing with plants.

Nick Schenck: [00:00:51] OK, I got introduced to you through my wife. She follows a lot of different food trucks and restaurants in Austin, and she stumbled upon Curcuma, and she’s really interested in different herbs and saw that it was like – Curcuma is all based on tumeric, right? Every ingredient has to…

Rachel Musquiz: [00:01:13] Not everything, but Curcuma is the botanical name for tumeric. So it was like, I’m very into it. But it kind of explains the idea that I use superfoods in everything.

So most things have tumeric, but if they don’t, there’s some sort of super food.

Nick Schenck: [00:01:26] Okay. So yeah, my wife, Celeste, she knew that we started this podcast for 3rd & Lamar, and she’s trying to be helpful and always like giving us ideas for different stories and content. And she kept on bringing up Curcuma.

She’s like, “Have you called them yet? Have you called them yet?” Finally, I was like, “Okay. Okay. I’m going to look into it.” And we like to interview people that have sort of a lot of different layers to the story and to their business, and on the surface, a food truck isn’t necessarily that unique, but when I checked out your site and I sort of peeled back the layers, I thought you did a really good job on your site of telling your whole story. I thought it was interesting that you had a career – like a really successful career – in the media industry in New York. And then you took a huge turn, and the path that you took to go from working for, I think it was Conde Nast and Vanity Fair in New York City, to starting your own food truck in Austin was very fascinating to me.

And I’m also just in general interested about the whole food-as-healing movement, which I feel has like grown a lot, especially in Austin, over the past, maybe five to 10 years.

So why don’t you tell everyone just briefly your quick background, where you grew up and  your career in the media industry, and then how that sort of led to where you are now.

Rachel Musquiz: [00:02:43] Yeah, so I grew up in Northern California in a small town. Wasn’t exposed to a lot of, you know, as far as like working in the media or even like the food industry. I went to school and studied journalism and then a couple of years later went to grad school for media studies.

So I just have like a big curiosity for life. And so journalism to me was like the appropriate place to be always asking questions and getting different opinions, which that’s part of my personality. Um, so I had moved to New York and was working in, um, first I worked in L.A., I worked in television and kind of transitioned to music and then magazine publishing.

All the while studying media studies and getting my masters and studying like kind of the why, and also the how’s. So doing media production as well as like studying theory behind it. And so, yeah, I landed a great job as an online producer kind of managing the website, figuring out when content from Vanity Fair would go on online and getting extra content.

And it was great. It was my dream job. It was everything I hoped, but for me, I just got super burnt out. It was definitely like a lifestyle of, you know, waking up kind of grabbing my coffee on the way to the train. I’d grab something and eat at my desk for lunch. And, you know, sit in a cube until like, you know.

Nick Schenck: [00:04:05] I’m envisioning like a “Devil Wears Prada” type movie.

Rachel Musquiz: [00:04:08] That’s not incorrect. Like, I wasn’t so much in the fashion, but like, I stood with those girls in the elevator. I’m like, “Oh my goodness.” But yeah, a couple of run-ins with Anna [Wintour] in the elevator. I’m like, “This is awkward.” But, yeah, it was everything that I had thought and hoped for when I moved to New York.

But sometimes, I think a lot of people go through this in different ways, it’s like when you get the thing, you realize that it wasn’t really the thing that you wanted. You know, we think we all kind of chase a feeling, and for me, when I got to that point, I just didn’t feel fulfilled.

And so kind of coinciding with that, I like started to like get into food a little bit more and really starting to care about where my food came from and started to realize just how disconnected from nature and the food source scene I was, and so that was kind of like the beginning of the transition of how I kind of got into that.

Nick Schenck: [00:05:03] I want to bring it back. Explain the process of just getting hired by Vanity Fair. I imagine that was extremely competitive.

Rachel Musquiz: [00:05:08] I came on as a freelancer, and it happened really quickly. It’s kind of a pattern in my life. Like sometimes the doors just like open and I’m like – I just get right in there.

And so, yeah, it was a freelance position to begin with, and then later  turned to full-time, but really I had just seen seen it and emailed someone who knew someone and got my resume, had the call, and then it was like I started in like a week, and it was like right after I started grad school.

And I think it was just because they needed someone to do exactly what I knew how to do. And it just worked. Yeah.

Nick Schenck: [00:05:41] How long did it take before you got to the point where you’re like, “Wait a second, this isn’t actually what I really want. I may have thought I wanted this job at Vanity Fair, but  I’m actually not that happy here.”

Rachel Musquiz: [00:05:50] It was probably like two years. I mean, there was a good amount of time that I like really enjoyed it, but as I continued to work and I think, you know, It’s like career development. Okay. Once I went from freelance to full-time, and then it was like wanting to get a promotion, and I got a promotion and then that’s kind of when I realized that I’m like, “This is never gonna fulfill me.”

Like I can work so hard, and it wasn’t the place, it was me. You know, I just realized that there were things that I just love to do, like be in the kitchen and work with my hands and be outside and not be sitting at a desk all day. It just wasn’t a good fit for me in that way.

I really enjoyed it, though, for a couple of years. There was a lot of good perks and there was a lot of fun. Some good parties to be had.

Nick Schenck: [00:06:34] When we spoke before the podcast, you mentioned how you weren’t necessarily happy there, but you don’t know if you would have taken the step to leave on your own.

They had a layoff, like many media companies have layoffs, and then you ended up like diving into the cooking, food industry from that point forward. Explain that turn of events.

Rachel Musquiz: [00:06:55] Yeah it was exactly that. It was something that I  knew that I wasn’t happy, but I also didn’t want to leave.

It happened quickly and I was just like, “Oh, now I can do something else.” And prior to that, I had gotten really into cooking and especially like dinner parties. I really love bringing people together around food. My creativity really comes out in the kitchen. Like some people paint or sing. And for me, it’s like, I just get with some vegetables and I just like have a good time and I think it’s art. So I love having dinner parties, so I would throw these huge Thanksgiving dinners. And so I knew that there was like something there between like food and community.

And so I had joined a CSA – community supported agriculture, which basically, you know, you get a share from a farmer and like every week you just pick it up. And so I’d like, go pick up, you know, a bunch of vegetables, and I’m like, “I have no idea what a kohlrabi is. Now I have four of them.” So, you know, it was just like learning and like teaching myself to cook.

Nick Schenck: [00:07:48] In a CSA you pay like a monthly fee and then like every weekend you pick up like a box of vegetables that you know was from like a farm.

Rachel Musquiz: [00:07:56] Yeah.

Nick Schenck: [00:07:56] Okay. But you don’t know what’s going to come?

Rachel Musquiz: [00:07:59] Exactly. And so it’s like at certain times in the season, you’re like, I just don’t know what else to do with eggplant, like enough, you know, but it just so happens that like for a few weeks, it’s a very abundant. Um, and then, yeah, so I mean, for me that, um, again, sometimes I think creativity comes with constraints, you know?

Like the best work is done when you’re like you have this deadline or these are your resources and then you kind of make it work. And so that’s really how it was for me in the kitchen where it was like, I didn’t choose these vegetables, but I’m going to learn how to work with them. And, you know, from there, like one of the cookbooks that really inspired me was “The Art Of Simple Food,” by Alice Waters.

And for me, that’s just like such a philosophy. She’s credited with starting the slow food movement in the United States, which is really this understanding of where does your food come from? And we should all be eating more local and organic and know where food comes from and just having a connection.

Nick Schenck: [00:08:49] Is that about like, you want to eat local because you reduce the carbon footprint tied to the food that you’re eating?

Rachel Musquiz: [00:08:55] Exactly. And, you know, when you’re eating local and organic, there’s just like such a higher concentration of nutrients. So, you know, it’s, it’s not the same as like going to a grocery store where something sat on a truck.

You know, as soon as food comes out of the ground, like that’s when it’s the most nutrient-dense and you know, when they either spray stuff on it or let it sit for awhile, it’s just degrading like what you’re going to be able to get out of it. And also it just tastes better.

Sometimes people are like, “Oh my God, you’re such a good chef.” And I’m like, literally, this is just fresh food. Like, you just haven’t tasted a tomato before, like it’s just tomato with olive oil, you know? So yeah, that I realized, just brought me joy. And so kind of a philosophy I have in life is just like, follow your bliss, follow your joy.

So I didn’t start a career as a chef for some time. It kind of was a transition of, I eventually left New York and had moved to the Bay Area and was thinking like, okay, back to California, I’ll chill here and then had this amazing opportunity to be the chef for an artist residency in Italy.

And so, you know, talk about imposter syndrome. I saw this posting, a friend had recommended it to me and she was like, “Oh yeah, you know, you’re a chef, you should apply.” And I’m like, “Oh no, I just like cooking for people.” It’s like, that’s what chefs do. I applied and I got it. And then yeah, I ended up moving to Italy, and that’s where I really honed in my craft, beause it was like I was spending every day, you know, working on it.

Nick Schenck: [00:10:31] What website do you go to, to find chef gigs at artists’ residencies in Italy? That seems like so out there.

Rachel Musquiz: [00:10:37] You got to know some people. The gal who introduced me had done it before. But actually, there are a good amount of, you know, ex-pat kind of networks of people who are in that industry.

Nick Schenck: [00:10:47] What is an artist residency?

Rachel Musquiz: [00:10:49] For what I was working on, it was mostly theater people and we lived in this old monastery and kind of had an intentional community. So there was about 20 of us.

And so we would meditate together in the morning, and then the theater people would go and kind of work on their crafts. And then there was some writers who would work on the script, and there was me working on the food. And, yeah, we spent, I think, it was about two months together. And so, yeah, a residency is typically, you know, it could be another type of art where it’s like more of, you know, painting or whatever, but it’s basically an opportunity to – it’s a container.

So everyone gets to show up for their artwork or for their creativity in whatever way feels good. And in our case, we had a theater production at the end of it, but they brought me on as, basically, to keep everyone fed.

Nick Schenck: [00:11:38] Sounds like a summer camp for adults.

Rachel Musquiz: [00:11:40] And for like hippies, yeah.

We would like go down to the river, like pick figs along the way, almost like daily. It was, I mean, when I think about it, it’s like a complete dream.

Nick Schenck: [00:11:51] And you got paid to do it?

Rachel Musquiz: [00:11:52] I didn’t get paid, but I didn’t have to pay anything. So all the food and board was taken care of. And I just had to pay for my flight there.

Nick Schenck: [00:11:59] Oh man. Sounds pretty awesome.

Rachel Musquiz: [00:12:02] Yeah. It was a pretty good like transition thing. And so yeah, I was living in Italy, kind of doing all that stuff when my visa ran out, because I was like, “I’m not ready to come back.”

Nick Schenck: [00:12:11] Yeah. That must have been a little shock, though, going from like the fast-paced life of the media world in New York City to this chill existence in Italy. I imagine you found a way somehow to adjust.

Rachel Musquiz: [00:12:24] Yeah, I mean, I think one of the things it taught me is just, I mean, it’s all like, it’s all in your head, you know, your ability to adapt to a situation, it’s like, yes, we are in these like stressful situations where there’s like tons of people, but like, there’s always a possibility to just kind of think your way out of it.

And you know, when I got there, you know, I still kind of had my like hustle and grind, you know, like, “Okay, I gotta get this and have a list and I’m going to go to the market and I’m going to get the tomatoes, and, Oh my gosh, there’s only a pound and a half. I need two,” you know? And just being in Italy, I mean, it was such an incredible lesson on the culture of just like, things take the time that they take. Italians do not care about time unless the pasta goes in the water, and then they know exactly how long eight minutes is. Other than that, Italians do not – like time is just when you get there.

Nick Schenck: [00:13:16] Which part of Italy?

Rachel Musquiz: [00:13:17] I was in Abruzzo, which is two hours east of Rome. It’s like a small region, it’s in the mountains.

Nick Schenck: [00:13:22] Okay. I want to get to probably my favorite part of the entire story. There was a time in Italy when you were walking or hiking and a cactus told you to move to Austin, right?

Rachel Musquiz: [00:13:35] That is the short version of it. But yeah, I’ll expand on that. Yes, that is true. Basically, you know, I was saying I knew that I needed to come back to the states because, yeah, legally I couldn’t stay much longer, and I was running out of money because I had originally gone for two months and then after six months I was just kind of feeling like, okay, I got to do something. I had like come with like, you know, sandals and it was now winter time. So I had spent about a month on a road trip. So I went and I visited Sicily and some other places in Southern Italy with a friend of mine. And so we were visiting and staying on different farms.

And so I ended up on this prickly pear cactus farm, and yeah, so we were there pretty offline for a few days. And I just remember like sitting there and kind of thinking and reflecting, like, now that I’ve had this experience, what am I going to do next? I can’t stay here. There’s nothing like this where I’m from. And just trying to reflect on like what it is that I love. And I just remember sitting and watching like the sunset over like a huge amount of cactuses. And then I was just like, “I’ll move to Austin,” and it was just like, one moment I was in this open space of like, what shall I do? And then the next, I mean, I didn’t think twice about it after that. It was just the next moment, that was it.

And so, yeah. Then moving forward, I moved to Austin. I was here for a while, about a year. It was on a plant walk with an herbalist friend of mine.

Nick Schenck: [00:15:05] What’s a plant walk? Like you’re foraging for stuff?

Rachel Musquiz: [00:15:09] So basically an herbalist will walk you through a space and point out the things that are edible.

So you can get to know kind of the plants that are in the region. So she was explaining part of the process of, you know, interacting with plants and like kind of introducing yourself and connecting with them. And so we, you know, had gone to a couple plants and, you know, she’d like talk about it.

And we walked up to this big prickly pear cactus. And it was like, it was like a movie of like all of these memories and all of these things just like lined up. And I was like, “It’s you. You brought me here. You brought me home.” And when I kind of did more research, like prickly pears are from Texas. I’m like, “What was a farm in Sicily, like where did those even come from?”

In some way, this cactus, you know, brought me back to Texas. I was actually born in San Antonio, so my family is indigenous to this region. And so when I interacted with that cactus again, and now every time I see, you know, the prickly pear, we feel like family.

Nick Schenck: [00:16:13] That’s awesome. Just a quick tangent, but one of my favorite shows on Netflix is “Restaurants On The Edge.” I don’t know if you’ve seen it?

Rachel Musquiz: [00:16:21] I haven’t.

Nick Schenck: [00:16:21] But it’s pretty cool. These three people with experience in the restaurant industry, they go to these restaurants in exotic locations around the world, and the restaurants are struggling in some way, shape or form.

Like they’re not getting enough customers. Their menu is all screwed up. Like they have a dilapidated restaurant, whatever. And, um, they kind of like rehab these restaurants. And at the end of the show, they show the results of rehabbing the restaurant and like the new menu, the new decor, all that. But anyways, one part of the show, um, that’s in every single episode is the guy with the chef background, he always goes to forage for ingredients that are local to the location of the restaurant. So you see him like walking through these meadows in like, Ontario, Canada, in one episode. And he’s like finding these like mushrooms, they’re just growing naturally. And he’s like, “Oh, we’re going to put this on the menu,” stuff like that.

And, um, after you mentioned that you like to go on plant walks and seeing that show kind of like made more sense to me. Right. And that’s actually, is that pretty common that people who own restaurants, food trucks, like they’ll source food by doing these plant walks and just see what’s native to the area?

Rachel Musquiz: [00:17:33] I mean, I definitely think that there is a growing amount of people who care about that. And, you know, because there’s one thing to eat local and get it from a farm. And then there’s another thing to have it wild crafted. And, you know, definitely there are people who do this ethically and you know, it’s not just like anyone should just go out and be like, you know, it’s not a free for all.

There’s a relationship of reciprocity that you build with nature. And so people who do wildcraft or forage as an industry, or as, you know, as a service, they kind of have this relationship. So they know when something’s in abundance, like that’s the time when you harvest and you never take the first, you never take the last, there’s all sorts of like, you know, things.

But chefs really start to value that because one, it tastes amazing. Wild crafted food, wild foods are like, they’re just delicious. They have a unique profile, especially like in the spring time when all of the weeds are like, all over the place. There’s just so much you can do with them. And because of the plant like having to basically fight for its life, you know, the weed is not wanted, it wasn’t planted, it’s not being watered. You know, you see them, you know, breaking up through the concrete, like they want to live. All of that energy and that survival, it translates into like just nutrient-dense food that you don’t get when you’re like having a plant that has been growing that gets watered at the same time, that gets shade. You know, it doesn’t really even have to try to survive. And so it tastes better. There’s all sorts of like health benefits, but yeah, I think a growing amount of chefs build relationships with the land or with herbalists or foragers for that reason, because when you incorporate wild food into your diet, I definitely feel like you can tell a difference. I do.

Nick Schenck: [00:19:15] Okay. I’m going to get to those differences in a second, especially with tumeric and how that made you just feel and why you think that’s so great. But after moving to Austin and not necessarily having a plan after you moved here from Italy, you bought a food truck for $13,000.

Rachel Musquiz: [00:19:32] That is, yeah.

Nick Schenck: [00:19:33] Talk about that whole process.

Rachel Musquiz: [00:19:35] I had moved here and it was kind of random. Like I said, I kind of just this idea planted in my head of like, I’ll move to Austin. So I’d reached out and my friend had a food thing going on. So I was like helping her and then kind of just getting the ropes.

I’m like, “Okay, I think I can do this.” Like, you can open up a food truck. And I had been talking to a friend, who also thought it was a great idea. And at the time, transitioning from Italy when I got back, like I had been plant-based before, it became more important to me when I got back to the States, because the quality of food, I was just like blown away, like going from like tasting like local Italian food every single day for months.

And then coming back, I’m like, “What are we doing here, people?” So I started really caring about my food and you know, when I moved to Austin, there just wasn’t like healthy plant-based options. Like paleo was a thing, but like, it definitely wasn’t a welcoming place for people who maybe identified as vegan, you know?

And so I started cooking in a certain way, and I had learned about Ayurveda a lot through the community that I was living in, in Italy. And just, it’s like, you know, when you like, see, I don’t know, like a Volkswagen bug on the street and then it’s like, you only see it always, it was like, that’s how it was with Ayurveda for me. It was like, someone introduced me to golden milk. And then Ayurveda came up in like every conversation with every stranger for months.

Nick Schenck: [00:20:53] You have to explain to our audience what golden milk is. And like, when I think Ayurveda, I think of like yoga. And so I have no idea what that has to do with food.

Rachel Musquiz: [00:21:03] Yes. Okay. I’ll come back to that. But the question is: How did I get my food truck? So all of these things were just kind of simmering, you know, these ideas of like, “Okay, I can do something with food. I love making food as medicine.” And I shared this with a friend of mine and she was like, “Yeah, you should do a food truck.”

And I started to like recipe test and I was like, “I don’t know. That seems like a lot of work, you know, maybe I’ll get a booth at the farmer’s market.” And then I was like going to recipe test. I was like looking for some fresh ginger in my neighborhood. And so I was like walking down South 1st St. and I just saw the cutest food truck ever.

And everyone listening, you should look up a picture of my food truck, because it is the cutest. It was painted teal, which was already, it just like drew me to it. And so I just ask the guy like, “Hey, I love this food truck. Like, how much was it? How did you build it out?” Like, you know, and he was like, you know, kind of answers, “Like actually I just put it on Craigslist, I’m selling it.”

And so I called my friend who had told me that she thought it was a good idea. And I was like, “I found it.” And so we pulled the money together and bought it and then two weeks later, I had like somehow pulled it together to like open up the windows and was like selling golden milk . I was still recipe testing the day I bought the truck, but like two weeks later it was on the menu as Austin’s first golden milk.

And I just kept on like adding things to the menu. I did not know what I was doing whatsoever. Uh, it was, you know, going from, you know, I used Mason jars for everything, for storage, even like learning how to like, just do things in like the restaurant way of like storing food. I was like, “Oh, okay. Cool. That’s more efficient.”

Nick Schenck: [00:22:44] What’s golden milk?

Rachel Musquiz: [00:22:45] So golden milk is a combination of tumeric and spices and usually some kind of milk. So I make it with coconut milk at the truck, and it is a tradition in Ayurveda. It’s usually drinken warm before bed.

Nick Schenck: [00:22:59] Why before bed?

Rachel Musquiz: [00:23:01] Because it has a real relaxing quality to it. So it’s a ritual. So it’s just kind of like a, you know, it’s always nice to kind of do the same things when you wake up and in the evening kind of sets your body in this more like rest and digest mode. And so tumeric is, is great for digestion and also it’s anti-inflammatory and so kind of just like your whole body just starts to kind of ease into like getting ready for bed. But tumeric is good any time of day. It’s just a really traditional recipe in Ayurveda and Ayurveda is a modality of basically the first holistic medical system. So looking at an approach of like, what are you eating? What are you drinking? How are you moving? How’s your digestion? All of those are things that an Ayurvedic practitioner would look into, not just like, “Oh, what’s your symptoms? You have a headache, take some ibuprofen.” So Western medicine is very like focused on symptoms and Ayurveda is all about the root cause. And so digestion is a really big thing. And then another big thing is like understanding your unique constitution. So in Ayurveda, basically everyone is one of three Doshas, which is your constitution. And, um, yeah, so Ayurveda is just like a method of like understanding how your body works and understanding that the goal is always balance.

And so, when you are out of balance, you start to see symptoms. Like for me, when my body’s out of balance, I’m Pitta constitution. I start to get inflammation, and that can show up in like red itchy skin or breakouts. Or sometimes I have like really painful joints, but I noticed as I started drinking golden milk, because that’s specifically good for inflammation.

That I just started to feel different in my body. Like it started to become a regular thing, and that combined with a plant-based diet, I just like, felt good in my body in a way that I hadn’t. Like when I was living in New York, it was very much like, you know, get takeout, you know, I loved making my own food, but it was like once a month I’d have a dinner party. And that was me cooking.

But it wasn’t really like I was in the habit of cooking for myself. And so once I started being intentional about it is when I started to feel better. So yeah, that’s like the Ayurvedic approach. And then the reason it’s attached to yoga is it’s kind of the same body of wisdom. And so yoga is about movement and Ayurveda is more about like diet and lifestyle. So combined, you know, the goal is to find like a life of balance. And so when you’re integrating in movement, food and lifestyle and routines, like you’re set.

Nick Schenck: [00:25:37] Yup. Okay. So two weeks after buying the food truck, you launched with golden milk.

Where was the food truck located when you launched?

Rachel Musquiz: [00:25:47] South 1st. I literally left it in the same spot. I just changed the decal. It’s just north of Oltorf, like south of Bouldin Creek Cafe.

Nick Schenck: [00:25:59] Got it. Okay. So this movie called “Chef,” I think romanticizes what it’s like to run a food truck. Um, for those of you who haven’t seen it, um, I don’t want to give away too much, but basically like Day 1 of this chef launching a food truck in South Beach, Miami, they send out one tweet and there’s like a line of like 75 people waiting to get their Cuban sandwiches. And like, I watched that, I was like, “Oh man, starting a food truck looks cool.” It seems so easy. Right? Um, and I think that’s why it’s a movie. Um, in reality, what was it like for you?

Rachel Musquiz: [00:26:33] Um, not that. I think two things were happening. It was the first time I was like, you know, being a chef and being paid for it. And also first time as an entrepreneur. And so there’s just so many lessons that come along with that. Also if we’re thinking about the population, it’s like, it’s very small amount of people who are like, “I want to eat healthy plant-based food that will make me feel better.” You know, maybe there’s people who are like, “Oh, I don’t eat animal anything.”

Or maybe there’s people who are like, “I want to feel healthy,” but it’s like,  the market I have to begin with, it’s like, I’m not selling Cuban sandwiches. So it’s a hard sell, especially when I have things like kitchery and golden milk and spirulina pesto, people are like, “What are you talking about?”

So my menu, it requires a lot of education, which is why social media has been super helpful, because people can kind of get to know what I’m talking about. So when they come, they’re already, like they’ve seen the pictures, they’ve gotten it. But, um, yeah. So I remember lots of days just like sitting in the food truck, like I really hope someone comes, you know, and then like five customers would show up and I’m like, “What am I doing? This is so hard. What have I done?” You know? Uh, so it was, it was a lot of that in the beginning. And I also opened up in July and it was my first summer in Austin. My car AC had been broken. I was like, “I’ve made a huge mistake.” Multiple times I thought that. I was like, “I don’t know what I’m doing.” And then there’s also things that come along with being a food truck, like, you know, having a gray water tank and the breaker went out and I just had to learn to also be handy and also, you know, fix leaks and get on the roof when I need to. Stuff like that.

So all while trying to hone my craft as a chef, get people to get excited about food that they’ve never heard of, and try and convince them that it was going to make them feel better. So yeah, that was kind of the beginning of it. I think what I realized early on, though, is that the personal relationships that I was building with people is like the most, it was the most important.

Nick Schenck: [00:28:37] What do you mean? Like customers who came up like repeat customers, like building rapport?

Rachel Musquiz: [00:28:41] Yeah. You know, people would be like, “Oh my gosh, my friend has been telling me about this.” And I kind of joke that, like, not everyone has heard of my food truck in Austin, but everyone’s healthy friends will like hype me up enough so that other people would be like, “I can’t believe you’re still drinking coffee. You need to try this. Get on the Matcha kick,” You know, and then they’ll send them over to me. I’m like, “I got you.” But you know, even still, you know, people come and they want to talk through the whole menu and they’re like, “Well, you know, what’s the best thing?” I’m like, you know, and my whole staff, they’re all trained as like health coaches, nutritionists, and herbalists as well, so we’re just like, “Oh, let me tell you, okay. So Maka, you know,” and we go into like all of the super foods and, you know, if you’re feeling like this, you should eat this.

 That was really important early on. And it remains just like a really important part of the experience of people coming to the truck and feeling like taken care of and also like educated. And we, you know, we were definitely, people are like, “Oh, I’m not vegan. I don’t, you know,” I’m like, “It doesn’t matter. Everyone feels good when they eat plants.” That’s where we’re at.

Nick Schenck: [00:29:38] I had a conversation with this guy named Bob, a friend of mine who runs the South By Southeast food truck, which is kind of a mix between Southern American food and then Southeast Asian food from Laos. Really good food. But I asked him, I was like, “What’s always been weird to me about food trucks is, you know, you think from the outside looking in, you think the overhead is way lower than restaurants. So why isn’t the price lower than restaurants?” And he’s like, “No, no, no, no. Like there’s a lot of things you don’t know that we have to pay for, that makes the overhead actually high.” And he kind of checked a bunch of things off the list. And one of the things he mentioned that I didn’t even think of his storage. Like he can’t buy things at bulk and get those economies of scale because he doesn’t have the storage in the truck. So the unit costs are a little bit higher. Then he’s got the propane, the diesel, um, you have to get, every city you operate in, you have to pay a fee. Talk to me a little about that from your experience.

Rachel Musquiz: [00:30:37] I probably have a little bit of a different model. Um, but for me, my prices are, some people might look at me like, “Oh my gosh, $6 for a latte.” But like I’m using the highest quality organic, non-GMO sourced, you know, ethically and sustainably. And so, there’s really not that many cutting corners. Like I make all of our milks in house. So our cashew milk, oat hemp milk, coconut milk. Uh, you know, so we put a lot of attention into it, and I think most food trucks are probably in a similar way. Like not wanting to cut corners to like make it cheaper. Because I think ultimately that’s where we’re all moving is like, “Wow, let’s pay for the quality. Let’s make it good.”

Nick Schenck: [00:31:18] Yep, what’s your top-selling item on the menu?

Rachel Musquiz: [00:31:23] It’s actually the most like traditional Ayurvedic, which is the golden milk and kitchery. So kitchery is basically like an ancient grain meal. It’s um, I make it with mung beans, quinoa, and a blend of spices. And it’s just super good for like, it’s really grounding. It helps reset digestion. You just feel like super nourished afterwards. Like people are like, “Oh, it feels like I got a hug for my guts.” And I’m like, “Cool, cool.” But you know, people say the weirdest things. I have a running list.

Nick Schenck: [00:31:50] The part you said about tumeric I thought was most interesting is inflammation. Many years ago, I worked in the NFL and I remember the team dietician always promoting to the players, foods that reduced inflammation, and like the thought process behind it was, you know, if you’re an NFL player and you’re banging against people in practice and games, you’re going to be sore. If you eat a bunch of food that’s going to increase inflammation, then you’re just going to be even more sore. And then you’re not going to feel like recovered by the next practice, the next game. Talk about like for everyday people, not football players, why reducing inflammation is important and like, what are some foods besides tumeric that help reduce inflammation?

Rachel Musquiz: [00:32:31] Well, a lot of inflammation comes from lifestyle choices, diet and lifestyle. And unfortunately our culture somehow made a collective decision that convenience was better than feeling good. And so because of that, a lot of food has tons of sugar or saturated fats, or just preservatives and all sorts of just junk that, you know, really it isn’t real food.

And so our bodies don’t know what to do with it. You know, they get the nutrients that they can and then it kind of stores it in weird ways. And, um, especially with like sugar and processed foods, that’s probably what they said to avoid. Uh, you know, it turns into inflammation and like I was saying, like, people experience that differently. Like some people in their joints, skin, but a lot of people experience that in digestion. And the crazy thing is, as I’ve gotten more into my journey, like I realized how good I feel when I’m like eating real good, like healthy, clean plants. And like, I didn’t even know that I didn’t feel good before. And so I think a lot of people are used to inflammation, especially in their gut and digestion.

And I just think it’s normal to like, feel like you need to lay down after you have a meal. Avoiding foods that are like high in sugar and all the processed stuff is like a good way to reduce inflammation, but then there’s also, yeah, tumeric is like a really great one. CBD has been a really popular one that people use. Um, but you know, there’s like the anti-inflammatory diets. A lot of people  who have auto-immune diseases really have to stick to that. So there’s even things like night shades, which is a whole category of food, like eggplants and tomatoes and goji berries, and a couple other things that, you know, if you’re a certain constitution, those things can cause inflammation.

So for me, at certain times of the year in the summertime, I know that I’m prone to inflammation even more so in the summer. So when summertime comes, I just like avoid nightshades, garlic, onions, and I start eating more cooling foods, you know? So the Ayurvedic way of like eating more things when your body already has heat, because we have so much heat on the outside, you eat more cooling foods. So you’re kind of like solving that from the inside out.

Nick Schenck: [00:34:33] Okay. How do you become so self-aware? I’m just like so focused on like day-to-day things. What do I need to get done? Whether it’s work-wise, whether it’s like, just, stuff around the house, whatever. You know, I think about my meals, but I don’t necessarily, like, I don’t keep a journal on how I feel every single day. Is that something you do in like, I guess, you know, part of your, your, your career is food. So you’re more prone to probably thinking about how food affects you, but for the average person listening to this, maybe that’s not a thing. How does that become a thing?

Rachel Musquiz: [00:35:07] I think a lot of people get turned off by like eating healthy or like having embracing a lifestyle that includes, you know, wellness and all of that, because, you know, the diet culture is very much like, “Don’t eat this, don’t eat this.” And, you know, kind of all of these restrictions.

And so the last thing that people want is just to be like told what to do all the time and feel like this is bad, I’m doing, you know? And so that is not conducive to making it into a lifestyle. So for me, you know, when I started transitioning into wanting to eat this way, I started thinking about all the foods that I wanted to eat, you know?

So I’m like making sure that I’m like adding stuff to my plate, like more greens, more steamed veggies, more local foods. Um, and so for me, that became the focus, and then I don’t really, you know, and there’s like kind of like a list of foods that I just, I know don’t make me feel good. Like I’m not celiac, but I avoid gluten because I know that, you know, especially after you’ve like not eaten it for a bit, for me, I’ll eat a little bit of gluten, sourdough not so much, but I’m just like, “Oh, I don’t feel good. I’m super bloated.” And then a week later, I’m like, “Oh, and I broke out, too. Cool.” You know, so it’s just like me paying attention to it, and sometimes it’s like, do I want this pizza or do I like my face this week? And I was like, “Okay, I’m going to eat pizza.” You know? So I just know that that’s what the consequences. And again, that’s very specific to me. Not everyone has that reaction, but to me, I just started valuing what it feels like to feel good.

And, you know, I’ve done a lot of experiments, basically doing an elimination of like all of the things. And then when I reintroduced something and it makes me feel bad, it goes into like this, you know, place in my mind where I’m like, I just don’t buy that food anymore.

And I also cook most of my food at home. And so it’s not super tempting, you know, and I think especially like right now, like everyone has to decide what they’re going to eat. Like it’s a whole thing now, you know, whether you’re making it at home or you’re ordering it or whatever. So I think that people are interested and they kind of, I truly believe that everyone has everything they need to heal inside of them.

You have your intuition, your bodies are made to be healed and healthy. And so it’s really a practice of like listening to your body and tuning in. That’s why I love Ayurveda because it gives you this kind of like general guidelines. It’s like, okay. How do you feel like, you know, like how do you feel in your body?

And you answer some questions and you get to know your constitution. And so there’s like Vata, Pitta, and Kapha. Once you have that basic things, you can kind of just start to avoid like, “Oh, I shouldn’t have spicy food or I should have more cooling food,” you know, and you can start to make those replacements.

And to me, like once you start feeling good, you’re like, “I’m not going back.” Like why would I keep eating food that made me feel terrible. And then to me, it’s also, you know, this is my creativity. So to me it’s like super exciting to like, “Oh, okay, I’m gonna, I’m going to try this this week,” you know? Or like, “I’m going to try and eat more zucchini. Okay. What can I do with it this week?” You know, put it into a smoothie instead of a banana, you know, stuff like that. So, yeah.

Nick Schenck: [00:38:12] That’s interesting. Let’s go back to the business of the food truck. Was there ever a point where you were like, “I might have to pull the plug on this thing”? Talk about that moment and like how you got past it.

Rachel Musquiz: [00:38:24] Yeah. A lot of those moments. You know, with the food truck specifically, it was very physically exhausting. This month marks four years of being open. And so the first year, I was really in it, I had some part-time help, but it was a lot of just like physical sacrifice. And like, I never questioned whether I should keep going, but I did question like, “Am I capable of this? Like, can I even do this?” And ultimately, during that time I was like, “No, I got this, I got this.” Started to find help people who like cared about the mission, so I could kind of not have to take on all the responsibilities, but even like when, um, you know, when COVID hit and I made the difficult decision to close my food truck back in March. And I closed for about six weeks. That was a really hard time for me because I felt like I had struggled so much to like, keep my windows open and to keep going and sacrificed a lot, you know, of what I wanted to do with my life, how I wanted to spend my free time that like all went into my business. But I was like, “I’m determined to like make this work,” but you know, during quarantine I was kind of like, “Um, am I going to reopen?” Like, is this, you know, I’ve really, really thought about it.

And, um, ultimately the thing that kind of kept me in it is that I really believe that people need to have this understanding that food is medicine and that there’s a way to heal yourself. Like you don’t need to follow a diet. You don’t need to follow what everyone else is telling you. Like people have access and knowledge within themselves to heal. And so that’s what my big purpose and mission is. And, you know, I got so many supportive notes during quarantine of people just like checking in on me, customers who have become friends.

Um, and I realized that this is an important part of the community. The fact that it exists, it means something and special. Um, so yeah, I also kind of went through the practice of like, “Okay. But if I can’t ever reopen, am I going to be okay?” And that really got me thinking about what else I can offer people.

And so I’m kind of working on a couple other projects of like more education resources, basically for this amazing group of people who’ve decided to like follow along the journey on Instagram. You know, people, people want to know more. And so, you know, I hope that I continue to have the food truck so that that’s a place that people can visit, but I really think of it as my storefront.

And, um, you know, I want to continue to find ways that people can interact with this mission. Um, yeah.

Nick Schenck: [00:40:57] What have you learned about yourself the most?

Rachel Musquiz: [00:41:00] Um, yeah, that’s the thing about entrepreneurship. It like really forces you to either like grow or quit, you know, it’s like, for me, you know, I’ve learned so much about, um, having more patience of, you know, I wanted things to look a certain way by a certain time.

And just like having to surrender to the fact that like, yeah, that’s just not, that’s not happening. Especially this year – 2020 has taught me a lot. I think entrepreneurship just requires that you are resilient and adaptable and like, that’s really it, you know. I think of it as a practice of like, not planning, but preparing. You know, so not saying, “Okay, my sales have to be XYZ this month and I have to, you know, whatever,” all that stuff can go out the window, but it’s like being prepared.

It’s like, I’m always prepared. I kind of keep a pulse on like, okay, if my sales are looking like this or this. And so I’m always just like ready for whatever happens and not just like inside of the food truck, but for my product line as well. I’m just like, hoping that I keep growing, but also I’ve really learned that it’s important that I enjoy the journey.

You know, it’s not worth it when you’re just grinding it out and it’s not fun.

Nick Schenck: [00:42:11] Sure. I want to get into all the different revenue streams you have beyond just selling through the food truck. But, um, you know, before we get to that, I think your background in media, has led to you doing a good job of telling the story of your brand. You’re very strong on social media. If you go to your website, you really are detailed in telling the story. And I do believe that a lot of people buy from companies because they buy into why those companies exist or they know what that company believes. They believe the same things, so they’re going to support that company. Is that something that you realized when you started like that, your story was going to have to be a big part of your marketing?

Rachel Musquiz: [00:42:53] So I definitely thought that for people to understand why I’m doing what I’m doing, they needed to know my personal story because it doesn’t really resonate with someone to be like, “Hey, you should do this so you feel better.” It’s like, “I did this and I feel better. And now I’m passionate about sharing this with other people.”

Like you have everything you need. Here’s some delicious food to support you on the way. And then people are like, “Oh, thank you.” You know? So I knew pretty quickly that like I had to share that. And I also, you know, people come to the truck cause like, they’ll come the first time because maybe a little hype, someone told them about it, but they keep coming back because of the experience they have.

And so I just got really used to just having that one-on-one interaction  with my customers. And so it was once I got comfortable doing that, it was easier to translate into like website or social media or, you know, I’ve done a few like panels and things like that because I’m like, “Oh, this is what I talked to my customers about all day long.”

Nick Schenck: [00:43:48] Yeah. And how long after you started the food truck did you start going the wholesale route and start – I think you’ve like branded products that you sell into certain grocery stores, right?

Rachel Musquiz: [00:44:02] Yeah. So the golden milk was the thing that was most popular and quickly people were, you know, asking me for tips on how to make it at home or asking if they could buy a growler of it.

And I knew that I didn’t want to get into the bottled beverage industry just cause like, it’s a whole, like thing. It’s like the hardest industry to get into when you’re talking about products. And so I started just like putting my concentrated tumeric and spices with coconut oil into like a Mason jar.

And then I, you know, I would sell it to my customers and then enough people asked about it. So then I started doing it at the farmer’s market. Um, and then kind of a big transition was when I started selling it to other restaurants, and so Soup Peddler, which is an amazing, you know, soup and smoothies shop here in Austin. Their operations manager was a regular customer, and I didn’t even really know. I don’t always ask what do you do? And so I was like, “Oh, hey, you should try some of this. Like, it’s really great in smoothies.” And so she was like, “Oh, you know, we actually do, you know, a smoothie where, you know, we donate to like a charity.

And so we did like a special, but like people just loved it. So they added it onto the menu as a permanent thing. And now it’s been two or three years, three years. So yeah, once I landed the food service account, then I was really able to like start scaling the business because, you know, to be successful as a food truck, you really like, that’s why you see most owners also as the operators, because there’s just not a ton of margin. And so once I was able to get another revenue stream, I would spend more time in the kitchen and then start delivering and then start getting more customers. And, um, yeah, so I was able to get into both retail and food service and then some of my food service accounts like Soup Peddler will also sell the paste in tubes, which people can take home with them as well.

Nick Schenck: [00:45:49] And how long after you did that, did those sales surpass the food truck sales?

Rachel Musquiz: [00:45:54] Um, I think last year it was about 50/50 because I also started doing the farmer’s market and I see that as more of like a marketing for the product. So, yes, those are all my revenue streams, though. I was doing the market, the food truck, some catering, food service, retail accounts, e-commerce and then I’ve started to do like educational stuff. So like kitchery cleanse where I like do like a 30-person community experience of like detoxing the Ayurvedic way. Um, so yeah, I guess that’s like six or seven revenue streams.

Nick Schenck: [00:46:27] When you go to bed every night, which part of your business keeps you up or is most on your mind?

Rachel Musquiz: [00:46:34] That’s a great question. Cause it definitely has changed. You know, there was a long time in which the food truck just stressed me out because I felt like the pressure to like continue to grow it and scale it and just feeling like, “Oh my gosh, I need to figure out how to, you know, keep the same quality, but make more money from this,” or like, “How do I get more customers?” And so that stressed me out for a long time, but I think where I’m at now, especially after, you know, everything 2020 has gifted us, is that like, the thing that keeps me up at night is like, how do I want to spend my time? Because each of these revenue streams I could lean into and make it like 10X it, could get so much more out of it. And so sometimes I question I’m like, “Do I really need to be doing all these things? Or should I just do the one thing?”

But what I’m most excited about is the product line that I’ve started to develop, which is like inspired by things I have on the menu at the truck.

So that product line is Luna Fixa, and I’m getting ready for a new packaging update. And I want to tell the story, not just of like, this is why you should have tumeric, but like, the story of like all the plants that are here to support us, not just like, “Here, buy this product so you feel better,” but like, “Did you know all of these things?” You know, how I talk about wild foods or just what it means to live a life that’s like connected with nature.

And to me that comes out primarily through food, but it also, it really is a lifestyle of spending time outside, you know, taking your shoes off and being connected to the earth, because when you have that feeling, it changes the way you interact with everything. You know, it changes the way you eat, because you just, you know, I mean, anyone who spends like a week out in Big Bend, they come back and like, “Why do we live like this?”

You know, it’s like, that’s the feeling that I chase. So that’s kind of what keeps me up is like, how do I keep all of these things going? Because people love my food truck. People love my products, but like, how do I make sure that I stay lit up, because if I’m lit up, it’s going to, it’s going to translate a lot more than if I’m just like, you know, trying to look at spreadsheets all day.

Nick Schenck: [00:48:35] Yeah. I totally believed that. It’s funny, you brought up Big Bend. Um, I go into these, you know, how like maybe now, or especially when I was a kid, I’d go through these phases where I’d listen to a certain genre of music for like two weeks and then I’d switch genres and like, I get stuck on it. Well, like that’s translated into how I am on Instagram.

Like for a few weeks, I’ll be like super stuck on pictures of the Caribbean and then recently I’ve been stuck on like pictures of Big Bend National Park, like Terlingua, the Chisos mountain range. And I actually I’ve driven on the I-10 out to California and back before, but I never took the time to stop in like Marfa or Terlingua or Alpine or any of those West Texas outposts.

But it’s definitely on my list. What’s that like?

Rachel Musquiz: [00:49:23] So, yeah, the first time I went to Big Bend was when I was driving from California moving to Austin. Yeah, I was like, this place is special, but, um, you know, I was like, “Oh, I’ll keep coming back out here.”

And I mean, you know, it just doesn’t, it’s just not that it’s not easy to get to, but, um, uh, Someone who – she’s now a dear friend, but at the time, um, I had gotten introduced to her because she was doing retreats and she would take people out to Big Bend. And so her and I chatted and she was like, “I would love to have your food out there.”

And so I was like, “Oh cool.” You know, so I started like kind of catering the food and then got the chance. So basically I’d make the food and she’d take it out there. And then I was like, what I need to be going on this. And so actually have catered several retreats, like a handful, um, where I’d go out and provide all the food for the people who are going there.

And so those trips are about like four or five days. And, you know, we go to the Chisos mountains and, um, Santa Elena Canyon and, you know, just sleeping under that expansive sky is like, there’s just like a quietness and a peace that you just, you don’t have in the city. And so, um, yeah, I’m just super drawn to West Texas.

The feeling of when your eyes just like adjust to the beauty. Like, again, that’s one of those things that I crave that I feel like Big Bend is an incredibly special place, but, um, I could go on forever.

Nick Schenck: [00:50:45] No, that’s great. I think, um, looking back at your story, going from Italy to Austin. You chose Austin. Do you ever think that there’s something special about Austin that’s made your business thrive?

Rachel Musquiz: [00:50:56] I definitely think that, you know, the success of my business is a huge amount of like being at the right place at the right time, you know, with the right thing. When I moved here, no one was doing golden milk, even though it was kind of becoming more trendy in like wellness circles in New York and L.A. No one had really even heard of it here. And so that, you know, I got to be kind of like on the forefront of like, “Hey, you only see this stuff on Instagram, but now you can actually try it.”

I think that was like, kind of the appeal at the beginning for some people. But I do think that Austin, well, one, it’s just a city of like entrepreneurs and people who just like want to support local and in the city.

So I think. It’s a fantastic city to be an entrepreneur in. And then specifically, there’s so many people who are in wellness and health and fitness. And so people are constantly looking for local brands that support their lifestyle. And I don’t know if it’s because the magic of Barton Springs or what it is about Austin specifically, but it definitely draws people who are wellness-minded.

And, um, for that reason, I don’t know that I would have had the success. Uh, in, in another city, like New Orleans or something. Now, I think it’s gotten a little bit more mainstream and, you know, sometimes, like I had a friend who was in like Jackson Hole, Wyoming, and like sent me a picture of a golden milk and they’re like, “It’s everywhere now.”

And I was like, “That’s awesome.” You know, you can find it in like random little cafes, but Austin’s definitely on the forefront of like, I think health and wellness trends, even with like having Paleo Effects here every year, stuff like that, people are like, always thinking about it.

Nick Schenck: [00:52:27] Have you felt the competition? Have more places popped up selling golden milk in Austin? Any food trucks that sell products similar to yours? How do you think about competition?

Rachel Musquiz: [00:52:37] Yeah, I mean, I think the people that I would be in the same category with like I’m friends, with all of the business owners of any kind of  business that’s like similar to mine, like restaurants and food trucks.

And, um, and the places that I don’t personally know the owners, like I’m a frequent, you know, customer. And to me, you know, one of the first people I met, um, her name’s Leanne and she owns Bento Picnic, um, which we’re actually just up the street from each other. And I remember like, I was just getting started and I was like, “Hi, like, you know, I’m opening up this like food truck and, you know,” and we just had an awesome conversation.

And one of the first thing she said was, you know, the rising tide lifts all ships, and she’s like, I’m so happy that you’re here and in this community, I can’t wait to see what you do. Um, And that was kind of like my introduction into like being an entrepreneur. And so I’ve continued to have that sense of community over like competition.

And there are some people like I remember there was like someone who owned a cafe that was starting to get similar and like, she’d come and pay cash. And I’m like, “I know who you are,” like, it’s fine. You know? And so it’s okay. If you can make it as good as I can, you should do that.

But I definitely think I still have the best golden milk in town, so that I’m proud of. But, um, I just don’t see it as competition because I think what people are wanting is the experience. And, you know, that’s the experience people get when they come to my truck, isn’t some something that can be replicated.

If I sold my business and someone else was running it, you know, it would probably look the same for a while, but I think there would still be a little bit of like the, I don’t know, the secret sauce that I bring to it. And so I’m not really worried about competition. Even if someone made a really similar product to mine, like, you know, I’m offering something that’s my story and my take on it.

Nick Schenck: [00:54:28] Yeah. Yeah. My thought is like, if you spend too much time worrying about things you can’t control, then it’s not a good use of time.

Rachel Musquiz: [00:54:38] Yeah. I have enough to worry about.

Nick Schenck: [00:54:39] Yeah. Okay. Five years from now, 10 years from now, if you ever allow yourself to look that far in the future, where do you want your business to be?

Rachel Musquiz: [00:54:48] Yeah, I think, you know, I think six months ago I would have had a much different answer, I think, same for most people. But, um, when I think about where I want to go.

With the food truck, I’m so happy with where it is right now. Like I don’t want a second food truck. I definitely don’t want a restaurant. So happy I didn’t go down that path. Um, I’m really excited about the product line and I think the ability to reach more people and be in their homes is very exciting.

Um, but I think, because I keep on finding myself drawn to like the education piece of it, kinda like the next big project that I’m working on is a book of Ayurvedic recipes, kind of some herbalism studies. And, you know, it’s a little bit of magic in there, too. So part of what I’m working on this summer is the book.

And so I think of where I want to be in like five to 10 years, like I would love for my business to grow so that people who believe in the mission can kind of come on and do more of the operations and help with the growth and in that part of it. And I can continue to create content that is changing people’s lives and helping them connect to themselves and to nature.

So I think in the next couple of years, that will look like a book, but I’m not sure, especially with my media background, sometimes I’m like, I could do a  podcast or some videos or, you know.

Nick Schenck: [00:56:08] Why not? You could be like the Martha Stewart of like healthy plant-based living.

Rachel Musquiz: [00:56:12] Yes, I could totally do that. I just have to get my ops down so I don’t have to be like, you know, chasing down mung beans around town.

Nick Schenck: [00:56:20] Yeah. Well, awesome. Thank you for joining the podcast. I really enjoyed the conversation. For people that are listening, where can they go to get more information on you, your products, etc?

Rachel Musquiz: [00:56:32] On Instagram, it’s at Curcuma Kitchen and at Luna Fixa for my food truck and my product line. And then websites are linked for both of that. And so you can buy the products, join a community kitchery cleanse. If you’re here in Austin, I run them seasonally. I’ll probably start doing more events when that becomes a thing again.

And then personally, I’m @Racheldrinksgold, on brand.

Nick Schenck: [00:56:53] @Racheldrinksgold on Instagram.

Rachel Musquiz: [00:56:55] Yeah.

Nick Schenck: [00:56:55] Awesome. Alright, Rachel. Thanks a lot.

Rachel Musquiz: [00:56:57] Thanks so much.