Food Trends 2017
Food Trends 2017

It’s time for my annual Food Trends update, this time of course focusing on predictions and trends for 2017 in food, nutrition, restaurants, and ingredients.

I find the focus on regional American cuisines and plant-based eating refreshing as well as the return to home cooked meals for Generation Z. This is a lot to digest, but included are some nice links to PDFs from Sterling-Rice Group, Baum + Whiteman, and the National Restaurant Association’s What’s Hot Culinary Forecast for 2017, as well as a list from Global Food Forums, that they keep updated as new lists and trend reports are published.

Global Food Forums: 2017 Food Trends
Top trend lists in food, beverage, and nutritional product trends for 2017

National Restaurant Association: What’s Hot 2017 Culinary Forecast

Sterling-Rice Groups: 10 Cutting Edge Culinary Trends for 2017

NPD: Predictions for 2017 and Beyond

Washington Post: Plant proteins, healthy fats and more 2017 food trends

Tasting Table: Our predictions for the most delicious food and drink tends of the year

Eater: Every Single Food Trend That’s Been Predicted for 2017

Kim Severson: The Dark (and Often Dubious Art of Forecasting Food Trends)

Linked-in David Craig: 2017 Food Trends Roundup

Oldways: Five Food Trends to Make 2017 The Best Year Ever

QSR: 12 Fast Food Trends for 2017

International Food Information Council Foundation: Functional foods, sustainability, protein, CRISPR, What’s Healthy

Baum + Whiteman International Food + Restaurant Consultants:
13 Hottest Food & Beverage Trends in Restaurant & Hotel Dining for 2017

Cookbook author and culinary dietitian Maggie Green coaches aspiring cookbook authors in the process of writing cookbooks, cookbook proposals, and building their author platform. Download her checklist “Am I Ready to Write A Cookbook?”

175 Simple Wintertime Pleasures
175 Simple Wintertime Pleasures

Originally published in 2011, I ran across this list in my files and it made me smile. Four years have passed since it was written, but it’s funny how there’s very little on this list that I would change. My kids are older, I’m older, and time is marching on, but the things that make me happy are pretty much the same. The Best Male Cook asked me this morning what I wanted for Christmas. I think I’ll show him this list. It pretty much sums up the way I feel about all the good things life has to offer.

  • A blank page
  • A clean bill of health
  • A dad and son headed to the mall
  • A drive through Kentucky back roads
  • A dusting of snow that won’t melt
  • A few priorities for the week
  • A fresh notebook
  • A freshly bathed dog
  • A freshly vacuumed rug
  • A good tear jerker
  • A hard day’s work
  • A hilarious movie
  • A hot shower
  • A job well done
  • A juicy homemade burger
  • A love note
  • A Midnight train to Georgia
  • A new pen
  • A new recipe
  • A new white shirt
  • A nice, wide, smile
  • A note from a friend
  • A photograph that catches a sideways glance
  • A pizza party
  • A pleasant-scented candle
  • A quiet house on Christmas eve
  • A roaring fire in the fireplace
  • A sleeping child
  • A warm pair of socks
  • A young boy with a new watch
  • Accomplishing a task long overdue
  • Aged gouda cheese
  • An a ha moment
  • An Aeropress coffee maker
  • An awake child
  • An emergency fund
  • An emphatic yes or no from a child
  • An evening wine and cheese party
  • An organized book bag
  • An unexpected hug
  • Another writer’s perspective
  • Automatic coffee pots
  • Baking Spritz cookies
  • Baking while snow falls
  • Bing and David singing “Little Drummer Boy”
  • Bourbon-barrel ale
  • Ceramic Santas my Aunt Eileen painted
  • Chap-Stick
  • Checking something off my list
  • Chili Con Carne
  • Christmas Spirit candles
  • Clementine tangerines
  • Constant Comment tea
  • Dave Bruebeck
  • Dinner with my sisters and my mother
  • Doing a little bit at a time
  • Dreams
  • Driving the back roads
  • Dusted tabletops
  • Eighty’s music
  • Energy
  • Fingerprint-less kitchen cabinets
  • Freedom to live with intention
  • Fresh Christmas tree
  • Fresh laundry
  • Fresh smelling shower gel
  • Fresh, whole ingredients
  • Frost on the rooftops
  • Getting up early
  • Good health
  • Gratitude and humility
  • Hair falling softly around my daughters face
  • Hand lotion
  • Happy school-age, high-school-age, and college-age kids
  • Having a plan
  • Having the pots and pans cleaned up before dinner is ready
  • Hearing a first grader read
  • Honey bell oranges
  • Hot chai tea with milk and a dash of sugar
  • Hot green tea to warm my hands
  • Hot tea and shortbread
  • Hot, hot water to wash dishes
  • Ice on the trees
  • King Rat nutcracker
  • Knowing I can accomplish a task
  • Krohn Conservatory Winter flower show
  • Lazy mornings at home
  • Leaving a secret note for someone
  • Lentil soup in the slow cooker
  • Less is more
  • Limestone walls in Central Kentucky
  • Lip balm
  • Listening to a good radio interview
  • Listening to children in the
Five Arbitrary Thoughts – Volume II #2
Five Arbitrary Thoughts – Volume II #2

 

1. I’m struggling with my five thoughts for today. Have you ever felt that way when you sit down to write? The muse just isn’t there. More often than you may realize, this is how writing feels to both me and my cookbook coaching clients. But, I always come back with “regardless of a lack of inspiration, the act of sitting down at a regular time to write is the most important thing.” Set your timer if you have too, but always show up and write.  Words will come. They may not be publishable, and they may not be exciting, but at least you’re writing. And, a first draft is better than no draft at all.

2. The weather has turned cooler in my town and it’s been one of those weeks where later in the day it’s warmer outdoors than it is in my house. Sipping green tea while I work is a sure sign that the weather is cool, as is my packing in the sandals, putting on socks, and wearing a jacket when I walk in the morning.

3. Every year I send out a calendar card for my business. It’s a flat card the next calendar year at a glance on the front side of the card. If you’re looking for nice calendar cards to send to your customers or clients, check out Tiny Prints. You can order the cards online and they’ll be shipped in about one week. My cards for 2014 have arrived and are ready for me to address and mail in December. I like to send a hand-written note to my clients at least once a year to thank them for their business over the past year and to wish them great things for the next year.

4. I am fortunate to work with a client who is creating a digital product. This project has been a huge undertaking from code-creation to design. I’ve learned a great deal from this project and can’t wait to share the news.

5. The 30-day blog challenge is 30% finished. I’ve done 10/30 days. On Wednesday I didn’t post until later than my usual time, but I did post. Same for today. I find that the easiest way for me to write blog posts day-after-day is to generate mock-ups and ideas for blog posts in a Word doc. Then I fill in my ideas as the days roll around. I like to write the entire blog post in Word, spell-check, erase any formatting, and then paste post into my blog dashboard. By maintaining an ongoing Word doc I have all my blog ideas and posts in one document and I can look back to previous posts and ahead to ideas I’ve jotted down.

Have a great weekend everyone. Get out and do something fun. Be sure to eat some apples too. They’re delicious this year!…

Five Arbitrary Thoughts - Volume 2 No. 1
Five Arbitrary Thoughts - Volume 2 No. 1

 

1. During the month of October I am participating in a 30-day blog challenge. The challenge is to post 30 times in 30 days. It’s too early to predict how this will go and a few times I’ve second-guessed myself for agreeing to participate. The reason I joined is because I knew this challenge would force me to focus on a daily commitment to write. As a food and nutrition writer, cookbook author, and cookbook coach I spend more time focusing on my paid, deadline-driven work than on tasks that are important for my business and personal growth, but have no deadline. So if nothing else, this blog challenge will make me pay attention, every day, to something important, but not urgent.

2. When I work with aspiring cookbook authors, the one thing they almost all struggle with is developing a writing routine for a project that’s not immediately tied to an income stream. They struggle with making a commitment to write every day because life gets in the way. I’m always on the lookout for what writers do to develop a routine for writing. Some writers write best in the morning and some prefer to write in the evening. But, no matter the time of day the most productive writers all have a writing routine where they show up everyday and write. Nothing will happen if we don’t put our pen to the paper. It’s like expecting fresh home-prepared supper to appear if someone doesn’t put a knife to the cutting board – it won’t happen. Time to call for pizza, again.  Here’s a link to an article about developing a routine.

3. Speaking of routines, there are a few things I am faithful to on a weekly basis and have committed to a routine. This isn’t all that I do each day, but I commit to these tasks on specific days. After the task is done I free up  mental energy worrying about these tasks because I know I have a weekly commitment to them:

Monday – write marketing copy, hand write cards/notes
Tuesday – book keeping, client phone calls
Wednesday – client phone calls, recipe testing/editing
Thursday – shop for groceries, fill my car with gas, client phone calls
Friday -errands, prospective client follow-up

I challenge you to make a list of the tasks you need to do every week and assign one day to take care of that task.

4. Speaking of routines: if you like Twitter search the hashtag #beforebreakfast. Laura Vanderkam author of What the Most Successful People Do Before Breakfast: And Two Other Short Guides to Achieving More at Work and at Home tweets using this hashtag as do many others who are making the most of the time before breakfast. It’s interesting to see what others focus on in the morning.

5. I hope everyone has a great weekend. If you’re interested in writing a cookbook of your own, don’t forget to sign up for my weekly ezine Fork, Pen, and

Who Listens When You Talk?
Who Listens When You Talk?

Or who listens when I talk for that matter? This is the question most publishers ask when they consider publishing works of non-fiction. Who Listens When This Prospective Author Talks?

This is called your platform. And it’s very important for non-fiction authors, including cookbook authors. Your message to your audience needs to be heard through various mediums: social-media (Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin), blog postings, e-mail marketing, print media, speaking engagements, and cooking classes. I’m sure there are more ways to connect with your audience, but these are the few that come to mind for me.

Building your own unique platform takes time. It takes intentional effort to connect with your audience.

On Tuesday, January 15, 2013 I am offering a complimentary teleclass about cookbook author platforms. Would love to have you join me. Learn more about the upcoming Who Listens When You Talk? teleseminar here.

Cookbook Writing Teleclass: Essential Ingredients for Success
Cookbook Writing Teleclass: Essential Ingredients for Success

Have you ever heard that still, small voice inside whisper:
“You ought to write a cookbook”?

Has anyone ever told you:
“You should write a cookbook.”

If you pay attention to these voices you may answer:

I’d love to write a cookbook, but….
I don’t have a clue where to begin.
Is there money to be made writing cookbooks?
How will I get my book published?
How will I find time to write?
Will anyone think my idea is good enough?

If any of these responses resonate with you I hope
you’ll join me for my
upcoming free virtual teleclass:

You Can Write A Cookbook:
Essential Ingredients for Success

Tuesday, September 18, 2012
12:00 EST/11:00 CST

During our one hour together you will:

Learn essential ingredients for writing a cookbook.
Receive permission to start your project.
Start to remove barriers you have for writing your own cookbook.
Learn the next step in writing your own cookbook.
I sincerely hope you’ll join me on Tuesday, September 18, 2012.
If you are interested, please leave your name and email address below. More details will be sent immediately. Remember the teleclass is free. What do you have to lose. This may be the year you can start your cookbook project.

“Cook-books have always intrigued and seduced me. When I was still a dilettante in the kitchen they held my attention, even the dull ones, from cover to cover, the way crime and murder stories did.”
‘The Alice B. Toklas Cook Book’ (1954)

Sign up here for the teleclass

The Return of Routine
The Return of Routine

“And so, once upon a time, Fred Rogers took off his jacket and put on a sweater his mother had made him, a cardigan with a zipper. Then he took off his shoes and put on a pair of navy-blue canvas boating sneakers. He did the same thing the next day, and then the next… until he had done the same things, those things, 865 times, at the beginning of 865 television programs, over a span of thirty-one years. ”

The new school year has arrived and I’ll admit I revel in the routine a school-year imparts. I guess that’s because for the most part I enjoy a good schedule. I’m the kind of person who likes to know what we’re doing next.  Don’t get me wrong, I love summer for what it is, but this time of year calls us to a different schedule and routine. Even those who don’t have children in school alter their routine for commuting to work or the grocery store in order to deal with increased traffic and school buses on the road.

Because of our three school-aged children I welcome the weekday routines of alarms, showers, breakfast, and driving to school and work. The after-school routines of sports practices, homework, cooking dinner, and a regular bedtime are welcome too. Maybe it’s the fact that most of my work activities are centered in our home, around my kitchen and my computer, that I welcome these routines, but I also know I am fond of them because routines give structure to my day. They provide a sense of predictability in a world where life isn’t always predictable.

When I stop and pay attention I can see that routines are, and have always been, part of my life. When my father retired from his work as a civil engineer what he missed most was he workday routine that involved driving us to school, going to work, coming home for lunch, returning to the office for the afternoon, only to be followed by coming home again after work for a cocktail, dinner, and TV. After he retired he worked to carve out new routines based on yard work, trips to the post office, and volunteer work at our home parish. These regular routines helped replace the work routine and gave some structure and meaning to his day.

One of my sisters lives in Lexington and she drives 20 miles on two-lane roads for her commute to work. Part of her routine involves driving out of her driveway 15 minutes earlier than she needs to so she can drive in a relaxed and leisurely fashion on the way to work. The roads wind down and across the Kentucky River south of Lexington and are too curvy to drive too fast. Plus, my sister knows if she drives fast she’ll miss the blooming trees and flowers or the water that trickles down the rocks surrounding the road. Her routine provides a sense of calm and peace because she’s not …

175 Simple Wintertime Pleasures
175 Simple Wintertime Pleasures

This week is my favorite week of the year. It’s officially winter, the Christmas season is in full swing, the kids are out of school, and my days are different. The best part too is that this is true for most everyone. To celebrate I’d like to share my list of 175 simple wintertime pleasures. If you can’t get in the spirit of the holiday season, or if you’re looking too far ahead to 2012, take some time to sit and reflect on this list. Maybe you might want to even work on your own list. Every year when I read this it makes me smile. I hope you enjoy it.

  1. A blank page
  2. A clean bill of health
  3. A dad and son headed out to run errands
  4. A drive through Kentucky back roads
  5. A dusting of snow that won’t melt
  6. A few priorities for the week
  7. A fresh notebook
  8. A freshly bathed dog
  9. A freshly vacuumed rug
  10. A good tear jerker
  11. A hard day’s work
  12. A hilarious movie
  13. A hot shower
  14. A job well done
  15. A juicy homemade burger
  16. A Kroger card for a school family in need
  17. A Midnight train to Georgia
  18. A new pen
  19. A new recipe
  20. A new white shirt
  21. A nice, wide, smile
  22. A note from a friend
  23. A photograph that catches a sideways glance
  24. A pizza party
  25. A pleasant-scented candle
  26. A quiet house on Christmas eve
  27. A roaring fire in the fireplace
  28. A sleeping child
  29. A warm pair of socks
  30. A young boy with a new watch
  31. Accomplishing a task long overdue
  32. Aged Gouda Cheese
  33. An a ha moment
  34. An Aeropress coffee maker
  35. An awake child
  36. An emergency fund
  37. An emphatic yes or no from a child
  38. An evening wine and cheese party
  39. An organized book bag
  40. An unexpected hug
  41. Another writer’s perspective
  42. Automatic coffee pots
  43. Baking Spritz cookies
  44. Baking while snow falls
  45. Bing and David singing “Little Drummer Boy”
  46. Bourbon-barrel ale
  47. Ceramic Santas my Aunt Eileen painted
  48. Chap Stick
  49. Checking something off my list
  50. Chili Con Carne
  51. Christmas spirit candles
  52. Clementine tangerines
  53. Constant Comment tea
  54. Dave Brubeck
  55. Dinner with my sisters and my mother
  56. Doing a little bit at a time
  57. Dreams
  58. Driving the back roads
  59. Dusted tabletops
  60. Eighty’s music
  61. Energy
  62. Fingerprint-less kitchen cabinets
  63. Freedom to live with intention
  64. Fresh Christmas tree
  65. Fresh laundry
  66. Fresh smelling shower gel
  67. Fresh, whole ingredients
  68. Frost on the rooftops
  69. Getting up early
  70. Good health
  71. Gratitude and humility
  72. Hair falling softly around my daughters face
  73. Hand lotion
  74. Happy school-aged and high-school-aged kids
  75. Having a plan
  76. Having the pots and pans cleaned up before dinner is ready
  77. Hearing a first grader read
  78. Honey bell oranges
  79. Hot chai tea with milk and a dash of sugar
  80. Hot green tea to warm my hands
  81. Hot tea and shortbread
  82. Hot, hot water to wash dishes
  83. Ice on the trees
  84. King Rat nutcracker
  85. Knowing I can accomplish a task
  86. Krohn Conservatory Winter flower show
  87. Lazy mornings at home
  88. Leaving a secret note for someone
  89. Lentil soup in the slow cooker
  90. Less is more

Do You Want To Write A Cookbook?

Have you ever heard that still, small voice inside whisper, “You ought to write a cookbook”?

If you pay attention to that voice you may answer, “Sure, I’d love to write a cookbook, but I don’t have a clue where to begin? Or perhaps you say,

  • I don’t know how to write a cookbook.
  • I’m not an English major or a culinary expert.
  • I don’t know how to combine my expertise with the craft of cooking.
  • I don’t know how to navigate the publishing industry.
  • It all seems so daunting.
  • I don’t know how to sell a cookbook.
  • I’m not a Food Network star.
  • ……and all sorts of other doubts you may have.

If your response resonates with these I encourage you to join my free teleclass for aspiring cookbook writers:

You Can Write A Cookbook:

Essential Ingredients for Success

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

12:00 EST/11:00 CST

With this unique teleclass you have the opportunity to:

  • learn essentials of writing a cookbook.
  • explore how your passion for writing a cookbook stacks up against the reality of writing a cookbook.
  • make the connection between your expertise and cookbooks.
  • begin to remove the barriers you might have for writing your own cookbook.
  • learn the next step in writing your own cookbook.

To register for this free, one-of-a-kind teleclass click here:

I sincerely hope to see you on Tuesday, September 20th as we pay attention to the small voice moving aspiring cookbook authors toward a cookbook of his or her very own.

“Cook-books have always intrigued and seduced me. When I was still a dilettante in the kitchen they held my attention, even the dull ones, from cover to cover, the way crime and murder stories did.”
‘The Alice B. Toklas Cook Book’ (1954)…

Do You Want To Write A Cookbook?
Do You Want To Write A Cookbook?

Have you ever heard that still, small voice inside whisper, “You ought to write a cookbook”? 

If you pay attention to that voice you may answer, “Sure, I’d love to write a cookbook, but I don’t have a clue where to begin?

Or perhaps you say,

  • I don’t know how to write a cookbook.
  • I’m not an English major or a culinary expert.
  • I don’t know how to combine my expertise with the craft of cooking.
  • I don’t know how to navigate the publishing industry.
  • It all seems so daunting.
  • I don’t know how to sell a cookbook.
  • I’m not a Food Network star.
  • ……and all sorts of other doubts you may have.

If your response resonates with these I encourage you to join my free teleclass for aspiring cookbook writers:

You Can Write Your Own Cookbook:

Essential Ingredients for Success

Wednesday, March 23, 2011 

12:00 EST/11:00 CST 

With this unique teleclass you have the opportunity to:

  • learn essentials of writing a cookbook.
  • explore how your passion for writing a cookbook stacks up against the reality of writing a cookbook.
  • make the connection between your expertise and cookbooks.
  • begin to remove the barriers you might have for writing your own cookbook.
  • learn the next step in writing your own cookbook.

CLICK HERE TO REGISTER

I sincerely hope to see you on March 23, 2011 as we pay attention to the small voice moving aspiring cookbook authors toward a cookbook of his or her very own.

“Cook-books have always intrigued and seduced me. When I was still a dilettante in the kitchen they held my attention, even the dull ones, from cover to cover, the way crime and murder stories did.”
The Alice B. Toklas Cook Book’ (1954)…

We Almost Have A Cookbook
We Almost Have A Cookbook
The Kentucky Fresh Cookbook files were sent to the printer today. Said files are now in the hands of capable professionals (in Michigan no less) who turn words and images into a beautiful bound books. I think I’ll die when I see a copy of the book in April. In the mean time I’m not sitting around twiddling my thumbs. Instead I’m scheduling book signings, events, and promotions so I can get “out there” and talk about, cook from, and discuss the book. In the end I hope The Kentucky Fresh Cookbook makes better fresh home cooks out of us all. If you would like for me to come to an event near you, please let me know.

I’ll kick off my promotion with the following events:

Friday, April 15, 2011
Kentucky Writers Conference
You Can Write A Cookbook: Essential Ingredients For Success
Bowling Green, Kentucky
Friday, April 16, 2011
Southern Kentucky Book Festival
Bowling Green, Kentucky

Speaking of cookbooks: Cookbook circulation in libraries is at an all time high and last year print cookbook sales were up 9% more than any other genre of print books (except entertaining.) There’s never been a better time to write a book of your own. Very soon I plan to officially announce a series of teleclasses on writing cookbooks. If you dream of writing a cookbook stay tuned for more information about this exciting opportunity. I’ll draw upon my experiences as a cookbook reader, editor, and author to guide would-be cookbook authors through essential ingredients for a successful cookbook.

4 Ways A GreenApron Starts Her Year
4 Ways A GreenApron Starts Her Year

This blog post has been brewing  for several days as I ponder my first blog post of the new year. What is there to say for 2011? Well, in lieu of a recipe, best-of-2010 or favorite cookbooks list, I thought I’d share what the last few days of an old year look like for me and how I get my new year off to a bang-up start. This is longer than blog posts are “supposed” to be, but so be it.

1. Write down Notes from Christmas/Holiday 2010

Every year I make notes about the holiday season while it’s fresh in my mind. I write out the following items on a piece of paper with “Christmas Notes 2010” at the top of the paper. Then, I store the list on the top of a decorations box before I store it away for next year. My Christmas notes include:

  • Menus for meals prepared during the holidays
  • Parties we attended and what I wore. (Holiday outfits can often be recycled.)
  • Varieties of cookies, candy, and snacks baked and who I delivered cookie-gifts to (it’s usually neighbors).
  • Our actual Christmas day activites and if we traveled out of town that day what time we left and where we went.
  • What church services we attended and what time we left the house to meet our obligations and still be able to sit together as a family.
  • How many business and personal Christmas cards we sent and if we didn’t send cards I note that too.
  • List of gifts bought for the YoungAprons and our extended family.
  • When we visited Santa and did other activities for Christmas – Duke Energy Train Display, Live Nativity and flower show at the Krohn Conservatory, ice skating on Fountain Square, etc.

Then I answer these questions: What worked this Christmas? What didn’t work this year? What should I do differently next year? How much vacation time did I or the best male cook I know take?

This might seem like a bunch of information that I’d remember, but trust me: when I read last year’s notes I smile, remember, and chuckle to myself while saying, “Boy, I’m glad I made these notes”.

2. Make No More Than 10 Concrete Goals for the New Year

Call them resolutions, or call them goals, but just like 45% of other Americans I enjoy setting a few goals for the new year. Similar to my Christmas list (above) I write the goals down and then put the list away somewhere where I can read it at the end of the year. I keep mine in my journal. (If it helps, store the list in an envelope in the box with the Christmas/Holiday notes.) I usually set no more than 10 goals and when I read them at the end of the year I’ve usually accomplished at least a few of the goals.

Note: Over the years I’ve noticed that the bigger and more “fluffy” the goal, the less likely I am to accomplish …

Favorite Week of The Year
Favorite Week of The Year

This is bar-none my favorite week of the year. To top this year off, The Best Male Cook is off “work” all week. He’s out running errands right now and since TeenApron just crawled out of his cave we’ll all go out this afternoon for some fresh air and I’m sure a bite to eat. Tonight it’s “Pub Game” night here at the GreenApron home. I have no idea what this really means except I see Shut The Box in my future along with some Shepard’s Pie.

I send all best wishes for a peaceful week where ever you are. Your reading this blog means the world to me and I hope you’re safe, sound, happy, well-fed, and feeling grateful for the year we’ve lived and the year to come~…

Proof(s) On My Mind
Proof(s) On My Mind

Today I keep thinking of the word proof(s). Here’s why:

1. The first set of page proofs for The Kentucky Fresh Cookbook arrived yesterday. The pages look beautiful thanks to the hard work of the designer and of course the top-notch coding of the manuscript by the copy-editor. The interior is set with shaded and boxed text, menus, recipes, stories, tips, and beefy head notes. I’m typically amazed at this stage of cookbook production, or the transformation of any text to design for that matter.  Presto. Magico. (not a word I know) Beautiful. I gave the proofs a thorough side-by-side run through, and now a few final tweaks to get the final pages set. Then we head into the phase where the cookbook is proofread and indexed. Some might complain about looking at page proofs over the holiday, but since my hobby has always been reading cookbooks I consider this a holiday pleasure. Plus the best male cook I know is off work for several days next week so I can still read while the Young Aprons are directed by him to “shovel the driveway”, “clean your room”, “take out the trash”. Lucky YoungAprons. Never fear. This will be followed by, “Want to go ice skating?”, “Let’s make Chicago-style Dogs”, and “Anyone want to play Axis and Allies?”

2. I have some finely chopped pecans soaking in 80 PROOF Kentucky bourbon for my annual bourbon-ball-making session. With this in mind I’ll sign off and head to the kitchen. It’s a gorgeous snowy day here and I look forward to doing a bit of holiday baking. The photo above is my batch from last Christmas. Wish I had one right now.

If you’d like to receive my posts by e-mail or a periodic newsletter (I promise not to flood the e-mail box) sign-up over to the right. Thanks for your support~…

“Life Is Good”
“Life Is Good”

Tomorrow the manuscript for The Kentucky Fresh Cookbook is considered final. I’ve combed through the edits made by an outside copy-editor and at this point have done all I can do. It’s time to turn the book over to the powers of designers to make this book all it can and will be.

Working with a copy-editor is both a liberating and humbling experience. I am grateful there are people like Linda who help books authors like me make sense of verb tense changes  and repetition in recipes.

In February 2008 the cookbook was not even a reality and in May 2009 the proposal I submitted for my cookbook was unanimously accepted at board meetings for the press. Now in November 2010 I’m 5 short months away from bound books – my very own cookbook. A dream come true. Next year will be filled with adventures as I get to have the privilege of meeting the wonderful people who buy the book and the fun of traveling throughout the state to promote the book.

In addition to the book, I’ve been working with a women’s business coach. I’ve worked through ideas for ways to market and brand my business The Green Apron Company and am very excited about 2011 for that reason too.

If you own a business or dream of doing something to make a difference in the world, all I can say is now is the time to do it. Time waits for no one. Days march on and kids grow up. Harness the energy you need to release something meaningful to the world. You won’t be sorry. I know, at least at this point, I’m not sorry.  Like the t-shirts say, “Life is Good”. Amen.…

ISBN and Amazon
ISBN and Amazon

When my book was assigned an ISBN (International Standard Book Number) and listed on Amazon I knew the forces of nature that ultimately push a book to completion were in full swing. I felt a surge of pride when I clicked over to the Amazon page. The publication date is in May 2011, around the date of the Kentucky Derby, so for now we’ll have to settle for pre-orders. Thanks so far for the support and kind words from my friends on Facebook, Twitter, and my bricks-and-mortar family and friends. I mean it when I say this book is for you. It’s my gift to help anyone willing to pick up a sharp knife cook a few more fresh meals at home.  Here’s the Amazon page.

Five Arbitrary Thoughts - Volume IX
Five Arbitrary Thoughts - Volume IX

 

1. It’s a good thing I paid attention in grade school when Ms. Burge taught about Roman numerals.

2. I also know the Greek alphabet but not for the same reason. Alpha, beta,…

3. We’re still eating and I’m still cooking although this past Tuesday when my YoungestApron turned 9, we were on the run at dinner time and he wanted hot wings and onion rings for dinner so I bought bags of onion rings and hot wings and heated them in the oven for him and cut up some celery and did make some fresh blue cheese dressing and we called it a birthday celebration. I’m sorry that sentence was so long but I felt I needed to let you know in one breath that it’s OK to deviate every now and then from fresh-cooked meals. I do. We all do. But, by and large, I try to cook fresh meals and that’s all for #3.

4. The Spring catalog for the University Press of Kentucky features a cookbook called The Kentucky Fresh Cookbook. It’s sure to be one book we’ll all want to have in our kitchen. When I figure out how to link to the catalog page I’ll do so.

5. The best male cook took TeenApron and TweenApron to the World Equestrian Games in Lexington today. YoungestApron is at school taking a spelling test, having gym, and preparing for an early dismissal. I feel bad he had school and that we were unable to attend WEG as one big happy GreenApronFamily, but here I sit manning the fort. Oh well, such is life. We’re going to go see Secretariat (the movie) instead with some of his buddies. Should be fun.…

Five Arbitrary Thoughts - Volume IX
Five Arbitrary Thoughts - Volume IX

 

1. This is the first full week of school for the YoungAprons. All is well on the going-to-bed, getting-up-early, packing-a-lunch, and homework front. I love the routine of school and I think in many ways they do too. At least for now. We can discuss again in October.

2. Don’t get me wrong, I loved our summer as well. We covered travel, family celebrations, Kentucky history, cookouts, friends over for dinner, meal prep for sick friends, and even a few rounds of golf. Last night the kids and I we were discussing all the things we might be tempted to take for granted in our life. Every single thing I just listed we discussed. The where-with-all, the resources, and the ability to do these activities is nothing short of amazing, at least to me.  When we can look back on the last 10 weeks and realize we’re living modestly, but in a way that many children and adults in our world can scarcely imagine the word humbling comes to mind. I hope everyone’s summer was full of some good times with family and friends.

3. With the school year comes a time to cook and eat dinner earlier. I’m back to my regularly scheduled, weekly grocery shopping trips, stocking up on food for packed lunches and home-cooked suppers filled with lean meats, fresh and frozen vegetables, whole grains, pasta, beans, and salads. I’ll try to keep up with the weekly “What We Ate Last Week”. Someone sent me a direct message on Twitter the other day and said they love “What We Ate Last Week” for its simplicity and the inspiration it provides in menu and meal planning. I’m happy that it does something for those who read it. We eat out, we order pizza, but by and large our evening meals are built around food I cook at home.

4. Maggie the dog is laying in her open-wire crate beside my table. She is snoring. Sound asleep. I guess this is what is called the Dog’s Life. I’m not sure why I’m telling you this, except it’s certainly an arbitrary thought. Even as I re-read and edit this piece, she’s snoring a bit louder than even previously.

5. I helped edit the catalog copy for The Kentucky Fresh Cookbook. The cover art for the book is being finalized. The manuscript has been cut by me to the tune of 100 pages and is now off to the copy editor. This project is yet another thing I could add to our summertime-don’t-take-for-granted list. My hope is that those who buy this cookbook will feel inspired and empowered to cook fresh meals from their kitchen, all year long. We don’t always have to eat local, and we don’t always have to eat everything perfectly fresh. The locavore movement can be too virtuous if we’re not careful. The point, at least to me, is that there is a wide variety of foods to cook and eat and enjoy, some from …

So I Lied...
So I Lied...
OK, I lied, but not intentionally.
Yesterday I met with my editor, and the marketing department, and the production manager at the University of Kentucky Press. We sat together discussing my cookbook, the marketing plan, the illustrations, the design, the ink colors, etc., etc. We’re all excited about the book and that’s not the part I lied about. I lied about the title. (In my previous blog post.) In an effort to keep the title short, sweet, easy to remember, and of course, marketable, the title of my forthcoming cookbook is:
The Kentucky Fresh Cookbook
I like it. I really like it. So much that I returned back to my house and promptly I registered a few domain names for web pages soon to be under construction. I think the title reflects the seasonal, freshly-cooked Kentucky cooking journey my book proposes.
For the next few weeks I’ll enjoy my time without the manuscript. (The copy editor will soon have the manuscript.) I think I’ll tweak a few recipes, read a few other books (Thomas Merton, Steig Larsson, Julia Cameron, and Rachel Naomi Remen come to mind), shred some papers, and enjoy these last few days of summer before the LittleAprons return to school. We’ve had such a good summer so far: we’re no longer Disney-virgins, we had a Green Family reunion, celebrated my mother’s 75th birthday, went to see the outdoor play “The Stephen Foster Story” in Bardstown, and  just yesterday the LittleApron’s helped Granmom with some chores around her Lexington home (while I met with said publisher) and she took them to Five Guys for burgers (and fries). We have nothing to complain about here.
That’s all for now. I just wanted to give an update. The publication date is May 2011.…
My Kentucky Kitchen Update
My Kentucky Kitchen Update

Things are rolling along with my cookbook. As you may or may not remember I submitted my manuscript in May. During the course of the past few months my manuscript has been read by two outstanding readers and my editor. I have received their comments and after spending more time with the manuscript than I did with the best male cook I know I submitted my corrected manuscript on Saturday.

The next phase is a thorough copy edit of the manuscript. The copyeditor will  run through the manuscript with a fine tooth comb correcting all my bad grammar, spelling,  punctuation, consistency, and anything else that needs to be fixed before the next stage. BAD grammar. Go sit in the corner. In reality I can’t wait to receive his/her comments back. This is such an important stage and I’m always amazed how much stuff we can fix, cut, shape-up before the book is laid out in designed pages.

The title has been chosen:

My Kentucky Kitchen: 12 Months of Recipes for Fresh Homemade Food

The illustrations are in progress and most of the work at this stage is happening on the dust jacket. This is in preparation for the Fall Catalog that the press publishes every year.

The marketing plan is in the works and I am completing a marketing questionnaire that will guide the marketing department in the best ways to promote and sell my cookbook. This is the part of the book that I am so happy to have a publisher to help me with. I realize I have to do some promotion of my own, but to have a team of people behind this book who want to see it sell and succeed is very exciting.

The final design and layout of the book will happen after copy editing. I’m pretty sure the production schedule will be tight if this goes anything like other cookbooks I’ve worked on. With an open mind and a commitment to the schedule I hope to do everything I can to keep the manuscript and book rolling along so we can meet the May 2011 pub date.…