Wednesday, September 07, 2005

Zen and the Art of Cooking by Jon Sandifer

Taken from the fabulous book, Zen and the Art of Cooking by Jon Sandifer

Too much water: If we continually use too much water in our cooking the food can turn out limp and soggy. The ultimate expression of the Water phase would be eating raw food exclusively, which would suppress or negate the presence of Fire in the preparation. Too much water food in general will put out the Fire in our chi.

Too much fire: Naturally, if we overcook our food then it will take on the qualities of the Metal phase and become dry, burnt, and brittle. A good example of this is burning our bread when we meant to only toast it.
too much metal: Overcooking our food ultimately destroys the essence of Wood chi-the freshness that Wood energy brings to our food.

Too much wood: If our food is consistently cooked for too short a time it does not allow the richness and the mellowness of the Earth element to evolve.

Too much earth: If we consistently prepare meals that are cooked slowly over a long period of time this style can prevent the "essence", represented by the water element, from coming through. Such a dish is likely to have only one overall flavor and may not reveal the hidden qualities of the different ingredients.

"If you care enough for the result you will almost always attain it" -William James

I believe this to be true, that when cooking take the time to prepare what will nourish both your stomach and your soul.

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