I’m intrigued by the idea of eating all of my meals out of a single bowl. Not only would it reduce the tableware in my cabinets; I think it would make me more mindful, and more appreciative, of what I put in my body.
My ideal one bowl menu would look something like the following:
Breakfast: oatmeal. I don’t think there’s a more perfect minimalist food than oatmeal (or porridge, as they say here in the UK). It’s simple, it’s satisfying, and best of all, it has so much potential. Oatmeal is like a blank slate: simply add what you like according to the season or your mood. Some of my favorite “embellishments” include brown sugar, cinnamon, honey, blueberries, and cranberries (not all at once, of course!).
Lunch: hiyayakko. I discovered this simple, delicious dish a few years ago in Tokyo. It consists of a cold block of tofu, topped with green onions, dried tuna flakes (optional if vegetarian) and soy sauce. See this site for some (mouth-watering) photos and more details.
Snack: yogurt. I eat this every afternoon to keep healthy bacteria in my digestive system. I’ve been buying it at the store, but would someday like to make my own.
Dinner: steamed vegetables over rice. I’m happy to eat this perfectly plain, as I love to savor the individual taste of each vegetable. DH, however, has a more sophisticated palette than I do—so we usually add a sauce like Thai green curry, or ginger and garlic. Other dinner options would be a hearty soup, or a bowl of pasta.
I don’t think one bowl eating would be too difficult, and am hard-pressed to think of any favorite meals that require a plate. I also like the connection to Zen philosophy; itinerant monks used to carry one bowl to satisfy their need for sustenance while pursuing their spiritual path.
I imagine that eating from a single bowl would focus my attention on the contents—to contemplate it, celebrate it, and be thankful for it (instead of taking it for granted).
I would also have to wash it directly after each use, so that it would be ready for the next meal. No more dirty dishes piling up in the sink!
I’d love to hear about your favorite minimalist meals, and your thoughts on one bowl eating!