I don’t usually talk about cooking on this site, and this will certainly be the start of it. As an edibles gardener, I love food of course, and when I’m visiting Dan in the rainforest, I get a chance to experiment with different recipes in his relatively spacious kitchen. I’d have to admit that I’m not quite as adventurous when I’m in Singapore, and eat out more often than not.
I also have some food allergies (including dairy, capsicum, and I suspect, gluten) which means I have an increased vested interest in the food I consume. Shojin Ryori, or zen temple cuisine, suits me well as I find it to be quite a clean diet, and I have been looking for a good cook book on this subject, since it’s somewhat of a rare treat that I get to have only when Enso Kitchen chef, Danny Chu is in town to do his seasonal sessions four times a year.
Fortunately for me and his other fans, Danny has just launched a book of Shojin Ryori recipes – Shojin Ryori, The Art of Japanese Vegetarian Cuisine. I was at his private book launch yesterday (a day after the public launch at Books Kinokuniya) and got to sample some of the food featured in the book.
I didn’t realise there was food, so I was pleasantly surprised. I wanted to eat more but I had to practice some self-restraint, I didn’t want to look too greedy. Here are the yummy morsels – Watermelon Jelly, Eggplant with Goma Dressing, and Yurine Citrus Balls.
Others looked pretty delighted with the food and drinks, as well as books.There is so much to love about the book. Other than its lovely visuals, which made me feel hungry (in a zen way), the recipes are straightforward and not the least lengthy. The book makes food look like art, and it’s obvious that it was thoughtfully put together. A highly recommended read, and one that I will reference very frequently through the years.A very necessary photo with Danny.The cookbook is available at all good book stores, and even on Amazon, see the full list here. If you wish to be informed of upcoming Shojin Ryori sessions in Singapore, sign up to email notifications at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The other book I’m absolutely hanging for is Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s River Cottage Light & Easy: Healthy Recipes for Every Day, which features gluten- and dairy-free recipes. I might just pre-order it on Amazon… Also, I can’t wait for the TV series that will be based on this. Oh yes, more recipes to add to my (very limited) repertoire.