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Bill's Kitchen will be a beautifully illustrated hardback cookery book with the very best recipes from my cafes and my home
'Bill's Kitchen' will be published in October 2017. Pre-order now on www.billscafes.co.uk
'Bill's Kitchen' will be published in October 2017. Pre-order now on www.billscafes.co.uk
340 backers pledged £17,394 to help bring this project to life.

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Bill's Kitchen - my very best recipes from a life of food

£17,394

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'The recipes here are an ethereal mix of hearty and delicate, of simple and complex… I could eat any and all.'
Shaun Hill, Food writer, broadcaster and Michelin-starred chef/patron at The Walnut Tree Inn

I've written my first cookbook for 20 years and I think it's a cracker. It's a collection of the very best recipes from both my cafes and my home life. The best of the best. I'd like your help to get it published.

Thanks to all the wonderful backers Bill's Kitchen has now reached its initial Kickstarter funding target of £15,000. If we can get to £20,000 before 31st May then I'll know that the interest in it is even stronger than I'd hoped for and I'll increase the print run.

I created my first restaurant ‘The Place Below’ in the crypt of St Mary-le-Bow  in 1989, followed by Café @ All Saints, Hereford (1997), The Refectory at St David’s Cathedral (2005) and the Michaelhouse Café, situated in St Michaels Church in Cambridge (2008).

My previous 2 books (Food From The Place Below and Feasts From The Place Below) have been much loved and have sold between them around 20,000 copies and are still selling today. But my cooking has moved on and I'm excited and delighted to have the opportunity to write another cookbook with everything that is most delicious from my life of food over the last 20 years.

Having been a vegetarian for 10 years, for the last 20 years my cooking and the menus in my cafes have been thoroughly omnivorous. In Bill's Kitchen you'll find recipes for pulled brisket and rabbit with cider and mustard alongside roast aubergine ratatouille with spiced chickpeas and lentil, leek and parmesan bake. 

And throughout the book you'll find a commitment to local sourcing and attention to provenance - indeed there's a chapter devoted to this subject. Whenever we recruit a new manager at the cafes I take them to visit the Tudge family's pig farm where we source all our bacon, sausages and ham. Our goat's cheese and apple juice come from local producers in Cambridge and Herefordshire. We only use free range chicken and it all comes from beautiful Springfield farm near Leominster. These connections inform my cooking and this cookbook.

But I don't want any of this beautiful, carefully sourced food to go to waste. So there's a chapter on leftovers and another on 'family weekday suppers'. Both chapters focus on delicious strategies for using what happens to be in your fridge.

The decision to crowdfund the publication of the book has been incredibly liberating. It's meant that I have complete control over what the book is like rather than having to negotiate with a publisher. So it will be a top quality hardback with coloured cloth place-markers and with each copy shrink-wrapped to make sure that they reach you in tip-top condition. 

Financing the project this way means that I've been able to build my own team. Michael Phillips has created an elegant, appealing and practical design. Jay Watson has taken tinglingly good photos that bring every recipe to life. And Marianne Ryan, the editor, has made sure that the text and recipes are all clear and consistent and that the index makes it a great book to use.

The recipes are all clearly laid out. Each one is beautifully illustrated and and introduced in an entertaining and informative way. It will be a book that will be a pleasure to use. Like my first two books I'm hoping that you will still be cooking from a food-splattered copy in 20 years time.

Here's a Taster so you can get a feel for the style of the book  http://www.billscafes.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/A-Life-of-Food-TASTER-low-resolution.pdf 

The money raised by this campaign will go to printing the book, paying the editor and some of the photography costs. The designer and myself will only be paid out of subsequent books sales after the book is published. If we can raise more than the target amount then that will be a clear sign that demand for the book is high and we'll increase the print run.

 

Risks and challenges

The recipes are all written and the photos are all taken. There's still some work to do on design and editing but we've allowed sufficient time for that and everything is currently on track so that we can deliver finished copies in October 2017.

Sending all the rewards out (books, brownies and aprons) as promptly as possible will be a challenge but I'll make sure that we're well organized and have all the correct packaging sorted.

Once the Kickstarter campaign has succeeded the risks are relatively small and the challenges have largely been overcome.

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge £9 or more About US$ 11

    an e-book

    an e-book version of the cookbook emailed to you

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    Thank-you brownies by post

    A little box of salted caramel walnut brownies delivered to your home

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    Pledge £20 or more About $25

    A signed copy of the book + an e-book

    A signed copy of Bill's Kitchen + an e-book version

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    108 backers
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    Pledge £20 or more About US$ 25

    Pick up in person 1 book & e-book

    A signed copy of Bill's Kitchen picked up in person at Cafe @ All Saints, Hereford or Michaelhouse Cafe, Cambridge + an e-book version emailed to you

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    Pledge £37 or more About $47

    Book + e-book + Bill's Kitchen apron

    A signed copy of Bill's Kitchen + an e-book +a navy blue apron embroidered with Bill's Kitchen logo

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    Pledge £40 or more About $51

    Two books and two e-books

    Two signed copies of the book and two e-books

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    Pledge £40 or more About US$ 51

    Pick up in person 2 books & 2 e-books

    Two signed copies of Bill's Kitchen picked up in person at Cafe @ All Saints, Hereford or Michaelhouse Cafe, Cambridge + 2 e-books emailed to you

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    Pledge £80 or more About $102

    4 copies of the book and 4 e-books

    Four signed copies of the book and four e-books

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    Pledge £80 or more About US$ 102

    Pick up in person 4 books & 4 e-books

    Four signed copies of Bill's Kitchen picked up in person at Cafe @ All Saints, Hereford or Michaelhouse Cafe, Cambridge + 4 e-books emailed to you

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    10 backers
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    Pledge £95 or more About US$ 121

    Cafe Barista experience for 2 + books

    Cream tea and cake at Cafe @ All Saints, Hereford followed by an introduction to the world of espresso coffee from Bill and then a hands on session making espresso, cappuccinos, flat whites etc. This is a great opportunity to experience a commercial espresso machine first hand - but it's taken Bill 20 years to become moderately good at being a barista so don't expect miracles in one afternoon! Timing of the whole event roughly 3pm to 6pm. Plus 2 books to take home with you!

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    Pledge £120 or more About US$ 152

    Cafe cooking experience + lunch + books

    One person to spend a morning in one of the café's kitchens (Cafe @ All Saints, Hereford or Michaelhouse Cafe, Cambridge) following the baker and seeing how our food is made; followed by lunch for you and a friend. Two copies of the book to take home with you and two e-books emailed to you.

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    Reward no longer available 10 backers
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  12. Select this reward

    Pledge £120 or more About US$ 152

    Cafe cooking experience + lunch + books

    One person to spend a morning in one of the café's kitchens (Cafe @ All Saints, Hereford or Michaelhouse Cafe, Cambridge) following the baker and seeing how our food is made; followed by lunch for you and a friend. Two copies of the book to take home with you and two e-books emailed to you.

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    Pledge £140 or more About US$ 178

    4 books + 4 e-books and lunch for 4

    Lunch or breakfast for 4 at either Cafe @ All Saints, Hereford or Michaelhouse Cafe, Cambridge and 4 copies of the book collected from the cafe when you have your meal

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  14. Select this reward

    Pledge £180 or more About $229

    10 books for Christmas + 10 e-books

    10 signed copies of the book delivered to separate addresses (P&P charged separately) and each recipient to have an e-book version emailed to them - that's all your Christmas presents sorted!

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  15. Select this reward

    Pledge £180 or more About US$ 229

    Pick up in person 10 books & e-books

    10 signed copies of Bill's Kitchen to collect in person at either Cafe @ All Saints Hereford or Michaelhouse Cafe Cambridge + 10 e-books mailed to your email address

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    2 backers
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    Pledge £500 or more About US$ 635

    So you want to open a cafe?

    A day spent with Bill working on your dream to open a cafe. The day would focus on creating a practical plan which would highlight the challenges and joys of cafe creation. The day would take place at Bill's home in Hereford (unless otherwise by mutual agreement).

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    Pledge £650 or more About US$ 825

    Bread course for 4 + 4 books + 4 e-books

    A one day hands-on bread course for up to 4 people at Bill's home in Herefordshire featuring recipes from the book including lunch (does not include overnight accommodation or travel to Herefordshire). Plus each person on the course receives a copy of the book on the day of the course and e-book emailed to them.

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    Pledge £1,200 or more About US$ 1,524

    Dinner for 20 + books

    3 course dinner for up to 20 people cooked by Bill with recipes from the book at Bill’s home in Herefordshire. Each of your guests to receive a signed copy of the book and an e-book. House wines from the cafe are included. Reward does not include travel to/from Hereford or overnight accomodation.

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Funding period

- (37 days)