London is notoriously a creative hub, where people meet to exchange ideas, pursue creative careers, learn new skills and work on personal projects. The creative bug is highly contagious and immune to vaccines, I myself have embarked in a second personal project (the first being this blog) called My Little Sous-Chef. My Little Sous-Chef is a children’s cookbook made to inspire parents to cook with their kids. I am not alone in this journey, in fact the whole design and illustrations side is orchestrated by two designer friends, and also founders of the design company Ink Inch. If you want to know more about My Little Sous-Chef you can click on our crowdfunding campaign page, where we explain why this project is awesome in all possible means, including written words, a video and an animation, and if you like it you might even want to pledge and help us make it a reality.
You might know all about it, if you are following me and the project account on Facebook and Twitter. What you don’t know is the struggle that a group of Italian girls faces in creating a book from scratch in English and for the English market!
As you might guess, language itself is the first obstacle: prepositions play tricks on you when you are translating the recipe into English as our chef is Italian, too; the jargon eludes you and the time you spend looking up culinary terms is actually more that the time it takes to actually write the recipe; some recipes’ names are so Italian that you have to gesture while reading them. Luckily I work in publishing and I have bribed some editor friends to check every single word of our book, with the promise of cookies and other baked goods. They will regret this when they will be facing a recipe called literally “mozzarella in a carriage”.
This brings us to the second struggle, which is the content: we love our culinary traditions and we would happily make a book with only pasta, pizza and other traditional delicacies from our nonna’s (granny) recipe book. We had to restrain our Italian instinct and opt for a selection of British, Italian and cosmopolitan recipes but if we land a book deal, we’ll make sure to make a sequel called My Little Sous-Chef Goes to Italy.