I've come up with a conclusion. A good food blog requires two things; pretty pictures and creative titles. However, a great food blog has the afore mentioned qualities and, perhaps the most fundamentally important attribute, detailed instructions.
A little while back, my friend Sarah Desmarais (how the pronunciation of de-mar comes out of that I have never figured out) took on a cooking mission, documenting it via blog, and now that the recipes have been flowing through, I've found myself a little inspired. A Baker's Doesn't was not only the ignition to write up this post but also to cook up some of her great recipes.
All of her recipes are devoted to scratch cooking... something I'm a little devoted to doing myself. Usually it's cheaper (Sarah will make note to tell you in some of her recipes), it tastes a million times better, and is healthier in most instances. Best of all, she features some really beautiful and scrumptious pictures.
For the winter warning of this weekend, I followed her spicy hot chocolate recipe.
Spicy Chocolate Ingredients - photo from A Baker's Doesn't
Now, I've relied on various food blogs and a couple sites for inspiration for a good portion of my most addictive concoctions (including a fantastic corn bread and my renowned crumble-liscious pie crust).* Whether I'm looking for how-to or just ideas of what to add to what I'm already thinking, I always go to Google before I start cooking... and I've come across some pretty neat food blogs.
Three Short Cooks:
Utilizing the nice organization of a blogspot template, this blog also has some really different and interesting recipes to choose from. A blog with adventurous recipes will always be put at the top of my food blog list.
A junkier looking recipe site than All Recipes, Simply Recipes or Epicurious (probably my top 3 commercial internet recipe sources), however, the site is pretty good for people who don't have their cooking confidence up just yet. If you're confidence is real nouveau, don't get discouraged when it doesn't look like the picture.
Falafel Mixings - photo from A Baker's Doesn't
The Hungry Masses:
A really pretty and well written food blog I must say. The recipes are unique and the pictures are quite amazing. The ingredients can be kind of rare and the meals a bit expensive, but all in all, a source I would rely on when I really want to impress.
Cooking for Assholes:
I really enjoy this blog. When you can chuckle at the abrasiveness of the writing tone, it's quite entertaining. I'm a rather big fan of recipes that like to mess up a traditional meal. I have a hard time following recipes exactly, so for that, I commend this blog.
After going through all of these and thinking I'd write up a little post, I realized how unorganized I am about cooking. I've written down some of my best stuff on post-it notes, index cards, or note pad paper and stuck them in a variety of places, some never recoverable. And now when I'm looking for a recipe online, I don't even note where I got the recipe from. I just figure if I want to make it again, I found it once, I'll find it later. Google, how I've come to take advantage of you. So, I decided that creating my own food blog would be a much better way to keep track of my favorite recipes.
Perhaps what I'm even more excited about is that the hope is to integrate the food blog with ChipperDemon (my monthly music blog). Every time I post a recipe, it will come with a suggested music playlist to listen to for you to entertain yourself and/or guests while cooking or eating. So far I have the following working titles: The Mad Spoon, ChipperOven, ChipperSpoon, Deviled Recipes, Spice and Notes, Spice and Tunes, and The Ripe Apron. Any suggestions or votes on the best title are greatly appreciated.
*Don't be fooled, my best work did not come from a sweet little food blog. There was a lot of trial and error, and I'd like to thank Bear for all the pie crust he ate, the buttery and the butter lacking. I did use some internet starting sources for the cornbread and pie crust.