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Kyoto

Toshio Tanahashi

“I would like people to experience shojin cuisine using their five senses. Explanation is all very well, but true understanding does not come without listening to the silent voice of vegetables. You must put effort into facing the things that you cannot see with your eyes or hear with your ears to find an answer. That is Buddhist cuisine.”

It’s the return of vegetable whisperer, Toshio Tanahashi… For Toshio, shojin-ryori isn’t just a matter of technique, but a spiritual experience that he hopes will lead towards greater understanding of the way we view our food and our dietary habits. Introduced to Kyoto monasteries by the Chinese in the 7th century, this entirely vegetable based style of cooking is all about “moving forward whilst respecting the old, and keeping oneself pure.” Toshio is a true master of his art and his sesame tofu, painstakingly ground by hand in a traditional suribachi, is one of Carousel’s all-time classic dishes.

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