Sunday, July 7, 2013

LitStarter: Bringing You the Best in Bookish Projects

Welcome to another installment of LitStarter! This is a regular look at some of my favorite projects I discovered through two popular crowd funding websites: Kickstarter and Indiegogo. The featured projects will be related to literature and comics, but not limited to publishing or writing projects.

Since the column began, we have yet to cover any kid-related projects -- until today! This week's column features a children's cookbook with an international flair.

The Cultured Chef: An International Cookbook for Kids is being written by Nicholas Beatty and illustrated by Coleen McIntyre. The last time they teamed up together, they created Baking With Friends: Recipes, Tips, and Fun Facts for Teaching Kids to Bake, and won five awards for their work! Beatty and McIntyre have collaborated again to create a fun, educational, and multi-cultural cookbook for children. Through colorful art, fun facts, and easy, delicious recipes, this cookbook will not only help children with their development, but  also teach them about the world. A few recipes to be included are: Mexico's Bread of the Dead, Brazilian Brigadeiro, Scottish Shortbread, Icelandic Snert, and Russian Pelmeni.

I grew up in a small town as part of an Italian-American family. My mother and grandmother cooked six, if not seven, nights a week. Each meal was a healthy mix of vegetables, proteins, and starches -- all with an Italian slant. We rarely ate out, and if we did, there weren't many choices. The selection was limited to a few American home style diners and a Round Table Pizza. It wasn't until I moved away to attend college in a major city that I began to discover international foods from places like Brazil, Japan, Ethiopia, and Vietnam -- just to name a few. And through food, I was also able to learn about each country and culture. The Cultured Chef is a way to teach children about the joys of cooking as well as introduce them to new ways of living and eating across the globe.

As of now, copies of The Cultured Chef will only be available to backers. The author and illustrator have decided to publish The Cultured Chef independently. They hope to work with a traditional publishing house to make the book more widely available -- but since that isn't their priority, it may be a while before that happens. So if you'd like a copy for yourself, you will need to back the project for $25 or more. Your cookbook will be personalized, numbered, and signed. Additional rewards (at higher backing levels, of course) include prints drawn by the illustrator and a chance to have your family recipe featured in the book.

You can learn more about The Cultured Chef and its creators by visiting their webpage. You can also like The Cultured Chef on Facebook.

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