WE ARE 100% FUNDED WITH 20 HOURS TO GO!
$7,500 - WE MADE IT! - T-shirts will be made for all the donors!
$8,500 - If we make it all the way to this amount, we can get SOLAR! Also, each donor will also receive a 16 oz Commemorative Glass Jar celebrating this enormous goal!
Follow us and check out our Instagram to see what we have been up to these past few weeks!
Hi there! My name is Laurel, but you can call me Sprinkles. I am the owner and Chief Sugar Fairy at Puttin' On The Mitts, an environmentally friendly, plastic-free, dessert food truck that will be based on the beautiful Seneca Lake Wine Trail in Upstate New York. I am hoping to be the Finger Lake's first dessert food truck and for that lofty goal to happen, I need your help to raise funds to help get my feet (and wheels!) on the ground this year! I like to say that I am 65% there, this includes a trailer, some commercial coolers and equipment, lot's of labor and love, and of course TONS of enthusiasm!
A Little About Me
I knew at the age of 15 that I wanted to be a pastry chef. When I was little, my mom’s best friend managed a bakery in Queens, NY and the folks who owned it were a bit like adopted grandparents. Each time we visited, their son Ralph would have fluffy layer cakes baked and ready for my sister and I to frost with the most brilliantly colored tubs of buttercream and sprinkles. The smells of vanilla, strawberries and bread are forever etched into my memory and I can still remember peering over the immense wooden tables strewn with flour trying to get that little bit of extra cookie dough. I am positive this is why I still do what I do fifteen years later! :)
In high school I enrolled in a Vo-Tech program that exposed me to the world of pastry and baking and there I received two scholarships to continue my education in college. I graduated from Sullivan County Community College in 2011 and received my A.O.S in Baking and Pastry Arts. I have spent the better part of a decade being a spongecake, learning techniques, styles, and building flavor profiles, all while challenging myself to constantly grow and adapt. It seems passion, planning, perseverance, consistency and some sacrifices all play vital roles in starting a business and keeping it afloat.
I am a hard-working, hard-loving, and hard-playing tiny woman that likes to approach everything in life with fiery passion and an insatiable sweet tooth for love. I love for everything to be colorful, I love sprinkles, people, places, all things baking related, all things nature related, anything that purrs, barks or chirps...and of course, PUDDING!
So, Why Pudding?
The idea for Puttin’ On The Mitts came to me in 2010 at my first major job while still in Culinary School. While there, I had found a recipe for Guinness Chocolate Pudding from a chef at Alias in NYC named Shane Phillip Coffey. The simplicity of the recipe, being it only used 5 ingredients, led me to start daydreaming how I could manipulate that into other varieties. Daydreams lead to experiments, experiments lead to successes, and the rest they say, is history!
My love for traditional stove-top pudding was born and from that moment I knew it was going to be my focus for the food truck. After a few failed attempts, and a lot of trial and error, I finally nailed my main bases down. Since then I have been experimenting with different chocolates, thickeners, vegan options, different alcohols, you name it...it has been tried or will be eventually.
Since moving to the Finger Lakes in 2015, I have seen what a blessing and an opportunity it is to be a foodie in this beautiful region. When the season permits, a wide array of fruits, vegetables, dairy, wine, beer, and even homegrown spirits are available within a comforting and sensible radius. It was only natural that this would become the place to set down roots and start my business.
While out exploring the area, I noticed there was a lack of dessert options available to locals and those on the wine trail that did not have the time or want to sit down at a restaurant in order to satisfy their sweet tooth. We have a few places for ice cream and some plated desserts on the trail, but they still remain fairly sparse and I just know that we would be a great addition to the wine trail and the surrounding area!
We plan on going to wineries, breweries, distilleries, farmer's markets, weddings, food truck gatherings and other events around the area. We also plan on travelling to warmer areas in the colder months to keep our hearts and heads happy as well as to bring a little bit of the FLX to the rest of the world.
You've heard of boozy cupcakes, boozy ice cream and boozy slushies...but how often do you come across boozy pudding!?
"Unlike ice cream on a hot day, the puddin' will always stay!"
"To show the world that it can be sweet, without the plastic wrapper."
I am very passionate about food and desserts, and certainly people, but did you know that I am also very passionate about our Earth? In 2017, global plastics production exceeded 350 million tons, and since 1950 when the first plastics were introduced, the world has produced over 7 billion tons of plastics. Think about that for a second. Think about just how much plastic will make it into our waters, into our wildlife, and into our children. Plastic doesn’t biodegrade, it doesn’t disintegrate, it just stays. Unwanted and unused again for millennia. We have reached a tipping point and it is our turn to make the right choices.
The numbers are extremely alarming and I believe we as guests on this planet, have a moral obligation to stop willingly polluting our precious home. To help reduce our carbon footprint and well as bolster the local economy, we plan on sourcing everything from as local as possible and shutting down operations when it isn’t viable to do so anymore. Our chocolate will be sourced from Callebaut in Belgium, which is in fact far away, but has extensive programs that re-invest profits back into the cocoa farming communities they source from.
- We pledge to use no single-use plastics in our daily operations. And if we must, we promise to actively make sure they get properly recycled.
- We promise to save all of our plastic waste and display it openly, to help educate the public on just how much waste gets produced as time goes by.
- We pledge to sell all of our puddings and desserts in reusable glass mason jars with lids, ice cream cones and other smart packaging options.
- We promise to only use recyclable and compostable materials such as wooden spoons, metal straws, paper boxes, and water bottles to help reduce the amount of waste produced. We will offer these items for sale to help better arm the population against plastic usage!
- We pledge to donate a portion of our time and profits to plastic cleanup efforts around the world, while striving not to add to the issue.
Some Of Our Earth Saving Rewards!
Our Menu, Inspired by our Surroundings.
Proudly featuring local NYS wine, beer, spirits, dairy & agriculture!
A Note Alcohol Content...
While a majority of the alcohol is cooked out in our products, some could still be left over in trace amounts after cooking, Unlike frozen ice cream, our bases and reductions are cooked and simmered for over long periods of time which leads to greater alcohol evaporation. We will be working with a branch of Cornell University to properly test our products in order to get an accurate reading so that we can safely sell our products in the allowed percentages to the public without having to obtain a liquor license. We at Puttin' On The Mitts understand that the consumption of alcohol, in any form, can be harmful to both the bodies and minds of some individuals. We would never want the joy of pudding and desserts to ruin someone's day, so this is why we will also offer plenty of non-alcoholic options to those who do not partake in the consumption of alcohol, in any amount.
I have always made baked goods and special orders for friends and family, so naturally it made sense for me to add some pastries and baked goods to my menu! You can look to find:
- Cookies, cakes, brownies, scones, muffins, specialty items & holiday items
- Occasional savory bites & special themed food holidays
- A variety of vegan, gluten-free, low sugar and other allergy friendly offerings
- Homemade dog/cat biscuits
What We Have So Far...
- As luck would have it, the trailer came to us in the form of a barter for rent (lucky, right!?) It is a 1968 Phoenix Rally Trailer that is in really good condition, considering its age. The frame is solid as well as the tongue and most of the insides. Most of the work that needs to be done is a new roof and some rotted wood needs to be removed.
- Single-Door Commercial True Sandwich Cooler
- Two mini-fridges
- Commercial shelving and storage bins
- A wonderful commissary kitchen
- A large collection of pans, spatulas, whisks, bowls, shelves, signs, storage bins, etc.
- Nutri-Ninja Blender/Food Processor
- Commercial Ice Cream Cone Maker
What We Need...
- Carpentry work, electrical work, plumbing, new sheeting inside, some minor dents and dings, and a paint job or a wrap on the trailer. We don't believe it will cost more that $2,000 to fix her up as she was just recently used at a food truck in the last 5 years.
- To purchase a vehicle that is able to tow the Phoenix properly. We currently have $3,000 saved and will use another $3,000 of the money raised to buy a really great one. We have our eyes on a few down south (No Rust= Happy Northerners!)
- A compressor hose on the sandwich cooler and a recharge of Freon. $200 max
- A KoMo Flour Mill so we can process spent grain into flour for ice cream cones! $500
- The rest of the funds raised will go to finishing details, merchandise, purchasing food, equipment, permit costs, commissary rent and registration for the vehicles.
- We have invested around $5,000 of our own money and we plan on using this money to buy smart, while making it stretch as far as possible and not cutting any corners!
Risks and challenges
1. We do not reach our funding goal. Which really just means you get your donation back and I start to turn up my couch cushions and waiting until August to turn in my grant application.
2. Seasonality takes it's toll and we are just not able to sell as much pudding as I want to.
In this case, I already have a few spots I wholesale to...so the dream will never die. It will just get slower and colder, kind of like a frozen pudding pop.
3. Somehow when we take apart our trailer, it's like opening the gates to MoldLand (your least favorite amusement park) and we are set back a bit further than planned with both time and money to get it up to code and inspected.
To solve this one, it may take a bit of extra moola and elbow grease...but I know a guy. And a girl. Maybe more than one...
4. We grow so big, so fast...that we (I) can't keep up with demand. While this is an awesome problem to have, I still don't want to get caught with my tutu down. I would have to change my business model so I could hire someone, then I would hire someone. Then if we need to, we can either buy a bigger trailer (or a truck!) or open up a second location where someone will have to sling pudding too.
5. Since this is my first legitimate business venture, it is certainly challenging everyday learning all of the new things that are now suddenly relevant. Between licensing, obtaining permits, the Health Department, marketing, ordering and the general day to day, I will be a pro in no time! It is also such a blessing to have some many people helping me with tips, pointers, equipment and funding along the way!
Hey you, thanks!
I am beyond words to explain how grateful I am that you took the time to even read a word of this and I can't wait to share my experience with you.
It's only onward and upward from here! :)
Go and check out our website that a cool guy named Mike made for us!
Love, Peace & Puddin',
- (30 days)