On Saturday afternoon, we were honored to join CC members, Chef Tim and Nancy Cushman of o ya, and Ten Speed Press in welcoming Elizabeth Andoh to Boston for a cooking demonstration and tasting based on the concepts of Kancha Cooking.

From Elizabeth’s website, “Kancha, ‘appreciation’, is an expression of gratitude for nature’s bounty and the efforts and ingenuity of those who transform those gifts into marvelous food. The spirit of kansha, deeply rooted in Japanese Buddhist philosophy, can be experienced and practiced by anyone, anywhere. Kansha encourages us to prepare nutritionally sound and aesthetically satisfying meals that avoid waste, conserve energy, and preserve and sustain our natural resources. Follow this link to the on-line culinary classroom that was created to enable all who wish to practice kansha cooking.

Regardless of one’s own cooking philosophy, ethnic background, religion or moral code, I think the concepts of Kancha cooking resonate with everyone who shows respect for food. They are also very relevant to chefs and restaurateurs who are trying to conduct a sustainable business in difficult economic times. Limiting waste (in the form of water, vegetable scraps, heating energy) defrays costs and is more environmentally friendly in the long run – and that’s something we can all get behind.

How do you save energy and resources while cooking? If you attended Elizabeth’s talk, what did you take away from it? Let us know in the comments below.