My culinary pillow book is a blog on food cultures, travel and beautiful things. It has been inspired by two very different sources: One is a book and the other is a chef. The original Pillow Book was written around the year 1000 AD by the Japanese noble woman Sei Shōnagon. Now it is one of the classics in Japanese literature. Her writing is fascinating, because she combines all sorts of stories, poems and lists on the beauty or profanity of life. This is exactly what I want to do with my blog.
Hence, my pillow book samples all kinds of stories on food, cities and the people I meet along the way. There will be posts on restaurants, dishes, styles of cooking, stories of people, places, art and aesthetic experiences of all kinds.
Food doesn’t end on the plate, because it is deeply rooted in human culture and connects all aspects of human life. That is why I want to give you an idea how exciting and complex the world of food actually is. Above all, I want to show you how much one can learn about people just by eating with them.
These pages are dedicated to la dolce vita. Most of the encounters happen on my conference trips, because I work as a philosopher and travel lot. This gives me the wonderful opportunity to see places where tourists rarely go. Even better: I get to eat with locals. Since many of my travels take me to Asia, there will be quite a few stories from that part of the world. But not only! Ultimately, gatherings around the dining table always give rise to the most interesting stories and new friendships, no matter where you are!
On my trips I experience food in a very personal way. That means, I eat with with people in order to get to know them and their culture. The first thing I do is asking my friends and colleagues to take me to their favorite places. Those places are not made for tourists. I want to know which food reminds them of their childhood or warms them on cold winter days. Sometimes I ask, where they would take their date or their granny for her birthday. And I listen to their stories.
This approach to food is indebted to my second inspiration for this blog: The late chef Anthony Bourdain. He was a travelling TV-chef with a love for people, culture and a badass foodie. I admire him because of his courage and empathy. I will take you on a wild ride of crazy foods and the stories of people who eat them or cook them. Sometimes you might need a strong stomach to digest, what I’ve been tasting for you.
Love Travels Through the Belly
I am a passionate chef myself and love hosting dinners with friends. These days I’m practicing my skills in cooking Korean dishes. Seoul has been my second home for some time, this is why I miss the city a lot. Every once in a while I crave dishes from there or other places I visited, so I recreate them at home.
I have found so many delicious things and so much beauty in the world, that I just can’t keep it to myself. Therefore, my aim is to show you the richness of food cultures, the strong connection of culinary traditions with people, their culture, art and fashion. There’s no need to fear exotic food for it’s always people just like you, who eat it.
If you want to find out more about the philosophy behind these little pieces of writing, please visit my homepage.