I Am Going on a Diet

I have begun to think about the best way to go about losing between ten and twenty pounds. Of course the higher number is what I really need to lose in an ideal world, but I figure that I can far more easily start out with half of that. At any rate the thing I am looking at is how to diet in the most effective manner. So I have been looking at finding real nutrisystem reviews of the food that they sell. I am thinking that the best use for these meals would be to take them to work with me and eat them there instead of going to one of the fast food places. It should be relatively easy to replace the meals that I have at home with healthier versions of real food. That is the plan at least, but the basic fact is that you need to be able to use the meals in the way that they are intended to be used. If you can not stand the taste of the food, then it is not of any real value to you.… Read More


So You’ve Got a Recipe and You Want to Sell a Food Product

So You've Got a Recipe and You Want to Sell a Food Product

You’ve been making this recipe forever and every time you share the results, someone says, “Wow, this is so good! You should sell it.” And that’s where you gets stuck, because you have no idea what to do next.

When you’re at this stage, at the very beginning with no clue what to do next, you don’t know what you don’t know. You don’t know even know what questions to ask. Eight years ago I was in your shoes. I needed help; I knew I needed help, but I didn’t know where to turn.

I stumbled along, making mistakes, spending money I didn’t have and sometimes getting lucky and finding solutions that worked. I looked for help from people who’d “been there” too. Shari Fitzpatrick, founder of Shari’s Berries, and I had a conversation during which I recall asking the most intelligent questions I could come up with. She was very kind in sharing her experience, but in hindsight, and to my point, I’m not sure I got as much as I could have out of that conversation. First because it was only about 15 minutes long and more critically, because I wasn’t sure what to ask. I wonder if she hung up from that call thinking, “ha, good luck to that girl ’cause she does NOT know what she’s doing.”

Eventually, I managed to piece together enough of what I needed to know to get the right incorporation, licensing, business and liability insurance, registration for sales tax, space in which to bake, ingredient, packaging and shipping vendors and so on. Quite possibly, I may have (unknowingly) violated some laws. This was not the fast track, but there wasn’t any other way, and I was determined to keep moving forward!

There is plenty of information “out there” about starting a generic business. Much of it applies to your start-up business whether you’re a food entrepreneur or a hair stylist. And it’s still confusing. Add in that you’re producing a product that people EAT, and laws that change frequently, and now it’s even more confusing and yet important that you get it right.

Here’s a brief checklist of the first crucial steps you need to take if you want to turn a recipe into a successful food business.

1. Determine to WHOM you are going to sell. Is there even a market, beyond your well-meaning friends and family, for your product? Many of the rest of your decisions depend on this one. PS: “Everyone” is not the right answer.

2. Incorporate your business. It’s important for tax purposes as well as liability and asset protection. Which type of incorporation you choose depends on your personal situation and merits discussion with your CPA.

3. Get liability and business insurance. Especially with a food business, there are too many factors and risks lurking to play around here.

4. Take care of these first two steps BEFORE you sell one bite of anything!

5. Register your business with the state and get any local … Read More


How Do I Know I’ve Found The Best Food Truck Business?

How Do I Know I've Found The Best Food Truck Business?

Not everyone who offers a meal on the go is in the same class. To find the right mobile food truck business you have to do some research. Do you want a concession business like the one on every other corner? Or do you want to be the food concession that offers a fresh and unique menu that stands in a class by itself?

You go into business for yourself because you want to turn a profit. In order to do that, you have to choose your operation wisely. A good mobile food truck system will provide all the necessary tools, resources and advice to ensure that you get out of the gate quickly and successfully. Trying this on your own will certainly lead to many missteps and wrong turns. Do you feel you have the time and money to risk going it alone? So before deciding on anything, find an industry leader who has a training program in place and systems designed to save you years of trial and error.

The best mobile food businesses have a proven business model that is built and designed to attract customers from a wide segment of the population. They provide you with training from the day you sign your Franchise Agreement and support for as long as you are in business.

Where lunch customers once had to settle for frozen-flat, tasteless burgers, frozen fries and sandwiches with few options, the best mobile food concessions offered hand-patted Vermont beef burgers and healthy choices such as a variety of fresh wraps. They have grown exponentially each year and continue to surpass expectations even in a dismal economy.

When you choose to partner with the top mobile concession franchises, you will be running a mobile food business with heart. You and your staff will have a great time serving customers a full menu of interesting and healthy choices. And when you’re working in a confined space, there’s no room for error. Your training gives you all the recipes and food preparation protocols that you need to attract your clientele and exceed their expectations each and every visit. And their state-of-the-art web-based reporting systems and back-office support mean you never have to deal with hours of paperwork.

So, is the lunch truck business for you? It is if you want to join a team of entrepreneurs who are backed by a proven system that steers them towards success.… Read More


How to Make Traditional Holiday Fruit Cakes

During the holiday season, I like to spend the afternoon making some delicious homemade mini fruit cakes. Making and serving these delicious items has been around for centuries. You will usually see them served around the holiday season or at wedding celebrations.

You will find that various cultures will have different touches on traditional recipes, however, the following recipes are carried out in the American tradition. When I make this fruit cake, I bake it in a muffin tin or mini bread pan. If you want, you can certainly bake it in a regular bread pan or a round cake pan.

How to Make Traditional Holiday Fruit Cakes

Fruit Cake Recipe

1 1/3 cup of granulated sugar

1/2 cup of butter, soft

2 eggs

3 cups of all-purpose flour

3 teaspoons of baking powder

2 cups of eggnog

1 1/2 cups mixed candied fruit

1 1/2 cup sifted sugar

1/2 teaspoon of nutmeg powder

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon powder

additional eggnog

(optional) half portion of candied cherries

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

In a large mixing bowl, shake the sugar with soft butter until soft and creamy. Beat in both eggs until mixed. In another bowl, stir in the flour and baking powder. Gently stir the flour mixture into the sugar mixture and then shake in the eggnog until all the ingredients are well combined. Fold the chopped candied fruit. If the mixture is stiff, mix with your hands.

Spray a few muffins or mini pans with non-stick vegetable spray. Spoon the mixture into the pan you want.

Place pans into a preheated 350 degree oven and bake for 20-22 minutes or until they are done and the centers test clean with a toothpick. Remove from the pans and let cool on a wire rack.

In a small bowl, combine the confectioner’s sugar, nutmeg and ground cinnamon. Add in enough eggnog to make the mixture of drizzling consistency. Drizzle the glazed over the cooled fruit cakes.

If desired, top the fruit cakes with candied cherry halves for garnishing and store them in an airtight storage container. … Read More


Fruit Cake: The Holiday Essential

Fruit cakes have become more than just a Christmas treat. Loved by young and old alike, this delicious treat has a colorful history and tradition that extends to this day. Did you know that the fruit cake industry began in Roman times? The belief was that it would provide blessings to them during the time of harvest. The combination of fruit and nuts made this a favorite delicacy by people during this time.

While it was regarded as a type of food that will bring blessings, in the 1800s, the exact opposite happened. It was believed to be sinful and was prohibited in some regions. Not long after, the cake was again regarded as a treat that could help bring love to unmarried individuals. The fruit cake became a symbol of hope as well; in many parts of England, they put a small slice under their pillow so they can start to dream about their future loved one.

Fruit Cake: The Holiday Essential

What exactly is fruit cake made of? The ingredients that are included in the classic ones may vary, but it is typically battered together with some nuts and a little rum or brandy. A vacation is almost never complete without a piece of fruit cake. Most people will associate a fruit cake for cheering during the Christmas season.

One of the biggest advantages would be that it can last for weeks and months. Unlike other types of cake, as long as you keep it refrigerated, it will not easily spoil. The rum inside is what makes this treat lasts longer, and more delicious at that!

Fruit cakes are also best enjoyed when cold or frozen. Sometimes, people opt to keep it for several days to let the flavor and the brandy sink in. It is also typically wrapped in foil and is perfect for parties and gatherings during the holidays. If you want to serve to younger family members, you can substitute alcohol for fruit juice. Make sure you also let the fruit juice be absorbed well by the dough to add to its flavor and rich taste.

There are so many things that you can serve on the Christmas table during the holidays, and fruit cake should always be one of them! This special treat is something that you and your loved ones will surely enjoy. Having a slice will really help get you in the spirit of the holiday season. Aside from that, you can also opt to give out fruit cake to your family and friends as gifts! They will surely love having this on their dinner tables as well. It is also best served with tea, coffee or a glass of wine.

If you plan to buy for the holiday season, make sure that you are able to find those that use authentic fruit and not just the artificial kind. There are many shops and specialty stores online that will make homemade fruit cakes for you. Take time to shop around and enjoy a slice of the best … Read More


Wonderful Drinks For Winter

A warm and delicious hot drink is exactly what our insides need on those days when we are wearing extra clothes and have the fire on. Make your insides as warm as your outside by trying one or more of these tasty and warming beverages.

If you are looking for some new drinks to try, have a look at a few of our suggestions here. They are all extremely tasty and really hit the spot.

To kick off we have the classic hot chocolate, add whipped cream and marshmallows if you want extra sweetness. This is a versatile beverage and there are a few ways to enjoy it.

Why not add mint to your hot chocolate? This can be done easily with peppermint or even a candy cane to give different strengths of mintyness. If you are a fan of peppermint bark, imagine it warmed up in a cup, sounds good doesn’t it?

Why not try hot chocolate the way it should be made, and not the pale imitations that come from instant powders. Melt a bar of chocolate by pouring hot milk over it and then just stir until the chocolate is fully dissolved. If you are used to using powder, you’ll be amazed at the difference in the taste.

These are all great drinks, but what if you fancy something more fruity than chocolaty? Hot fruity drinks are very tasty and have a bit of sharpness to them thanks to the fruit.

Hot Cider could just be the drink that you’re looking for. Add some spices to give it a kick, or sweeten it up by adding something like Caramel.

If you are a fan of Hazelnut coffee, why not throw some chocolate into the mix by adding Nutella to your coffee? This drink then ends up almost like a dessert, and you will be pleasantly surprised by how well the 3 flavors combine.… Read More