(June 1, 2014—Global Food Forums, Inc.) In the opening page of “Cooking to Save Your Life,” by Chef Kurt Stiles, John Morey, Executive Chef of DNC Sport Service, Bank of America Stadium, Carolina Panthers writes “Five short years later [after Chef Stiles’ stroke], Kurt has taken all his experiences, knowledge and love, and put it to work. I believe his research in this book comes from his life experience, passion, and knowledge of good cooking. I know using this cookbook will help families and friends eat healthier to live life fully!”
This is more than a cookbook. It is a story of the experiences endured by a successful father of a young family upon having a stroke and how he dealt with it. Most of the first section has been written by his friends and family and touches on topics ranging from his therapy and natural medicine to the challenges faced by caregivers. From there it segues into fitness and his new lifestyle, meal planning and lastly some 180 pages dedicated to healthful food recipes.
“Extras” include a system of allergen icons to indicate the presence or absence of allergenic ingredients in the basic recipes, ideas for substitution of certain ingredients to better customize for health concerns and personal interests, the nutritional content of recipes and personal notes.
I am posting a blog on this book, not only because Chef Stiles is a friend and his book is an unusual spirited effort that will benefit many, but also because of his creative usage of new tools now in the business world. They include use of the San Francisco-based crowd funding organization Indiegogo and a “must watch” short professional YouTube video on his story, see https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VqCzTBIS77c. He raised $8,310 toward his modest goal of $7,500. He has a productive relationship with academia; three students at Southwest Minnesota State University’s (SMSU’s) Culinology & Professional Writing and Communication programs helped him with the book and he now donates $1 per book sold to SMSU’s Culinology Foundation for scholarships and another $1 is donated to help stroke survivors.
Finally, the recipes themselves are heartfelt suggestions from Chef Stiles that provide information for individual customization to one’s own needs and desires and, most importantly, made me want to run to the kitchen to try them out.
For more information, Chef Kurt Stiles can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information on purchasing the book “Cooking to Save Your Life,” click on the link.
— Claudia Dziuk O’Donnell, Co-owner, Global Food Forums, Inc.