The world of freelance food blogs frequently asks us to go through thousand word preambles. When looking for recipes that match our preferences and food sensitivities, we don’t need to know your unique treat for Asian greens or the trip to Tuscany that changed your culinary philosophy forever. Sometimes artistic photos in progress scattered throughout the recipe make the instructions even more difficult to follow. Home chefs may find it difficult to scroll through their laptops when their hands are covered in dough.
The reason for verbosity probably comes down to ad revenue and SEO optimization: Unique words improve a site’s position in search results. At the end of the day, we get what we pay for when we use free food blogs. While we feed our families, maybe we should recognize that food bloggers need to feed theirs. Blogger Deb Perelman responded to critics of Twitter feed who defended the practice. “Congratulations, you have found a new, not particularly original, way of saying ‘shut up and cook’,” she wrote.
However, several services have emerged to go directly to the recipe, some better than others. Short-lived, Recipeasy shut down after complaints it allegedly infringed copyright and scammed writers (previously). Here are two that still exist.
- Chrome extension “Recipe filter”
- The justtherecipe.com website takes a URL and formats a recipe to fit on one screen (no scrolling required)
For anyone interested in the recipe for Maple Shortbread Bars that opens with “Shortly After the September 11, 2001 Attacks”, it’s here (and it looks really good!).