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Reviews by: Pete

10 Lessons in How to Market Your Food Idea

Posted

Pros: 10 great case studies on those that achieved their dream business

Cons: focuses on those that made it and doesn't do enough to remind people how difficult it is to succeed

Are you a backyard barbecue warrior with a great sauce you want to try and market?  Maybe your friends tell you that you should sell that granola you give as Christmas gifts, or maybe you've created a new food that meets the needs of a niche market that hasn't been exploited yet.  Well, before you even consider trying to turn your item into a product found in stores across the nation, I suggest you read "Cooking Up a Business" by Rachel Hofstetter.   Rachel offers up "case studies" of 10 individuals (and couples and partners) that successfully turned their passion for food into big money as they navigated the slippery slope of launching and marketing a new food product;...
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A Solid Foundation

Posted

Pros: small class size, very hands-on, great location

Cons: very expensive

First off, a disclaimer; it has been 20 years, this year, since I graduated from NECI (New England Culinary Institute) in 1994.  In that time the school has changed a lot.  The restaurants I worked in no longer exist, but in their place newer, more high tech kitchens have been built.  The school has also expanded their offerings.  When I was there your only choice was their Associates degree.  At the time they did not offer a pastry and baking concentration, nor did they offer a Bachelors degree, both of which they offer now.   Two things that drew me to NECI, and which are still important tenets of the education system there, were the small class sizes and...
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Simple Food, Beautiful Book

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Pros: Simple, back to basics recipes are presented in a beautiful book with delicious results

Cons: For some people, the recipes may seem a little "old school."

I recently had the joy of picking up "The German Kitchen" by Christopher and Catherine Knuth and I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised.  The book's tag line is "Traditional Recipes, Regional Favorites and that is exactly what the book offers the reader.  You won't find recipes that require you to source fruits from Asia or strange grains from South America.  There are no treatises on how to make a foam that holds up or on the use of hydro-colloids in cooking.  What you will find though are recipes with a firm foot in both the German and European tradition.   Yes, the recipes may be a little "old school" but that doesn't mean they are boring.  With...
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What's Old is New Again

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Pros: wonderful recipes from across the globe

Cons: this book is more about using yogurt in recipes than making it

Originally released in 1978, "The Book of Yogurt: An International Collection of Recipes" by Sonia Uvezian was just recently re-released to entice a whole new generation to look beyond the breakfast table and see yogurt as a vital ingredient that can be used a whole range of dishes and in many different ways.   In the 35 years since it was first released, Americans have connected with cuisines from around the globe and have incorporated many of their foods into our every day lives, yet we still don't often see yogurt as anything but a sweet, fruity dish best served at breakfast or frozen and served as dessert.  Sure, we all know that yogurt is a healthier alternative to sour...
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Fermenting Foods-Now Even Easier

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Pros: their "waterlock" system makes fermenting foods almost fool proof

Cons: heavy for its size and not real easy to clean

In recent years people have been rediscovering the joys of home food preservation.  Not only can people purchase local foods, at their peak of ripeness, but by preserving their own foods, people know exactly what is in it, and more importantly, what is not in it, i. e. no chemical preservatives.  Along with this new found love of preserving has come renewed interest in fermented foods, one of the oldest forms of food preservation.  In the fermentation process, food is submerged in a brine, which allows beneficial  bacteria to produce lactic acid, souring the food, while harmful bacteria, molds and fungi, are kept at bay.  This is the method in which both...
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