Australian chef, gardener, culinary instructor and cookbook author, Rodney Dunn moved from the bright lights of Sydney to Tasmania to convert a 19th century schoolhouse to run The Agrarian Kitchen Cooking School. He followed it with The Agrarian Kitchen, a cookbook born out of Dunn’s search for “renewed connection with the food we eat.” He focuses on cooking nourishing, flavorful dishes while pursuing sustainable practices like zero-kilometer food. The recipes, divided into chapters named after seasons, are a sumptuous mix of soups, salads, breads, desserts, and infused teas. Vignettes about Dunn’s struggle to get the farm and restaurant up and running, his abiding influences like Alice Waters and Paul Bertolli, the support and encouragement of his wife and co-founder Severine Demanet, and his gratitude to the wisdom of the original people of the land make this a mindful read.
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Dunn writes about how cooking and eating can be mindful by:
- Choosing seasonal and local produce
- Foraging and gardening, which renew connections with nature
- Making nourishment and taste the focal point of cooking