Monday, November 29, 2010
Tuesday, November 23, 2010
Pumpkin Pie Crunch
Cooking up a Classic Christmas - FRP, Inc. - Nashville, TN
Home Again, Home Again - The Junior League of Owensboro - Owensboro, KY
1 (16-ounce) can solid-pack pumpkin
1 (12-ounce) can evaporated milk
1 1/2 cups sugar
4 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 (2-layer) package yellow cake mix
1 cup (2 sticks) butter, melted
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease the bottom of a 9x13-inch baking pan. Combine the pumpkin, evaporated milk, sugar, eggs, pie spice, and salt in a bowl and mix well. Spoon the pumpkin mixture into the prepared pan.
Sprinkle the cake mix evenly over the top of the prepared layer and drizzle with the butter. Bake for 50 to 55 minutes or until golden brown. Let stand until cool. Garnish with whipped topping and chopped pecans. Store in the refrigerator.
San Francisco Entertains - The Junior League of San Francisco - San Francisco, CA
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1 cup rolled oats
2 large or 3 small Granny Smith apples, peeled and coarsely chopped
2 large or 3 small Fuji apples, peeled and coarsely chopped
1/4 cup golden raisins (optional)
1/4 cup slivered almonds or chopped walnuts (optional)
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon orange juice
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon or pumpkin pie spice
Mix the flour, brown sugar, 2 tablespoons granulated sugar and the salt in a large bowl. Combine with the butter in a food processor and pulse until the texture of coarse meal; you can also mix with a pastry blender. Add the oats and mix with your fingers to form large moist clumps. Chill in the freezer.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Toss the apples with the raisins, almonds, 1/2 cup granulated sugar, the lemon juice, orange juice and cinnamon in a large bowl. Spoon into a 2-quart baking dish and top with the oats mixture. Place on a rimmed baking sheet and bake for 55 to 65 minutes or until golden brown and bubbly. Cool for 10 minutes. Serve with vanilla ice cream or frozen yogurt.
Mocha Bundt Cake
Bay Fêtes - Junior Service League of Panama City - Panama City, FL
1 (2-layer) package yellow cake mix without pudding
1 (6-ounce) package chocolate instant pudding mix
1 cup vegetable oil
3/4 cup water
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup vodka
1/4 cup coffee-flavor liqueur
1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
1/4 cup coffee-flavor liqueur
confectioners' sugar to taste
For the cake, combine the cake mix, pudding mix, oil, water, sugar, vodka, liqueur and eggs in a mixing bowl. Beat at low speed for 1 minute. Beat at medium speed for 4 minutes, scraping the bowl occasionally.
Spoon the batter into a nonstick bundt pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 60 to 70 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in the cake comes out clean. Cool in pan for 10 minutes. Invert onto a wire rack. Pierce the top of the cake with a fork.
For the glaze, mix 1/2 cup confectioners' sugar and liqueur in a bowl until a glaze consistency. Spoon the glaze over the warm cake. Let stand until cool. Dust with confectioners' sugar to taste.
Monday, November 22, 2010
Apple Walnut Dressing
Savor the Seasons - Junior League of Tampa, FL
1 pound Italian sausage, casings removed
2 cups finely chopped onions
8 garlic cloves, minced
4 ribs celery, finely chopped
1 cup sliced mushrooms
1 (14-ounce) package stuffing mix with sage and onions
1 cup chopped walnuts
8 sprigs fresh Italian parsley, stems removed and leaves finely chopped
4 sprigs fresh sage, stems removed and leaves finely chopped
1 cup chicken stock, or to taste
1 Granny Smith apple, peeled and finely chopped
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Brown the sausage in a skillet, stirring until crumbly. Remove the sausage to a bowl using a slotted spoon. Drain and discard all except 1 tablespoon of the pan drippings. Add the onions, garlic, celery, and mushrooms to the reserved drippings and cook until the vegetables are softened, stirring frequently.
Add the sausge and mix well. Spoon the mixture into a large baking dish. Add the stuffing mix, walnuts, parsley, sage and chicken stock and mix well. Add the apples and mix gently. Bake for 30 minutes or until brown on top.
Yield: 6 to 8 servings
Ever wondered what the difference is between these two items that accompany a holiday turkey? The two are basically the same, but stuffing is often placed in the cavity of the turkey, while dressing is served on the side. In the Southeast, people usually call it dressing, while in the Northeastern United States, it's referred to as stuffing.
Sweet Potato Casserole
Country Green Beans
Recipes Worth Sharing - FRP, Inc. - Nashville, TN
A Taste of the Good Life: From the Heart of Tennessee - Saint Thomas Heart Institute- Nashville, TN
1 pound fresh green beans
1 teaspoons low-sodium beef boullion
1 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1 onion, sliced
1 teaspoon olive oil
Wash beans; trim ends and remove strings. Place in saucepan with remaining ingredients; cover with water. Cook, covered, until beans are tender and liquid is absorbed.
The Illustrated Encyclopedia of American Cooking - Favorite Recipes Press - Nashville, TN
2 eggs, separated
2 tbsp. flour
2 tbsp. sugar
2 tbsp. melted butter
1 can white cream style corn
Beat egg yolks; add enough milk to make 3/4 cup liquid. Stir in flour, sugar, butter and corn. Beat egg whites until stiff peaks form; fold into corn mixture. Spoon into buttered 1-quart casserole. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour. Serve immediately. Yield: 6-8 servings
Friday, November 19, 2010
Read on for the recipe and tips from our friends at Publix Supermarkets on how to truss and carve your main dish.
Stop and Smell the Rosemary - Junior League of Houston - Houston, TX
1 1/2 bunches each fresh thyme, sage, basil, and oregano, coarsely chopped
1 1/2 teaspoons each dried thyme, sage, basil and oregano
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon freshly ground pepper
1 fresh turkey (12 to 14 pounds)
2 small onions, cut into 1/4-inch slices
2 carrots, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
2 ribs celery, cut into 1/4 pieces
2 leeks, cut into 1/4-inch rounds
2 cloves garlic, sliced
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
2 tablespoons minced fresh sage
2 tablespoons minced fresh thyme
2 tablespoons minced fresh basil
1 tablespoon minced fresh oregano
1 clove garlic, minced
freshly ground pepper
Jalapeno and Cranberry Jelly or Mexican Cranberry Sauce (recipes below)
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Mix fresh herbs, dried herbs, butter, salt and pepper. Rub into turkey cavity. Stuff onions, carrots, celery, leeks, and garlic into cavity. Truss with string. (Instructions below.) Rub outside of bird with olive oil. Place on a rack in a roasting pan. Roast 30 minutes.
Herb Butter: Combine butter parsley, sage, thyme, basil, oregano, garlic, salt and pepper in a small bowl. (This can be refrigerated up to 4 days, but bring to room temperature before using.)
Reduce oven to 325 degrees and brush turkey with half of Herb Butter. Roast another 30 minutes and brush with remaining Herb Butter. Continue to roast, basting occasionally with pan juices, until thigh temperature measures 170 degrees on a meat thermometer, about 2 1/4 hours. Serve with Jalapeno and Cranberry Jelly or Mexican Cranberry Sauce.
Jalapeno and Cranberry Jelly:
6 jalapenos, seeded and quartered
2 1/2 cups cranberry juice cocktail
7 cups sugar
6 ounces liquid fruit pectin
1 cup distilled white vinegar
red food coloring (optional)
Place jalapenos and cranberry juice in blender. Process until jalapenos are finely chopped. Combine jalapeno mixture with sugar in a large Dutch oven. Bring to a full rolling boil. Add pectin. Return to a boil. Cook 2 to 3 minutes. Add vinegar and food coloring if desired. Cool. Spoon into sterilized jars and refrigerate.
Mexican Cranberry Sauce:
1 can (16 ounces) whole berry cranberry sauce
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
1 jar (10 1/2 ounces) hot jalapeno pepper jelly, preferably red
Combine cranberry sauce, cilantro, and jelly in a small saucepan. Cook over low heat, stirring often, until jelly melts. Cool. Spoon into sterilized jars. This will keep for several months in the refrigerator.
Trussing a Turkey:
Use a piece of butcher's string three times the turkey's length. Place the string underneath the center of the back, breast up and tail closest to you. Pull the string around the bird, binding its wings to the body. At the base of the breast cross and wrap it around the legs' ends, tying tightly so the legs cross. Lift the bird to a tail-up position and wrap the string around the tail, closing the cavity. Again place the turkey on its back, bring the string to the front, and tie it off.
Carving a Turkey:
Choose a very sharp or electric knife to carve your turkey; you will also need a special fork with two long prongs. Cut the meat against the grain to achieve even, eye-appealing slices of turkey. Begin with a cut where the leg and breast meet. Use the fork to pull the leg away from the body as your cut continues down to the point where the thigh meets the body. Slice through the joint to remove the leg and thigh.
Place the leg skin-side down and find the point where the thigh and drumstick meet; cut along the joint to separate. Repeat on the opposite side. Remove the wishbone (collarbone). Cut along one side of the breastbone in slices, gently pulling the meat away from the bones in large pieces. Cut through the wing joint and remove it. Repeat on the opposite side.
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
If your family is anything like mine, appetizers are a must to keep hungry nibblers out of the kitchen while the table is being set. Here are a couple of starters that are sure to please!
Toasted Cheese Rounds
2 cups chopped scallions
2 cups (8 ounces) shredded Cheddar cheese
40 (1/2-inch) slices French baguette
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Combine the mayonnaise, scallions and cheese in a bowl and mix well. Spread the cheese mixture over 1 side of each of the bread slices and arrange spread side up on a baking sheet. Bake for 15 minutes or until bubbly. Serve immediately. Makes 40 rounds.
Chili Bacon Breadsticks
Simply Sarasota - Junior League of Sarasota, Inc. - Sarasota, FL
30 thin slices bacon
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
3 tablespoons chili powder
30 crisp breadsticks, broken into halves
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Trim the fat from the bacon and cut each slice lengthwise into halves. Mix the brown sugar and chili powder in a shallow dish. Wrap the breadsticks with the bacon and coat with the brown sugar mixture.
Arrange the breadsticks on a rack in a baking pan and bake for 30-35 minutes or until the bacon is brown and crisp. Let cool for 15 minutes. Serve at room temperature.
Yield: 5 dozen breadsticks
Monday, November 15, 2010
Here is an idea for getting started:
Begin with a book development workshop. Decide who should attend, but prior to the meeting send out a survey and ask everyone to complete and return at least one week prior to the meeting date.
The survey should ask questions that will give the leadership some insight into the dynamics of the group such as strong personalities that might push an agenda the majority doesn’t agree with. They should try to uncover interesting ideas that may be initially “blown off” but in reality are quite good. The survey might give the group an idea of who they are or who they want to be.
Here are some sample survey questions:
What are the top 3 cookbooks in your area that will be competition?
What do you like and not like about these books?
What are your 3 favorite cookbooks?
What cookbook do you use most? Why?
What type binding do you like and why?
What foods are indigenous to your area?
Name 3 things that are unique about your town, city, and region.
Who is the target market for the (whoever) cookbook?
How many people live in a 100 mile radius?
Do tourists visit your city/region? Name the top 3 tourist destinations.
You might also want to ask the attendees to bring their favorite cookbooks to the meeting.
The leadership of the group should take the survey responses and do its own homework by answering the survey, gathering information packets on the community from sources such as the Convention and Visitors Bureau, Chamber of Commerce, AAA, etc.
From a time stand point, we suggest that you budget approximately 4 hours for the brainstorming session and remember that it is important to have a neutral facilitator conduct the workshop. This person should be good at leading a discussion and drawing people out to explain their thoughts and opinions. The facilitator should have an easel or white board or pad and basically brainstorm with the group – setting the basic guidelines for brainstorming – no idea is a dumb idea – write every idea down, then go back and prioritize.
Start with target markets, that is, who you are going to sell the book to (select the strongest 3 to 5), then brainstorm what type of book these individuals would like to purchase. What will make them want to purchase your book over another cookbook?
The next step gets a little tricky because the facilitator needs to be able to guide the group to point out to them what they are saying that makes them unique and will make the book unique. The discussion should point out other elements to give the reader than just the recipes and photos which make the community interesting and different.
Here is an example from one of our consultants that served as a facilitator for a group in Savannah, GA.
“St. Andrews School in Savannah, GA. is an upscale private school – and this was right when Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil was really hot. Everyone associated Savannah with this book and tourists were coming in record numbers – BUT there was so much stuff about the book and the typical Savannah Squares, etc. "
The group knew that tourists would be their biggest market – and a tourist would obviously want a ‘Savannah’ cookbook – so what could they do different?
"In my research, I discovered that Savannah is the City of many Firsts…there are some very interesting ‘Firsts’ and this was not something that the city promoted – I had a list of the ‘Firsts’ that we went through, the committee immediately bought into the theme, they of course knew this about Savannah, but they had never thought about using this as a theme for the book. The excitement was great and we came up with the title right then – First Come, First Served…In Savannah! They knew they wanted concealed wire, and had originally wanted 4-color dividers (but didn’t have a clue what would be on them) with the storyline taking shape, it was determined that since most of the “Firsts” were historic and if a photo existed it would most likely be in black and white, they decided they would do a one color book – the side bars are very entertaining, they take the reader by the hand and give them a tour into the lives of the people of Savannah.”
If we can be of help to you, or someone you know, by leading a development workshop all it takes is a phone call.
Friday, November 12, 2010
Thursday, November 11, 2010
I love the blog from Beth who works for the Arts council and hope you will enjoy it as well. Recipes from this book and other great community cookbooks are included in a new compilation cookbook, More Recipes Worth Sharing that will be launched on QVC this weekend —tune in and I think you will be motivated to order a copy: QVC to launch More Recipes Worth Sharing
Monday, November 8, 2010
My purpose in sharing this interview is to let my readers hear it from someone who is "in the trenches" and not just sitting in an ivory tower espousing theory. Lisl and Jaimie are organized, pleasant, cheerful, and goal-oriented. To date, Capture the Coast has sold over 6,000 copies in it's first two months of existence.
Dave: Which of your marketing activities resulted in the most books sold?
Lisl: Easily the # 1 was our presales to membership. We have a membership requirement for each member to purchase 4 books each. We also ran a contest for sales through our members with discounts at different levels based on quantity purchased. The Top 5 sellers were invited to our exclusive Capture the Coast debut party. Since our general membership doesn’t usually attend these events, it made for a great incentive.
We've held cooking demonstrations at Datz, a local restaurant & wine bar, using recipes from Capture the Coast.
We also held a Cocktail party at Datz with a beautiful spread of food featured in Capture the Coast. We sold tickets for $10 each, with all of the money collected going back to the League.
Dave: What advice regarding sales would you give a new cookbook publisher?
Lisl: Have a really good team. There are too many tasks for one person to accomplish. We have a really great marketing team, consisting of about 9 women. They are great at getting out there and promoting the book and talking to potential new merchants. We created teams for every aspect of the book’s business from Public Relations and Communications to Social Media to Member Sales and Delivery.
Also, set realistic goals.
Dave: Is there anything different you are doing to market book the 4th book that you didn't do for book 1?
Lisl: Much of our marketing plan was based on EveryDay Feast’s plan. The social media would be the only difference. We have one person designated to social media, and she wrote a fantastic plan. We have a Facebook page, Twitter account, and blog.
Dave: How do you keep the enthusiasm for cookbooks going within the League?
Lisl: “The Culinary Collection” has kept the enthusiasm high, as everyone wants to hear about the newest books/trends with each book that's released. Gasparilla remains a classic.
Dave: How many wholesale accounts do you have? How do you maintain those accounts?
Lisl: Capture the Coast came out 4 years after the others, so we’re starting from a small base. We have seen a small decline, but Capture the Coast has allowed us the opportunity to re-establish those accounts.
Since Capture the Coast debuted, we’ve acquired 11 new accounts, and we’re expecting to increase that number with 5 or 6 more accounts soon.
We also have a part-time employee that maintains existing accounts, calls them when we have special sales or promotions coming up, and makes sure their requests are met.
Dave: What has been your best personal experience as cookbook chair?
Lisl: 1st meeting we had was really interesting for me. I’ve been on the committee before, but I’m now stepping into a leadership role for a committee of close to 50 ladies. That’s a really big group of people, and I’ve never managed anything on that scale. So, that first meeting was really inspiring to me to look out and see this room of people and to know it’s my job to make sure all of these women have a good year with the League. The responsibility of leading the committee is kind of terrifying, but it’s really exciting, too. I’m really grateful to the League for putting me in this position and entrusting me with this responsibility. So far, it’s been great.
Dave: Other than the money raised from the sale of the cookbooks what other intangible benefits are received?
Lisl: Part of our mission is developing the potential of women and the Cookbook Committee is a great place to try out new skills they might not have the opportunity to use in other parts of their lives.
We have lawyers serving marketing roles, teachers handling Public Relations… It affords them the opportunity to do something they wouldn’t normally do in their every day lives.
Dave: I notice that in Junior League of Tampa, being chair of cookbook has led to major Board of Director responsibilities and even the Presidency of the League—why do you think that is?
Lisl: For starters, “Cookbook” is one of the larger committees of the League. That’s an important stepping stone in terms of learning to manage large groups of people. Our League certainly has a commitment to cookbooks. Having 6 cookbooks currently on the market shows that we put a lot of emphasis on our Cookbook Committee. A lot of the challenges you face with “Cookbook” allows you the chance to expand your skill set.
Dave: Having sold over 50,000 cookbooks since 2001 what do you say to someone who says a community is saturated with cookbooks?
Lisl: I don’t think you can ever have too many cookbooks, personally. Certainly, in Tampa we love to eat and eat well. I haven’t seen any lack of enthusiasm for new cookbooks. I don’t think nationally, we’re quite to the point of saturation either. Especially with the popularity of Food Network and food blogs on the internet. I think people love recipes. You don’t have to be a cookbook collector to enjoy cookbooks. One of the advantages of Capture the Coast is that it is full of lots of great recipes, but it also tells the story of Tampa. It also makes a nice gift for someone simply because of the beautiful photography.
Dave: I know that your League always sends someone to Cookbook University—how did you rate your attendance there this year and would you recommend it to others?
Lisl: The timing was good for us. We had just gotten started in our committee in March. It was a wonderful chance for us to hear about the different aspects of “cookbook” that would come in the months ahead. We came back with lots of information.
Dave: What will you take away as your greatest memory from this year in the League?
Lisl: I’m hoping its going to be when we reach our goal. I think it’s too early what my greatest memory is going to be.
So far, the debut party was big for me. The Mayor of Tampa was there to declare “Capture the Coast Day”.
If I could add one more thing….
We’re focusing a lot on Capture the Coast now, but we will be looking at transitioning to promoting all of the books moving forward.
We’re selling some of the 4-book sets, but not as many as we had hoped yet. Holiday Gift Market comes up in November, and it’s a chance to reach the general public. That will really be a testing ground on how Capture the Coast affects the public.
Saturday, November 6, 2010
One key ingredient in a great cookbook is the quality of the recipes. This means several things--they should be well written, consistently edited, and easy to follow with clear instructions which produce a fabulous finished dish if followed properly.
I learned many years ago that another "secret" ingredient in a successful cookbook should be the inclusion of one or more signature recipes. This recipe should be one that hasn't appeared in countless other cookbooks and is truly an original from the publishing organization. It can certainly be a derivitive of someone elses recipe that has been turned into an original due to the additions or changes to it. Of course, with 3 significant changes it is now considered an original recipe.
This signature dish should be relatively easy to prepare and should contain ingredients that you ordinarily keep on hand. If possible, it should lend itself to preparing ahead and using as a "teaser" give away at book promotions and signings. It should be so good that the person tasting or reading about it should be motivated to buy the book.
Here are some great examples of signature recipes:
-Lisl Unterholzner, Junior League of Tampa, FL
Palm Beach Punch
Worth Tasting - Junior League of the Palm Beaches, FL
" From Worth Tasting I would have to say our Palm Beach Punch on page 31 and the Carolina Caviar on page 21. These 2 dishes are generally served at our events and are always met with rave reviews. Also, the Palm Beach Punch was served at our first Ladies Luncheon and the women loved it. It is the recipe noted on our website as well."
-Laura Wissa, Junior League of the Palm Beaches, FL
Amelia Island Shrimp
Toast of the Coast - Junior League of Jacksonville, FL
"Well the answer is easy: Amelia Island Shrimp from Toast of the Coast. My family is in the seafood business so shrimp and/or fish are always my choice to prepare. This recipe showcases any fresh seafood well. I’ve made it with fish, scallops, mussels or just assorted vegetables. It is a great go-to recipe because it is quick and people usually have butter, garlic, pasta and parmesan cheese on hand. And kids love it. I started making it after my then 10-year-old son picked it out of the cookbook."
-Janet Reagor, Junior League of Jacksonville, FL
Paradise Party Punch
Paradise Served - Junior League of Fort Lauderdale, FL
In a place so beautiful that a little bit of every day is a vacation day, it makes sense that one of our signature dishes is a drink! This recipe embodies our sophisticated, yet luxurious laid back lifestyle, here in South Florida. On the beach or one the back porch - this cocktail makes the party. It's cool, effortlessly fabulous and has that little something unexpected - just like the women of the Junior League of Greater Fort Lauderdale. Cheers...to another day in paradise! Pass the punch!
-Lori Ebinger Sullivan, Junior League of Fort Lauderdale, FL
Think about it--how many times do you have a dish that everyone asks you for the recipe? It happens all the time. We all have these signature dishes but they become so commonplace to us that we forget how special they are. If you already have a community cookbook what is that book's signature recipe? If you were asked to contribute a signature recipe to a project, what would it be?
Monday, November 1, 2010
Research is one action item I believe every organization thinking about devleoping a cookbook as a source of income or as a brand builder should certainly do. While the entire project can be a fun, exciting and profitable venture, it can also be a huge flop if not done properly. Of course, the same could be said of almost any business venture.
Amazingly, the individual I met with was a member of an organization that had produced two previous cookbooks and neither had been successful. Did that mean that group could not be successful? Absolutely not; however, it did suggest that they should take a different approach and their commitment level to staffing their committees should be stronger.
It is important for organizations to check out the "lay of the land" regarding other groups that might already have books in their community. What price points do local retailers suggest is the right price range for good volume? One mantra we at FRP express constantly is that a community cookbook must be treated like a business because publishing a book is a business. Anyone who has ever been in business knows that you have to have a good product at a good price that is easy for consumers to find. Putting forth a little work on the front end will pay big dividends on the back end.