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Like it or not, we’re living in the "Era of the Blog." In a country where just about everyone has the ability, with the click of a mouse, to not only consume but create content, it seems like anyone with an opinion to voice has taken to their laptop and started a blog. This is obviously nothing new (as anyone who used to have a Xanga account can tell you), but the fact alone that anyone, anywhere, can set up a platform and instantly reach millions of readers is one worth celebrating. So for the fourth year running, we’re ranking the top 25 food-oriented blogs, ranked according to readership and social media following.
Click here to see the 25 Top Food Blogs of 2013 (Slideshow)
There’s plenty of time to argue the merits of what makes a food blog great, be it the amount of breaking news, quality of the recipes, layout, industry usefulness, or wide appeal, but for today’s (and previous years’) purposes, we took a very objective approach: we tracked down nearly 200 leading food blogs, using "best-of" lists from sites including Saveur and Babble, and then compiled four data points on each of them: the average number of monthly visitors for the past year (using Compete.com’s data), and the number of Twitter followers, Facebook fans, and Pinterest followers.
To arrive at the final 25, we factored in the number of average unique visitors (this accounted for 50 percent of each blog’s score) and the data from the three social media components (which accounted for the remaining 50 percent). The blogs with the highest total scores made the cut.
While the list didn’t change dramatically from last year, there were a few notable differences. The Kitchn made a leap from number six up to number two, and Picky Palate jumped from number 12 up to number five on our list. Skinnytaste, which ranked third last year, fell to number 10 this year, and David Lebovitz, whose star just keeps rising, jumped from number 11 up to number six. Simply Recipes held onto the top spot for the fourth year in a row.
There were also several newcomers, while others fell off the list entirely. This year we welcome Bakers Royale, Chocolate & Zucchini, Elana’s Pantry, Food52, Gluten-Free Girl and the Chef, Simple Bites, and Thug Kitchen to our list, while we say goodbye to Annie’s Eats, Gluten-Free Goddess, Mommy’s Kitchen, Our Best Bites, Pinch My Salt, TasteSpotting, and A Year of Slow Cooking. Falling off our list in no way indicates a drop in quality; reasons vary from blog to blog. Some have slowed down the rate of posting entries; others have simply been surpassed by other blogs in traffic.
The blogs on our list offer everything from recipes to breaking restaurant news to simple musings about life and food, but they’re all worthy of being on your radar if you love food. Click here for our list of the 25 top food blogs, and if you think we missed any, let us know in the comments below!
Dan Myers is the Eat/Dine Editor at The Daily Meal. Follow him on Twitter @sirmyers.
The Epicurious Blog
It&aposs time again to look into the crystal ball for predictions of upcoming food trends for 2013. As in years past (2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, and 2008), our editorial team sifted through ingredients, food news, and pop culture to compile our culinary forecasts for the coming year, which we&aposve divided into Front Burner (trends you&aposll likely see dominate) and Back Burner (things whose popularity has peaked) categories. Agree with our findings? Are we off base? Share your opinions on the predictions, and weigh in on what you think we&aposll see in the world of food next year!
STATE OF THE FOOD NATION
Front Burner: Collaborations
Playing nice in the kitchen is the order of the day. The food world can take a lesson from Grant Achatz and Daniel Humm, chefs who switched restaurant spaces for 21st Century Limited. Achatz&aposs Alinea cooked its signature fare in Humm&aposs 11 Madison Park space for a week in September and Humm followed suit in October in Chicago. And in the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy, restaurants like Hill Country and Rob&aposs Bistro in Madison, New Jersey, offered temporary work to servers, bussers, prep cooks, and other kitchen workers displaced by the storm. More collaboration, please!
Back Burner: Food Feuds
Just when everyone thought Pete Wells&apos takedown of Guy&aposs American Kitchen & Bar couldn&apost make feuds any worse, Gordon Ramsay came along and applied for a U.K. trademark on the Spotted Pig in an apparent bid to stop chef April Bloomfield from opening an outpost of her popular New York gastropub of the same name. It&aposs time to put to rest the food fights of 2012.
Front Burner: Technology
Comodo&aposs Instagram menu (full disclosure: Carolina moonlights there) and the rise of the iPad in the dining room mean it&aposs only a matter of time before more restaurants opt for pixilation over paper.
Back Burner: Tasting Menus
Multi-hour, dozen-course-or-more tasting menus are about as popular as the 1 percent. Instead, expect restaurants to focus on small plates proportioned to suit a diner&aposs appetite.
Front Burner: Cauliflower
This cruciferous friend is finally taking center plate with restaurants like Chicago&aposs Girl and the Goat (where it&aposs roasted), Sunday Suppers (where it&aposs fried) in Brooklyn, and the National in Athens, Georgia (where it&aposs soupified), showcasing the vegetable as a starring player. Cauliflower wins in the home kitchen as well, in "steak" form.
Back Burner: Kale
We&aposll always love kale, but it&aposs time for a breather from all those chips, salads, and sautés.
Front Burner: Vegetable Plate
Cauliflower is having a moment, but so too is the Vegetable Plate. It&aposs not just for vegetarians anymore. Seasonal vegetable mains at New York&aposs the Fat Radish and Philadelphia&aposs Supper are good places to start increasing your veggie intake.
Back Burner: Meatballs
Always delicious, but no longer the hot new kid on the block.
Front Burner: Toronto
David Chang&aposs addition of four (yes, four) Momofuku spinoffs and Daniel Boulud&aposs new outpost at the Four Seasons adds further depth to an already exciting international dining scene. Head to Ossington Street, Roncesvalles Village, or the St. Lawrence Market, which rivals San Francisco&aposs Ferry Building. Want to taste it all? Victor Restaurant in the Le Germaine Hotel has a menu of neighborhood classics. It&aposs clear the Big T-O is poised for something scrumptious in the coming year.
Back Burner: Portland
Chefs like Pok Pok&aposs Andy Ricker aren&apost necessarily fleeing PDX, but their expansions into realms further afield mean that Portland&aposs culinary moment may have peaked.
Front Burner: Mezcal
Handcrafted from wild agave plants, mezcal has always been an artisanal product historically seen as tequila&aposs poorer cousin. But with a massive PR push by the Mexican government and more producers making more of this smoky spirit available Stateside, it&aposs only a matter of time before mezcal finds its way into a cocktail near you.
Back Burner: "Moonshine"
We called white corn liquor the hot spirit of 2012. Indeed it was, highlighted at the center of a reality TV show sponsored in large part by Ole Smoky Moonshine. Even large bourbon distillers like Maker&aposs Mark started selling their unaged whiskey, a.k.a. white dog, to factory visitors. But corn liquor burns, and at the moment, we&aposre hungover from the trend.
Front Burner: Exercising to Eat
When all you want to do is eat up all the delicious fare young chefs are whipping up these days, exercising adventures are the only way to justify these weekly (or daily) splurges. We&aposve heard of people walking 100 blocks to erase that Sunday afternoon at the barbecue joint, and at least one of our staff members has embarked on miles-long bike food tours of taco stands and pizza parlors.
Back Burner: Dieting
Diet haters rejoice! The way to a healthy bod is through a balanced diet and regular exercise, not vile cleanses, chewing slabs of meat, or starving oneself. We think this focus on healthy living will be the way to go in the coming year.
Front Burner: Brazilian
With the World Cup in Brazil only about 18 months away, Brazilian fare is about to take the world by storm. Churrascaria, check! Pão de queijo, check! Want to learn more? Read more at Gourmet Live.
Back Burner: Southern
We have to take a break from this, the comfort food of comfort foods.
Front Burner: Sumac
With a whole slew of new books on Middle Eastern cooking (Jerusalem, The Lebanese Kitchen, to name two) we expect sumac to make an appearance in a pantry near you. Look for this tart but fruity powdered spice at specialty purveyors like Penzeys and use it to spice up eggs or make za&aposatar.
Back Burner: Offal
Now that we know how to cook marrow, trotters, tripe, and tongue, it&aposs time to get back to the cuts that cause us to crave meat in the first place.
Front Burner: Pinning Pictures of What We Might Make
More and more of us are pinning creations on Pinterest of the dream meals we&aposd like to make .
Back Burner: Taking Pictures of What We&aposre Eating
. Leaving us less time to Instagram the dishes we&aposre eating out.
COOKING AT HOME
Front Burner: Homemade Snacks
Get ready to say goodbye to the snack aisle, as more and more cookbooks (Salty Snacks, Real Snacks) offer homemade options to our favorite guilty pleasures. Still in Twinkie shock? Here&aposs a recipe for a homemade snack substitute: Vanilla Snack Cakes.
Back Burner: Homebrewing
While dedicated enthusiasts will continue to conjure up their yeasty brews, the trend won&apost froth as much as it did this past year.
Front Burner: Vegetables
2013 will be the year of vegetables. They&aposre even in dessert. Battersby in Brooklyn offers a Fennel Panna Cotta, Michel Richard makes a Maple Parsnip Cake, and Avocado Mousse at Tilth in Seattle. Talk about sneaking in the veggies!
Back Burner: Nostalgic Kids&apos Treat
Cereal Milk and Cake Pops are among the desserts designed to hit your sweet tooth and tap your nostalgia vein. We&aposve had fun remembering our childhoods, but now it&aposs time to look to the future.
Front Burner: Artisan Food Producer
The rise of the artisan market includes the emergence of the dedicated purveyor, the expert in one laser-focused food specialty. Enter the Sriracha maker, the mayonnaise master, the mustard queen. This is their time.
Back Burner: Forager
Wildman Steve Brill can have Central Park. The forager isn&apost this year&aposs hot food profession.
The 20 Greatest Food Bloggers of All Time
What makes a great food blog? First and foremost, a recognition that food blogging is different than food writing, or even reporting on food issues. It’s not that food bloggers don’t write or report, but rather that they do so with a different (and often more relentless) rhythm. And the best ones—whether they’re scribing a link roundup or a weekly feature or a stunner of an exclusive—they put their back into it, too.
Great food blogs go beyond restaurants, recipes, scenes, celebrities, or a trending pieces of news. They have a voice. They have ideas. they become a dialogue with readers and with the subjects they cover, whether those subjects like it or not. And often, they really, really haven’t liked it.
But we have. And, clearly, so have countless other readers, as evidenced by the explosion of food blogs over the past eight or nine years, our own included. But it’s pretty obvious that ubiquity doesn’t lend itself to quality—again, we say this as a nascent food blog less than a year old—and a lot of truly awful crap has also come out of those eight or nine years. Not that the bottom-feeders give great food blogs a bad name more so, they underline the fact that great food blogs (and the people who run them) were always, and still are, the exception to the rule. They are, in every sense of the word, exceptional. They are also, in many of the cases herein, responsible for all of their pathetic imitators. The crown: it’s heavy.
A note on geography: We’re talking here about American food blogs, so if your favorite street-eats blogger from Bangkok didn’t make the cut, it’s no snub. And secondly, the list is very centralized in New York for a reason—if you look at the trailblazing food-blogging operations that have morphed into national brands, almost all of them (Eater, Grubstreet, Serious Eats) got their start in NYC. Blame it on the rest of the country for not getting with the program when New Yorkers started these crazy blog things en masse in 2004.
A note, too, on the cast: Many great food writers—Francis Lam, Jonathan Gold, Peter Meehan, Adam Sachs—have been omitted in light of their blog-specific efforts (or lack thereof), as have numerous blog editors who steer the ships but don’t always hop into the fray themselves. Some of the people on this list had thousands of posts in the can before they hung up their blogging gloves. One of them had only seven but changed the game in terms of what it meant to be an important character in the food world. In either case, one thing is constant: Great food bloggers have great runs.
And during these epic streaks of Internet glory, great bloggers usually demonstrate some recognition of the sheer absurdity of the enterprise: It is, after all, just food. And you can only do so much with it. You have to get creative.
All of the people that made our list have great posts, sure, and moments that stick out above others. But the best of them—the ones at the very top of the pile—don’t really have a single post that can be pointed to as a game-changer, so much as an entire catalogue and repertoire of note. They’re the people who didn’t just change the tone of the daily conversation about food, restaurants, dining out, the rising tide of celebrity in the food world, and the characters and scenes driving it all—they changed the conversation itself.
These are the 20 Greatest Food Bloggers, Ever.
Written by Chris Schonberger (@cschonberger) and Foster Kamer (@weareyourfek)
2013 Recap: 10 Over-the-Top Foods We Ate This Year
It's often said that every story has already been told, and new ones are just variations on the same themes. Transfer that analogy to food and put it in the competitive pressure cooker of 2013, and you've got the year in food. No one seemed content to create simple, new recipes. Instead, the culinary-minded combined already complicated foods and drinks, with each iteration adding on more and more to one-up the previous ones. Here are 10 epic concoctions that had us talking this year.
The Opening Day Bloody Mary
This was the stunt that started it all and made us pay attention. O'Davey's Pub in Wisconsin created this epic cocktail to celebrate the Milwaukee Brewer's Opening Day. For only $5, patrons could get a Bloody Mary topped with a soft pretzel, cheeseburger, nachos, bacon, cheese curds, popcorn, and more.
Could anyone have predicted the hysteria that would result when pastry chef Dominique Ansel combined a croissant and a donut? Definitely not, but that's the only word that properly describes what happened. It also helped that Ansel only made a certain number of cronuts every day and put a cap on the number people could purchase, which led to early-morning lines of cronies trying to get their pastry fix outside his New York City bakery.
Similar to a cronut, the do'sant from New Orleans bakery Manhattanjack comes in unique flavors like Boston cream, Bananas Foster, Irish car bomb, and crème brûlée.
The Ramen Burger
Burgers really had their moment in the sun this year thanks to creative chefs like Keizo Shimamoto , who molded Ramen noodles into the shape of a patty and used them in place of a bun. Voil, a new burger sensation was born, often garnering longer lines to obtain than the cronut.
The Umami Burger
While not as crazy as some of the other stunt foods on this list, foodies rejoiced when beloved West Coast chain Umami Burger expanded to eastern shores. Their signature burger is topped with the chain's addictive "Master Sauce" and Parmesan Frico.
The Mac & Cheese Burger
Building on the whole pasta-as-bun phenomenon started by the Ramen burger, Chicago's Rockit Burger Bar combined comfort food fave macaroni and cheese with a classic American burger for the "MacAttack."
The Deep-Fried Twinkie Burger
Philadelphia's PYT restaurant, which is known for its "stunt burgers," outdid themselves in October with this creation. It has two deep-friend Twinkie buns, a pork-belly patty, American cheese, and extra bacon.
The Souped-Up Snickers Bar
Created by teen food blogger Tieghan Gerard, these DIY candy bars have all the components of a regular Snickers bar, plus cookie dough and salted pretzels.
KFCs in Japan now offer deep-fried corn "potage," should you prefer your soup in solid form.
The Thanksgiving Burger
Thanksgiving is one of the most American holidays. Hamburgers are one of the most American foods. Put 'em together on a bun, and you've got a downright patriotic burger with turkey gravy and cranberry sauce.
Want to be a roaming food critic that helps readers discover little known mom-and-pop restaurants? Here are a few ideas that fit well for this genre.
- The Restaurant Review Letter
- 365 Dining Habit
- My Food Review Formula
- Skin Deep Eating Guide
- American Restaurant Critic Magazine
- 1001 Dinners with Sal
- Group Dining Decision
- Fish Stick Debates
- Austin Dining Review Guide
- San Francisco Dinner Club
- Idaho Fast Food Review
- Taco Review Guides
- The Best QSR I Ever Ate At
- Rick’s Top Rated Buffets
- Tim’s Taco Shop Tasting
- All-American Food Truck Review
- Unbiased Mobile Food Reviews
- Pizza Chain Review Magazine
50 More Food Blogs You Should Be Reading
It wasn’t easy to work through over 45,000 of your nominations for this year’s food blog awards but honestly, it was a lot of fun. We discovered so many incredible blogs that we hadn’t previously heard of in the process, and choosing only six finalists per category was a tough task. Since we didn’t have room for all of the sites we loved in this year’s nominee list, we wanted to give fifty of our next-favorites a shout-out. Here are 50 food blogs you should bookmark, along with reader quotes on why they’re loved.
À la Mode Journals
“An L.A. food photographer’s travels.” (Rick Poon’s photos pictured right.)
“Annie is a truly amazing woman. She cooks amazing meals, bakes wonderful desserts and is a great wife and mother. On top of all that, she’s also a doctor!”
“She cooks. He devours. Together, they have some amazing food photography and recipes.”
“She adds a sprinkle of humor and generous amounts of elegance to her posts while still managing to make them warm and inviting.”
“Motivating and simple to follow recipies. Beautiful and simple site design. Great writing.”
“Unique sweets, sometimes with Asian ingredients.”
Honey and Jam
“Her blog consists of a plethora of baked goods and/or desserts, all of which inspire comfort and warm cheer on gray rainy days.”
House to Haus
“A new ex-pat and newly wed adjusting to life in Zurich.”
Hunter Angler Gardener Cook
“A hunter and forager’s recipes for enjoying the fruits of the earth.”
John and Elana
“Gorgeous design and photography from a funny brother-sister pair.”
“Drop dead gorgeous photography and write ups that transcend her desserts into works of art.”
“Stir-fry and great Chinese cooking techniques.”
“Gorgeous photos and full-screen design.”
“Scandinavian style and healthy recipes.”
“I bookmark a lot of sites, but the recipes on Simple Bites are ones that I actually make and my family consistently enjoys.”
Slice of Feist
“I love the writing, very engaging storyteller, great recipes and beautiful photography.”
So Good and Tasty
“Vegetarian recipes everyone can enjoy.”
Starving off the Land
“A writer with the goal of eating what she hunts, fishes, grows, or gathers.”
The Kitchen Sink
“Healthful recipes from a Chicago lawyer.”
The Naptime Chef
“I love finding options for what to bring to a picnic or foods I can package for gifts, just as easily as finding a side dish I can make.”
“A wife and husband who tell funny stories about family life (and the food they eat).”
The Spinning Plate
“Angela’s essays are thoughtful and elegant, and The Spinning Plate has been one of my longtime go-to blogs.”
The Year in Food
“Kimberley’s writing is fun and approachable, but her photography makes everything look absolutely decadent and irresistible.”
Things We Make
“Really original photographs and a lovely writing style bring a little corner of England to life.”
Three to One
“It’s beautiful, smart, has a great perspective, and has something to say.”
Use Real Butter
“I read many blogs, but I have made more actual recipes from this one than any other. ALL have been fantastic.”
“She eats her way around New York City, photographing food at major restaurants, her own cooking, and occasionally, food & lifestyle around the country.”
Visions of Sugar Plum
“I can’t wait to read her blog everyday. My day isn’t complete until I catch up on what she’s been up to.”
What’s Gaby Cooking
“Gaby’s blog is amazing! Her recipes are delicious, easy, and the perfect “go-to” for almost any meal needed!”
“She has the best recipes, along with some daily story telling and its all very inspirational.”
Whole Larder Love
“A DIY-minded blog with a sharp sense of humor.”
Willow Bird Baking
“You feel better after reading it, and you feel you know the author.”
Yummy Mummy Kitchen
“She makes cooking beautiful food for my family easy and fun.”
“I love Zoe. Her recipes are clear and concise, and she posts the most photos of any blogger I can find making the recipes easily understandable.”
“The writing is absolutely awesome, and it’s the only readable blog I know that focuses on prairie food.”
MORE TO READ
The SAVEUR Cookbook Club
Each month, our Cookbook Club digs deep into a cookbook and shares our progress online.
Boiled Pork and Chive Dumplings
The go-to Chinese filling: juicy pork mixed with the fresh onion flavor of garlic chives. Try to find a fatty blend of ground pork it will improve the filling’s flavor and juiciness. Chopped garlic chives, which have a peppery raw-garlic flavor, and fresh ginger cut through the rich meat. Make sure the dumplings are completely sealed and devoid of air bubbles to prevent any leaks during boiling. This recipe is adapted from The Dumpling Galaxy Cookbook. Get the recipe for Boiled Pork and Chive Dumplings » Heami Lee
Best Food Bloggers: The Top 10 Of January
If your New Year's Resolution was to start reading new food blogs, you're in luck because we've got 10 stellar ones you should start following stat. (And if that wasn't your resolution, it really should be and it's not too late to change.)
The food blogging world is rich with creativity. But if you're new to reading them, you might just stumble across the handful of oldie but goodies that dominate Google search. That's where we come to your aid.
If we know anything, it's food blogs (we spend our days reading them -- not a bad gig, we know). There are 10 food blogs we just can't get enough of this month. There's one for the baker, health nut and curious cook too. But if you're looking to expand beyond that, you should check out our favorite bloggers of October, November and December.
Want to read more from HuffPost Taste? Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and Tumblr.
If you are planning to put on a full dinner spread for the Super Bowl, check out these meat recipes. You can go as simple as wings, or as as fancy as skewers or ribs on the grill. Either way, you will love these Super Bowl foods. They are all winners!
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BRIDGET WHITE-KUMAR – AUTHOR AND FOOD CONSULTANT
Bridget White-Kumar is a Cookery Book Author and Food Consultant. She has authored 7 Recipe books on Anglo-Indian Cuisine. Her area of expertise is in Colonial Anglo-Indian Food and she has gone through a lot of effort in reviving the old forgotten dishes of the Colonial British Raj Era.
Her 7 Recipe books are a means of preserving for posterity, the very authentic tastes and flavours of Colonial India, besides recording for future generations, the unique heritage of the pioneers of Anglo-Indian Cuisine.
Bridget is also an Independent Freelance Consultant on Food Related matters. She has assisted many Restaurants, Hotels and Clubs in Bangalore and elsewhere with her knowledge of Colonial Anglo-Indian Food besides helping them to revamp and reinvent their Continental Menus by introducing new dishes which are a combination of both Continental and Anglo-Indian. Many of them are now following the Recipes and guidance given by her and the dishes are enjoyed both by Indian and Foreign Guests.
Bridget also conducts Cooking Demonstrations and Workshops at various places such as Clubs, Restaurants, Women’s Groups, Corporate Offices, etc. She is always ready to share and talk about Recipes and Food.