Myra Kornfeld

Myra Kornfeld

Date:: December, 2011

Myra Kornfeld is an innovative chef and the author of The Healthy Hedonist Holidays; A Year of Multi-Cultural Vegetarian-Friendly Holiday Feasts, The Healthy Hedonist; More than 200 Delectable Flexitarian Recipes for Relaxed Daily Feasts, and The Voluptuous Vegan: More than 200 Sinfully Delicious Recipes for Eggless, Meatless, and Dairy Free Meals.

The Spice Mistress is honoured to welcome Myra Kornfeld as the focus of this month’s Pancha Q.

Myra is also the Head Chef and Content Manager of, a food and healing website and she teaches classes in ethnic, classic, and vegetarian cooking at The Natural Gourmet School of Health and Culinary Arts and the Institute of Culinary Education in New York City. She has been a guest instructor at numerous schools including the New York Jewish Community Center, Classic Thyme in New Jersey and at Sur la Tables around the country. She frequently teaches individual and group private classes and coordinates cooking parties.

She is a frequent contributor to Vegetarian Times and has contributed articles to Natural Health magazine and Organic Style. A veteran restaurant chef, recipe developer and editor, private chef and menu consultant, Myra worked for six years creating innovative vegan cuisine at New York’s Angelica Kitchen.

1. How do you begin your day?

Myra: I drink a glass of water, take a shower, jump on my “cellercizer” urban rebounder for 20 minutes to ½ hour (unless I’m going to attend a yoga class), meditate for a while, then eat a good breakfast. I feel centered and relaxed and ready to start the day. (This routine works best if I have not indulged in “Crimes against Wisdom,” described in question #4.)

2. What’s one piece of life changing health advice you can share with others?

Myra: Can’t help myself, I’ve included three:

  1. Maintain balance both in eating and in other activity. When I’ve lost my footing (with an ice cream attack for instance or, like last night, too much food and drink at a holiday party), I make sure to get back to good habits as soon as possible. My body recovers fast if “out of balance” doesn’t last too long. Nowadays, when I’ve worked hard for more than a few consecutive days, I make sure to schedule in a less hectic day in order to regroup. This way, despite the inherent nuttiness of a freelance life, I avoid burnout.
  2. I put good quality food as a high priority. I spend a minimum of 20 minutes (certainly more when possible) savoring each meal, including breakfast. One of life’s little pleasures is my steaming mug of puerh tea.
  3. I’m convinced that maintaining a sense of lightness (it goes without saying that a wicked sense of humor helps) towards all that comes my way is essential for the best of health. To be sure, this one is a work in progress.

3. What’s one thing that gives you hope for the future?

Myra: The wonderful people that I’m constantly encountering.

4. Any lifestyle ‘Crimes against Wisdom’ (Prajnaparadha) that challenge you?

Myra: Staying up way too late. I relish the early morning – it’s when I have the most energy. Still, I find many things pulling me to keep me up way too late too often, making it difficult to get up early.

5. A moment of beauty that inspired you today?

Myra: Today, while shopping at the vibrant New York Union Square greenmarket, I ran into and had a soulful conversation with a friend that I have not seen in years. Near us, sitting regally, was a large and beautiful dog.

Thank you for the interview, Myra. Om Shanti!

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