Takenogosho-style shōjin cuisine

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Shōjin cuisine is Japanese vegetarian cooking as the tradition of Buddhist temples.

The monzeki convent Donge-in Temple in Sagano, Kyoto is known colloquially as the Bamboo Palace (Takenogosho). The culinary style of princesses of the imperial family and noblewomen who joined the temple and became nuns known as monzekis was a tradition that has been carried on for over 600 years since the Muromachi Era.

It was Soei Yoneda, who arrived from Donge-in Temple to become the first abbess of Sankō-in, who brought this unique style of shōjin cooking to the Musashino region and gave it roots here. This is a style of cooking that has the gentle, elegant and refined nuances of the cuisine served to the imperial family, plus the directness and simplicity of Zen religious life. In the eighty years since they were brought to Koganei, these traditions have been protected and carried on for three generations: through abbess Kōei, who focused much of her efforts on globalization, and Kōshun, Kōei’s chosen successor.

Sankō-in is the only place that offers the tastes of Takenogosho’s style of shōjin cooking to the general public. This is a cuisine simple and elegant, and abundant in seasonal flavors.


photo:Akira Moriyasu

Head Chef Kōshun Nishii


photo:Akira Moriyasu

Inheritor of the shōjin culinary tradition of Kyoto’s Takenogosho. At the age of 16, Chef Nishii traveled to France to learn cooking and pastry making. Upon her return to Japan, she hosted French home cooking classes and wine tastings in Roppongi at Pot-au-feu Salon; she was widely covered in TV and magazines as an expert French chef under the name Aya Nishii. She was a regular on the NHK show Today’s Cooking. She authored many books on French cooking and herbs.

In 1993, desiring to hone her Japanese cooking skills, Chef Nishii apprenticed to Kōei Hoshino, the abbess of the convent Sankō-in in Musashi-Koganei. Now, in addition to preparing the shōjin meals that are served to guests at this same temple, Chef Nishii teaches classes in shōjin cooking, showing her passion for spreading the traditions and keeping them alive.

To make a reservation, please contact by phone through the number on the Directions and Contact Information page.

“Kōei Tofu”: Sankō-in’s unique creation

This tofu is enhanced by the subtle flavor of saikyō miso, and carries a hint of cherry wood smoke.

This smoked tofu was perfected by the temple’s abbess, Kōei Hoshino, and is lauded as a food unparalleled in shōjin cuisine.

With the recipe perfected through the years, this tofu is considered on par with Okinawan tofuyō or Chinese fermented bean curd, and can be enjoyed by itself, or paired with rice, saké, or wine.

We accept orders for delivery by mail.

◎Kōei Tofu  110g  JPY1,200 (tax inclusive)
Miso-flavored smoked tofu
Contains domestically produced soy beans (no genetic modifications), bittern (MgCl2 produced from sea water), and miso

◎To place an order
We accept orders by fax, and will mail it through a cash-on-delivery system (additional delivery charges will apply).
We require a week between receiving orders and sending them out. Please take this into account when placing your order.
To place an order, please print the form below and fill out your address, name, phone number, and the number of boxes you wish to order.

「香栄とう富」申込書 Please print this document out to place an order. (Form in Japanese only)