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Finding Yourself in the Kitchen: Kitchen Meditations and Inspired Recipes from a Mindful Cook
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Finding Yourself in the Kitchen: Kitchen Meditations and Inspired Recipes from a Mindful Cook

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4.08  ·  Rating details ·  167 ratings  ·  29 reviews
Many books teach the mechanics of cooking and even inspire us to cook; not many dwell on the kitchen's ability to be a place of awakening and joy. In Finding Yourself in the Kitchen, Dana Velden asks you to seek deeper meaning in this space and explores what cooking can teach about intimacy, failure, curiosity, and beauty.

Finding Yourself in the Kitchen is a book of
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Hardcover, 272 pages
Published September 8th 2015 by Rodale Books
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Average rating 4.08  · 
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 ·  167 ratings  ·  29 reviews


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Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
Nov 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
The idea of meditation is comforting but daunting for many people. How about meditating in the kitchen? Dana Velden proposes that, for many of us, that is what happens when we cook, and that, for many of us, meditation in the kitchen is something we can easily do better. I love how Velden offers extremely simple ways to move more of your eating habits away from restaurant eating and into home cooking. I also love how she takes away the stresses that we often impose upon ourselves as we cook, and ...more
Nick Klagge
Oct 11, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: cookbooks
Tough for me to rate this book. On the one hand, I love Dana Velden--one of my favorite food writers--and I think almost everything she wrote in the book is great. On the other hand, I'm not sure how well it works as a book.

Probably like most other readers, I got to know Velden's writing through her "Weekend Meditation" blog posts. These are nice, fairly short, thoughtful sketches of ideas related to food and cooking--mostly the emotional or personal aspects, how these things fit into the
...more
Alyssa
Jan 25, 2016 rated it it was amazing
There is just not a better word to describe this book than lovely. As a person who loves cooking, it is so refreshing to read the musings of another cook. It really does just make you want to knock on Dana's back door and pop in for tea. I'm sure she'd be super creeped out by a bunch of strangers doing that, but you know what I mean. Her writing style is casual and easy to read. It flows as if you're chatting with a best friend. There are yummy looking recipes sprinkled throughout with ...more
Jenna (Falling Letters)
I picked this book from my library's selection of 'new addition' ebooks. I was not familiar with Velden's online presence prior to stumbling upon this book. I really enjoyed the mindfulness perspective on cooking and the experiences that surround that. Velden brings two of my favourite interests together. I hope I can remember her words when I work in my kitchen. The bite size pieces that make up this book would make it a nice book to have handy in the kitchen, to pull out and read a few pages ...more
Dawn Hicks
Feb 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This kitchen book (NOT cookbook, even though there are a few recipes) was an experience. At times it brought me so much self-reflection I had emotional responses. I learned to make an amazing curry and shared it with my husband, who also loved it. If you feel lonely, lost, or just in need of inspiration check this out. I really enjoyed it and it made me think about why the kitchen is so important to our lives.
Julie
Oct 18, 2019 rated it liked it
Not what I expected.
Karen
Aug 21, 2017 rated it liked it
A nice book about finding yourself and becoming aware of many aspects of life from the point of view of feeling comfortable in the kitchen.
Abi
Mar 12, 2020 rated it really liked it
sweet and soothing read, changing how I look at cooking both for myself and others. A feel good weekend read!
Kris
Apr 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
Enjoyed this book. It was intimate, like a conversation with another cook in the kitchen.
Rose Read
Jul 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
A lovely book about cherishing the time spent in the kitchen.
Michele
May 29, 2019 rated it really liked it
Enjoyable read with recipes
Emily
Mar 11, 2017 rated it really liked it
A book I'll go back to for the recipes and for words of wisdom.

If you love cooking and spending time I. The kitchen, this is for you.
Susan
Sep 16, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads
I received this book from a Goodreads Giveaway. An honest review was requested in exchange for winning the giveaway, but was not required.

This book combines the musings and insights of the author as she contemplated the intersection of being Mindful and going about her daily life. Much of daily life involves preparing food for oneself or others, and it's in this sphere of daily life that the book is focused on exploring mindfulness.

Some recipes are included but it id's not a cookbook. As a lover
...more
Anastasia
Zen in the kitchen this book was written for me! I really loved the reflections, delivered in short bites, that slowly explored just about every aspect of what goes on in the preparation, enjoyment, sharing and cleaning up after eating and how we can do it more mindfully not because we should but because the heightened awareness is a meditation that can mine the pleasure inherent in any activity done with presence.

I look forward to baking my first tart in the pan left to me by a friend from
...more
Julia
Sep 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This is a beautiful collection of essays, about two of my favorite topics: cooking, and finding yourself. I really liked the way the book was set out, into three main sections, each full of wonderful essays. I've always belived in the idea that learning something, such as meditaiton, doesn't help you unless you can bring it into all aspects of your life - in other words, if the only time you are benefiting from meditation is when you are actually mediatating, well, that's now how I think it ...more
Jacqueline
Apr 05, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: digital
Short, easy to read mediations on living in and out of the kitchen. That TOTALLY should have been the blurb on this book. It's ok. I tried two of the recipes and, yes I substituted a bunch of stuff in them (because that is what people do), they were pretty good. She writes for Kitchn.com so the chapters feel like short blog posts. Did it change my life, no, but this is one of those books that maybe you need to hear her say it to make a difference in your life. Honestly, I'm just jealous that I ...more
Erika
Jan 25, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: spirituality
This is an absolutely beautiful collection of exactly what the title says: kitchen meditations and recipes. I loved the author's careful examination of the kitchen and the practice (like meditation) of preparing food. Rather than regulating cooking to the following of instructions or the perfecting of techniques, Dana Velden contemplates the heart of cooking and the movement towards greater intimacy with the physical world, with our mind and with other people. I loved sinking into the carefully ...more
Rachel Blakeman
Jun 28, 2016 rated it really liked it
The author wrote weekly essays for The Kitchn, which is one of my favorite food blogs. I always looked forward to them on Sundays so I was delighted when she wrote a book. I did not spend enough time with this one as I read it to reflect on what she had to say, but it had a strong zen, meditative quality. I didn't make any of the recipes (they weren't that interesting to me), but I enjoyed this quick read.
Susan
Oct 01, 2015 rated it really liked it
NOTE: I RECEIVED A HARDBACK COPY OF THIS BOOK IN A GOODREADS GIVEAWAY.

This book delighted me! So many times during my reading, I wanted to get up and go into the kitchen and make something -- and I can't cook. I loved the thoughtfulness espoused throughout this book, and I found it inspiring in terms of cooking and bringing mindfulness to the rituals of daily life. I plan to read it again after I've had time to, ahem, digest this time. Thumb's up!
Carol
Mar 04, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2016, 2017
Great book! Not really a cookbook....more of meditative reading related to the kitchen. This is a book I will reread over and over to remind myself to slow down and enjoy the gifts of daily living. Highly recommend! I have said this before but it is worth repeating...I love the County Library system! I find the best books when I stop in and pickup what I have ordered online and browse the new additions shelf. I find things I might never have heard of. Great resource for all!
John
Oct 30, 2015 rated it really liked it
For as much time as I spend working in the kitchen this was a great read. I've already incorporated different ideas in this book into my own life. I constantly have lemons on hand, and when in the middle of making a large dinner with Alyce, we make sure we stop for 30 seconds, hold each other, close our eyes and take in the moment with all the smells, and sounds.
Rebecca Irving
Jan 10, 2016 rated it really liked it
I loved this author's perspective.
Her suggestions and priorities were refreshing, relatable and encouraging
The writing was sometimes uninteresting but not enough to stop reading
It reminded me of, "The Japanese Art of Tidying", for food!
Claudia
Nov 04, 2015 rated it really liked it
Easy read with great recipes - tried several already
Tamara
Enjoyable read about applying meditation practices to your time in the kitchen.
Randi
May 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I love when friends gift me books that speak to my soul. This was one of them, and I can't wait to pick it up periodically again.
Laura Hodgins
Mar 15, 2016 rated it really liked it
Really enjoyed it!
Linda Jamison
rated it it was amazing
Mar 18, 2016
Samaire
rated it liked it
Apr 15, 2017
Sharon
rated it it was amazing
Jan 10, 2016
Susan
rated it it was ok
Oct 11, 2015
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Dana Velden is a writer living in Oakland, California. Before Oakland, she lived at the San Francisco Zen Center for 15 years. Before that, she was born in Chicago and raised in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Clearly she is a very lucky person.

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