"Most cooks try to avoid reading reversed cards. With every card in an upright position, ingredients can be assembled in the order they will be used and instructions can be clearly understood." - Corrine Kenner
The Epicurean Tarot Recipe Cards is an unusual offering by Corrine Kenner, author of Tall Dark Stranger and Tarot Journaling (1/06). These cards-designed to nourish your body, mind and spirit-come in a sturdy, attractive box that stands vertically on a base.
Measuring approximately 6 ½ X 4 ½ inches, each glossy card features a Universal Waite Tarot card (approximately 2 ½ x 3 ½ inches), corresponding recipe, and amusing notation about the card as it relates to the recipe.
The 35-paged booklet that accompanies the Epicurean Tarot Recipe Cards offers several ways to use the "deck", including:
* Active meditation
* Learning the Tarot
* Preparing a magical meal
* Hosting a Tarot pot luck dinner
* Assessing lifestyle and spiritual nourishment
* Brainstorming for creating additional recipes
The companion booklet also provides traditional meanings for each of the 78 cards.
For the Major Arcana, Ms. Kenner has selected recipes inspired by the card imagery-almost as if the characters had chosen favorite recipes to share with the world. The Minor Arcana recipes reflect the essence of the four suits: Wands recipes (Fire) are spicy and hot, Cups recipes (Water) call for seafood or fresh fruit, Pentacles (Earth) recipes feature homegrown vegetables and hearty meats, while Swords (Air) recipes call for chopping, cutting, slicing, dicing, and spearing.
Some of the tempting recipes featured in the Epicurean Tarot include:
* The Fool's Caramelized Nuts
* 9 of Cups Beer-Cheese Soup
* 4 of Cups Crab Cakes
* Queen of Pentacles' Welsh Rabbit
* The Charioteer's Jerky
* The Tower's Banana Flambé
* The Moon's Lobster Bisque
* 7 of Swords Midnight Snack Dip
* King of Wands' Jabanero Salsa
* 10 of Pentacles Chicken and Dumplings
* Ace of Swordfish Baked in Parchment
Most of the recipes serve four-six people (depending on portion size), with readily available ingredients.
Epicurean Tarot Recipe Cards would likely appeal to gourmands and Tarot enthusiasts alike. Many of the recipes don't appeal to me, but there's no accounting for taste. It's evident that Ms. Kenner has put a lot of effort and thought to the gustatory correlations of Tarot imagery, meaning, and elements.
What would have made this offering even better is if it would have featured original, whimsical Tarot cards (think Housewives Tarot) rather than the Universal Tarot. For example, the cover of the box shows the Magician wielding a wooden spoon and a wire whisk; carrying this type of motif throughout the cards would have made for quite a unique experience! Still, the Epicurean Tarot reflects originality and enthusiasm-and there's nothing on the market (that I know of) that's like it.
(Note: I found two mistakes in the companion booklet. The 2 of Swords was referred to as the 2 of Cups and the King of Cups was referred to as the King of Wands.)
(To see 2 card images from the Epicurean Tarot, visit the Reviews--Decks section at [...])