Karl Schatz and Margaret Hathaway at their home, Ten Apple Farm, in Gray. The couple’s “Maine Bicentennial Community Cookbook” will come out this summer. Brianna Soukup / Portland Press Herald

GRAY — A new cookbook, compiled by the owners of Ten Apple Farm in Gray, to celebrates 200 years of Maine history through family recipes.

Margaret Hathaway and Karl Schatz began working on the Maine Bicentennial project just over a year ago with a vision of a cookbook with recipes from all 16 counties in Maine and a pledge to fight hunger in the state with the proceeds from the sales.

What they learned from their friend Don Lindgren, owner of Rabelais Fine Books on Food and Drink in Biddeford, is that they were creating a “community cookbook.”

“These early community cookbooks (are) some of the very first examples of crowdsourcing and crowdfunding,” Schatz said.

“We just did a Kickstarter,” Hathaway added, about the $32,000 fundraising campaign for the first printing of their “Maine Bicentennial Community Cookbook.”

They put out a call for recipes and received more than 350 submissions. Then the difficult part came: cutting down that number to about 200.


“We’re not quite ruthless enough,” Hathaway said.

“There were just too many really heartwarming stories,” Schatz said. “It was just hard to cut out people’s stories about food and what it meant to their family.”

Pre-orders of the cookbook begin this month. Image courtesy of Karl Schatz

Some of those submissions came from notable Mainers like author Stephen King and astronaut Jessica Meir, as well as politicians like U.S. Sens. Angus King and Susan Collins.

Stephen King submitted a recipe for “Lunchtime Gloop,” which basically is SpaghettiOs, ground beef and Wonder Bread. Meir’s mother submitted one of Jessica’s favorite childhood recipes on her behalf; Meir was in space at the time.

But for Hathaway and Schatz, who received more than just recipes – a father’s unfinished memoir, a great aunt’s journal about the Depression – the cookbook is about stories of families coming together at the table, both in times of celebration and hardship, Hathaway said.

“It’s really been incredibly humbling to be invited into people’s lives and to be able to help them share their stories with other people,” she said. “They’re not famous people, for the most part … But within their communities and within their families, the people mentioned in these stories and recipes loom really large and it’s just really heartfelt.”

This isn’t the first cookbook that the Gray couple has collaborated on before: Hathaway has written two cookbooks and a guide, and Schatz took the photos for all three.

To help them with the distribution process of their latest cookbook, they worked with Islandport Press in Yarmouth and include Sherman’s Maine Coast Book Shops and Print: A Bookstore among their early supporters.

Mainers can get a copy of the cookbook with recipes for Fairy Cake, Wowie Cake, 7-Up Cake, Tomato Soup Cake, Wacky Cake and Margaret’s Soggy Green Cake (“It’s delicious,” said Hathaway, who is not the cake’s namesake) in bookstores across Maine starting in June or at maine200cookbook.com. The first print’s cover price is $20.20 and $2 dollars from the sale of each book will go to organizations in all 16 counties working to fight hunger in Maine.

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