Pairing tropical fruit, wine and cheese
A lot of chefs hate food bloggers. They lambaste us for being amateurish, opinionated or worse, ignorant. I’ve read a lot of food blogs while working my own and many are all of those things, home cooks whose apron strings have become unhinged, angry diners with a forum to rant. But others are inspired and informed, thoughtful and even well researched. The best blogs I’ve found are written by passionate people, who come at life with a fork, a knife and an insatiable appetite for transforming new experiences into stories.
Last weekend, I had the opportunity to meet some of these talented people at a blogger bash hosted by Todd and Diane of the blog White on Rice Couple. This dynamic duo opened their home to a small group of food-obsessed writers they never met to break bread. What happened next was as mysterious as molecular gastronomy—strangers were transformed into friends while frying spring rolls, gathering herbs and tearing away at a giant jackfruit, hands covered in oil and taffy-like resin. The conversation bubbled with Champagne-complexity, with moments of ecstatic joy, as we realized we are an army of hungry ninjas descending on dinner tables with cameras and cultural curiosity.
Our blogs are not nattering, or angry, and though none of us are professional chefs, the grilled tilapia and bass stuffed with herbs and grilled flatbreads, prove you don’t have to be “trained” to cook great food. We are carrying on the foodways of our grandmothers, not restaurants, a wooden-spoon wielding, laptop carrying generation creating community with a computer, a camera and some chicken feet.
It was an honor to be among these storytellers and fellow food-lovers. It made me realize that these blog-bashing chefs must not know about Burnt Lumpia, Sushi Day, Foodwoolf, White on Rice Couple, The Delicious Life, Daily Bread Journal, Wandering Chopsticks, Wrightfood, Julie’s Kitchen or MattBites. If they did, they’d know, like I know, that these are the people they want in their restaurants, people who appreciate the work that goes into creating great food, to highlighting culture in a bite or a sip, but they probably won’t find too many of them there. These bloggers are either home cooking for the people they love or traveling the world exploring, gathering recipes and, I hope, continuing the foodie revolution I witnessed last Saturday night.