Good Food from a Japanese Temple

Good Food from a Japanese Temple

by Soei Yoneda

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Recommended by

Sarah Hodge

Food writer and cookbook reviewer

Written by a Zen abbess in Kyoto, this sadly out-of-print gem is my bible for shojin ryori, the elaborate vegan cuisine of Japan’s Buddhist monks. Shojin ryori is about balance, reflection, and nutrition, and also relies on elaborate plating and appearance. The helpful line drawings and gorgeous color photos with suggested plating is immensely helpful if you find yourself thousands of miles from the nearest monastery! Menus are arranged seasonally, from sansai (mountain vegetables) in spring to sturdier root vegetables and preserved dishes in winter. Another modern winner is Danny Chu’s “Shojin Ryori.”