Supply local shops
With a bit of creativity you can probably find a niche for yourself if you want to earn some money by cooking at home. A friend of ours bakes delicious smoked fish quiches which are then sold in the fishmonger’s where she buys the fish.
Is there a niche in the market where you live? Perhaps there’s a crafts shop which sells local products. Think about what you could make with local produce. Ideas could include making jam from locally grown fruit or making a local speciality such as vanilla fudge. Perhaps you could get together with another local person who can do the arty side of the packaging to make your products more attractive.
Is there anything you could make with meat purchased from the local butcher? You will need to think creatively as they probably already sell pies. Perhaps you are great at making chilli con carne or specialise in Thai food or some other cuisine. How can you add value to what’s already available and come up with a new product?
If you are cooking at home on a commercial basis, you must comply with the laws on food safety and hygiene. The following applies to UK-based businesses. In addition to passing the basic food hygiene certificate, you will need to comply with the Food Standards Agency inspection procedures. You will also need to comply with the laws on labelling, food handling and storage. Details of what this involves and links to further information can be found on the Food Standards Agency website.
You should contact your local authority or council for advice. In addition to overseeing the Food Inspectors, they will also advise on whether you need permission to use your home for commercial purposes.
Breaking the laws about food hygiene and food processing is a criminal offence. There are serious penalties for breaking the law. Don’t risk giving your customers food poisoning. Remember – if you don’t comply with the laws you could end up killing someone.