Saturday, January 20, 2007

Scary (intimidating ) food blogs

In my internet travels over the past months as I was thinking about starting this blog, I have visited scores of food blogs to get a feel for the look, the feel, the tone of the food blogs out there. Many of them are truly beautiful - they have incredible photographs, an appealing or creative layout, and lots and lots of features. They range from funny and irreverant to serious and technical.

There are many many specialty blogs like Cooking for Engineers, blogs totally focused on one city, or one ethnic food. Some are even bizarre like the Grocery List blog, featuring discarded grocery lists from around the world or Dead Man Eating, which chronicles the last meals of death row prisoners (in truth, I couldn't make myself go to this blog, but feel free if you like.)

My blogging tastes are simple- I like the beautiful blogs, with great pictures and graphics, especially if they include recipes, reviews or tips I can actually use. I enjoy blogs with incisive wit and those that specialize in sarcasm - they say the things we wish we could say. I will look at almost any blog once (with the exception of the one mentioned above) but the ones I return to are accessible, practical, and the tone is as important as the food. When I read a blog that starts "Giada sent over a copy of her latest book..." or "When Wolfgang Puck and I were discussing his Oscar menu..." or "As I was travelling through Provence ..." I probably will not be coming back. Professional chefs and food writers already have a forum for their thoughts, ideas and recipes. They are the establishment. New ideas, new approaches from the ground up is what food blogs are about. The exception that proves this rule is Epi-Log, written by Epicurious editor Tanya Steel. Her blog is practical, fun to read, and accessible. She checks out new blogs (I know because she wrote about this blog!) and provides links to the best of the best. Most of the sites I have linked to thusfar I found on her page. Her page is one that starts a dialogue and encourages participation, and I think that is what blogging is all about. If all you want is a resource, you can read a magazine or a book about food, but a blog is where you go for a conversation about food. So pull up a chair to my cyber-kitchen table and let's talk!

1 comment:

Kathy Maister said...

Hi Deborah, You are so right! We seem to have evolved into thinking that dinner has to be either high cuisine or take-out. It’s time to get back to basics, and start cooking real food! Cheers!