Saturday, July 12, 2014

Interview: Looking for the secrets of Mary's secret ingredients

A couple of weeks ago, I discovered on Twitter Mary's secret ingredients and instantly fell in love with the idea. But what and who is behind this project? I tried to answer a couple of my curiosities in this interview!
For now, the boxes are only available in the USA.

Products to inspire your cooking

- What is in Mary's secret ingredients box?

MARY’s secret ingredients boxes are filled with an assortment of unique, gourmet, artisanal ingredients and small kitchen products to inspire your cooking to create wonderful tasting food. The box contains real size products not samples. For the cost of $25.95, the value of the box will be at least $30. (FYI the value of our last box was $52)

- What's the story of your idea?

In 2011 Mary, a food and cooking lover, wanted to share her passion and culinary experiences with other gourmands/foodies, created her blog LOVE-the secret ingredient.
Every week the blog serves up engaging stories of love, joy, comfort and friendship to its followers. Posts include proven, scrumptious, healthy recipes and celebrate LOVE as the secret ingredient for wonderful food. The idea behind this blog is to engage a convivial community of true foodies and home cooks. The goal is simple: to encourage people to fall in love with making great, healthy food and to share it with those they love. Pour love into your cooking and it will always taste better!

Every year, thousands of exciting new food ingredients and products are introduced across the U.S. If you are a foodie who loves to both cook and eat, how can you possibly know about all of them? Mary is here to curate them for home cooks all around the U.S.!

While delighting 28,000 followers with her blog LOVE – the secret ingredient, Mary is on a new mission. Two, actually: To deliver her favorite ingredients packed in seasonally themed sets to your front door, and to help hungry children across the country.
As a passionate cook, Mary always looks for new inspiration and interesting flavor combinations. With LOVE – the secret ingredient, she shares her expertise, passion and her all-time favorites with you. In each box you’ll find mouth-watering sweet and savory products to create wonderful tasting food. On the LOVE – the secret ingredient blog, Mary will share recipes to inspire, which will include ingredients from the boxes.

The box is ready!

Target: the epicurean 

- What is your target?

Basically, the epicurean… those who love to discover new tastes, both gourmet and healthy. People who want to take care of themselves and those around them and that are interested in discovering and learning to cook with new products, or expanding their range of culinary experimentation. Whether you're an experienced cook, a kitchen adventurer, a cautious cook or a novice, MARY’s secret ingredients will be right for you!

- How do you pick up the ingredients?

Mary wants to highlight specialty, artisanal and new, quality products that she personally likes. She also wants to help small producers expand their reach. She is curating the ingredients for the box along seasonal themes.

Only 40 minutes to have your meal ready

- What recipes do you suggest? How much time do you need to cook them?

The recipes are posted on the LOVE blog and Mary aims for a 40 minute time to make.

The content of the box. The mortar and the pestle are not included in the box.

- Do you also have gluten free or other products for people with various dietary restrictions - such as kosher?

While these are not entirely specific goals we will have these types of products in the mix. Our summer box turned out to be entirely gluten free.

Let yourself surprised

- Why would you recommend to someone to order the box?

First of all, for the fun of being surprised and for the excitement of opening the box and discovering the contents. It's a present!

Secondly, it’s a great way to discover new products. MARY’s secret ingredients introduces its subscribers to new and artisanal ingredients, products and recipes they might not otherwise discover or try, with the convenience of having it delivered to their door.

Finally, buying a box is also a good action. As a proud supporter of the worldwide organization Feed The Children, MARY’s secret ingredients contributes to help fight worldwide hunger.

- What is the feedback you received so far?

In one world POSITIVE! From everywhere we have received excellent feedback on our first box. Whether it is from our subscribers, our followers, our partners, foodies or bloggers.

Some secret recipes:

Here are some details about the recipes associated with the box, on Mary's blog, LOVE-the secret ingredient.
Here are the post revealing the secret ingredients of the summer box and the first 2 recipes Mary has created so far using the box ingredients: 

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