What I’ve Been Up To — A Fun New Project and a New Company!

Hey there! I can’t believe it’s been nearly 6 months since my last post. Time definitely flies when you’re having fun — and I’ve been having lots of fun, diving into a new cookbook project!

Introducing…The 8×8 Cookbook

No panini press this time, it’s all about the 8×8-inch baking dish (or metal pan). You know that little square dish that we usually pull out for brownies and cornbread? It’s also the perfect size for weeknight one-pan dinners, Sunday dinners, desserts, sides and brunches for a family of four to six (or, for a larger crowd, you can double the quantities to fit a 13×9-inch dish). In The 8×8 Cookbook I’m turning this versatile dish that most of us already own into a kitchen workhorse, with recipes for 88 crowd-pleasing “square meals” (get it?).

A team of 40 amazing friends and family members have been hard at work, testing the recipes as I’ve been finishing them. Each and every time a feedback survey comes in, I learn something incredibly valuable to make the recipe clearer, more accurate, more delicious or just plain more grammatically correct. I cannot thank them enough!

If you follow me on Instagram, you’ve already seen a number of the recipes I’ve been working on over the past few months (as well as my growing vintage Pyrex collection). A few of my favorites so far (FYI, these are just my iPhone snapshots — I’ll be doing the “real” photography next month):

Top Row: Blueberry Cobbler with Cornmeal Cream Biscuits, Fluffy Baked Omelet with Pico de Gallo, Chunky Ratatouille Goat Cheese Pasta; Middle Row: "Shortcut" Chicken Enchiladas, Deep Dish Strawberry Lattice Pie, Kale, Mushroom and Onion Gratin; Bottom Row: Detroit-Style Deep Dish Pizza, Spinach-Pesto Lasagna, Croissant Bread Pudding with Espresso Butterscotch Sauce (sauce not pictured)
Top Row: Blueberry Cobbler with Cornmeal Cream Biscuits, Fluffy Baked Omelet with Pico de Gallo, Chunky Ratatouille Goat Cheese Pasta; Middle Row: “Shortcut” Chicken Enchiladas, Deep Dish Strawberry Lattice Pie, Kale, Mushroom and Onion Gratin; Bottom Row: Detroit-Style Deep Dish Pizza, Spinach-Pesto Lasagna, Croissant Bread Pudding with Espresso Butterscotch Sauce (sauce not pictured)

…and also Burnt Cheese Press

I’ve also started a publishing company! Burnt Cheese Press, LLC is officially a thing, and The 8×8 Cookbook is the first title I’m releasing. I will learn a ton this time around, and likely make my fair share of mistakes (we’ll call them “experiential learning opportunities”). My goal is to publish other authors going forward, and to explore content distribution options beyond traditional print publishing — electronic, apps, videos, merchandise, to name a few.

I have the incredibly talented design and editing duo from Interrobang Collective out of Portland putting the glitz and polish on this 8×8 project. We aim to earn a spot on many cookbook shelves with a beautiful collection of recipes people will love to cook and eat.

Join Me On This Journey

I’d love to share my progress with you! I’ve started an email newsletter for Burnt Cheese Press, which will feature recipes from The 8×8 Cookbook, updates on my publishing journey, decisions I’m faced with, lessons learned. Subscribers will be the first to know when the book is available for pre-order and hopefully I’ll have some fun offers as well. Join the email list here!

Whew. So that’s what I’ve been up to. It’s not without a little trepidation that I’m making this public today! But I’m shaking off those fears. I’m very proud of the work that’s been done so far on 8×8 and I couldn’t be more excited to cross the finish line and hold the first copy in my hands. I hope you’ll join me on this journey!

What if I fall? Oh but my darling, what if you fly?

Welcome

KathyPanini Happy, online since 2008, is more than just a sandwich blog. Here, you'll find hundreds of my original panini recipes, my guide to choosing a panini press and a whole lot of other creative uses for the panini press.
~ Kathy Strahs
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29 Comments

  1. sara wrote:

    So cool!! Congrats on the book + the company. 🙂

    Posted 7.14.15 Reply
    • Kathy Strahs wrote:

      Thank you, Sara!

      Posted 7.14.15 Reply
  2. Allison wrote:

    How exciting! I’m really looking forward to seeing where your new publishing company takes you!

    Posted 7.14.15 Reply
    • Kathy Strahs wrote:

      Thanks so much, Allison! Me too. 🙂

      Posted 7.14.15 Reply
  3. How fantastic!!! That is a great cookbook concept. Have fun with it!

    Posted 7.14.15 Reply
    • Kathy Strahs wrote:

      Thanks, Aimee!

      Posted 7.14.15 Reply
  4. Stef wrote:

    Wow! Congrats! What an exciting new adventure!

    Posted 7.14.15 Reply
    • Kathy Strahs wrote:

      Thanks, Stef!

      Posted 7.17.15 Reply
  5. This new is awesome! Can’t wait to hear more about the new cookbook!

    Posted 7.14.15 Reply
    • Kathy Strahs wrote:

      Thanks, Jackie! Looking forward to keeping everyone updated. 🙂

      Posted 7.17.15 Reply
  6. Congrats and all the best! Love the name too 🙂

    Posted 7.14.15 Reply
    • Kathy Strahs wrote:

      Thanks, Gerry!

      Posted 7.17.15 Reply
  7. Girrrrrrl. I am soooo proud of you. You are an inspiration and I cannot wait to see the amazing things that are going to happen for you. I’ll be rooting for you big time. And if you ever want to do a book deal with a spice girl, let me know. I have some ideas. 😉 Love you tons. Go get em!!!

    Heather

    Posted 7.14.15 Reply
    • Kathy Strahs wrote:

      You’ve inspired ME so much, Heather!! Thanks for all of your support, my spicy friend. 🙂

      Posted 7.17.15 Reply
  8. Katrina wrote:

    That is wonderful, Kathy, congrats.

    Posted 7.14.15 Reply
    • Kathy Strahs wrote:

      Thanks, Katrina!

      Posted 7.17.15 Reply
  9. Yay! What exciting news 🙂

    Will you be at BlogHer this week? Will be nice to know if I’ll be able to run into you – we’ll have the WordPress.com booth of course.

    Posted 7.15.15 Reply
    • Kathy Strahs wrote:

      Thanks so much, Sara! I’m afraid I’m missing it this year — sounds like a crazy good entertainment lineup.

      Posted 7.17.15 Reply
  10. This is so exciting…. Congratulations on the new cookbook and the publishing company. This is gonna be huge and I can see how happy you are ????

    Posted 7.15.15 Reply
    • Kathy Strahs wrote:

      Thanks so much, Tasha! It does make me happy to build something. 🙂

      Posted 7.17.15 Reply
  11. Flavia wrote:

    Bravissima Kathy! Well done! Your new cookbook sounds fantastic and congratulations on the new company!

    Posted 7.15.15 Reply
    • Kathy Strahs wrote:

      Thanks, Flavia!

      Posted 7.17.15 Reply
  12. How exciting, Kathy! Super congrats. If I ever write a cookbook, maybe I’ll pitch you first! 😉

    Posted 7.15.15 Reply
    • Kathy Strahs wrote:

      I will look forward to that, Amy — thank you!

      Posted 7.17.15 Reply
  13. Congratulations Kathy! What an exciting journey you are on! 😀

    Posted 7.16.15 Reply
    • Kathy Strahs wrote:

      Thanks, Lisa!

      Posted 7.17.15 Reply
  14. Wow, this is amazing Kathy! I already have a cookbook in mind, so I know where to go when I am ready to publish!

    Congratulations!

    Posted 7.16.15 Reply
    • Kathy Strahs wrote:

      Thanks so much, Cheryl! Keep me posted! 🙂

      Posted 7.17.15 Reply
  15. We miss you in SD but sounds like you’ve been busy! Congrats on the new book and the new company – great name, btw 🙂 I can’t wait for your new cookbook.

    Posted 7.17.15 Reply