Aaawww... I'm so touched! Matt from Addicted To Vinyl named my newbie foodie blog as one of his faves and with that lovely compliment came this award:
Yeah, nice graphic huh? Yikes. But hey, I'll play the game because it's nice to know someone out there appreciates my little adventures in the kitchen and that is just cool. Thanks, Matt, for all your very kind words.
So with this award, I am told that I have to nominate at least 7 of my favorite blogs so they can proudly display this crappy graphic on their beautiful blogs as well. Aren't you all so EXCITED!? Seriously though, this will be a good opportunity for me to give some props to the blogs I'm really enjoying these days. Here are my TEN nominees:
1. Deb from Smitten Kitchen. Deb's blog is one of the reasons that I started food blogging. I didn't even know food blogs existed 9 months ago! I don't know how I managed to miss that little tidbit, but I did. Until one day I came across Deb's blog and her BEYOND beautiful food porn photography. I believe it's her husband, Alex, that does most of the photography, and you just have to go over there and check it out. If you love food that looks good, you'll LOVE this blog. Plus, she makes a lot of cool stuff and her cookies are just perfection.
2. Claudia from cook eat FRET. Claudia is a cool chick, and the other reason why I started food blogging. Hers was the second food blog I came across and I instantly loved this one, too. Her photos are awesome as well and her writing is witty, funny, and in your face. She knows good food, she's not afraid to pay for it when needed, and she's from NYC (currently living in TN), so she knows a thing or two about eating out at kick-ass restaurants.
3. Candace from i shot the chef. She used to be a chef at the Four Seasons and it's very very obvious when you get a load of her plating skills. Every single thing she makes or bakes is perfectly presented on the plate and that is one of my most favorite things about cooking; making it look pretty. She has that market cornered! I try to learn what I can about plating from her photos. Oh, and be sure to click on her About section to see her "babies". They are ADORABLE!!!!
4. Mel from life, liberty & pursuit of your boyfriend. I don't even remember how I found her blog, but the day I did, I read a couple posts and got hooked. I started checking it almost every day to see what she was up to. She reminds me of "Carrie" from Sex and the City and I know she's probably tired of hearing that. She's got her quirks, her vices, MANY crazy drunken weekend stories, and even her "mushy" moments here and there where she really lets you in. She's a chick you can have a beer with while watching the Indians play, yet she also knows how to pick out a cute outfit and whip up a mean pasta dish. AND she's a fellow Clevelander, which makes her instantly cool!
5. POPSUGAR . Dude! I am HOOKED on this blog! I know, the respect some of you may have had for me just dropped a little bit, but hey I admit it! I enjoy the celebrity gossip and I don't care who knows it! I like this one because they're informative and have great pics. They're always on top of all the hot stories and the girls that comment on the blog are fun, too. It's an eye-catching blog and I check it at least once a day. Ok, it's my crack. There I said it.
6. The Superficial. This is actually the first celebrity blog I ever read and had been reading it for a good while before stumbling across POPSUGAR. The Superficial is written by a guy and he is F'ING HILARIOUS. He is SO funny. Just read one post and you'll laugh your ass off. He takes these crazy celebrities to task and sometimes his comments are so off the wall, you'll just burst out laughing. I just love it. Oh, and the commenters are often JUST as funny. The tag line is funny in itself, "The Superficial... Because You're Ugly". I love it.
7. Kevin from Closet Cooking. This guy cooks a beautiful meal EVERY day. I think he actually does post nearly every day and it's one delicious creation after another, beautifully photographed, and seemingly expertly prepared. He makes a lot of things that I myself would make. He's not afraid of cilantro and I LIKE it. Recently he's begun using some more exotic ingredients in his cooking, (well exotic to me anyway), like quinoa, kare (Japanese curry), and garam masala. I've been learning a lot from him and hope he keeps it up! It's a great Canadian blog, eh?!
8. Matt from Addicted To Vinyl. This is the only music blog I currently read. Even though I LOVE good music, I've never really been all THAT into reading about it. Plus, I have my favorites and I kind of stick with them. I'm a HUGE hair metal fan and a proud one. I know that's like announcing you're a Star Trek junky, but I don't care; I LOVE HAIR METAL! I've listened to it since I was 13 years old and always will. The Poison/Dokken/Sebastian Bach concert is rollin' through in a couple weeks and I am THERE bitches! Another band I just will NOT miss live (and neither will Mark) is Dream Theater. That's how I found Matt's blog. He mentioned that they are coming out with a new live CD/DVD and he said it would be good for guys to "annoy their girlfriends" with. I immediately felt compelled to comment because I am IN LOVE with that band, whether they are singing soft, melodic, lovely songs or rockin' out with their... well you know. I'm pumping my fist and shakin' my head around with all the guys at those shows and I made sure Matt knew it. I then realized that he knows a CRAP load about music and seems to have the inside track on when EVERYTHING is being released, happening, touring, etc., so I've become a regular reader. You rock, Matt!
9. Carol from French Laundry at Home. This woman is my hero. She is actually crazy enough to cook every single recipe out of the great Thomas Keller's masterpiece of a cookbook, The French Laundry. You should SEE some of the stuff she cooks! It doesn't matter how many days the recipe takes for her to make... (yes, I said DAYS), she cooks the damn thing and makes it look GOOD! She takes you through step-by-step and shows you how to make these extremely intricate recipes and I'm constantly amazed by her talent and bravery. Plus, her writing is funny as hell. She once cited the song "No Diggity" and at that moment I KNEW she was a cool chick.
10. Jaden from Steamy Kitchen. Do you know how HARD it is to find a good Asian food blog out there??? I still can't believe it, but it is! Jaden's blog fixes all that with her breath-taking photos of the modern Asian cuisine she prepares in her own kitchen. She is my go-to blog when I'm in the mood to learn something new and briefly step away from my Bobby Flay addiction. Want to make authentic dumplings of all varieties? Need a sure-fire egg roll recipe? She's got it all and she plates the food so perfectly. Her blog is eye candy at its finest. My mouth is watering just thinking about it!
So there they are... the places I frequently visit on the web. They are scandalous, hilarious, delicious, and kick ass all rolled up into one. Thanks guys for making the Internet cool for ME.
Now wait, don't go away yet! This award that you've all just won comes with a few rules:
1. Put the (ugly) logo above on your blog.
2. Add a link to the person who awarded it to you.
3. Nominate at least 7 other blogs.
4. Add links to these blogs on your blog.
5. Leave a message for your nominee on their blog.
Have fun spreadin' YOUR blog love, too. This was actually really enjoyable to "give thanks" to the blogs I truly love. Thanks!