OpenIDEO is an open innovation platform. Join our global community to solve big challenges for social good. Sign Up / Login or Learn more

Recipes for all seasons - recipe book competition

A competition where people devise recipes which use only local produce and enter them into 4 categories: spring, summer, autumn and winter. The best recipes are included in a book.

Photo of Helen Moss

Written by

Perhaps people don't really know which foods are produced locally or which foods are seasonal. This could be a fun way of getting people to research this and adapt their favourite recipes or invent new ones which use only local food. The concept is a competition where people will submit these recipes into one of 4 categories - the 4 seasons. The best recipes will be chosen to be included in a recipe book with each of the 4 seasons as a chapter. The book itself could be an ebook and/or a printed book and could feature local producers, telling their stories and showing photographs of their farms. 

Maybe the winners could win a month's supply of local produce as well as having their recipes used.

There could also be a schools section which would encourage children to be involved and learn about food.

A whole event about local food could be devised around the book launch.

17 comments

Join the conversation:

Comment
Spam
Photo of DeletedUser

DeletedUser

I like the idea! I was also thinking of a print or online recipe book that suggested seasonally-appropriate alternatives to our favorite meals. I notice that often times my friends and family eat a favored food or cook a favorite dish regardless of the time of year because first-off they are not aware of seasonal eating (our supermarket culture has made it possible to purchase anything at anytime and made us lose our sense of seasonal availability) and secondly they don't think of equally enjoyable alternates (that are seasonal or local)

I imagine the book could either be organized by seasons themselves or arranged by theme/course with the seasonal options for each.

Spam
Photo of DeletedUser

DeletedUser

I love this idea! I'd buy the book right away! As you've discussed below a book is a static medium, but I just haven't found a good way of scrolling down that recipe web page while my fingers are covered in tomato sauce or whatever...Books are still useful in the kitchen :)

If this is combined with some of the concepts that are about marking which products are local and seasonal in the supermarket I think we have the perfect solution to this challenge!

Spam
Photo of DeletedUser

DeletedUser

I love this! Some local schools have programs in which parents can share recipes to compile a book that is then sold as a fund raiser. But this takes it to the next level by incorporating the local producers! Very fun!

Spam
Photo of Helen Moss

Thank you Quyen. And why not use it as a fund raiser too? Something directly benefitting the local community would encourage people to get involved.

Spam
Photo of Vincent Cheng

As a kid, I remember getting recipes from my mom for one of these cookbook fundraisers. Perhaps this could benefit from a school project as well? As in, getting kids to work with their parents in creating a local food meal/recipe?

Spam
Photo of Helen Moss

Yes, that's what I thought, it would make a good school project. And how about if the school kitchens were persuaded to cook for a week with only local produce to try out the recipes devised by the children and their families? After the week's tasting all the children could vote on their favourite recipes!

Spam
Photo of DeletedUser

DeletedUser

I like the voting aspect for the kids - they could be the drivers behind the family cooking! Great collaboration!

Spam
Photo of Meena Kadri

Nice one! But I hate to break it to you – my mother's going to win.

Spam
Photo of Louise Wilson

Helen, building on the other comments from members, how about a series of different books which relate to schools, new home owners, students starting uni etc? Competitions are excellent and people will be so engaged!

Spam
Photo of Helen Moss

Thanks for the suggestion Louise, that highlights the diverse range of people who could get involved.

Spam
Photo of Johan Löfström

I'm following the discussion here in the comments, and thinking that a book is really a very static media, even though you are talking about 4 editions throughout the year. I think it risks becoming abanded and just a shelf-warmer. (and printing, distribution costs are high, resulting in high purchase price)

If you had only an interactive web page with the voting continously, the users would be able to automatically highlight the recipes that have most ingredients in-season. So all are able to add recipes all year round (any type of food) and all users together categorize the recipes according to availability each month, so after a year the database adapts and "learns" what the visitors to it are looking for.

the service could be financed from fees from people that submit recipes and the voting via text messaging? or subscriptions that you can give away as a gift certificate or as christmas present.

Or if you want to give away the recipes to someone not computer-literate, you could "buy the right" to print out pdf-versions of each months or seasons recipes.

( At one christmas when I was about to move from home into my own first apartment, i received a subscription for a big 12-part cook-book, that came delivered by post to me, one section each month. )

Spam
Photo of Helen Moss

Thanks for your input Johan. You're right, books are static and, given the fact that the recipes would be based on local producers, the information could change frequently. That's why I suggested an ebook too. I think that an electronic version of the book, whether it is a website or an online book which you can browse is essential. And I really like your idea that it should be interactive.

I do think however, that a small print run would also be of benefit. Now with digital printing, printing prices are going down and there are "print on demand" services which means that only copies which have been ordered are printed (no unnecessary waste). It would be good to have a few copies for libraries, schools, for those who won the competition. There's something about "being in print" which makes people enthusiastic and may motivate them to enter the competition. Even though the advantages of an online version are evident, I think people still like to hold something in their hands that they have had a part in creating.

But why not do both? One competition per year with one printed edition, with the interactive website too, which would be a growing resource. On the website there could be a section with interviews with local farmers, a directory of producers, the possibilities are endless!

Spam
Photo of Helen Moss

Oh and I meant to say, I didn't mean that there would be 4 editions throughout the year, just one book with 4 chapters (one for each season). Maybe I need to edit my concept and clarify that...

Spam
Photo of Vincent Cheng

I've seen some local seasonal recipe books (including one given to me as a gift), but I love the idea of gathering contributions from the community through a competition. Perhaps there could also be an online component to make it easy for everyone to submit, search, & vote on recipes (sort of like OpenIDEO, and then can be easily reapplied to different communities)?

Spam
Photo of Helen Moss

Yeah, that's a great idea Vincent. Getting people involved through voting is a cool way to reach even more people! People could then be encouraged to try the recipes and the local products before voting.

Spam
Photo of DeletedUser

DeletedUser

Great idea, Helen!

And what if the book producers partnered local councils and real estate agents, so that when you move into your new house, there was a welcome package waiting for you that contained this recipe book showcasing local seasonal produce and information about the farmers' market (times, dates, transportation options, etc.). Agencies handling rental properties could do the same for their renters. This would need some public funding to cover the book costs, but as a new homeowner/renter, it would be great to have this information at your finger tips.

Spam
Photo of Helen Moss

Thanks Sarah. I like your idea to reach out to new home owners. I would love to receive a book like that on moving into a new area! It would make me feel a connection with the local community and inspire me to go and try out the products.