These days, who doesn’t have a culinary speciality? You can’t visit a friend for fear of being bestowed with yet another jar of their ‘special chutney’ to add to the row already monopolising valuable shelf space and gathering dust… In fact, you’d swear the buggers were procreating. And it gets somewhat embarrassing when you wryly roll out a box of handmade truffles to a chorus of dinner party titters, only to realise the newly-crushed chocolatier is amongst the ranks.

But most of us are guilty of foisting less-than-enthusiastically-received edibles on our nearest and dearest on occasion. It’s not that they’re not tasty- most are every bit as pleasant as the gourmet goodies gifted from posh department stores- more that you start to get a reputation as’The Mad Jam Lady’, or’The Fudge Forcer’ or summat. Wouldn’t it be nice to sell your wares to willing customers, rather than lose friends and alienate the people who find your baking habit bothersome?

That’s where’Cook, Wrap, Sell‘ comes in. It’s a handy guide- in fact, almost a workbook, like what you used to lug around at school- to becoming a kitchen-sink entrepreneur. The author has purloined his wisdom from a decent roll-call of now-successful producers, adding an air of authenticity and keeping things down-to-earth and nicely practical. Although encouraging, the book is quick to disavow you of any romantic notions you may have had about living’The Good Life’.

It’s a decent hand-hold through the perplexing labyrinth of paperwork, extensive health and safely considerations and tough financial concerns you’ll need to conquer in order to make a go of any type of culinary business from street food vendor to product producer. The book’s tone is inspiring and encouraging, but still realistic. Although, applying that same sense of reality, it would seem somewhat risky addressing continually-evolving topics like social media in a print title.

There is a definite place, though, for the majority of the remaining content. When it comes to instructional volumes, sometimes there’s nothing like a hard copy you can pick up and flick through whenever you get stuck, double underlining, dog-earing and highlighting at your leisure. The wealth of sensible advice in’Cook, Wrap, Sell‘ means it’ll look a right state pretty soon after purchase- the very measure of a well-thumbed tome.

ISBN 1908003278

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