Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Breaking In the Le Creuset, and Starting a New Business

I just finished creating Nick's birthday gifts; a batch of blueberry ice cream/frozen yogurt, and a batch of my homemade granola, with peanut butter chips added. He's so easy to please! He's been reminding me non-stop that for his birthday he just has to have those two foods. He's playing poker tonight so it was the perfect opportunity to prepare these foods (he turns 32 tomorrow!!!).

If you're wondering why I didn't provide the link to my granola, I've decided I want to start selling it, so I deleted the recipe from my blog. I found out that a local grocery store will sell homemade goods so I've been spending some time perfecting my recipe and determining an appropriate selling price.

Would you pay $6 for 5 cups of delicious, homemade, low sugar, high protein, 100% whole grain, peanut and wheat-free granola? Be honest.

When I haven't been working, preparing for birthdays, blogging, or thinking of an appropriate marketing plan for my granola, I have been managing to use some of my new kitchen gadgets. I'll share my walnut butter with you soon (I finally used my new food processor), but tonight I want to share with you my first creation using my new Le Creuset pan!

I decided to create my favorite side dish; kale with tomatoes.

I always buy the canned tomatoes with no added sugar. The salt content is also very low (under 35 mg per can).

I added a large bag of fresh kale, then topped it with the entire can of crushed tomatoes.

(**Compared to fresh, canned tomatoes are actually a better source of the powerful antioxidant lycopene because cooking the tomatoes helps you absorb more of the lycopene!**)

I put the lid on the Le Creuset and turned the heat to medium, then cooked the kale/tomatoes for about 7 minutes (I stirred the mixture a few times during that 7 minutes).

So simple! I promise I'll do something more amazing the next time I use it. I'll be honest though, I have not been cooking much. I never feel like making elaborate meals when I get home from work. I always make something but lately it's been a lot of eggs, large salads, and stir-fries.

QUESTION: What should I make next in my Le Creuset?! I need some simple ideas!


  1. Happy early birthday to Nick!
    Honestly, I would try to go the extra distance and eliminate all sources of gluten from the ingredient list, or just not mention it on the label at all because low-gluten doesn't really have any meaning for intolerant people.

  2. happy birthday to Nick and congrats on starting a new business! I'd definitely pay $6 dollars for a bag of healthy granola! :D
    I've been lazy on cooking as well. We just finished our take-out dinner! I think it's alright to be lazy sometimes. It makes cooking more enjoyable when we actually do it! :)

  3. I might pay 6 dollars, but it'd have to be amazing ;)

    So cool you're selling it though! HOORAY!!

  4. How exciting that you're going to start selling your own granola!! Any chance of making it available online? ;-)

  5. Happy Birthday to Nick!!! I love the idea of selling your granola! I think $6 for 5 cups is very reasonable, promise!!! I am jealous of that Le Creuset! They are amazing, but sooo spendy!

  6. That is so exciting! I wish you all the best in getting your granola out there. I also wish I knew more about selling prices, but I know that those raw granolas that seem to be a new rave are uber expensive, so $6 might not be too bad. People love granola, and homemade is always best.

    Happy Birthday Nick!

  7. Happy Birthday to Nick!

    Your granola looks delicious. Such a great idea to sell it locally. I feel like $6 is pretty comparable to the granola sold at Whole Foods.

  8. Honestly, as someone who goes to grocery stores frequently, I would pass by a $6 granola. The only groceries that I spend $6 on for one item are bulk items or an item that has been really publicized and I have heard a lot about. It may be homemade and taste amazing but I dont know the taste when its sitting on the shelf. I think you should look at the other granolas on the shelf and try to make your price competitive with theirs.

  9. The blueberry ice cream looks AMAZING!!! My favorite flavor, by far!

    I'd definitely give local, homemade granola a try for $6...

  10. Congrats on the new opportunity! Once in a while we "splurge" - well, usually my husband sneaks things into the cart or comes home with surprises and they're just things like that - usually a bag of granola I won't buy on a weekly basis, but love, or a fun trail mix, etc! So I could definitely see your granola making that list!

  11. happy birthday nick! sounds like he's getting some pretty awesome gifts. :)

    i've tasted your granola, and it is delicious! but i'm kinda a tightwad, and I usually don't spend a lot of money on cereal. but i'd definitely buy it once in a while!

  12. selling your granola!??! I would TOTALLY buy some!!! cant wait to see how that turns out for you!

    I love making my own rather than buying! such a money saver and the flavor is so much better in my opinion!

    happy bday to NICK!

  13. Hey Gina!! That kale dish looks yum! I've seen a lot of kale around the blogs lately and it makes me want to buy some!

    I have to be honest, I would not buy $6 granola. MOstly bc my hubby would frown upon me AND bc I make my own normally. but for 5-6 cups...that is probably very comparable to what is standard in stores! I'm not sure though!!
    I would buy your granola though!! Especially since I follow you!

  14. You should definitely sell your granola :) I have no idea about prices though since I don't eat or buy granola. My mom does and I bet she'd pay for a tasty and healthy type.

    I also think it's one of those things where some people are willing to pay for high quality food and some people are not- you can please everyone :)

  15. That Kale recipe looks so good and simple to make! Thanks for sharing.
    In regards to the granola recipe--your price sounds reasonable but I would pay more in the ball park of around $5.00. Good luck!!!

  16. I would say a great first use for your le creuset. This looks excellent. I don't use kale as often as I should.
    I would pay that for granola. Knowing that it is a fresh and healthy option makes the price reasonable.

  17. Ok, honestly this is tough, I would and I would not spend $6 on this. The reason being that I know I do not eat granola enough to buy 5 cups worth, so for me personally, I know I would be tossing it (I have to eat it in about a week here or the moisture makes it soggy, no matter what I keep it in, maybe I need a well sealed glass container), but I DO think 5 cups of your homemade granola is worth $6 and I would buy it from you at least once. If it didn't go to waste, then I just might buy it again :) Good luck on this business venture!

  18. I always give gifts of homemade goodies, too :)

    That's exciting that you might be selling it! Nice that they have that opportunity at a grocery store.

    I think that $6 for 5 cups is reasonable because granola can be VERY expensive... I just probably wouldn't buy it myself because I like making my own. But if I DID buy granola, I'd totally pay $6 for good quality stuff!

  19. Happy birthday to Nick! I adore your pan - I like the shape of it - I have a knock off one - but its big - I think its an 6 quart!

    Yep, that is very reasonable to pay that for five cups of granola - good luck on your new venture! :D

  20. The 12th is my hubby b-day, too, only he's 37! LOL Happy birthday to Nick!

  21. oh that's a GENIUS idea!!!! i love kale and tomatoes and together it sounds like a match made in heaveeeen :)

    nick IS easy to please! granola and ice cream? couldn't get any easier or tastier then that! happy birfday to your main man

  22. Happy Birthday to Nick! The ice cream looks wonderful! And tell him he is very lucky that he gets your granola for free! :-) And I think your price sounds fair for a good, quality product! Good luck with the granola business!

    Love, love your Le Creuset pan! It's beautiful. And the kale and tomato dish sounds great!

  23. I'm so glad I got on your blog today. I was just about to start feeling guilty but I saw your note about balance and eating. thank you!

  24. this post is very usefull thx!

  25. I say yes and yum!! I absolutely LOVED your other granola recipe, it's the bomb. what a gorgeous le crueset! hmmm I would definitely make a beef stew on the weekend. Throw everyone in the pot and simmer low and slow for leftovers during the week :)

  26. Congrats on your venture! How awesome.

    This is going to sound funny but I could see a lot of people passing it by at $6 for 5 cups but totally buying $1 for 3/4c (like a single serving package)! People are funny about pricing and $1 sounds cheap even though they are paying the same price per volume.

    Just a thought about package sizing. Perhaps you could try both sizes to see. Best of luck!