07 April 2011 by Denise Slabbert

The Cake the Buddha Ate - More Quiet Food

The Buddhist Retreat Centre (BRC) in Ixopo, first published a selection of recipes in 2005 under the title Quiet Food - a Recipe for Sanity. Louis van Loon, who runs the BRC with his wife Chrisi says that Quiet Food first emerged as a response to the numerous requests from visitors to the KwaZulu-Natal retreat centre for their recipes. He says, ‘For many people in South Africa, particularly in those early 1980’s, it was their first exposure to excellent vegetarian food. Those early recipes were hand-written on paper serviettes, which were photocopied and stapled together.  Eventually, due to increasing demand, they were stapled together into a booklet, called Essie in the Kitchen - after our chief Zulu cook at the time.  After a number of other clumsy versions, Quiet Food was our properly-printed collection of recipes that had been accumulated at the BRC over a period of 25 years’.

The good news for Quiet Food fans is that there’s a new book coming out titled: The Cake the Budda Ate - More Quiet Food (published by Jacana).

Van Loon explains,  ‘A lot happened to the food served at the BRC since the publication of Quiet Food.  When chef Daniel Jardim joined us - the food was ratcheted up several levels.  He revised and added to the recipes served at the BRC.’ The new book consists not only of recipes, but also contains anecdotes about the retreat, photographs, poems and haikus by a number of contributors.

The Cake the Buddha Ate is more than just a recipe book.  It also features the place where those recipes were created: Buddhist Retreat Centre. It is a very special place. And the book therefore also features the beauty of the place and the fascinating workshops that are conducted here’, says Van Loon.

The Cake The Buddah Ate - More Quiet Food will be available nationwide from 8th April, from all good bookstores or online from sales@jacana.co.za

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