Rhymes With Five: And those who can't cook, read food blogs
I love food, but I’m not a very good cook. It’s one of the
great conundrums of my life. I’ve never poisoned someone or set anything on
fire (though there was that whole pot of noodles I accidentally dumped into the
sink at a Paste Intern Appreciation Dinner a few months back-- sorry, interns!) It’s just that
I’m impatient and undisciplined and lack the necessary foresight to start
preparing a meal before I reach a point of such intense hunger that I can’t
concentrate on anything, let alone slicing and dicing and preheating and
This, of course, explains my intense love for food blogs. Where I'm scattered and indecisive, clumsy and inept, food bloggers are graceful, knowing, precise and... well, able to cook. They're aspirational, an escape from my own culinary inefficacy. Basically, they're little bits of fantasy. Some people have fashion magazines, soap operas or pornography, but I have food blogs. (Hey, it's not called food porn for nothing.)
There as many different ways to blog about food as there are palates, from the practical to the romantic, for audiences of fellow serious cooks and to the masses fumbling, bumbling, all-thumbs proletariat. My favorites combine skilled writing, an adventurous belly and artful photography into something that starts bigger conversations—about life and how to live it, about politics and culture, about our own place in the world. Just like a good meal should.
As I begin to contemplate my own truly heinous lunch, here are my top 5 favorite food blogs. What are yours?
Deb brings a level of geekiness to cooking that, though I'm prevented in sharing fully by my technical incompetence, I totally appreciate. This woman loves food, and it shows in both her carefully approached recipes (often attempted multiple times until perfected, and sometimes only then shared on the blog) and her beautifully composed photography.
Bake And Shake
L. writes from the rainy Northwest, offering up “food, style, judgement—just like Grandma.” She peppers her recipes with biting humor and bluntly personal stories, making for a read that’s as refreshingly funny and honest as her muffins, pancakes and monkey breads are comforting. Also, we remember all the same
Sometimes I get overwhelmed by all the restaurant options in tiny little Decatur, so I can’t imagine what it’s like trying to pick a lunch spot out of all the choices in New York City. But these two ladies, partners in an architecture firm, handle their abundance of options with finesse. Almost every day they take time for a midday meal and a mid-afternoon snack, and they report their findings here. The peanut butter ball they split yesterday afternoon is literally making me drool.
Not Eating Out In
On the flip side of the LUNCH coin is Cathy, who’s decided to entirely eschew all
Rachael is a Melbourne-based cultural studies Ph.D student whose food blog is likely one of very few boasting a Nietzsche-referencing title. Whether debating the primacy of mac-and-cheese with her American boyfriend, parsing her hatred of Jamie Oliver or just baking for friends, she infuses her musings on food with academic wit and self-effacing verve. She is a credit to our name.
Note: Welcome to Rhymes With Five, the weekly blog post where I feature five things that I like that somehow relate to each other. I came up with a few other names, like "Five Alive" and "Five Jive" but, as you probably already figured out, those names all sucked. See you next Thursday!