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Book details
  • Genre:COOKING
  • SubGenre:Regional & Ethnic / Asian
  • Language:English
  • Pages:240
  • eBook ISBN:9781483522609

Lao Cooking and the Essence of Life

by Xaixana Champanakone

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To understand Lao cooking one needs to understand all things Lao. This cookbook is about the Lao attitude towards life which makes it a universal book about Cooking-and-Life. For the use in daily life it guides the reader to go about cooking in a relaxed and recreational way, Cooking Meditation. The way Lao people cook to nourish body and soul is nothing other than an extension of their ‘being’, going about life with ease and humility.


The Lao Way of Living, so intimately in touch and in tune with nature, will lead you to an understanding of the Lao Way of Cooking. The chapter LAOS Today is a start; after that get into details with Cooking Meditation. Here I make an attempt at interpreting, i.e. translating into and explaining in English, Lao cooking terminology and the characteristics of various dishes. These terms are forever fluid, overlapping and interchanging, truly reflecting the easygoing way of Lao life, the unimportant-ness of it all. The cooking of food, like everything else in Laos, reflects the easy and immediate reliance on nature as guide and provider; never doubted, never questioned. It had not occurred to me to write a cookbook pontificating about Cals or Carbs. Mine is nothing other than an instinctive, open minded approach to the Lao way of cooking which happens to be so simple and sensible, ever so healthy and fulfilling. In the pursuit of writing I came to understand this highly effective way of cooking that enables you to thoroughly enjoy your food and still lose weight naturally. You will be doing it easily while living an exuberant, classy gourmet lifestyle instead of enduring self imposed dieting torture, and practicing cooking meditation in the process - food for body and soul. I do not claim to have the most refined taste buds in the world, far from it, which allows me to take a relaxed and fun approach to cooking. After all, for me it’s all about practicing meditation, ‘to do what I am doing with consciousness’, applied contemplation - pure Buddhism. Have the courage to set out on your own, and you will increasingly gain confidence. The Lao approach their cooking with light hearted intuitiveness, easy fun creative innovative instant joyful healthy. Would not all of us like to approach our entire life in the same way!

About the author

Born in Venezuela in 1952 and christened Vincent Fischer-Zernin by my German parents, my life’s journey has led me across continents, peoples and religions to Laos where I have become Xaixana Champanakone.