What Defines a Food Blogger ? {Because I Can't Cook}

I received this very good question today on my video post. Thanks to "Anonymous" for starting an engaging discussion. Someone has finally asked the question I've been waiting for...

"While the video is cute, I'm wondering if you ever actually COOK anything? How can you justifiably be in a food blog competition when it does not appear that you COOK?"

Tomato in Circle

As most of you know, I've always been up front about not being a very good cook (my profile). What I love is the combination of food and art. I communicate this love by telling my quirky food stories, sharing my simple (yes, very simple) recipes, creating monthly food themes to offer a fresh perspective, and sharing fabulous recipes from fellow food bloggers...all through my illustrations.

This brings me to the next question stated above (which I think is a very good one)...is it relevant for me to be in a food blog competition if I can't cook? Hmmm, I guess the real question is what defines a "food blog"? Recipes shared by a great chef? An author that writes about other great chefs? Someone that strictly critiques local restaurants? Someone that isn't a great chef, but shares their struggles with cooking? Someone that draws food of other great chefs? Can a food blog just be about food (in whatever form it takes)? What do you think?

Tomatoes and Rabbit

The Foodbuzz competition has been a challenge for me (in a very good way)...to stay true to my blog focus, while also staying true to each challenge. It has helped me step outside my comfort zone. As you can see from my challenges...I'm actually "cooking" something (yes, way outside my comfort zone). Okay, they are simple in many ways, but that's me. You will note that most food bloggers in this competition have also stayed true to their focus. These bloggers are unique because they spin each challenge towards who they are...and that is what engages us. For instance...how can pizza on a stick not be fun? Because it's the view of a cookie decorator - love that spin...and there are many more.

One thing I commend the Foodbuzz competition organizers for is a variety of challenges to highlight the different talents of food bloggers - photography, videography, baking, recipe tweaking, education, communication, critiquing, and on and on. It really demonstrates the vastness of how we all approach food.

So in the end, I can't cook. But I can write about food, share my struggles and highlights with food, celebrate fellow food bloggers, illustrate food, and communicate the idea of food from a different perspective. Whether or not that makes me a "food blogger" is up for grabs, but I do appreciate being able to participate in this competition and deeply appreciate all these fabulous new challenges thrown in front of me.

Tomatoes and Flowers

Thanks again to everyone supporting my quirky view of food, but also thanks to everyone supporting this competition and allowing so many food bloggers to shine. I've learned so much from my peers and I continue to learn from honest questions like the ones above. Food and conversation go together well. Cheers!


kg said...

Honestly, I initially wondered the same thing....."How can she be getting so far in this challenge, when she admits that she can't cook?"---But, I LOVE your drawings and your creativity that I believe that you definitely need to be there. You are taking such a unique and creative approach to food and I love to see what you come up with for each challenge. You are right----food blogs come in many forms, those expert chefs, beginning home cooks, restaurant reviewers etc. The food blog community needs and loves someone who bridges food and art! Keep it up!

Anonymous said...

I've been developing and testing recipes for years and believe me, some of these beautifully lit and photographed compositions of combined ingredients and multi-step technique taste like complete crap. So what if you can cook something if it stinks?

Food blogging to me is exactly what you wrote. It is sharing your voice and your passion about a theme that is multifaceted.

Ignore the haters. I actually dropped by to grab your link because I want my readers to discover what a cool food blogger you truly are.

Jean said...

I don't think you have to be a great chef to write about food. You taste, smell, see and feel food like the rest of us and that makes you just as qualified. You've made it this far in the competition based on your merits and that counts for a lot. Blog on! :-)

Gayle Martin said...

Hey Lisa I'm a good cook, but I'm far from being a chef, and I say so on my food blog. However that doesn't stop me from writing cookbooks or writing a food blog. Your blog is one of my favorites on Food Buzz, and I also have a link to your blog on the sidebar of my blog. Your blog is unique and original, and I love your artwork.

There will be critics everywhere you go, but always remember that when you're good at what you do, in your case drawing and writing, people will get jealous and start sniping.

Ruth said...

Just found PFB, and then found you. I enjoy your stories and hope your prints decorate my kitchen soon.

Will start voting for you in the next challenge.

Lizzy said...

This is honestly so unique thats the reason you are still here...

Stephanie said...

Well. I am a food blogger, and Lisa's blog is one of my absolute favorites. I don't believe that food blogging is all about recipes. It is about sharing, getting ideas, being inspired. I'm with Lisa... and say that "all of the above" is what makes a food blog.

david said...

Honestly speaking...you don't have to be a cook to talk about food. The daring times and the funny foods you come up with are enough

Lisa Orgler said...

Thanks for all your thoughtful comments. I think the food blog community is so generous and kind.

What I've realized the last few days is that the unique food perspective we all bring to the table only makes the community richer. We all need to fill in the gaps with our distinctive talents.