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  • Writer's pictureMax Sinsheimer

Sold! The Cochon555 Cookbook (by Robert McKeown, with Cochon555 Founder Brady Lowe)

I've been working with Robert McKeown, a food writer and doctoral candidate in food studies, and Cochon555 Founder Brady Lowe on a cookbook that will showcase some of the top recipes from the tour's nine-year history. I am really pleased to announce that Agate Publishing in Chicago has acquired the rights for their Agate Surrey cookbook imprint. I previously sold Agate Sonia and Gabriella's Porto; Jessica, the editor for both projects now, is lovely.

Cochon555, North America's premier snout-to-tail culinary tour, holds events in about fourteen cities annually. My brother, his wife Lauren, and I got a chance to go to the 2017 NYC event (New Pork City) and had a blast. That's cotton candy with bacon bits, folks.

The gist of the tour is as follows: Five chefs are chosen in each city. About a week before the event, an in-state (often in-county) farmer delivers a roughly two hundred-pound heritage pig to each chef's doorstep. They then have a week to come up with 5-6 dishes using the whole animal in prescribed categories that might include “Surf & Turf Tartare Bar,” “Starter Bar” (salami, charcuterie, and pâté), or “Pop-Up Bakery.” Then, they deliver 450 bite-sized portions to a crowd numbering between five and six hundred people. The winner (by popular vote) is crowned the Prince or Princess of Porc and, along with bragging rights, gets flown at the end of the year to Grand Cochon to compete for the national crown with some dozen-plus other regional winners. The winner of that event is that year’s King or Queen of Porc.

It's a lot more fun to see it than to read about it, though, so here's a photo gallery:

And here is an abbreviated version of how I described the book in my pitch letter:

The Cochon555 Cookbook will be the heritage pig bible, from North America’s premier snout-to-tail culinary tour, Cochon555. Like the tour itself, this book will be dedicated to supporting family farmers and educating chefs and diners about the agricultural importance of Old World livestock. It will feature roughly 100 award-winning recipes, ranging from pig face tacos to pork fat macaroons, created by top chefs in the fourteen cities that host Cochon555 events annually. Beyond the recipes, The Cochon555 Cookbook will utilize every bit of pig history, culture, and gastronomy to serve readers an unabashedly obsessive tribute to some of the greatest four-legged creatures on earth.

Congratulations to Robert, Brady, and Jessica -- this will be a fun one!

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