I met a lady yesterday who gave me some almonds. Her name is Stéphanie Kinger and she is originally from France. She has a business in Porreres, Mallorca, where she takes local almonds and ‘dusts’ them with sugar, adding natural flavours such as apricot, chocolate, orange, lemon and cinnamon in the process. She takes a fairly humble, standard, local product and creates something different; something that I hadn't seen before yesterday and she generously gave away free samples of her products.
Apart from the fact that her almonds are delicious, combining different flavours with simple nuts, they also look different. They are not coated in a hard, shiny coloured coating which standardises the size and shape of each almond. These almonds are irregular and individual. They are different.
Stéphanie has taken a local and traditional concept and created something new. She elegantly tells the story behind her business, how she got started, how she chose the business name and developed her recipes on her website, www.bessodemallorca.com, and I think she is a great example of innovation, creativity and storytelling.
Mallorca has become famous for its almond trees and their beautiful blossom which heralds the oncoming spring so early in our year and also attracts many visitors. Not so long ago, however, so many of the island´s almonds were simply left to fall to the ground and rot as their size and form are not like those of their American rivals. Innovations like Stéphanie’s help to breathe new life into old products and have widespread appeal because they have a certain quality that goes beyond the ingredients - they are different.