This project's funding goal was not reached on August 21, 2012.
About this project
Culture Kitchen's mission is to spread culture through food; to make it possible for anyone, anywhere, to experience a foreign culture at its most intimate, through the diverse people and cultures around them.
We began in San Francisco, hosting cooking classes where those who know best, immigrants to the US, taught the preparation of authentic, ethnic food. Not classically trained chefs, but men and women with a lifetime of experience. Now, we are thrilled to introduce an even more convenient way to experience authentically ethnic cuisine: The Culture Kitchen Kits. These curated monthly shipments of generations-old recipes and hard-to-find ingredients make it easy for you for create real, everyday ethnic food in your own home.
Culture Kitchen Kits contain far more than its ample physical contents. Each kit embodies the story of the Master Cook that was pivotal to its design. Our Kits were not compiled by a single culinary school graduate with a broad education in international cuisine but individually crafted by an astoundingly talented man or woman who learned his/her wares through years of impassioned routine, experts in the practical application of their respective culture’s cuisine. Our Master Cooks brought their generations-old recipes with them when they immigrated to the US. These are not formally trained chefs. There is no fusion, no molecular gastronomy: just passionate people who love cooking, and love sharing their culture through food.
What's in a Culture Kitchen Kit?
Each kit features a different Culture Kitchen Master Cook, feeds 4-6 people and contains:
(1) All the hard-to-find ingredients in the exact quantities you’ll need
(2) Three recipes with step-by-step directions, helpful photos and a comprehensive shopping list for fresh items and pantry staples
(3) Personal stories from our unique Master Cooks, as well as tips & tricks cultivated from a lifetime of practice
So far, we have shipped 6 months of Culture Kitchen Kits (see previous kits here) and the response has been tremendous. To meet demand, we are looking to develop another SIX Kits! This means more manpower and time to plan, with our Master Cooks, the development of new kits and once done, to photograph, film and assemble them. For our next round we'll capture live cooking videos to help you along your culinary and cultural journey. With each of these six new kits, we will make short videos that blend technique with the endearing stories of our Master Cooks, adding to a cultural experience you’d be hard-pressed to find unless you have grandmas from around the world. We'll also include digital copies of the recipe booklets included in each kit, giving you more options than ever to satiate your hunger for Culture Kitchen!
We know from experience that this is a tall order, but we believe in the crowd-power of Kickstarter. Your order can make a difference! In order to source the best ingredients and make amazing kits, we need a minimum of 1000 pre-ordered subscriptions. A thousand people saying they want our amazing Master Cooks to teach them to make exceptional, authentic ethnic food at home. A thousand people that want to learn about not only the magic of a different cultures cuisine, but about the people that inspired it.
Culture Kitchen is The Food Network meets The Travel Channel and results in an experience more authentic and effective than either! Together, lets bridge the cultural divide and spread the skills and experiences that make people feel at home, wherever that may be.
Enjoy good food, good company and explore.
Special thank you to our amazing Photographers Ariel and Sam Soto-Suver of Bowerbird Photography, thanks for the lovely photos for the campaign.
We (Abby & Jennifer) met in graduate school where we quickly became strong friends and collaborators. During trips to Kenya and Myanmar, we were inspired and transformed by the ability of food to transcend language and culture. We worked with rural farmers and were welcomed into their homes to partake in and enjoy their family meals. These families inspired our thesis in the Masters of Product Design program at Stanford where we were both enrolled, and served as the basis for Culture Kitchen.
As avid cooks, food lovers and travelers, we are incredibly lucky to explore the world in our own kitchen. We hope to bring to you the same joy that spending time with our incredible Master Cooks has brought to us.
We have shipped the following kits containing:
Suchitra's Western Indian Kit: Chicken Tikka Masala, Saffron Rice and Spiced Vegetables
Suparvadee's Thai kit: Pad Thai, Pumpkin Red Curry, Sweet Rice with Mango
Linh's Vietnamese Kit: Summer Rolls with Peanut Sauce, Coconut-Turmeric Shrimp Pancakes, Fried Bannas & Ice Cream
Paloma's Mexican Kit: Poblano Mole, Red Rice, Spiced Beans, Hibiscus Tea
Baraka's Iraqi Kit: Upside Down Turmeric Rice with Curried Fish Filets, Cardamom-Almond Halva
Yulie's Taiwanese Kit: Hot and Sour Soup, Taiwanese BBQ Beef, Green Tea & Red Bean Mochi
You can learn more about some of these past menus https://shop.culturekitchen.com/join.
We ship all the hard to find non-perishable ingredients. Inside the kit and via email we send you a shopping list for all the fresh ingredients you will need such as chicken, tofu, tomatoes, potatoes, spinach, etc. Each kit calls for a different set of fresh ingredients. We also do not include pantry staples such as salt, sugar or olive oil.
Each recipe in a kit serves 4-6 people and there are three recipes in every kit.
Every kit is designed to be a complimentary menu of recipes, but customers have reported making recipes individual as everyday meals as well as making all three recipes at once to feed a half dozen people.
We can ship to Canada! Unfortunately, we cannot ship to any other countries due to tricky food regulations. We hope in the future to offer international shipping other than Canada on our site. However, in the meantime, you can sign up for our mailing list http://eepurl.com/nHtVT to stay up to date on Culture Kitchen news and be the first to know if we can ship Internationally besides Canada in the future.
We created a reward just for you! For $100 you can join the Culture Kitchen community and receive 6 months of digital recipes intead of our full kits with ingredients. You'll get your digital recipes the same time as our subscribes get their kits, three recipes via email the middle of every month for 6 months.
Alternatively, you can gift a kit or subscription to friends of family in the USA or Canada, you can sign up to get a trusty Culture Kitchen magnet, or you can sign up for one of our subscriptions and we will send you the recipes for that month's menu digitally and give you access to all the fun stuff on our site.
Have other ideas? We always like to hear from people who want to help. Email http://mailto:email@example.com
We have 3 main costs to create a kit. First is product development. Actually working with our cooks to capture their recipes which have never been written down before, documenting each step, testing different ingredients. Second is the costs of what makes up each kit (packaging, ingredients, shipping) and any other content for the kit such as video. Third is paying our very small team a modest wage for food and shelter. :)
We share our Master Cooks' recipes in as authentic form as possible. We present the menu as it was presented to us, and work with our cooks to come up with vegetarian options. While some menus are not traditionally vegetarian, we always offer vegetarian modification for every kit and will ensure each kit of the 6 kits we are developing has a vegetarian option.
No, they are not all vegan. Every kit is very different so we can not offer a standard vegan option.
Fantastic! We'd love to work with more amazing Master Cooks to help develop our 6 new kits! We have a few criteria: They must live in the Bay Area. We like to work directly with our cooks on these menus in the kitchen. They must be foreign-born immigrants to the US who can work in the US. We have made a choice to work with immigrants to tell their story through food. They must love cooking and sharing their stories, no secret ingredients here. And, they must be able to interview in person. For more information email http://mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org.
Yes! we have already included shipping to the continental USA in the reward levels, each kit weights between 2-4 pounds and will ship via FedEx Smart Post (a partnership between FedEx Ground and USPS).
Unfortunately, if you live in Alaska, Hawaii or Canada it costs more than we can cover in our product costs as a small team shipping a small amount of product. Until we have enough orders to get discounts on shipping, if you live in Alaska or Hawaii we ask you to add an additional $5 shipping for every kit we will be sending you. If you live in Canada, we ask that you add an additional $17 for every kit we will be sending you.
Why thank you, we agree. We work with some of the most incredible photographers in San Francisco, Bowerbird Photography. Almost all the ingredient, food, and people cooking shots are their work. Check them out on their http://www.bowerbirdphotography.com/ or http://www.facebook.com/pages/Bowerbird-Photography/227119930684217.
Currently, all of our kits are packed in a facility that processes tree nuts, wheat and coconut and may contain trace peanut, walnut, almond, wheat, or coconut. However, every ingredient is processed, packaged and sealed individually so that you can decide to cook with only the ingredients you want to use in your kit.
We start every kit menu using the exact ingredients that our cooks use and then carefully review all of the ingredients in a menu to provide the highest quality and purest ingredients possible. We believe in pure food free of artificial additives, preservatives, sweetners, colorings, flavors and hydrogenated fats and provide ingredients that fit these standards whenever possible. However, currently many ethnic ingredients are not produced free of artificial additives, colorings or preservatives. With your help in growing the Culture Kitchen community and interest in pure ethnic ingredients, it is our goal to reach critical mass to persuade manufacturers to produce pure ethnic ingredients!
- (29 days)