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The Test Nest Process


I plan, prepare and price out a gourmet 4-course menu and invite diners to cover the cost of the food (space permits up to 6 or 7 “testers”).

Who attends TEST NEST:

The TEST NEST invite list includes friends, colleagues, acquaintances and “foodies” that I’ve met in passing. I’ve hosted special TEST NEST’s for family and friends while traveling. I also encourage friends to spread the word and suggest their colleagues be added to the list who would enjoy the concept.

What to expect:

I can’t guarantee TEST NEST food will be perfect. I’m testing the recipes for the first time along with my guest testers. I can guarantee a relaxing social experience with a fun mix of people – you’ll probably meet someone new.

Rating System:

Once dinner is complete, I lead a discussion with my testers to decide how each course of the menu should be rated. Let me reiterate that the purpose of this experiment is to find a significant amount of 5 star recipes to possibly compile a cookbook, so I encourage testers to be very honest. I did not create the recipe so I am not offended if the recipe is not favorable. Suggestions for garnishing, extra spices, or even better preparation of the food is greatly appreciated and noted in the blog posts for readers who might also want to try the recipes.

I rate each recipe on a 5 star scale. Anything under a 3 is considered a “throw away.”

5 stars = a triple chocolate cake recipe that I came across years ago is one of my favorite examples of a 5 star recipe. It became the requested roommate birthday cake and has often been requested by friends and family. 5 star recipes melt in your mouth, tend to persuade sounds of “ummm” and “ahhh” upon the first bite. 5 star recipes are the ones that make your eyes open wide with excitement. They are memorable. You crave them. They would be worthy of being one of the best things you ever ate.

4 stars = yummy, pleasing and nothing significantly wrong with the recipe. Good enough to make again and doesn’t require any major changes, but it is not quite a 5 star recipe…

3 stars = decent recipe, but possibly lacking on flavor/spice/texture. If suggestions for what would be needed to improve the recipe drastically change the recipe, then it is a “throw away.” It would better to try a similar recipe.