The Bizz by AnyPromo.com

Business & marketing advice, news and features, design inspiration, and the art of gifting.

Illegally Perfecting All-Natural Ice Cream with Nitrogen in Silicon Valley


Stanford Grad Robyn Fisher started her business by illegally selling all-natural ice cream on the street next to unemployed chefs. Today, she’s the proud owner of the super popular Smitten Ice Cream shop.


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By Fausto Mendez / Photo by Robyn Fisher

    Wired interviewed Stanford Grad Robyn Fisher on her recent successes as the owner of a made-to-order, all-natural ice cream shop that started out as an illegal operation on the street.

Wired: When you launched, it was sort of a pirate ice cream enterprise wasn’t it? Not strictly legal?

Fisher: At that time I started getting my ice cream out there in 2009, all these chefs had been laid off from restaurants. So they went to the streets to sell their food, and I joined them. We used Twitter and Facebook and about 12 of us would set up in a park or on the street and say “come and get it before the cops come.” It was totally not legal. We would get hundreds of people coming, and it was amazing. I learned so much from all of those street food chefs about pricing, marketing all sorts of things.”

    Fisher partnered up with laid off chefs to improve her recipes and business model. Around the same time, she also perfected the art of using nitrogen, all-natural ingredients, and a custom mixer to instantly freeze the ice cream sans freezer, and it’s not just flashy tech for flashy tech’s sake.

    The nitrogen technique creates the perfect texture in ice cream because the instant freeze enables her to skip some of the chemicals that ice cream makers inject into their product in order to achieve similar textures. Fisher does a really great job of explaining the science behind the cream during the interview.

"Wired: I know ice cream is cold, but what does the nature of ice crystals have to do with how good the ice cream is?

Fisher: The general gist of it is freezing speed makes all the difference in crystal size, and the smaller, the better for mouth taste and creaminess. Freezing speed is correlated with freezing temperature. So if you can freeze it really, really cold, you can get smaller ice crystals.

And if you can freeze really cold, you can freeze really fast. The benefit of that is if you make small enough batches you can freeze to order. Therefore you don’t need any of those extra ingredients that make ice cream far from natural.”

    Smitten Ice Cream is now one of San Francisco’s favorite ice cream spots, and it continues to reach new heights of fame as travelers from around the nation and the world visit the shop during their stay at the Bay Area.


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Recipes to Boost Focus in Meetings: “Ooey-Gooey” Butter Cookies #RBFM

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By Fausto Mendez

    Pitching to a hungry audience is shooting yourself in the foot, so bring along some tasty treats - preferably sugary stuff - to boost client focus and mood. It WILL make a significant difference in the success or productivity of your meeting or pitch. This week’s #RBFM sugar spell: “Ooey-Gooey” Butter Cookies. 

    Our favorite and most popular #RBFM recipes often mash up two different deserts into one delicious concoction that most people don’t even realize is possible, and this week’s treat follows that tradition closely by combining cake and cookies. You can thank Lil Luna for the original “Ooey-Gooey” recipe, which we summarize down to the short-and-sweet version below. Let’s start by preheating your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.

Step 0 - Gather Your Ingredients

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+ One box of Yellow Cake Mix

+ Half cup butter

+ Half teaspoon vanilla

+ One 8 oz. cream cheese bar

+ 1 Egg

+ Powdered Sugar

Step 1 - Beat the vanilla, egg and cream cheese until fluffy.

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Step 2 - Add the cake mix.

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Step 3 - Let it chill for 30 min. Roll into balls. Dip in sugar. Eat leftovers.

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Step 4 - Bake for 10-12 minutes at 350. Drizzle sugar.

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Bring Your Own Lunch Recipe: Single-Serving, Instant Brownie #BYOL

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By Fausto Mendez

    Every week, we suggest a fascinating, unique and delicious dish that is easy to make or reheat at your office lunchroom. This week’s #BYOL recipe: Single-Serving, Instant Brownie.

    I know what you’re thinking, “Technically, this is not a lunch recipe.” And you’re right. This post is for an instant desert, and for #BYOL posts, we usually do a main course, sometimes coupled with a side or two. But we’re not prudes around here. I’m sure you enjoy a sugar boost at work as much as the next guy/gal, so I present to your our first #BYOL desert recipe. 

    As usual, the idea is to present a recipe that is easy to make or reheat at your office lunchroom. Unlike past #BYOL recipes on this blog, you actually make - instead of reheat - the brownie at work, so the beauty in No. 2 Pencil's brownie recipe is its freshness. As a result, you should prepare the mix at home, and when you’re ready to eat, simply throw it in the microwave.

Step 0 - Gather Your Brownie Ingredients

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+ One decent microwave

+ One ramekin or a small microwaveable cup

+ Two tablespoons butter

+ Two tablespoons sugar

+ One overloaded tablespoon of light-brown sugar

+ 1/4 Teaspoon of pure vanilla extract

+ One pinch of kosher salt

+ One egg yolk

+ Four tablespoons of flour

+ One tablespoon Hershey’s unsweetened coca powder

+ Two overloaded tablespoons of semi-sweet chocolate chunks

Step 1 -  Melt it Down

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+ Melt the butter in your ramekin or cup, but don’t let it boil.

Step 2 - Stir it Up

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+ Add the sugars, salt and vanilla to the butter. Stir.

+ Add the egg yolk, but do not add the egg white. Stir.

+ Add the flour and cocoa powder. Stir.

Step 3 - Apply Some Heat

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+ Top off your mixture with some chocolate chunks.

+ Microwave the mixture for about 45 to 55 seconds. Do not overcook it! Microwaves can easily overcook food. Plus, a slightly undercooked brownie is preferable, in my opinion. 

Step 4 - Enjoy

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+ I recommend being selfish, and eating it all to yourself. Like a territorial lion, you should lunge at any coworkers that approach you during this feeding session. But don’t be too selfish; share the recipe!

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Recipes to Boost Focus in Meetings: Peach Wontons #RBFM

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By Fausto Mendez

    Pitching to a hungry audience is shooting yourself in the foot, so bring along some tasty treats - preferably sugary stuff - to boost client focus and mood. It WILL make a significant difference in the success or productivity of your meeting or pitch. This week’s #RBFM sugar spell: peach wontons.

    Last week, we combined a cheesecake with a cinnamon roll to make a tasteful absurdity I sometimes call a cinnamon-roll cheesecake, but this week, the American South meets the Asian East as we turn wontons into a delightful peach desert. Surprisingly, peach wontons are pretty easy to make. Now, let’s stop talking about it, and let’s get to cookin’ - I’m hungry!

Step 0 - Gather Your Materials

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+ Two pounds of RIPE, sweet peaches

+ Two tablespoons of all-purpose flour

+ Three tablespoons of brown sugar

+ Wonton wraps

+ Canola or vegetable oil

+ Powdered sugar

Step 1 - Prepare the Delicious Peaches

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+ Cut up the peaches into small slices. Grab a big bowl, and toss the peaches with some flour and brown sugar. 

Step 2 - Wrap the Delicious Peaches

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+ Lay down the wontons on a flat surface. Place a small pile of sliced peaches on each wrap. When you run out of peaches, it’s a good idea to drop a little bit of the leftover peach juice in the center of each pile.

+ Next, wrap the peaches by rubbing a tiny amount of water to the edges of the wonton wraps; then, fold them into any shape you want. For more intricate folds, you might need to apply more water as you do more and more folds.

Step 3 - Fry the Delicious Peaches

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+ Heat about one-inch of oil in a pan over medium-high heat. The temperature  of the oil should reach about 375°F. 

+ Dry each wonton with a dry paper towel before frying. Fry them in small batches for about two or three minutes. Turn the wontons as they cook for best results. Once they appear golden brown, they are done. 

+ Lay them on some paper towels to absorb some of the excess oil; then, sprinkle with powdered sugar. 

+ Now, eat ‘em up! And take a few seconds to thank She Wears Many Hats for the original recipe, and these beautiful pics. Check her page for more delicious photos.

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