I’ve been travelling or living abroad for the last seven years, so I haven’t been able to own much stuff. I’m also a minimalist at heart. A lot of clutter really stresses me out, because it just feels a bit superfluous. I think it’s important for things to have purpose and practical use. Knick-knacks? No, thank you.
In the last couple of years I’ve started using more reading technology like my Kobo and an iPad, because it allows me to have limitless books at my fingertips when I travel. BUT! There are certainly some things, some books, that just demand a tactile experience. For me, that’s cookbooks. Though it hasn’t always been that way.
Until recently, I’ve been using my flour-caked fingers to double check a recipe in the middle of baking. It wasn’t until living with my previous roommate and seeing her use sauce-covered cookbooks that I realized how enjoyable and important that experience is.
I think this change also has to do with my recent discovery of a practice called Intuitive Eating. I’ve struggled with my relationship to food for over 10 years, but now I’m starting to find more freedom and flexibility through this approach. Basically, (big surprise here) Intuitive Eating involves actually listening to your own body, understanding your hunger cues and being fully present while you eat. It’s unbelievable how much of a difference this has made for me. (I’m still making my way through Intuitive Eating: A Revolutionary Anti-Diet Approach by Evelyn Tribole, Elyse Resch, review to follow.) But in the meantime, buying an actual, hardback, glossy-paged cookbook has been so helpful in getting me slow down, disconnect from the world, and reconnect with what I’m eating. But let’s also keep it real here, it’s another kind of delicious to eat a bowl of pasta and watch Selling Sunset, so I refuse to count that out entirely. I can’t say I’ve been perfect with the Intuitive Eating approach, but the best part about the practice is that it’s forgiving. If my already stained copy of Plenty by Yotam Ottolenghi is any indication, I’m on the right track.
So how about you? Do you use actual cookbooks? Or do you utilize digital formats for everything?