Kathy Strahs

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Ten years ago, Kathy Strahs had at least one thing in common with Oprah Winfrey: Strahs’ panini press, a Christmas present from her sister, was one of her favorite things, too. Home with a new baby, Strahs got busy in the kitchen and started blogging about her recipes for the appliance.

“I really enjoyed the creative process and would stay up late and work through the night,” recalls the former marketer. “I had never been a workaholic before, but for the first time I loved what I was doing and felt invigorated.”

Her aptly named blog, Panini Happy, eventually led to a cookbook on the same topic. When her next idea, The 8×8 Cookbook, wasn’t picked up—“Publishers didn’t think the panini press person could sell books about an 8 x 8 inch pan”—Strahs decided to publish the book herself and start a publishing company, Burnt Cheese Press. Read More

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