The other day I was contacted to participate in some test kitchen and culinary brainstorming work. The company I worked with has many national quick-service restaurant clients and specializes in recipe development, food styling and product development, among several other services.
After introductions, we spent a majority of the morning brainstorming and writing product development ideas.
Essentially, for each scenario we were asked to create innovative recipes and applications for a specific product or food item. They were really looking for out of the box ideas and it took me a few minutes to let go and let my imagination run wild. After coming up with our ideas we would present them to the group.
Following a lunch provided by the in-house test kitchen staff, we spent the afternoon in the test kitchen, working out new products and recipes for several of their clients. Unfortunately, I can’t say what or for whom, but I can say, it was an extremely exhilarating and fun day. I got the chance to work with people who are as passionate about food as I and spend time in the test kitchen with some very talented chefs.
The day ended with some food styling work and I have to say – it is amazing what a food stylist / photographer can do with a plate of food. The picture below was from a “bread-basket project” that I worked on and was taken on my phone and I thought it looked decent. However, I wish I could post the pictures the food photographer took; they were definitely magazine worthy and not because of how I styled it; she was truly talented.
At any rate, the day was also sort of an audition for future freelance work. I knew this going in and thus came very focused on doing my best. Needless to say, I was very pleased when the owner asked me to hang around after everyone left. After talking for a bit, he told me that I “rose to the top” and they wanted to bring me back for additional projects. I was thoroughly grateful and excited. After such a fun day, I was very happy to hear that they wanted me back. I look forward to working with them again in the near future. It was a great time!