3 Greek Sisters – Cookbook Authors

3GS Bio Group

 

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I had the pleasure of meeting with the 3 Greek Sisters recently.  They are Cookbook Authors of 2 published cookbooks.    We are both members with the Guelph Mompreneur’s Group.  An association connecting Mom’s in the business community with chapters across Canada.

 

Owners of “Adelfes” – Publishing Company

  Cookbook Authors  –  Betty, Eleni and Samantha Bakopoulos

“Three Sisters Around the Greek Table”

“Three Sisters Back to the Beginning”

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HOW DID YOU GET THIS JOB?

We created our own job!  The 3 of us had careers of our own before the cookbooks, one of us was still is an artist, and two are former teachers.  There came a time when our lives took us in different directions.  We were either at home raising children, or due to our husbands’ careers, found ourselves displaced in Ontario somewhere.  During this time, we pooled our energies, combined our talents and passions and started writing down all recipes that we grew up with.  We were lucky enough to grow up with wonderful home-cooked meals and our family dinner table was always the centre of our home.  We knew we not only had great recipes to share but a great story that many people would relate to and perhaps be inspired by.  We had all the parts required for writing a cookbook:  we love writing, we are passionate about food, and Eleni is a photographer.  So the adventure began.  We also decided to self-publish and started our own publishing company.

Four years later, we have 2 award-winning Greek cookbooks, best-selling status and we have appeared on radio, television and in print across the Country.

 

WHAT DO YOU LIKE MOST ABOUT YOUR JOB?

We love that there are always exciting new things happening that we never would have dreamed before writing the books.  Our first book was awarded Best Foreign Cookbook by the Gourmand World Cookbook Awards.  This meant that we would be competing on an International level, and that competition took place on Valentine’s Day in Paris, France.  It couldn’t get more exciting than that!  We decided to take the plunge, we all went to Paris in the winter and we took along our parents – they deserved the award just as much as us.  We ended up placing 4th in the World.

This year, our newest book won Best Mediterranean Cookbook and the International awards take place in Beijing, China in May.  We are hoping that we can head to the far East and be there in person.

Around the Greek Table

  

WHAT WOULD YOU RECOMMEND TO SOMEONE JUST STARTING OUT IN THE WORKFORCE?  (Especially if they want to do what you do?)

The best advice is to talk to someone who has already walked the path.  They can give you so much information on what the world of publishing is all about.  We reached out to several cookbook authors, Emily Richards, Elizabeth Baird, and Greta Podleski; each women was candid and honest and their feedback was priceless.

Also, you need to realize that the world is changing, and social media plays a big role in marketing.  Whether you like it or not, you will have to engage in twitter, Facebook and all the rest if you want to expand your brand and business.

 

HOW DID YOU GET TO WHERE YOU ARE TODAY?

It was a lot of hard work – writing the book was just the first part, and in many ways it is the easiest part.  Marketing is a job that never ends.  You always have to think of ways to let people know about your products and why it is something that every home should have.

One of the best pieces of advice we read was, “do 5 things a day for your product” – it could be a phone call to a book-store, a blog, or a Facebook post.  If you keep to that each and every day, you will reap benefits.

 

WHAT ARE YOU READING NOW:

Betty:  Three Day Road, Joseph Boyden

Eleni:  The Orenda, Joseph Boyden

Samantha:  419, Will Ferguson

 

FAVOURITE COLOUR:

Betty:  Purple

Eleni:  Red

Samantha:  Blue

 

IS THERE SOMETHING IN YOUR CHILDHOOD WHICH MIGHT HAVE INFLUENCED YOUR CAREER PATH TODAY?

When we were young we were very fortunate to spend our summers in Greece with our Grandparents and extended family.  We jokingly referred to it as “Greek Girl Guides.”  It was like travelling back in time.  We made egg noodles from scratch with our Grandparents.  We went crab hunting in the ancient Neda river, and had lamb on a spit in the shade of olive trees.  Those memories made a very strong impression, one of food, celebration and family as the key to happiness.

 

WHAT IS YOUR BIGGEST ACCOMPLISHMENT (Work Related?)

Selling over 16,000 books!  In Canada, that is a huge number, especially when 4 years ago, no one knew who we were.

 

IF YOU COULD TALK TO A ROOM FULL OF PEOPLE WHO ARE INTERESTED IN YOUR WORLD – WHAT WOULD YOU SAY TO THEM AND WHY?

When it comes to food and family, make the time.  Eat together.  Connect with your food and each other.

 

WHO IS YOUR FAVOURITE PERSON (MENTOR?)

We would all agree – our parents.  They came to Canada in 1970 not knowing the language and having to work so hard to make ends meet.  They were like all immigrants in the 70’s.  They worked days and nights to make a better life for their kids.  And they did just that.

They also gave us courage to become entrepreneurs, they have been truly supportive of us throughout the cookbook journey.  In fact, they still join us at events and roll up their sleeves to wash a pot or two if needed!

 

WHAT ELSE WOULD YOU LIKE PEOPLE TO KNOW ABOUT YOU?

We have a warehouse full of books!  They can be purchased at Chapters, Amazon, and our website, www.3greeksisters.com

 

 

 

 

What does your New Year’s Fortune say?

 

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Fortune (For-Tune) n

1. The chance happening of fortunate or adverse events; luck.
2. A person’s standing in the financial, affected by material possessions or financial wealth
3. Often fortunate, a people that is favourable or unfavourable events.
4. Fate, destiny.

 

I am not a huge fan of Chinese food but on occasion I do like to order a dinner for 4 or the number 604. My favourite part of the meal is opening my fortune cookie at the end. I always like to remind the person picking up the food, if it is take-out to get enough fortune cookies for everyone. I mean really who doesn’t like to indulge in this fun little game of snapping them open to reveal your destiny.

I always like to tuck my latest fortune in my wallet and carry it around.  I giggled when I saw I really did have a fortune in my wallet and was still carrying it.  It is crumbled and worn, but here is what it says. “Don’t worry about money. The best things in life are free. 16, 19, 23, 29, 34, 43 (I guess these are my lucky numbers on the bottom). Perhaps I should buy a lottery ticket with those lucky numbers. This is a good fortune to receive for a girl like me has recently begun her own business. I better go put this back in my wallet before I loose it, (it might bring me luck!).

Did I mention my little people, Meg & Noah love for me to read their fortune’s. “Mommy… mommy what does my fortune say”. I reply, “clean your room and be a good boy and girl to your Mommy”.  I tell them this even if it says, “Work will be better tomorrow, cheery smile at your coworkers goes long way!”.

As 2013 is nearing an end and we have a new year ahead of us I have been thinking on the good fortune that has bestowed me this past year.  And like my fortune stated not all monetary.  As this is a time to pause and reflect I was thinking the year ahead could be thought of as a blank canvas. What colours will you use to paint and create the life you want?  I am going to use more reds,purples and golds.  Lately I am giving the notion of “positive thinking” some more thought. I love Norman Vincent Peale’s famous quote; “You are what you think”. I have read recently in one of his books, the importance of “Believing and Creating” are paramount for success.

This is a time of year for much reflection on the things which have come an gone, and we wonder what the year ahead will bring to us. Will your year be filled with “Good Fortune”? If you think it will, so be it! I hope it will and if you need to see it in print for reassurance, why not order some Chinese food and ask for some extra fortune cookies.

My wish for this year ahead is that it will be a postive year, filled with possiblities just waiting to be created. But first we have to believe before we create. Or is it first we create and then we believe? Here is my recipe for ‘Golden Good Fortune Cookies”. Don’t worry you can make it later,  you will find the time this year.

 

 

Golden Good Fortune Cookies

 

1 pound of Lucky Pennies
1 1/2 cups of Friendship
2 spoons of Hope
1 cup of Fresh Abundance
3 Teaspoons of Hugs & Kisses
Pinch of Kindness

Stir the Good Fortune Batter in a big mixing bowl, remember to make a wish before you put it in the oven. Fold each piece together – leave space for good fortune. Check often to make sure it is golden brown on top – sprinkle some love on top, tuck in Good Fortune. Serve to family and friends.

 

 

Talk soon ~

Nancy