Shojin ryori. When you yen for Zen.
Shojin ryori is vegetarian Japanese cuisine prepared based on Buddhist teachings.
Introduced from China with Zen Buddhism in the 13th century, it was originally eaten only in Buddhist (particularly Zen) temples. Then it gradually spread among the common people and evolved to suit Japanese tastes.
The dishes mainly consist of grains and vegetables and don’t include meat. However, nutrition is rounded out by the addition of processed soybeans for protein and vegetable oil for energy. Some of the processed soy ingredients, such as tofu and miso, are now common in Japanese home cooking.
Eiheiji Temple, one of the main Zen temples in Fukui Prefecture, serves an original chilled sesame tofu with miso sauce that is popular. Other famous Shojin ryori dishes served at the temple include fried kurumafu (roasted wheat gluten and flour) and ganmodoki (deep-fried tofu containing thinly sliced vegetables).
Hakujukan Inn near the front gate of Eiheiji Temple offers not only accommodations, but also Eiheiji-supervised Shojin ryori and Zen experiences such as seated meditation. It’s the perfect place to experience the world of Zen.
■ Eiheiji Hakujukan (Fukui)
For details, visit: https://www.hakujukan-eiheiji.jp/en/index/
- Shojin ryori. When you yen for Zen.