Leanne Citrone - Founder of UDEA WELLNESS


We sat down with longtime friend, social media chef, and holistic nutritionist Leanne Citrone to chat all things food, the scents that define her approach to cooking, and the grounding rituals she relies on to unwind. . . .

RUKSKE : When it comes to food and cooking, do you gravitate more toward bright, zesty scents or deep and savory? 

Leanne : The recipes I share and even the simple weekly meals I make for my family are always driven by seasonal cooking; you can find me at my local farmer’s market basically every week! I love working with foods that are in season. That’s always when they’re at their tastiest and ripest, and when their scents and flavors really get to show through. 

With food, no scent feels off limits for me! Because I share so much of what I cook online, bright, colorful, and visually stimulating foods are what I gravitate toward, and those always tend to embody such incredible and unique aromas. I do think that scent determines so much about a dish and the experience of preparing it. When it’s in the oven and you start to get a hint of what it’s going to smell like… as a chef those are the moments that feel special and full of possibilities. 

RUKSKE : What’s your essential RUKSKE scent to burn when entertaining friends at home? 

Leanne : Hands down, all the way, 100% of the time - I’m burning the scent Willow because that’s my daughter’s name. I also grew up in England and willow trees are so prominent there; when I light this candle it just feels like home. As a kid I also had a cat named pussy willow (ha!) so it’s a word that’s followed me throughout my life and I love how the scent brings up so many happy memories for me. 

RUKSKE : You live in Los Angeles, a city known for its diverse array of food and hotspot dining scenes. What’s the best meal you’ve ever had here? 

Leanne : So much about my best meal depends upon the scene I’m in. Who am I with? How’s the lighting? Is there a dimly lit candle on the table? Are we yelling at each other in order to chat? But, of course, the food plays heavily into the experience as well. 

I adore Botanica in Silver Lake. I think I’m just so in love with that super fresh, zingy, seasonal flavor that’s present in every one of their dishes. In my mind the dishes I create are the “home version” of that. Another favorite is Antico Nuovo. Their food (and ice cream) is amazing. This is always such a tough question for me because my dream meal is a three hour dinner that ends with hot water and fresh mint. :) 

RUKSKE : So, that being said, what would you say are the key elements of an amazing meal for Leanne? 

Leanne : Friendship, time, love and care. At the core, that’s why I cook. It fosters all of these feelings, it creates memories, it offers new experiences! I do a “supper club” with a friend (it’s not lost on us that this club only has two members) and we’ll end up having a three hour dinner together just talking, enjoying our meals, and soaking up the moment. 

RUKSKE : Okay, here’s a quick one: Ordering food in or going out to eat?

Leanne : Going out! Always! 

RUKSKE : Tell us about your favorite at-home ritual with RUKSKE

Leanne : I know this sounds simple but it’s always so nice just to *have* candles in your home. I think there’s something incredibly welcoming and warming about walking into a room that has a candle burning. I love to keep a candle next to my sink in the kitchen. In the evenings after I’ve finished cleaning up, I’ll light my candle and it creates this calming opportunity to exhale and wind down for the day. 

Stay lit. 

Guest: @leannecitrone                                                                                             Photo: @magdawoskinskastudio

Share this post