Dave Tuttle has a passion for pie. "Let's face it. Pie is wonderful stuff,” he says. “It makes people feel great.” And it would be hard for anyone to argue that point, after seeing and smelling one of his signature double crusted fruit pies as it emerges, hot and steaming, from the oven.
But Tuttle's passion grew more out of necessity than culinary curiosity. After a 20-year career in film and television, Tuttle found himself unemployed in 2008 during the height of the recession, as the industry was shedding jobs.
"For about a year, I really made it full time to try to find a job, to get back into the business because that's what I had known for 20 years," Tuttle says. But after that year, there was still no job, and even less savings. It was time to try something new.
It is every child's dream to own a candy company.
Roxy Klein eventually got her wish.
Today, the 33-year-old co-owns Nifty Candy with her father, David Klein, who invented the Jelly Belly jelly bean in 1976.
In addition to the Kleins, the company, based in Covina, Calif., employs three candy makers, three employees who pack orders and one assistant.
By July, 15 years after its founding, Nifty Candy had earned its first $1 million. "We had a party," said Roxy Klein. "It's one of those things where the pennies really do add up."
Brent Ridge and Josh Kilmer-Purcell are the owners of Beekman 1802. Take a peek at life on their farm at beekman1802.com
When we first bought Beekman 1802 Farm, the only heirloom vegetables we’d ever heard of were heirloom tomatoes. But a welcome-wagon meeting with one of our neighbors changed all of that. Half-a-mile down the road from us lived the owners of Landreth Seed Company, and we soon learned that every kind of vegetable seed carries with it a little bit of history.
Before long our vegetable garden was sprouting with over 100 different varieties of heirloom seeds – peas, beans, lettuce, carrots, cabbages, and nearly any other kind of vegetable you’ve ever tried. Or haven’t tried.
This summer, CNN's Defining America project will be traveling the country with the CNN Express bus to explore the stories behind the data and demographics that show how places are changing. This week, CNN brings you coverage from North Carolina.
If you eat doughnuts in Greensboro, North Carolina, chances are you head to Krispy Kreme.
The king of the hot glazed doughnut was founded just 30 miles away, in Winston-Salem, in 1937. Since then it's gained a loyal following regionally, and more recently, nationally and internationally. The first Krispy Kreme in New York City opened in 1996, and the first non-U.S. store opened in Toronto in 2001.
So what on earth would possess someone to open a little, independent doughnut shop in the land of Krispy Kreme?
We visited with Nelson at the opening of her first New York City outpost to discuss the Oprah effect, what's next and how to beat the "just another cupcake shop" rap.
See more small business success stories from Morning Express with Robin Meade
Erika Dimmler is a producer for CNN's American Morning.
Carolina Garcia was searching for the perfect French baguette. A native of Bogotá, Colombia, Garcia had spent two years in France enjoying some of the best breads and pastries the country had to offer, and now, as a resident of Arlington, Virginia, she was having trouble finding a baguette that met her expectations.
Even worse, she had just been offered a job she knew she would hate. An economist by trade, Garcia was contemplating a position as an assistant in a firm where she was told point-blank that there was very little room for growth above her current position. After years of studying economics, and then earning her masters in international business, she would be booking flights and organizing breakfasts.
In order to de-stress after searching high and low for other opportunities, Garcia turned to baking. It was her "relaxing therapy." Despite her baking prowess, she studiously stayed away from baking bread. After all, Garcia had tried it once before and the results were disastrous. According to family legend, her grandmother had to leave her "bread" in water for a week so the birds could eat it. Her brother makes fun of her to this day.