Content Kitchen

Content strategy that leaves people hungry for more ...

Welcome to Content Kitchen

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Great content is created for people, not eyeballs. Effective content marketing hits the sweet spot where your goals intersect with what your audience needs and desires.

Content Kitchen offers food-focused digital strategy, from project work to full-scale, cross-platform plans encompassing onsite editorial, email campaigns, e-books, social media, recipe development and food photography.

WHAT CLIENTS SAY:
One of the (many) things I love about Alison is that she doesn’t believe in content for content’s sake. She shapes engaging, relevant content authentic to the NOURISH brand and is an invaluable partner in my business.
Lia Huber, founder and CEO, NOURISH Network
Alison creates perfectly balanced content, marrying the consumer’s interest and desires with the organization’s goals and needs. Her works understand the audience, and she delivers a compelling narrative every time.
Genevieve Longtin, director of email marketing & engagement, Sharecare
Alison Ashton is the person every manager needs on their content team. She is a versatile, food-savvy  writer and a smart, sharp editor, no matter the topic. You can count on her to deliver projects on time, even those quick deadlines. With her clear vision and expertise, she devises creative ways to engage readers in both traditional and new media.
Vani Rangachar, vice president/managing editor, Lifescript

 

Want to discuss your content needs?
Alison Ashton
310.460.8063
alison@contentkitchen.com
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  • Hi, I’m Alison

    I create content to inspire, inform and entertain ...

    Hi, I’m Alison

    I create content audiences crave

    And what could be more fun than that? I’ve been lucky to spend my career developing audience-focused lifestyle content that surprises, engages, inspires and informs readers.

    Would you ever guess?

    I’ve visited all seven continents on Earth!

    Alison Ashton
    Founder

    I combine experience developing content strategy for top national outlets with culinary training at Le Cordon Bleu.

    Would you ever guess?

    I believe everything is better with bacon. Everything.

    Rascal
    Mascot

    From the day she arrived, Rascal staked out the kitchen. She likes roasted veggies, watermelon and, yes, bacon.

    I started out covering travel, health, fashion and shelter for a national wire service and magazines. Then, in 2002, everything shifted. I went to Cooking Light, where I led the food team to develop award-winning feature stories. I got hooked on covering all things edible, and in 2009, I got my culinary diploma from Le Cordon Bleu in Los Angeles in order to improve my skills in the kitchen and deepen my knowledge about cooking techniques and ingredients. Since then, my work has appeared in the pages of Vegetarian Times, Natural Health and on top national health websites. I’ve even scripted nutrition videos for Dr. Oz. Why focus on food? Because it’s about so much more than what’s on the plate. What we eat touches on everything that’s important. Pleasure, physical health, emotional well-being, community, politics and family — it all starts in the kitchen!

    Rascal isn’t the only helper in the Content Kitchen. Meet the rest of the crew:

    Member of:

    LDEI Logo

    IACP-logo

  • Services

    What I can do for you ...

    Services

    I’m pretty lucky — I get to do what I love: create audience-focused content strategy, with services ranging from project work (articles, slide shows, video) to full-scale, cross-platform plans encompassing onsite content, email campaigns and social media.

    black-eyed-peas

    Some of the things I can do for you:

    Content Strategy
    Recipe Development
    Food Photography

    WHAT CLIENTS SAY:

    One of the (many) things I love about Alison is that she doesn’t believe in content for content’s sake. She shapes engaging, relevant content authentic to the NOURISH brand and is an invaluable partner in my business.
    Lia Huber, founder and CEO, NOURISH Network
  • Portfolio

    A taste of my work ...

    Portfolio

    I’ve written nutritional features for top health websites, developed mouthwatering recipes for major food magazines, scripted syndicated health videos and created full-scale content strategy initiatives encompassing onsite, email and social media.

    Are you looking for a partner for your next content project? Check out my portfolio to see what Content Kitchen can do for you.

  • The CK Blog

    Tasty content tips and trends ...

    A Hatch Chile Makes Great Content Strategy

    hatch-chiles

    Smart, focused content strategy helped transform the Hatch chile from a beloved regional favorite into a national obsession.

    Recently, while trolling the cheese counter at Whole Foods, I spied a display of Cheddar cheese flecked with Hatch chiles.

    “Must have ….” I thought. Kinda like Homer Simpson murmuring, “Donut …”

    Of course, I bought some.

    Then I realized my Pavlovian response was the result of ace content marketing.

    If you don’t happen to live in the Southwest and you’ve had a yen for Hatch chiles lately, you probably have Melissa’s Produce to thank for it.

    Over the past decade, the company has promoted the green chile from a regional specialty to a national obsession with annual chile roastings across the country.

    And they used content to help make that happen. Here’s how:

    Start with a great story. The Hatch chile hails from the dinky town of Hatch, N.M., and lends New Mexican cuisine its distinctive flair. It grows to about 6 inches and looks just like its descendent, the California Anaheim, but it boasts more complex flavor and heat.

    The Hatch has a fleeting, end-of-summer season. It’s kind of like the Beaujolais Nouveau of chiles — if you don’t stock up now, you’ll have to wait until next year’s harvest. So for years, all over New Mexico and the Southwest, people would buy 10, 20, 30 pounds or more and have them roasted to freeze and use throughout the year.

    Joe Hernandez, owner and president of Melissa’s, was one of those folks in the know: He grew up in El Paso, Texas, where Hatch chile season was always a big deal.

    The chile’s limited availability enhances its mystique — and offers a story that’s worth telling every year.

    Invest resources. Educating consumers about the Hatch was a key part of Melissa’s strategy. The company put a ton of information on their website, then took to new content platforms as they became available — their push started way back in 2002, long before there was such a thing as social media. Last year, they self-published Melissa’s Hatch Chile Cookbook, with ideas for using the chiles in everything from Bloody Marys to brownies.

    They also engage lots of brand ambassadors, from food bloggers to celebrity chefs. This season, Chef Jet Tila stars in a YouTube video that fuses the Hatch with another food obsession: Sriracha hot sauce.

    And they’ve steadily extended the product line beyond fresh chiles to include dried chiles, Hatch chile powder, salsa and more. Those kinds of product extensions help keep the story fresh.

    Give it time. Hatch chiles weren’t an overnight sensation — Melissa’s first started distributing them outside the Southwest in 2002. They began doing roastings seven years ago, starting in Southern California. Now they’ve teamed up with chains like Bristol Farms, Wegmans and Kroger to host roastings are all over the country.

    “It’s the Hatch roastings that really fuse all the marketing of the fresh Hatch season outside the Southwest,” says Robert Schueller, director of public relations at Melissa’s. “We’re getting people who have always been afraid of chiles to eat them for the first time (this is the only chile you can get in mild, medium, hot and extra-hot).

    “We get a ton of emails and calls every June and July about our roasts that we conduct nationally in August and September. It’s very much a unique thing that happens in front of the stores every season now.”

    And smart content helps whet that appetite.

    Hatch Chile Romesco Sauce

    Prep Time: 15 minutes

    Cook Time: 15 minutes

    Total Time: 30 minutes

    Yield: about 2 cups

    Hatch Chile Romesco Sauce

    Traditionally, Spanish romesco sauce is made with roasted red bell peppers and almonds. Hatch chiles give this Catalonian sauce a zippy Southwestern spin, and you could sub tomatillos for the tomatoes. Hatch chiles are unique in that they come in mild, medium, hot and extra-hot varieties. I used medium Hatch chiles, which lend the sauce pleasant heat. Serve it with grilled fish or chicken, use it as a dipper with chunks of rustic bread, or toss it with hot pasta.

    Ingredients

    • 6 Hatch chiles
    • 2 medium tomatoes
    • 1 medium onion, cut into 1/2-inch slices
    • 1/2 cup toasted whole-wheat bread cubes
    • 1/2 cup toasted pistachios
    • 3 garlic cloves
    • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
    • 2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
    • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt

    Instructions

    1. Move the oven rack to the top position and preheat the broiler.
    2. Arrange the chiles, tomatoes and onion in a single layer on a baking sheet lined with foil. Broil 15 minutes or until blackened, turning halfway through cooking time. Transfer chiles and tomatoes to a large bowl; cover the bowl with a plate and let stand 15 minutes or until cool enough to handle. Peel and seed the chiles and tomatoes.
    3. Combine the chiles, tomatoes, onion and garlic in a food processor; process until chopped. Add the bread and nuts; process until chopped. Add oil, vinegar and salt; process until smooth.
    http://contentkitchen.com/hatch-chile-makes-great-content-strategy/

     

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    Contact

    How to get in touch ...

    Contact

    310-460-8063

    Ready to serve your audience the content they crave? Contact me for a chat about your goals, your audience and the sweet spot where those two things intersect. I look forward to partnering with you on your next project.