Shojin cuisine and cooking class

 Sanko-in in Koganei

Sanko-in in Koganei

There aren't too many places were you can eat vegan food in Tokyo, but recently the number of vegan cafe and vegan restaurants has dramatically increased and we've been trying quite a few. Yet to enjoy Shojin cuisine, there are still very few places. There is the most famous Daigo we went to last February, that provides the highest end of kaiseki shojin cuisine with a real unique experience. Then Itosho. Both being on the Michelin with respectively two and one star. Then there are a few temples providing a simpler experience, more rustic, but also interesting. Lucky enough there is one of these temples close to where I work: the Sanko-in and when I have visitors I like to take them there for lunch, for them to experience something different. At the Sanko-in you can eat some vegan buddhist cuisine in a budhist temple. Entering the temple and walking to the back building where the dining room is, is already setting the tone: quiet, simple and peaceful. The dining room is very simple, a little kitsch, but the chef and her assistant are really nice and welcoming (it's run by two ladies). The cuisine uses seasonal ingredients of course and their famous matured tofu in miso, something close enough to a creamy cheese. The chef also prepares tea to accompany the lunch and it is a rare chance to enjoy macha and susuricha for my foreign visitors. A place I recommend if you don't have the chance to go to Koya-san, or if you want to learn Shojin cuisine. I will enroll soon to her cooking class!

 Pictures courtesy of Sanko-in website

Pictures courtesy of Sanko-in website

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Ah! She also recommended me a book on Shojin cuisine that Soei Yoneda, the previous chef-abbess from the temple wrote. It is unfortunately not edited anymore but thanks to amazon I got my hands on one and should receive it soon!!!! Can't wait!!! 

When A. is out

When A. is out

Summer plate

Summer plate