Dana Slatkin

Sweet Corn Chowder with Lotus Root (adapted from M Cafe)

Corn Chowder with Lotus RootI’m always trying to teach my kids how to have their own sense of balance. I want them to learn to appreciate the yins and yangs of life…to know when to excel and when to exhale.

It’s not always an easy lesson. But we know that incorporating balance wherever possible can improve our well-being and even our health. It can moderate stress and boost our immunity to disease. Apparently it can help our cooking taste better, too.


I learned this while preparing for my class on Macrobiotic Cuisine, which I taught last month with Yuta Tsunoda, the spirited and visionary owner of the popular M Café chain here in Los Angeles. In macrobiotic cooking, whole grains, vegetables, fruits, nuts and fish form the basis for a holistic, unprocessed diet. Only natural sweeteners are permitted, but dessert is encouraged a few times a week. As Mr. Tsunoda explained, “Balance trumps everything.”

There’s a delicious equilibrium to macrobiotic cooking. Take this creamy corn chowder, for example. Completely vegan, it’s a perfectly calibrated mix of salty and sweet, land and sea, light and luscious.

Fresh lotus root is worth hunting for at your local Asian grocery or farmers market. The starchy tuber adds a crunch of the unexpected…especially when deep-fried into chips. I like to sprinkle mine with truffle salt…a big improvement on oyster crackers, for sure!

I also discovered dulse, a type of seaweed that comes in granules. A sprinkle adds natural saltiness and a briny twist to soups, salads, even pasta.

One glance at the glowing young beauties that frequent M Café and you’ll be tempted to give your life a complete Macro makeover.

Or you can just take it one slurp at a time.

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Here are some more slurp-worthy soups for Spring (all vegan):

Photo credit: MyRecipes.com

This post may contain affiliate links. Though all content is unsponsored, some items mentioned editorially may have been provided at no charge to the author.

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