These delicious chewy, cherry chocolate macaroons are you for you my readers, as Spinach TIger celebrates post 100. And, for my fellow bloggers, a little bit of sugar.
Love and generosity of spirit go hand in hand with food. This is why in my 100th post, I share with you today a few bloggers that I think surpass this with who they are and what they give. Their blogs keep me in shock and awe, but never make me uncomfortable. They have either made me cry, laugh, or jump up and down and applaud.
The two blogs that surprise me the most on a nearly daily basis are Sippity Sup (Greg from the Hollywood Hills) and Not Quite Nigella (Lorraine from Sidney, Australia). You will get addicted to them, not just for the food, (which is fantastic) but for their personalities that shine through and “connect” to their readers.
I followed every bit of Greg’s broken jaw dilemma as he spun a positive weave and cooked us delectable cream soups. And then, there is this thing he has for tomatoes. Sippity’s blog has a rhythm to it…as you read, you can hear music as his words and thoughts dance along the page. Lorraine who is just as incredible as the real Nigella will make you jealous that you are not eating out with her having a cocktail and caviar or a McDonald’s burger (really) or riding in the car with her as she tests the idea of cooking food attached to her engine (again, really). And, she is out of this world in her own kitchen. They are givers in the food blog world, stunning, yet humble and non-elitist.
And, speaking of givers, there is a whole backdoor experience that no one knows about…the gals from Whisk Wednesday two cooking groups devoted to french and Italian classical cooking and they are listed on my sidebar. We have on-going discussions at length on pasta machines and shucking oysters. These bloggers share a google group with me and I know about their lives and I know that cooking can be a rope to hold onto in an unkind, unpredictable ocean of life. (I say gals, but we’re waiting for a guy to join us any day now).
The leader of Whisk Wednesdays, Shari of Whisk: a food blog has managed to break down the recipes from Le Cordon Bleu at Home so you can understand them, while not compromising french cooking one bit. You must visit her stunning blog and see the shockingly tedious monumental job she has done in connection with Mastering the Art of French Cooking by Julia Child.
Speaking of impressive, Kamran at The Sophisticated Gourmet is only 17 years old, but you would never know that. He’s another “giver” ready to help behind the scenes with anything, like a computer problem. He’s open and willing to talk and he will greet you when you visit him.
Shannalee at Food Loves Writing emphasizes the point that food blogging is not just a recipe; it’s also the story and she tells a great one with every post. Now why didn’t I think of that blog name?
If you are into whole, fresh, local food with lots of education attached, Darya of Summer Tomato is your gal. She is a seriously smart young woman in San Francisco, working on her PhD in neuroscience. Summer Tomato is friendly and fascinating, and she is the most “reader focused” and the quintessential blogger of “reader” feedback.
Simone at Junglefrog Cooking from Holland takes the most gorgeous photographs of food and throws a lot of muscle and passion into her blog, even taking us on vacation to Indonesia with her. If you email her, she’ll get right back to you and help you any way she can. Even if you don’t want to cook, just looking at her food photos may be enough.
Speaking of photography Sabra, of Cookbook Catchall is a true food artist in every aspect. Her photos look like the food section of a sassy, modern design and decor magazine.
If you want to find out about the latest food trends, cookbooks, kitchen gadgets, you must subscribe to The Daily Colander paralleled only by Elaine’s food blog, The Italian Dish. Subscribe to both for a double treat.
Kathy at Noble Pig deserves a shout out for sheer energy. During her move from California to Oregon to establish a vineyard, she maintained her blog and her children. How? We want what she’s drinking. Now we sit and wait for her winery to blossom.
A fun couple, The Duo Dishes, simply love to eat and cook, and do both in Los Angeles. They seem to have the most fun whether it’s dining out (at the thousands of LA eateries) or cooking together, which they do frequently. I get to meet them at the Food Buzz Festival in November in San Francisco. Unlike many other types of bloggers, food bloggers are often found in social settings eating and drinking. It’s a wonderful life, and thank you Food Buzz.
Bea of La Tartine Gourmande does for french food and life style what I would love to do for the italian way of food life, although I am American and she really is french. Her pictures portray the story with a particular beauty in her food that captivates me. She is the very first food blog I found online, and it was this googled recipe that led to staying up all night exploring her blog and making a decision to join the food blogging world. Bea has a cookbook coming soon, and it will be a treasure. She had her first baby the same day I launched my blog. Somehow that made it extra special on top of being Christmas Day.
That same night I discovered my first blog, I jumped over to Heidi of 101 Cookbook, a fabulous vegetarian blog that is not just for vegetarians. We should all eat our produce cooked the way she cooks, whole, fresh and delicious. She is the author of Super Natural Foods which I ordered after about 3 visits to her site. She has so influenced my decision to blog, that it is her recipe I made today, adding in a few dark chocolate chips around the cherries just to celebrate a little more. And for Bea, I made them into little “tarts” instead of squares.
My three favorite creative non-food bloggers that will feed your hunger for design and style are:
Kim Vallée from At Home with Kim Vallée who reports on all things about style home and often wonderful innovations on kitchen and food stuff.
Regina Garay at Fauxology- Seek no further for design trends, decorative painting, personality and graciousness galore. She is equally talented in delivering beautiful work on the wall and on-line, as she is one of the best faux artists in the country and certainly publishes the best blog. Her company, Garay Artisans, recently received the prestigious Top Job Award for paint contractors.
Grace at Design Sponge is the rock star of design blogs with an array of features that keep me going back, even if my table didn’t make the top ten hand-made entries.
Why do I gush so much about other wonderful bloggers?
They let me know I’m not alone in my kitchen or at my computer, and the many hours I put into Spinach TIger is not in vein. Their inspiration charges my inspiration. The food blogging community is greater than the sum of its parts. The process has electrified the food world by the global sharing of information, and it’s not just about food, it’s about the undertaking of how food is produced, the good, the bad and the ugly and food bloggers are influential in this process. (Hooray).
Unlike most cook books, food bloggers deliver the truth, the science and often the better way to cook a dish. If you are searching a recipe, I implore you to go to the food blog search on my side bar to get the best choices.
Food blogging has opened up a world of people that I sort of thought were out there, but I just didn’t know where to find them or how to connect to them.
To you food bloggers a big kiss with a cherry on top!
Recipe adapted from 101 Cookbooks. See original recipe here.
I hope you enjoy these cherry macaroon tarts, first seen on Heidi Swanson’s 101 cookbooks. She made them in a sheet pan and cut them into little squares, and she also shares a gluten free option using almond meal and rice flour.
I also made a few with some dark chocolate chips which can only make anything “cherry” richer, better and simply more delicious.
1/2 pound of cherries, pitted
1/2 – 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (you decide) 1 1/2 cups white whole wheat flour (regular all purpose flour will work) 2 3/4 cup sweetened finely shredded coconut (divided) 3/4 cup raw cane (or brown) sugar, lightly packed (divided) scant 1/2 teaspoon fine grain sea salt 10 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted 4 large egg whites
Preheat oven to 350F degrees with racks in the middle. Butter baking pan or mini tart pan.
In a large bowl combine the flour, 3/4 cup of the coconut, 1/2 cup of the sugar, and salt.
Stir in the melted butter and mix until dough is crumbly but no longer dusty looking.
Press into mini tarts. Bake for 15 minutes. Set aside.
While tart bottoms are baking, mix remaining coconut sugar, and egg whites together until well. The original recipe used unsweetened coconut. I compensated for with less sugar for my sweetened coconut. I suggest you taste both bottom crust and egg mixture before baking. You can mix the sugar and coconut together (before) adding eggs and adjust for sweetness. I like baked goods less sweet than most, so make adjustments according to your own sweet tooth.
Once bottom crust is out of oven, drop a few chocolate chips followed by 2-3 cherry halves in each tart. Top with coconut mixture, using your hands to evenly arrange. Bake for twenty minutes at 350 degrees or until coconut topping is golden brown. Cool a few minutes and remove from tart pan. I used a silicone tart pan, which made this very easy.