Being stuck at home has turned even the most phobic of us into home cooks. And those of us who have enjoyed cooking for a long time have been ready to try new recipes and techniques during the coronavirus pandemic.
If, like me, you’ve found yourself experimenting with recipes that you might not have found tempting before – beet and cherry salad, fennel and olive salad, and a cake made with ketchup, for example. – keep reading for some of my favorite food blogs to help you expand your culinary horizons.
You might recognize some of them – top names in the food blogging world – and others that are less well known. They represent five states and three countries; several focus on vegetables; and many focus on seasonal foods.
But they all have one thing in common: simple, easy recipes and clear instructions.
Deb Perelman is the grande dame of food bloggers. She started her blog while cooking in a Manhattan apartment with a tiny kitchen – “a whopping 80 square feet”, as she described it – and avoids “excessively difficult foods.” No truffle oil, Himalayan pink salt or original chocolate, she promises.
His food is unpretentious and his commentary is sassy and entertaining.
> Butternut squash and caramelized onion patty
It’s easy to make but looks like it came out of a fancy French bakery. It always impresses. In all honesty, I made it for Thanksgiving just because I knew it would stand out from the same old, same old pots.
> Fennel salad and crushed olives
I was skeptical of this recipe because, as Perelman points out, “fennel divides. Olives divide.” But this salad is refreshing and quite addicting.
Two red bowls
This beautiful blog is the creation of Cynthia Chen McTernan, lawyer and cook in Los Angeles. She describes her recipes as “comfort food and easy, with occasional Asian influences from my Chinese background and Korean mother-in-law, and a southern touch here and there from my childhood in South Carolina.”
> Miso glazed scallops
All kinds of umami occur in this recipe along with sweet-salty-tangy miso and caramelized scallops. Not your typical seafood recipe.
> Rosemary Citrus Bundt Cake
The combination of lemon zest and rosemary creates fragrant cuisine when this rich cake bakes. McTernan describes it as “lively and lively, not to mention wonderfully wet”.
What Gaby cooks
Another big issue in the world of food blogs, this blog is written by California cook Gaby Dalkin.
See the âMaster Listâ section of the Dalkin website for recommendations on kitchen gadgets, appliances, pots and pans, and food products.
The only annoying thing about this site is that Dalkin mentions Trader Joe a lot, a reminder that Chattanooga doesn’t (yet).
> Ripe Pineapple Smash Cocktails
This pretty drink is the perfect antidote to sticky Southern evenings. Plus, you don’t have to feel too guilty about having a cocktail because you also get a serving of fruit.
> Poblano Stuffed Peppers
These cheesy smoked peppers are made with quinoa, black beans and, believe it or not, canned tuna.
Ice cream every day
South African foodie Saaleha Idrees Bamjee describes her philosophy this way: âI’m not advocating that anyone eats ice cream every day, although in a far and perfect world my every meal would be in the form of cream. icy. “
In addition to exotic desserts, it serves main dishes and has a DIY section. But I’m here for the food.
> Quick curry with coconut milk
This dish strikes the senses – it’s turmeric amber and coconut milky, and it smells like a spice market. The recipes call for steak strips, but chicken or vegetables could easily be substituted. Or you can leave the meat aside and add additional eggplants (eggplants).
> Chocolate Cake Tomato Sauce
This is made with ketchup (known in South Africa as tomato sauce), ground coffee, and cinnamon. I concede it sounds like a horrible mix, but this cake somehow works. Bamjee promises “not a single hint of tomato, only rich, spicy chocolates,” and this recipe keeps its promises.
Cookie and Kate
This vegetarian whole food blog is run by Kansas City-based Kathryne Taylor, aka Kate. Cookie is her adopted dog, an Australian Schipperke / Dachshund / Koolie mix.
Taylor’s philosophy is solid: âI believe in consuming whole foods, which are foods as close to their source as possible. I am also a strong believer in the occasional indulgence.
Its recipes are accessible and healthy.
> West African Peanut Soup
The key ingredients are peanut butter, tomatoes, and collard greens, which may not seem like a mouth-watering combination. You’re just gonna have to trust me here. This soup is perfect for a cool fall evening.
Kayla Howey, creator of this blog, has an impressive foodie CV. She is a Chicago-based chef trained at the Culinary Institute of America who honed her cooking skills in Napa at Thomas Keller’s Bouchon Bistro.
> Mashed Potatoes with Bacon & Parmesan
My husband says bacon makes everything better. If you agree, you’ll love this side dish.
> Zucchini Fritters with Lemon Yogurt Sauce
These pancake-style donuts with hot sauce are a nice change of pace.
The false Marthe
Melissa Coleman, based in Minnesota, named her cooking and design blog after Martha Stewart.
His recipes are simple with traditional ingredients. âI’m a purist at heart. Butter, cream, milk, eggs, and flour (especially wheat) all have a place in my kitchen,â Coleman writes.
Her blog also has sections focused on minimalism, design, and the Minneapolis home she built, which is so uncluttered it made my inhabited home feel like a bit of a mess.
> Acorn squash risotto
The scent of thyme, sage, cloves and nutmeg will permeate your cooking as you stir the risotto (with a glass of wine in hand, hopefully). Autumnal gluttony.
> Pumpkin cookies
Coleman describes Swig-style cookies as producing “a dry dough, producing a large, crisp cookie disc on top, with cracks on the edges and a chewy type of cookie in the middle.” Adding pumpkin makes cookies slightly mushy. And they’re topped with cream cheese frosting. These are a better fall alternative to pumpkin spice lattes, I promise.
Jacqueline Meldrum blogs from her kitchen in Scotland. His recipes are vegetarian and some are vegan. She named her blog Tinned Tomatoes (what we would call canned tomatoes in America) because “they bloom tasty and convenient,” she says.
In addition to the food categories by meal, Meldrum has a section on baby and toddler food and one on Scottish recipes.
I tend to try Scottish recipes because they are so unfamiliar and because it won me over with this description: âTraditional Scottish food, of the type passed down from generation to generation, tends to be from the comfort food. This is because of the often gloomy weather, where at any time of the year it can be dark and dry with a lot of rain. “
Bad weather demands good food, indeed.
> Staffordshire oatcakes
This dense and healthy pancake-pancake hybrid can be served sweet or with a savory topping as a meal. The recipe originated in Staffordshire, in the West Midlands of England, where housewives set up bakeries in their homes and served these cakes through the window. Workers bought them in “holes in the wall” to eat on the way home at the end of their shift, according to the blog.
>> Fun fact: The English town of Stoke-on-Trent celebrated an Oatcake Day in 2010, according to the BBC.
This last recommendation is not a food blog and does not list recipes and amounts of ingredients. It’s the Instagram account of Charleston chef and restaurateur Brooks Reitz. Check out @brooksreitz for his âBrooks Cooksâ videos on how to make simple meals. Make sure to try these: Strawberry and Tomato Salad, Beet and Cherry Salad, Roasted Carrots with Smoked Blue Cheese (yes, he calls them “roasts”) and clams on garlic toast. . Reitz is charming in these raw videos filmed in his home kitchen by his wife, and the food he cooks contains a lot of fruits and vegetables. I have yet to try any of his dishes that I did not like. It also gives recommendations on food products and tools.
Bon appÃ©tit, all of you! Good food.