More often than not, food is a common thread in my most talked-about memories—the kitchen a common locale. I've come to the realization that my stress can stand still in the kitchen. No deadlines or errands, no worries; just ingredients and an empty palette to create. For me, cooking has always been a lifestyle. Everyday spices and sauces came together at dinner time, as did my family. Eating is such a universally rewarding experience, that I'd assume many people can relate. Memories surround food and vice versa.
The process of cooking takes time though, and I believe that where you'll find meaning is cooking not because you can spare a few minutes, but sparing a few minutes to cook. Unfortunately, time is a luxury nowadays, and convenience is something that's hard to spare. As much as I'd like to regularly create a homemade meal, I look to producers of gourmet cooking products to speed up my time in the kitchen and give me the opportunity to become a more efficient at-home chef. In this issue, we've gathered products that might do the same for your customers. Whether it's replacing a few steps in a recipe or sparing an extra ten minutes over the stove, the at-home chef can find relief. Turn to page 26 for simmering sauces that boost the flavor of even the blandest piece of fish or meat. For the (wannabe) pastry chef, we've profiled companies that are churning out baking mixes with healthier ingredients and bolder flavors (page 18).
Turn to page 10 for the latest in chocolate trends or page 24 for a preview of can't-miss items at the Summer 2014 Fancy Food Show. Whether or not you're taking time to cook in the kitchen, I hope you and your customers are making memories around food.