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A Sumptuous Gathering of

Seasonal Recipes, Culinary Poetry,

and Literary Fare


By Myra Kornfeld and Stephen Massimilla


March 29, 2016 -- In COOKING WITH THE MUSE: A Sumptuous Gathering of Seasonal Recipes, Culinary Poetry, and Literary Fare, co-authors Myra Kornfeld and Stephen Massimilla explore the full potential of a complete seasonal cookbook, one that celebrates real food and the rich cycles and traditions behind it. Here the glories of fresh ingredients, nutritious cooking, and delectable dishes are honored as never before.


This 500-page cookbook features 150 recipes with more than 200 full-color photographs, dishes inspired by cuisines from around the world. Reflecting the cooking instructor Myra Kornfeld’s background in real foods traditions and nutrition, these dishes highlight fresh, local ingredients and encourage the use of seasonal produce, wild seafood, traditional fats, and meat from pasture-raised animals. This book is also Paleo-friendly and gluten-free-friendly throughout—while remaining a delight for omnivores. All the recipes have been thoroughly tested and are easy to follow. They will appeal to casual and experienced cooks alike.


Thanks to Stephen Massimilla’s venerable career as scholar and poet who also lectures and teaches about food, history, and the environment, he revels in the culinary and literary cross-fertilization of cultures. Compared to other seasonal cookbooks, this volume has extraordinary added value: interesting and beautiful literary pieces about food, cooking and eating, each treasure perfectly paired, like a fine wine, with each dish.


COOKING WITH THE MUSE draws on culinary wisdom from not only from contemporary American cooks and nutritionists, but from many traditions and eras—from the ancient Greeks and Romans to the Bible, from the medieval Sufis to the Japanese, from the great Romantics to a dazzling pageant of modern “food” writers.


Befitting their emphasis on fresh ingredients, the recipes are presented in sections honoring the seasons, starting with Autumn, where such crops as corn, apples, eggplant, and squash are celebrated. Whether delighting in the authors’ “Cranberry-Glazed Roast Turkey,” or their “Blackberry Parfait” paired with the deliciously lyrical “Blackberry Eating” by Galway Kinnell, readers will experience the rich flavors of this savory season.

William Blake once wrote, “In seed time learn, in harvest teach, in winter enjoy.” The Winter section features a scrumptious range of healthy comfort food dishes to hunker down with—from “Nut-Butter-and-Jam-Stuffed French Toast” to a “Shepherd’s Pie with Colcannon Topping.” It offers vibrantly spiced Moroccan dishes that will awaken the wintry palate.


The great writer Rilke observed that “Spring has returned. The earth is like a child who remembers many poems.” In this section, verdant Spring recipes revolve around artichokes, greens, asparagus, and peas, in dishes such as “Mediterranean Asparagus Ricotta Frittata” and “Warm-Hearted Pea Cakes.”


In Summer, succulent fruit abounds, even in the meat recipes. Enticing teasers by Pablo Neruda, Robert Frost, and many others garnish recipes for everything from the sumptuous “Seared Tuna with Purple Potatoes and Cherry Tomato Sauce” to lush desserts, such as the “Peach-Indigo Blueberry Crisp.” Together with the recipes, the photographs and writing are food for thought, the eyes, and the heart, enhancing every morsel.


As Myra Kornfeld and Stephen Massimilla write in one of the essays in their book, “Here the cycles of the day, the year, and our lives are celebrated alongside works about food: food that entices, food that inspires, food that nourishes and sustains us.” Both a culinary and a creative achievement, COOKING WITH THE MUSE is a perennially seasonal feast for the senses, a delectable journey that nourishes the body, mind, and spirit.


About the authors:

Myra Kornfeld is a chef, educator, and the author of three previous cookbooks, The Healthy HedonistThe Healthy Hedonist Holidays, and The Voluptuous Vegan; she teaches in the graduate nutrition program at the Maryland University of Integrative Health and The Natural Gourmet Institute, and is the head chef for the website She specializes in team building events and cooking parties.


Stephen Massimilla is a poet, critic, and professor who teaches literature and values pertaining to food; his honors include a Stephen F. Austin University Press prize for The Plague Doctor in His Hull-Shaped Hat; the Bordighera Poetry Prize for Forty Floors from Yesterday; the Grolier Poetry Prize for Later on Aiaia; and a Van Renssalaer Award, selected by Kenneth Koch. His work has appeared in hundreds of publications, and he teaches literature, food ethics, and writing at Columbia University and the New School.


COOKING WITH THE MUSE: A Sumptuous Gathering of Seasonal Recipes, Culinary Poetry, and Literary Fare

By Myra Kornfeld and Stephen Massimilla

Published by Tupelo Press

Hardcover, ISBN: 978-1-936797-68-4

Price: $34.95

512 pages with 150 recipes

200 full-color photographs with cooked dishes photographed by Michael Grimaldi and ingredient shots photographed by Stephen Massimilla

Illustrations by Francis Estrada

Publication Date: April 1, 2016

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