The Calm of Cooking
A new series of videos celebrating mindfulness in the kitchen
I am excited today to share with you a new project of José Andrés Media, (or as we call it, JAM!) It’s the media arm of my company, the place where we make this Longer Tables newsletter, my Longer Tables podcast, and also the James Beard Award-winning podcast Pressure Cooker hosted by Jane Black and Liz Dunn.
Our newest project, which went live this week, is a short video series called Silent Chef. Produced for the sleep and meditation app Calm, the videos feature the amazing Michelin-starred chef John Fraser and celebrate the connection between cooking and mindfulness.
John lives on the North Fork of Long Island, where he has his award-winning restaurant North Fork Table & Inn. Each of the three journeys that he brings us on in the videos revolves around a central ingredient—tomatoes in the first, chèvre in another, and oysters in the third—that John sources locally, and brings to his kitchen to create a beautiful meal.
The idea of this series is about more than just cooking, though the food that John makes is beautiful (and he actually shared one of his recipes, for a cherry tomato pomodoro, below!)…it’s about the peacefulness and joy that we can all find in the kitchen. Making food can be an act of mindfulness and self-care, and a way of showing love for those around us. I feel that way when I cook for sure.
Maybe, with all the multi-tasking and scrolling we do, cooking can help us to be present in the moment, to focus on simple tasks, and to quiet some of the noise of our busy lives. Cooking also brings us closer to the source of the foods that nurture our bodies and our minds. It’s a gift not only to those who eat what we prepare, but to ourselves.
I hope you’ll love these videos and that they bring you a little closer yourself and to the people who sit around your tables!
Oh—and if you want to make John’s tomato sauce in the last video, he shared his recipe below. It’s the heart of tomato season, so get cooking!
John Fraser’s Cherry Tomato Pomodoro