Have you ever thought about how the preparation of food can affect the energy that the food imparts during a meal? Think about the emotion poured into the cooking in the movie “Like Water for Chocolate”, but on a smaller, more every-day scale. Different kinds and styles of cooking, at different temperatures, create a different “energy” in the meal. Consider the following types of preparation
- Cooking on high heat, and quickly and stirring often – a stir fry
- Cooking on low heat, slowly, without stirring
- Pressure cooking
- Tossing, mashing, pureeing, stirring, kneading
- Cold or raw food
- Heated or well cooked food
Each one imparts its own properties on the food, regardless of what is actually being prepared. And the cook has their own contribution to make, adding the essence of the their physical and mental state to the equation.
As with any activity, being mindful and fully present in the cooking process can not only help produce a great meal, it can also promote a sense of well-being. Food nourishes the body, but it can also nourish the soul. Bring on some good vibrations – find enjoyment and peace in cooking.
Which Cooking Method to Choose?
This depends on many things – you, your mood, what you need, and of course what you may have on hand in the kitchen. It also depends on if you are cooking for others, and what might be beneficial for them. All methods of cooking help to break food down for easier assimilation. For people with digestive difficulty, cooking is generally more beneficial than eating food in its raw state. While most raw fruits and vegetables contain more nutrients, for bodies which struggle to break food down properly, digesting them can be a taxing proposition.
The method you choose may simply be part of the recipe, but there are always choices. If you are serving friends and family, it could be interesting to try and match the style of cooking to the people who are partaking of the meal:
- The more quickly something is cooked, the more activating and stimulating it will be – this is a good choice for stagnant, tense person.
- Cooking on a low heat for a long time, without disturbing will have a more calming quality – consider this for calming someone who is angry or impatient.
- Adding time, pressure, salt, oil and heat to the equation will make the energy of the meal more concentrated, giving it a strengthening and hearty energy – try this for an inactive or weak person who has lost their joie de vivre.
- Tossing, mashing, pureeing, stirring, and kneading help to blend and energize the food – use to stimulate a weak digestive system and a desire for a more enjoyable life.
The cook’s attitude matters too – your energy will find its way into the food, regardless of how you cook! Cooking is a great opportunity for mindfulness – enjoy.
Sources for this article include:
- Healing with Wholefoods, Paul Pitchford