If you have not yet invested in a copy of Miriam Hospodar's Heaven's Banquet, you are missing out on a veritable treasure chest of knowledge on ayurvedic cooking.
What do you generally find in a cookbook? An introduction, a list of commonly-used ingredients, some basic techniques and the recipes themselves, right? Of course. But if it's Miriam Hospodar's Heaven's Banquet you're looking at, the 700 international recipes are a bonus. The real treat is the crisply-written treatise on the art of eating for good health the ayurveda way. One would, in fact, go so far as to say that inside these sumptuous pages, you might just discover your own recipe for a more flavorful and healthy life.
A recipe for life? That's right. You'll sense something delicious coming right from the first page, when Hospodar starts to speak about how food enlivens the body's inner intelligence. "Nature's intelligence," observes the author, "creates orderly growth and change, ensuring that kittens grow into cats, not elephants, and that when you plant an acorn it will always blossom into an oak tree, not emerge as a cornstalk." The approach promises both breadth and depth beyond what you'd find in most cookbooks.
And Hospodar keeps that promise throughout her 600-page book. Trained extensively in the principles of diet and health care, Miriam presents the Maharishi Ayurveda approach to diet and food so delectably that it is a pleasure to savor, both for the newcomer and the well-versed.
There is such a thing, says Maharishi Ayurveda, as eating for bliss. And it is not difficult to achieve, either. The secret is in discovering that your dietary requirements are different from anyone else's on earth.
To explain this approach, Hospodar introduces you to the fascinating concept of body types: your unique combination of cosmic energies that sets you apart from every other human being. How the three doshas — Vata, Pitta and Kapha — affect and are affected by what you eat; how you can understand your unique dosha type; and what you can do to eat foods that will keep your doshas happy. You will find answers to these and other questions in Miriam Hospodar's book.
The gift of this author is her ability to present the principles of ayurvedic nutrition like a best friend sharing a delicious secret that is easy to grasp and difficult to keep to yourself! Her simple yet appetizing recipes will make you want to share your newfound secrets of healthy cooking with friends and family.
The fare here is all vegetarian, but the sheer variety of menus and recipes — many hundreds to choose from — is sure to make you reach for the ladle and the frying pan.
Heaven's Banquet is available in both hardcover and softcover.
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