The Buddhist principle of “ahimsa,” or doing no harm, fit with the ancient Chinese tradition of vegetarianism perfectly, as Chinese Buddhists, unlike other types of Buddhists, were uniquely prohibited from killing animals. Because vegetables, beans, fruits, and cereals are very nutritious, the lifestyle is very kind on the body, allowing one to focus on other aspects of a Chinese Buddhist lifestyle such as meditation. It also offers health the benefits that come with avoiding meat consumption, such as lower cholesterol levels and–for some–improved energy levels! The Chinese never incorporated dairy products, such as milk and cheese, into their diets, so Chinese Buddhist foods tend toward veganism.
Kian Lam Kho, a chef and writer specializing in Chinese cuisine, is well-versed in the art of Chinese Vegetarianism, and is gracing us tonight to share with us tips and tricks on how to compose dishes that adhere to the lifestyle. Although, there are multiple interpretations of Buddhist Vegetarianism, this class doesn’t restrict the cooking to any particular school, allowing us to experiment and explore different perspectives that allow us to piece together the styles that suit us best! In this class, you’ll learn to make authentic Chinese vegetarian dishes using traditional techniques, basic Chinese knife skills, and how to incorporate texture and flavor into the dishes in new ways! Imagine you’ll get the added benefit of being one step closer to a meditative plane, after experiencing a whole new kind of vegetarian cooking!
Recipes:Chinese Eggplant Salad, Daikon & Garlic Chives Salad, Gung Pao Tofu, Crispy Fried Mushrooms with Five-Spice Salt, Braised Seitan with Chestnuts, Multigrain Rice with Bamboo Shoots & Shitake Mushrooms
Class Type: Individual, hands-on cooking class
Class Notes:Clean, kind food, it’s the Chinese Buddhist way!
Kian Lam Kho is a chef, food writer, teacher, and food consultant specializing in Chinese cuisine. He is the creator of the Chinese home cooking blog Red Cook and is one of the authors of Knack Chinese Cooking: A Step-by-step Guide to Authentic Favorites Made Easy. He lives in New York City and teaches Chinese cooking at the Institute of Culinary Education and the Brooklyn Kitchen. He appears regularly as speaker and discussion panelist on Chinese cuisine and its history. He is a frequent guest chef and caters private ten-course Chinese banquets known as Red Cook Private Chinese Kitchen.