Recently I (This is John of course!) volunteered to test cook some recipes for an upcoming cookbook. An innovative chef, whose blog I follow, asked for “recipe testers” to cook some of the recipes that he will feature in his newest cookbook, and give feedback. Because I enjoy cooking and can relate to his blog posts, I jumped at the opportunity. Mention of our names in the cookbook was the Chef’s form of reward, but that didn’t factor into my reason to participate at all. I didn’t give it a thought at the time, but playing a small role in developing the cookbook was pretty cool!
This was the beginning of a huge collaborative effort…
I took on this project with the seriousness of finding the cure to a hangover. Believe me, that’s serious! The dish I was to prepare was Beef In Barolo. I made certain to purchase all of the ingredients at the market with the freshest vegetables and herbs, buy the best cut of meat for the best possible taste and presentation, and of course…follow the ingredients and measurements to the exact specifications.
When it came time to prepare the dish, I would have our family there to sample, taste and give feedback. Feedback is one thing I know I can count on from the family! They were more than happy to oblige…looking forward to it actually. It practically turned into an Event.
This was turning into a full-blown collaboration. It started with Chef Matt engaging his friends and readers…to my engagement of the finest local markets…next the engagement of family and friends. This is more than a recipe tasting. It is a truly collaborative endeavor. Through the desire to share and authenticate this event, it became a collaboration of ideas, thoughts and emotions. With the nurturing and support of all parties involved, a Cycle-of- Courtesy was created. This single recipe has touched many, whether they realize it or not. A three year-old gave valuable input to this collaboration (“Grappa, I would like to eat that again.”), the seven year-old asked for more.
All-in-all, the recipe was exceptional, and we have a few collective suggestions to share with the Chef. Not because I did a spectacular job, but because I followed the recipe. As a result, I’m certainly looking forward to the completion of the cookbook, and my family is anxious to see the finished product. One or two may even check-out Chef Matt’s blog.
My hope is that this cookbook is published as an interactive eBook, allowing recipe(s) to be followed on a mobile device or iPad. Comments and ideas could be made on each recipe as we prepare it…encouraging continuous collaboration!
Thanks for the experience Chef Matt!