Finest Foodies Friday – October 9, 2009

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IF YOU LIKE FOOD BLOGS, THIS IS THE PLACE TO BE EVERY FRIDAY!

As always here is what the FFF is all about. Finest Foodies Friday is a weekly Friday post featuring favorites from The Foodie Blogroll! We do this so we can share in the rich diversity of what The Foodie Blogroll has to offer by featuring some of our favorites and yours!

What is the Foodie Blogroll? It is the first and fastest growing free membership blogroll for food bloggers and has become a wonderful community to share ideas about all things food related. With a membership of over 5,200 food blogs, I am sure you can find much inspiration and new friends! :)

The only requirement to be featured here on FFF is to be a member of The Foodie Blogroll and be displaying The Foodie Blogroll widget on your blog. If you are not yet a member, but you have a food blog and would like to join us, please click here!

If you have a favorite foodblog on The Foodie Blogroll, that you would like to be featured here on FFF, please join us over on The Leftover Queen/Foodie Blogroll Forum, and post your favorite Foodie Blogroll foodblogs here.


Other People’s Food

I wanted to feature this blog today, because Katie has been around the blogosphere for as long as I have. She is just coming out of a one year hiatus, and has a new baby. So for those of you who haven’t been to Katie’s blog, you should check it out. As for those of your who know Katie, let’s welcome her back! This is what Katie B. has to say about the inspiration behind her blog: “Honestly, I would sooner open a can of soup for dinner than try to make something without a recipe. Give me some directions and I can feed you something fun and fresh and yummy… nothing to follow, no carefully measured ingredients… and you get soup. Just how it is. What this means, is that I make meals pulled from friends, family, cookbooks, recipe sites, other food blogs… other people’s food.” There are some really great recipes for just about everything you could crave.

Oh Kitchen, What Won’t You Do?

Another blogger I want to welcome back is my buddy Georgia, who just got married recently! :) This blog is authored by Georgia, and Randi, two girls, who much like the rest of us, are obsessed with food! These girls are part of the Daring Kitchen, and regularly participate in other online Foodie Events. Hopefully they will make an appearance soon on the Jousting fields! Looking at the attire from Georgia’s wedding, I think it is very appropriate (by the way, Georgia, I LOVE IT!!! and Congrats!)!

What Do I Want to Cook Today?

This lovely blog is written by Jan who lives in England. She and I like to talk a lot via facebook about food and the differences we have in weather! :) Her blog is always full of soul-warming, delicious fare. She has this to say about food: “I don’t believe that you should be too concerned with exact measurements in cooking. Within reason, if you like something put more in, if you don’t put in either less, or something else in it’s place! It will nearly always turn out fine. I love cooking and eating especially! I like almost anything – from good old English Roast Beef to Greek, Turkish, Indian, Chinese, Thai and Moroccan, Mexican……..most things actually!” As you can see she enjoys many culinary influences, and I am sure that you will enjoy her blog!

Adventures of Kitchen Girl

Another Twitter buddy of mine is Jo from Adventures of Kitchen Girl. Jo is a thirty-something Mother of 3 who loves to cook and take pictures of food. She also enjoys doing product reviews, wherehonest opinions are always given… good, bad or just so so. Of course she has a lot of family friendly meal ideas on her blog, but they are perfect for everyone!

Canela and Comina

This blog is written by Gretchen, who loves to write about the flavors, markets and cuisine of Peru. She lived in Peru for 6 years as a missionary. She says: “My experiences here in Peru have taken me to 19 of the 24 departments, including the heights of the Andes mountains and the depths of the jungle. I love the variety of cultures within Peru and I find that variety so often represented in the foods of the different regions…I hope to take you on an adventure through Peru, showing you the many delicious foods found here as well as all the creative things you can do with them.”

That’s it for this week! I hope you enjoyed this week’s FFF. Remember, if you would like to see a blog featured here, who is part of the FBR please visit the forum and nominate them.

I NEED NOMINATIONS!!!!!! I know we all have our favorite blogs that we read everyday, and I would love to know about them. We have a very diverse food community, and I would love to see more of the blogs you love featured. We also have a lot of humanitarians out in the Foodie Blogosphere. If you think there is a food blogger out there that deserves a little recognition for their culinary skills, or what they are doing to help the world through the lens of food, please tell us about them!!! Please post your favorite Foodie Blogroll foodblogs here.

Also we all love to know how people came to find our blogs, so please visit all of our featured bloggers today and don’t forget to tell them that you found them via Finest Foodies Friday! They would love to have your feedback.

Royal Foodie Joust Winners: Apple, Maple and Cayenne

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I love the fall, it is certainly, without a doubt, my favorite season. So when Natasha, from 5 Star Foodie , winner of last month’s Joust, sent me her choice of ingredients for this month I was thrilled!

Apple, Maple and Cayenne are three ingredients that really exemplify fall fare. It seems that the Jousters felt the same way, because we had 17 awesome entries this month! Everything from soup, to seafood and salsa to caramel apples! Be sure to check out all the recipes and tantalizing photos here on the Foodie Blogroll forum!

We welcomed several new Jousters this month, who will hopefully become regulars, and welcomed many of our seasoned Jousters back, after a much deserved summer break! I hope this will encourage some of you to join us this month too! Things are always exciting, and changing in the Jousting fields! We have a fantastic group of ingredients this month too. I will announce them at the end of the post!

About the Joust:

The Royal Foodie Joust is an awesome and fun monthly peer voted competition that is hosted on The LeftoverQueen/FoodieBlogroll Forum! It gets better each and every month as the competition gets stiffer and more creative, as Jousters try to outdo each other! It is also one of the friendliest competitions I have ever seen. So please don’t be intimidated to come and join us this month in another round!

We don’t bite, unless of course there is real food in our faces ;)

The only rules for the competition is that each Jouster create only one dish and each entry must feature three ingredients in common.

This competition has been referred to many times as the “Iron Chef” of the Food Blogosphere. Each month’s ingredients are chosen by the previous month’s Best Overall Entry winner. The Best Overall winner of each Joust not only wins the Queen’s favor, bragging rights and a cool icon to put on their blog, but is also awarded with a super awesome Royal Foodie Joust Apron! There are also prizes for the winners of the other two categories: Best Photo and Most Unique Interpretation

So what are you waiting for? Come over and join us this month!

If you would like to participate in this month’s Joust, be sure to submit your entry by 12 NOON, Eastern Standard USA time on the First of the following Month (Nov. 1, 2009)!

If you have an idea you would like to share about how to make the Joust a better community event, please join us in discussing it here.

Although there were so many awesome entries this time around, there can only be one winner in each category, and each month making that call gets harder! Onto those winning entries now!

This month’s Best Overall winner is Kat from A Good Appetite. Her winning entry is Brie Stuffed Maple Burger with Spicy Apple Bacon Compote .

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Her recipe was inspired by a local restaurant, Blue Door that does some really interesting takes on the classic Minneapolis Juicy Lucy. Their most recent version stuffed with brie & topped with apple compote was only available for one day. Kat and Matt, couldn’t make it there that day so they decided to put their our own spin on it at home. “In our version the beef is flavored with a little maple syrup & then stuffed with brie. The apple compote is spiced up with cayenne, sweetened with maple syrup plus given a little saltiness with some bacon. Put it all together & you really have an amazing flavor combination. The apples go surprisingly well with the beef.”

I could certainly sink my teeth into this amazing burger! Congrats Kat for taking the win this month!

As food bloggers (and food appreciators) we all know that pictures speak a thousand words and this month’s Best photo winner goes to Peter, aka Protos Souvlaki for the Soul with Spicy Carrot and Apple Cakes with Maple Buttercream Frosting

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For his Joust entry Peter made us some mini carrot cakes. He added the cayenne pepper to the “spice mix” which also included nutmeg, cinnamon and ground cloves. He added the maple syrup to a buttercream frosting that went on top. True to his Greek roots, he also used olive oil, Greek yoghurt and a combination of wholemeal flours and almond meal in his recipe. I really love the look of these cute little cakes!

The Winner for Most Unique Interpretation of the Ingredients is awarded to Joan of FOODalogue with her 3 Alarm Fruit Pizzette

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This pizzette is an amazing combination of flavors! Joan says she always has bits of recipes and flavor combinations swirling around in her head that helps her to create her super flavorful dishes on her blog. This is what she says about her Joust creation:It may make you sweat a bit, but the layers of flavors will totally entice. You’ve got heat from the cayenne pepper and jalapeño mustard; sweet from the maple syrup and apples; salt and gooeyness from the cheese; freshness from the cilantro, scallions, lime zest and starfruit; and crunch from the pumpkin seeds and toasted flatbread.” Unique and delicious indeed!

Thank you so much to our winners, all the participants and everyone who voted! Remember, even if you don’t enter the Joust you can still vote for your favorite entry on The Foodie Blogroll Forum!

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This month, here in North America, we celebrate Halloween! So for this month’s Joust, Kat has decided to use the colors of Orange and Black to inspire you for this month’s Joust!

Here are your ingredients:

Orange – Pumpkin (or anything other orange flesh squash, i.e. butternut, acorn, kabocha)
Black – Stout, Porter or other dark colored Beer (if you don’t want to use alcohol, you can substitute in cola)
Sugar

Please post your entries here!

Let the games begin!!! :)

Finest Foodies Friday – October 2, 2009

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IF YOU LIKE FOOD BLOGS, THIS IS THE PLACE TO BE EVERY FRIDAY!

As always here is what the FFF is all about. Finest Foodies Friday is a weekly Friday post featuring favorites from The Foodie Blogroll! We do this so we can share in the rich diversity of what The Foodie Blogroll has to offer by featuring some of our favorites and yours!

What is the Foodie Blogroll? It is the first and fastest growing free membership blogroll for food bloggers and has become a wonderful community to share ideas about all things food related. With a membership of over 5,200 food blogs, I am sure you can find much inspiration and new friends! :)

The only requirement to be featured here on FFF is to be a member of The Foodie Blogroll and be displaying The Foodie Blogroll widget on your blog. If you are not yet a member, but you have a food blog and would like to join us, please click here!

If you have a favorite foodblog on The Foodie Blogroll, that you would like to be featured here on FFF, please join us over on The Leftover Queen/Foodie Blogroll Forum, and post your favorite Foodie Blogroll foodblogs here.

Healthy. Delicious

LK has been cooking full, balanced meals for her family since she was 10 years old. After spending the first 10 years of her life “helping” her mom in the kitchen, her mom decided to give her the wheel once a week. The recipes on her blog feature the kinds of food, that she eats to maintain her health – limiting processed food and refined carbs, eating lots of fresh, in-season fruits and vegetables, whole grains as well as all natural and organic when it’s reasonable and makes sense. Her recipes are divided into 40 minutes or less, and “weekend meals” – which are recipes that take over 40 minutes. Enjoy!

Sense and Serendipity

This blog is about food, cooking, health and nutrition and anything between wellness and well-being. The goal is to awaken society to a new and fresh interest in nutrition in its simple, natural and holistic approach. The photos are colorful and beautiful, and many interesting ingredients are featured.

Guilty Kitchen

Elizabeth started her career in a professional kitchen at the age of 15, washing dishes. She quickly moved on to prep cook and then on to salads and desserts. She is now a stay at home mom. In order to keep her sanity she cooks, gardens, takes photos, and plays with her child. This blog shares those experiences with you. As a healthy role model for her child, she tries to eat healthy, but sometimes the desire for butter, cream and sugar gets the best of her, hence the name of the blog.

From Ketchup to Chutney

This blogger never tasted mac n’cheese or chicken nuggets until she was in college. Her mom was a passionate and adventurous cook who wanted to expose her daughter from a young age to a variety of ingredients. Hot dogs were served in whole wheat pita pockets with mango chutney, while her daughter wanted to be like the other kids and have ketchup and a white bun. This historical event is the inspiration of the blog’s name! Now that she is older, she has begun to appreciate gourmet foods again!


Spicie Foodie

This blog is written by a Mexican expat who has lived all over the world, learning the tastes and cuisines of the various countries once called home. Currently living in Europe where the more exotic products aren’t always available, this blogger has to learned to work with what they have resulting in learning to make many things from scratch. This blog shares both their traditional recipes and the one’s using substitute local ingredients.

That’s it for this week! I hope you enjoyed this week’s FFF. Remember, if you would like to see a blog featured here, who is part of the FBR please visit the forum and nominate them.

I NEED NOMINATIONS!!!!!! I know we all have our favorite blogs that we read everyday, and I would love to know about them. We have a very diverse food community, and I would love to see more of the blogs you love featured. We also have a lot of humanitarians out in the Foodie Blogosphere. If you think there is a food blogger out there that deserves a little recognition for their culinary skills, or what they are doing to help the world through the lens of food, please tell us about them!!! Please post your favorite Foodie Blogroll foodblogs here.

Also we all love to know how people came to find our blogs, so please visit all of our featured bloggers today and don’t forget to tell them that you found them via Finest Foodies Friday! They would love to have your feedback.

Finest Foodies Friday – September 25, 2009

Just a quick announcement that this week’s Stuffed Nation Giveaway winner is Melanie from Cake Walk.

Please check out her awesome video presentation she did about obesity.

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If you have not read about the giveaway yet, please see this post!

It is a very important topic that food bloggers should be weighing in on! I am really hoping for some more entries over the next 2 months that we are doing this giveaway! For those of you who left comments on my post about the giveaway, I do hope that some of you decide to expand upon those comments and write a blog post about it! I would love to hear more of your ideas and thoughts, and I would love for more people to be eligible to win!

Now onto Finest Foodies Friday.

icon_fff1

IF YOU LIKE FOOD BLOGS, THIS IS THE PLACE TO BE EVERY FRIDAY!

As always here is what the FFF is all about. Finest Foodies Friday is a weekly Friday post featuring favorites from The Foodie Blogroll! We do this so we can share in the rich diversity of what The Foodie Blogroll has to offer by featuring some of our favorites and yours!

What is the Foodie Blogroll? It is the first and fastest growing free membership blogroll for food bloggers and has become a wonderful community to share ideas about all things food related. With a membership of over 5,200 food blogs, I am sure you can find much inspiration and new friends! :)

The only requirement to be featured here on FFF is to be a member of The Foodie Blogroll and be displaying The Foodie Blogroll widget on your blog. If you are not yet a member, but you have a food blog and would like to join us, please click here!

If you have a favorite foodblog on The Foodie Blogroll, that you would like to be featured here on FFF, please join us over on The Leftover Queen/Foodie Blogroll Forum, and post your favorite Foodie Blogroll foodblogs here.

The Veggie Girl

Another blog I cannot believe took me this long to feature! Veggie Girl’s blog is Gluten-free. Soy-free. High-raw. Dairy-free. Egg-free, and more. She eats in a way that has helped her manage her Crohn’s disease as well as many food allergies. But don’t let that stop you. Even if you have no food issues, but just enjoy interesting and tasty recipes made in ways that you haven’t thought of before, this is an excellent blog.

The Kitchen Witch

The Kitchen Witch is a blog written by a former teacher, writer, personal chef and mother of 3. She “lives and struggle to maintain her sanity in the Rocky Mountains.” When she started her blog, she had a list of 15 items that her child would eat. This list is what began her journey into food blogging. She started The Family Dinner Rehab. For a year, she and her daughter will cook something together at least once a week. Her daughter will try it, and TKW will report back to you. It is full of humorous blog posts, and of good eats.


Mitzi Dulan: America’s Nutrition Expert

This blog is written by Mitzi Dulan. She is an author, registered dietitian, foodie, and mom. Her passion is to help other people get healthy, lose weight and perform their best. She also loves good food! Her philosophy is to eat clean, real foods and allow indulgences for your favorites. She believes food should be fun, fresh and flavorful! Mitzi is currently the nutritionist for the Kansas City Chiefs Football Team and the Kansas City Royals Baseball Team! We are lucky to have her expertise on The Foodie Blogroll!

Jeroxie: Addictive and Consuming

This blog is written by a food obsessed, foodie. Blogging about food is a form of expression and gives focus to this blogger. It allows them to have a better depth of understanding between food and culture. Born in Singapore, but living in Melbourne for the past 10 years, the blog documents travels, opinions and the life of it’s author, Jeroxie.

Delightfully Delicious

This is a blog about all the simple and enjoyable things in life. There are several other blogs attached to this one on decorating, and crafty adventures, but this one is all about the food. All of the recipes have very few and easy to find ingredients. This is a great blog for simplifying your life!

That’s it for this week! I hope you enjoyed this week’s FFF. Remember, if you would like to see a blog featured here, who is part of the FBR please visit the forum and nominate them.

I NEED NOMINATIONS!!!!!! I know we all have our favorite blogs that we read everyday, and I would love to know about them. We have a very diverse food community, and I would love to see more of the blogs you love featured. We also have a lot of humanitarians out in the Foodie Blogosphere. If you think there is a food blogger out there that deserves a little recognition for their culinary skills, or what they are doing to help the world through the lens of food, please tell us about them!!! Please post your favorite Foodie Blogroll foodblogs here.

Also we all love to know how people came to find our blogs, so please visit all of our featured bloggers today and don’t forget to tell them that you found them via Finest Foodies Friday! They would love to have your feedback.

Finest Foodies Friday – September 18, 2009

Just a quick announcement that this week’s Stuffed Nation Giveaway winner is Toni From Daily Bread Journal.

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If you have not read about the giveaway yet, please see this post!

It is a very important topic that food bloggers should be weighing in on! I am really hoping for some more entries over the next 2 months that we are doing this giveaway! For those of you who left comments on my post about the giveaway, I do hope that some of you decide to expand upon those comments and write a blog post about it! I would love to hear more of your ideas and thoughts, and I would love for more people to be eligible to win!

Now onto Finest Foodies Friday.

icon_fff

IF YOU LIKE FOOD BLOGS, THIS IS THE PLACE TO BE EVERY FRIDAY!

As always here is what the FFF is all about. Finest Foodies Friday is a weekly Friday post featuring favorites from The Foodie Blogroll! We do this so we can share in the rich diversity of what The Foodie Blogroll has to offer by featuring some of our favorites and yours!

What is the Foodie Blogroll? It is the first and fastest growing free membership blogroll for food bloggers and has become a wonderful community to share ideas about all things food related. With a membership of over 5,000 food blogs, I am sure you can find much inspiration and new friends! :)

The only requirement to be featured here on FFF is to be a member of The Foodie Blogroll and be displaying The Foodie Blogroll widget on your blog. If you are not yet a member, but you have a food blog and would like to join us, please click here!

If you have a favorite foodblog on The Foodie Blogroll, that you would like to be featured here on FFF, please join us over on The Leftover Queen/Foodie Blogroll Forum, and post your favorite Foodie Blogroll foodblogs here.

Just Making Noise

Mare’s blog is one of my new favorites. We both share a passion for cooking nourishing meals for our families and like me she is often referring to the Nourishing Traditions cookbook. Mare has been cooking this way for her family longer than I have, and she has been very helpful with answering some questions for me recently. She lives with her husband Jon and their two beautiful daughters in Costa Rica. She says “My interest began innocently with High Fructose Corn Syrup and Hydrogenated Oils, then it snowballed into an avalanche of many other things. Like many mothers, I desired the best for my growing babies and that started the hard, long process of re-learning what a nourishing, healthy lifestyle really looks like. I was very “healthy” according to the American standards, but I had to re-define what the term “healthy” really meant.” I  and many of you, dear readers, I am sure,  can relate to this sentiment. For delicious and healthy treats, please check out Mare’s blog.

Going With My Gut

This blog is written by Wen. She and her partner Babs on on a year long sabbatical and honeymoon seeing and eating the world. They are learning everything they can about seasonal, traditional and organic eating and agriculture along the way. They are doing this by volunteering on organic farms, signing up for cooking classes, and harassing their relatives and relatives of our friends to impart their knowledge of traditional foods! Left to her own devices Wen can be found pointing her camera too close to her food, dawdling at farmers markets, and terrorizing crustaceans everywhere. Go join them on their journey!

Healthy Tasty Chow

This blog is written by Ann, who had to change the way she cooked to accommodate her husbands various food allergies. Along with that, she has a major sweet tooth and loves to bake. But what she enjoys most is experimenting with baking and trying to make healthier versions (than the original) of her favorite treats! She is of Italian and German decent, but she says she has always been loyal to the Italian side, because of the food! When it comes to Italian foods, she makes no exceptions – she loves it all! I am really looking forward to trying out her Baked Hot Wing Sauce Garbanzo Beans!

Nom!Nom!Nom! Blog

This blog is written by Kris who is a “vegan baking fool” living in Portland, Oregon. Like many food bloggers she grew up in the kitchen. Her foodie role models were her great-grandmother and her aunt. Her family life revolved around someone puttering in the kitchen while everyone else sat around chatting, laughing and sampling the cook’s inventions. That is why creating “mind-blowing” vegan food has been so important to her! She even has her own cookbook, 100 Best Vegan Baking Recipes! So go check it out!

Look Who’s Cooking Too

The author says that she is an Open Book, and her food blog is a way for her to keep record of her trials and tribulations in the kitchen. A former kitchen “disaster” she shares on her blog the recipes that turned out alright! She always comes back to her blog to remind her that she is a decent cook, when things don’t turn out so well. In my opinion, it looks like she is having very few of those days! One of those classic examples of how playing in the kitchen can really expand your kitchen skills, and allow you to have fun while doing it!

That’s it for this week! I hope you enjoyed this week’s FFF. Remember, if you would like to see a blog featured here, who is part of the FBR please visit the forum and nominate them.

I NEED NOMINATIONS!!!!!! I know we all have our favorite blogs that we read everyday, and I would love to know about them. We have a very diverse food community, and I would love to see more of the blogs you love featured. We also have a lot of humanitarians out in the Foodie Blogosphere. If you think there is a food blogger out there that deserves a little recognition for their culinary skills, or what they are doing to help the world through the lens of food, please tell us about them!!! Please post your favorite Foodie Blogroll foodblogs here.

Also we all love to know how people came to find our blogs, so please visit all of our featured bloggers today and don’t forget to tell them that you found them via Finest Foodies Friday! They would love to have your feedback.

Finest Foodies Friday – September 11, 2009

Just a quick announcement that this week’s Stuffed Nation Giveaway winner is Eleanor from Make Friends with Food.

If you have not read about the giveaway yet, please see this post!

It is a very important topic that food bloggers should be weighing in on! I am really hoping for some more entries over the next 2 months! For those of you who left comments on my post about the giveaway, I do hope that some of you decide to expand upon those comments and write a blog post about it! I would love to hear more of your ideas and thoughts, and I would love for more people to be eligible to win!

Now onto Finest Foodies Friday.

icon_fff

IF YOU LIKE FOOD BLOGS, THIS IS THE PLACE TO BE EVERY FRIDAY!

As always here is what the FFF is all about. Finest Foodies Friday is a weekly Friday post featuring favorites from The Foodie Blogroll! We do this so we can share in the rich diversity of what The Foodie Blogroll has to offer by featuring some of our favorites and yours!

What is the Foodie Blogroll? It is the first and fastest growing free membership blogroll for food bloggers and has become a wonderful community to share ideas about all things food related. With a membership of over 5,000 food blogs, I am sure you can find much inspiration and new friends! :)

The only requirement to be featured here on FFF is to be a member of The Foodie Blogroll and be displaying The Foodie Blogroll widget on your blog. If you are not yet a member, but you have a food blog and would like to join us, please click here!

If you have a favorite foodblog on The Foodie Blogroll, that you would like to be featured here on FFF, please join us over on The Leftover Queen/Foodie Blogroll Forum, and post your favorite Foodie Blogroll foodblogs here.

My Colombian Recipes

This blog is written by Erica, and she was inspired by her grandmother to write this blog. She says that she never saw her grandmother use a recipe for cooking, she just used whatever she found in her kitchen! Erica wants to share the food of Colombia (and elsewhere) with you. Her photos are gorgeous, and I love her recipes! I made a modified version of her Coconut Rice Pudding Brulee and it was AWESOME! There are tons of other recipes I would like to try too! I just subscribed to her blog, why don’t you?!

When I’m Bored I Make Soup

This is a most perfect blog to feature this time of year! I really love soup (and ice cream) any time of year and with this blog you will never get bored checking out all the delicious creations! The blog is written by Peter, a dentist in New Zealand! He loves soup, and coins it The Ultimate Food. He says: “Soup is surely the ultimate food. From the poorest of the poor standing in the street beside a soup kitchen to the richest of the rich at a posh dinner party, we can all eat soup”. Check out some of his amazing creations.


Food & Creativity Meet The Web

This blog is written by Justin, who is a student in Singapore that has been blogging about food for 6 years! Six years may not seem like a long time, but in terms of blogging, Justin is one of those food blogging pioneers. In 2007, he decided to take a new perspective on blogging – one that involves doing food reviews. He likes to focus those reviews on restaurants that give you the best food, for the best value. Being a student, and expert of Singaporean food for so many years, he would know! Although I have never been to Singapore, this blog is awesome for learning about all the diverse foods that make up the cuisine of Singapore.

Tuti Foodie

Written by Mara, this blog features all of her her own original creations, although she uses cookbooks and notable blogs as inspiration. She waxes poetic about fall in New England and the idea of Tapas on a recent post that features a delicious end of summer, moving into fall menu of Sauteed Baby Bellos and Feta-Mint-Basil Pesto . Delicious! Go check it out!

Divine Domesticity

Ali has been blogging about all things domestic since 2004 and Divine Domesticity is a mish mash of all the things she finds comforting and domestic – including food and cooking! Hee blog is a tenet that “homemaking can be fun, silly and totally worthwhile”. She admits that although she doesn’t read food labels, she is trying to eat healthier these days. Check out the recipe index of her blog for more info .

That’s it for this week! I hope you enjoyed this week’s FFF. Remember, if you would like to see a blog featured here, who is part of the FBR please visit the forum and nominate them.

I NEED NOMINATIONS!!!!!! I know we all have our favorite blogs that we read everyday, and I would love to know about them. We have a very diverse food community, and I would love to see more of the blogs you love featured. We also have a lot of humanitarians out in the Foodie Blogosphere. If you think there is a food blogger out there that deserves a little recognition for their culinary skills, or what they are doing to help the world through the lens of food, please tell us about them!!! Please post your favorite Foodie Blogroll foodblogs here.

Also we all love to know how people came to find our blogs, so please visit all of our featured bloggers today and don’t forget to tell them that you found them via Finest Foodies Friday! They would love to have your feedback.

STUFFED: An Insider’s Look at Who’s (Really) Making America Fat GIVEAWAY!!!

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Last week, when I announced all the Foodie Blogroll Contests and Giveaways for this month, I mentioned that I would be writing more about our Stuffed Nation Giveaway, that we are doing in conjunction with author and former former food executive turned anti-obesity exponent Hank Cardello.

The giveaway is starting this week, and we will be giving away the first of 8 books this Friday, September 11, 2009 and will be running for 8 weeks. This giveaway is much more interactive. Bloggers are encouraged to discuss their views on food policy and the obesity problem for a chance to win a copy of the book. This is a way to get people talking about the very important issue of escalating obesity and diabetes (as well as other health related concerns) in the United States. As two-thirds of Americans struggle with being overweight or obese, nothing has worked to take off the pounds. Diet plans, Food Pyramid Guidelines, package nutritional labeling, and five-a-day fruit & vegetable programs have all failed to arrest America’s increasing girth. Hank offers solutions in his book, but we want to hear your thoughts and ideas as well! We encourage bloggers, whether they are in the US, or elsewhere to weigh in on this big issue, that seems to be spreading worldwide.

I had the opportunity to chat with Hank Cardello a few weeks ago about his book, his concerns about rising obesity and his respect for people like Michael Pollan and The Slow Food Movement. He sees himself as a bit of a conduit between consumers and the industry. Although he believes that prevention is a powerful thing, the problem is translating that in a hard dollar amount to the food companies. He also disagrees with those that lobby for placing taxes on “bad food” as it is just more money to the Federal Government, and doesn’t really solve the problem. People will eat what they want to eat. Although he has respect for the Michael Pollan’s of the world, he doesn’t believe it solves the problem of obesity. Consumers have counted on fast food and convenience food for so long. Mr. Cardello believes that there has to be a meeting point so that we can move past this stalemate. It may not be a perfect solution, but it will get us going. From the conversation, it was my interpretation that he would love to see people eat more seasonally and healthfully, but he feels that this won’t work on a large scale right now. It is too much of a leap. That there needs to be another way to really get this thing moving. A platform that meets somewhere in the middle, in order to make everyone involved happy enough to move forward to actually do something.

Food policy is a very important and heated topic these days. You hear about it in the news, and the popularity of books like Michael Pollan’s Omnivore’s Dilemma and In Defense of Food, as well as Barbara Kingslover’s Animal, Vegetable, Miracle and Nina Planck’s book Real Food really shows a growing trend of consumers being more and more concerned about the food we eat and a very big movement to getting back to basics. With this wave of books, comes Hank Cardello’s book Stuffed: An Insider’s Look at Who’s (Really) Making America Fat, where he discusses from an insider’s perspective and offers solutions for how this trend can be changed, in a very different way than these other books. He provides novel and concrete steps food companies can take to fatten their profits while slimming down their customers. In addition, he stresses the realistic role that consumers must play in America’s new health equation, explaining that unless they demand healthier food with their wallets, America will continue to tip the scales for years to come.

I very much agree with this last sentiment. I have discussed this very thing recently, in my post Concerned Consumer or Mentally Ill? I believe that Americans ( and any other people, for that matter) have to take personal responsibility for their health. People need to find out more about the food that they put into their bodies, and from that make informed decisions about what they choose to buy and eat from that point on. We need to make informed decisions by looking at the “modern diet” which has created this modern problem, and remove those problem foods from our diets. When we vote with our wallets, change can happen.

I know personally, this is a topic that I have been learning about, and as a consequence modifying my own diet for the past 10 years. I think it has taken me that long to figure out what really works for me. I feel that there is no cookie cutter plan for individuals – not just food, but lifestyle, genetics and exercise play a big role in obesity and diet related health problems. My rule of thumb is that if we eat the foods that humans have been eating in their diets for millennia, we are on the right track. It is with the introduction of new convenience and processed foods, that we have also been introduced to these new health problems. America is such a melting pot of different cultures and foods, and we have really been bombarded by the food industry and their new foods that we have forgotten how to eat. Many other countries, have the advantage of traditional foods, and with that strong cultural backbone, there is a lot of backlash against new products and food, that are not part of the diet. This is a good thing. We need to take this back in the US. Since we are such a melting pot, we have to do this differently. I think the best way to go about it is to eat as locally, and seasonally as possible. When I talked to Mr. Cardello about how this obesity problem is pretty much isolated to a few countries, his response was that he believes there are 3 factors that contribute to people overall being healthier in other countries: 1) exercise as a way of life 2) dependence on fresh food as opposed to processed 3) a diet based more on traditional/ cultural foods which are not processed.

Mr Cardello, disagrees in his book that eating locally and seasonally helps to solve the obesity problem. He comes from the position that calories are calories. His goal is to lower calories that people consume on a large scale basis, to help solve the obesity problem. Although this approach does make sense for people who live off fast food, and processed foods, I feel it is a band aid fix. This approach is probably the best I have heard in a context where we only have fast food and processed food available. But,  I tend to look at this from an “outsiders” prospective and know from my own experiences (and I also know that I am not alone) as well as scientific findings, that calories are not all created equal. We have all heard about empty calories. Mr. Cardello discusses at length how those 100 calorie snack bags are a good idea. They limit the amount of calories a person ingests, because the bag is only so big. Those 100 calorie snack bags, area controlled 100 calories. But which is healthier for our bodies – that 100 calorie snack bag or say, a hard boiled egg, which is also about 100 calories? That egg also offers protein, and that egg contains vitamins and trace minerals. Sure it has more fat and probably more cholesterol, but it is derived naturally, which can not be said about the chemical factory that is contained in that snack pack. But not only that – what kind of nutrition do you really even get from a snack pack, naturally derived or not? Not much. Empty calories.

I am a firm believer that eating real food that comes from nature, that humans have been eating from time immemorial, are the best foods to eat. We don’t need to re-invent the wheel. We need to make the decision to eat food that has been around for thousands of years. I believe that there needs to be better education about this, so that people can make informed decisions about what they chose to consume. It is not just about calories. Some people may still chose that fast food burger, give this information,  but many will not. Although there is educational information on this topics, already out there, there needs to be more. This information also needs to contain strong language, really showing the health risks, in a similar fashion to  the way information was exposed about the tobacco industry. Since the real truth came out about that, there are way less smokers in the world today. I believe the same can happen where food is concerned.

I really enjoyed reading Hank’s book. I believe for many people, those who eat fast food, and lots of convenience and processed foods, there will be a lot of eye openers contained within and some solutions,  if people really do refuse to change their ways. For me, I feel like most of this book does not apply to me. I never eat fast food, and I make most of my food from scratch, without the help of processed foods. Mr. Cardello says that people like me are very much in the minority. However, I have seen an encouraging and rising trend over the past few years where more and more people everyday are joining this minority. Even for us, I do believe that this book is worth reading, to really learn where the food companies, food industry, advertising firms and even grocery stores are coming from and how they contribute to this problem, in more ways than I even knew! This book is a catalyst for discussion on the topic, and perhaps the more people join this conversation, the more will chose not to eat that fast food burger or 100 calorie snack pack.

These are my personal views and thoughts on the subject, and now I want to hear yours!

I sent a link to this discussion to Mr. Cardello, and this was his response:

You certainly have stirred up some passionate responses. Your audience clearly “gets it” about healthy eating and behaves accordingly. I have also found that there is very little “give” with this group. It is all or nothing, and that eating this way is the only way to go…for everyone.

Our crisis in food is not a simple “either/or” situation. The remainder of the population doesn’t eat processed or fast food 100% of the time. Many do, but most practice a combination of healthy and less healthy eating behaviors. I believe that obesity has not been solved to date exactly because of this “either/or” mentality. It causes both the food industry and food advocates to dig in to their respective positions, with little progress.

My proposal to focus on lowering calories (which will, by the way, also lower fats and sugars by definition) is not the end game. But engaging the food industry in a way that recognizes they EXIST to make a profit, while demanding more responsibility on their part, stands a higher probability of resolving the biggest health problem we’re facing right now.

I welcome further dialogue on this and again thank you for raising the level of awareness to alternative solutions.

With this 2 month giveaway, we want to spread the word and our concerns about food policy in the US (and the world over). So we are inviting food bloggers to post on their blogs about their ideas on food policy, or why you think obesity is such a problem in the US, and ideas on what we can do to solve that problem To be eligible to win the book, your post will need to include a link back to Stuffed Nation (Hank’s blog) and The Foodie Blogroll . You will also need to email a link to your post to Jenn, The Leftover Queen (founder and manager of The Foodie Blogroll) at: queen(@)leftoverqueen.com. We look forward to these entries!

September Royal Foodie Joust Winners – and this Month’s Ingredients!!

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The Royal Foodie Joust is an awesome and fun monthly peer voted competition that is hosted on The LeftoverQueen/FoodieBlogroll Forum! It gets better each and every month as the competition gets stiffer and more creative, as Jousters try to outdo each other! It is also one of the friendliest competitions I have ever seen. So please don’t be intimidated to come and join us this month in another round!

We don’t bite, unless of course there is real food in our faces ;)

The only rules for the competition is that each Jouster create only one dish and each entry must feature three ingredients in common.

This competition has been referred to many times as the “Iron Chef” of the Food Blogosphere. Each month’s ingredients are chosen by the previous month’s Best Overall Entry winner. The Best Overall winner of each Joust not only wins the Queen’s favor, bragging rights and a cool icon to put on their blog, but is also awarded with a super awesome Royal Foodie Joust Apron! There are also prizes for the winners of the other two categories: Best Photo and Most Unique Interpretation

So what are you waiting for? Come over and join us this month!

If you would like to participate in this month’s Joust, be sure to submit your entry by 12 NOON, Eastern Standard USA time on the First of the following Month (Oct. 1, 2009)!

If you have an idea you would like to share about how to make the Joust a better community event, please join us in discussing it here.

Now onto the winners of this month’s event. The ingredients for this month were chosen by last month’s Best Overall winner, Raquel from Cafe Nilson with her Spicy Banana Zucchini Balls.

She chose, Papaya (ripe or green), Tarragon and Cheese . Many people struggled with these ingredients, but having a challenge sometimes pushes us out of our comfort zone and allows the creativity to begin to flow! This is pretty much the point of the Joust – a fun time expanding our culinary take on different ingredients in a competitive yet friendly environment where doing something different can be very rewarding!

But there can only be one winner in each category, and each month making that call gets harder! Onto those winning entries now!

Our Best Overall and Best Photo Winner is awarded to Natasha from 5 Star Foodie. Natasha is on an incredible foodie mission to eat at all the Michelin 5 Star restaurants in the United States. Her blog features reviews of those restaurants and also recipes that she has been inspired by her 5 Star experiences to create at home! So this girl knows good food, so it is no surprise that her blog is so popular and her recipes so good! Her winning dish was Tarragon Lobster Cakes with Spicy Papaya Queso Blanco Sauce

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They sound absolutely delicious – sweet and spicy, and the photo is mouthwatering!

The Winner for Most Unique Interpretation of the Ingredients is awarded to Dhanggit from Dhanggit’s Kitchen .

Her winning dish was Papaya Brioche with Cheese and Farm Eggs Omelette with French Tarragon Bearnaise Sauce

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I was impressed with this combination of flavors. I mean who doesn’t love brioche? Adding papaya to it brings it to a whole other level! Then adding the omelette and tarragon bearnaise really makes this dish something very special and unique!

Thanks again to all the participants for another great Joust! :)

If you would like to see all the entries please check them out here!

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Now for this month’s ingredients. Natasha has set us up with some really beautiful autumn inspired ingredients!

Apples
Cayenne Pepper
Maple Syrup

Now that the foodie blogosphere is coming back from vacations, holidays, and quiet time, I am looking forward to an exciting Joust this month! If you have never participated, now is the time! These are some great ingredients that most people always have on hand, or are readily available! So please come and join us for your chance to win a Royal Foodie Joust Apron or Royal Foodie Joust Mug!