The idea came to me right before Thanksgiving, having been in the back of my mind for a while. But now, I thought to myself, was the perfect time. Wouldn’t this be such a cool and memorable Christmas gift? After years of cooking together for family, friends and tailgates and many people asking us “can I get your recipe?”, I had an idea. Our very own cookbook.
“Barefoot Natessa”, Nate said to me one day as we were cooking in the kitchen. “That should be the name of it.”
“From our kitchen to yours,” I added. We both smiled and knew that we had our title. We couldn’t wait to get started.
After doing a little research and taking a cue from Oprah Magazine as “the site to see”, I stumbled upon HeritageCookbook to help us create our very own. For weeks we put together a list of our favorite Tessipes, decided that it would be a collection of our 50 favorites (some new and some old, including hamburger roll, sangria, pumpkin bread, banana bread, triple-layered brownies, mac ‘n cheese with chorizo and white trash), gathered pictures and had to take more pictures, wrote down all of the Tessipes in a uniform style, customized our cover photo and then finally organized it into seven different categories: Happy Hour, Dips, Sauces, Small Bites, Feasts, Holiday Favorites and Desserts. During the process, I was pleased when one of their representatives even called me and asked if I would like them to match the color of the back cover to the forest green on the front cover (otherwise it would have been left white). I appreciated this level of customer service, knowing that they wanted to make our cookbook as every bit special as we did.
After about a month and a half and a lot of excitement later, Nate and I finally held our cookbook in our hands. We anxiously flipped through it page by page and read through each Tessipe carefully, making sure we didn’t leave anything out. When we were done, we signed each of the back covers, wrapped them in Christmas décor and tucked them away. It is now six months later and I still smile every time I picture our family’s faces as they were unwrapping our gifts, thrilled at what we were giving them that morning. A little piece of our cooking became a little piece of their cooking that day.
“Barefoot Natessa: From Our Kitchen to Yours” isn’t on sale for you and I, but I hope that it will be one day.
P.S. Here’s a peek inside if you would like to see…