On a daily basis, folks stop me in the grocery store, on the streets, or while I'm at the gym to ask me, where do you get the inspiration for your recipes? After being around the food world for a couple decades and learning from chefs from all parts of the world, it comes down to what is freshest when I go to the grocery store. There are a few tricks in my tool kit but they are all rendered useless if the products I'm working with aren't of the best quality.
So, I'm very excited to announce that I have been working with the SUNSET® team to develop a bunch of recipes using their amazing goodies, do some cool events with them, and generally shout their praises. I met Paul Mastronardi, El Presidente of SUNSET®, about a year ago on a tour of their greenhouses and facilities in Kingsville Ontario; to say that I was blown away would be an understatement. Paul and everyone on the team are so passionate about every aspect of their operation. It's that rare kind of excitement I so seldom get to witness first hand; it is a very inspiring thing.
First, the sheer scale of the greenhouse facility is so vast! we rode around in a golf cart going up and down the aisles trying all kinds of tomatoes straight off the vine. Many of the tomatoes I tried, I later learned, were strictly under development and although mind blowing, may still not be good enough to see the light of a grocery store. We drove around an entire greenhouse the size of what must have been a couple football fields, and this was just the development space – real dedication!
Hearing about Paul's travel schedule, which is mostly dedicated to seeking the next best thing, proved once again the level of commitment to excellence that this company has. I was sucked in and incredibly inspired not only by the great stuff that passed my lips that day (cucumbers, sweet peppers, and of course, tomatoes!) but also by walking through the various buildings and feeling the pride from every single member of the team.
Inspiration is infectious and I'm incredibly excited to share some of the stuff I've been working on with the SUNSET® crew. Stick around, it's gonna be a fun ride!