Seamus Mullen has blended his expertise as an award-winning chef, his childhood spent on the family farm in Vermont and a personal health crisis into a new book that may be the first gourmet publication to truly celebrate food as medicine.
Hero Food (Andrews McMeel 2012) is the culmination of Mullen’s personal journey after his diagnosis 5 years ago with rheumatoid arthritis, a disease that affected his ability to withstand the stressful demands of his chef-restaurateur’s role. Research led him to pinpoint how 18 key ingredients in the diet could improve his quality of life. The book’s subtitle distills his philosophy to an essence: “How Cooking With Delicious Things Can Make Us Feel Better.”
Hero Food is divided into four sections that address seasonality in food. Each is prefaced with a very thoughtful look into Mullen’s personal ethos about food. Like seasoning, his words purvey flavor to the recipes that follow and marry them seamlessly. “Seamus’s ‘heroes’ are real food, elemental things like good meat, good birds, eggs, greens, grains, and berries. He cares about how his vegetables are grown, how his fruit is treated, and about the freshness and sustainability of the fish he uses. His hope is that you will eventually forget about why these recipes are good for you, and that you’ll make them just because they taste good,” says the Web page for the book.