I know. — before we go any further, we have to acknowledge what I’m trying to do here: I’m attempting to force 7 links into a Top 5 Friday post. It’s kind of like trying to fit the batter for a 13″ x 9″ cake into an 8″ round pan. Fortunately, my little squeeze play won’t result in burnt batter all over the bottom of my non-self-cleaning oven.
Tasty Trix tagged me on this 7 Links Meme on September 6 — when she gave it the name I prefer, Seven Superlative Links — now that’s what I call lighting fast response time, don’t you? On top of that, Howard reminded me that I haven’t written a Top 5 post since the start of summer. And so, in a fit of desperation, the 2 blog-related guilts weighing on my mind have collided into a single post that sort of fits together.
The challenge? Participants are tasked with choosing one post each of the most beautiful, overlooked, helpful, successful, popular, controversial, and the one of which they are most proud.
Given that November 30 marks the 2 year anniversary of Island Vittles, I think this is the perfect opportunity to take a look back over 2 years worth of posts, don’t you? I’m glad we agree.
1. My Most Beautiful Post
This Mocha Hot Fudge over coconut sorbet from October is my favourite picture from the past few weeks. I take most of the fall & winter photos for Island Vittles on a table under our bedroom window. This can result in a sort of Keystone Cops-like caper while I dash between the kitchen and bedroom, setting up the shot, removing the silver goblet from the freezer, (carefully, to avoid leaving fingerprints in the frost), quickly spooning up the hot fudge and coconut sprinkles, all in time to get the shot before the afternoon light is gone.
I know that some of you know what I’m talking about.
Anyway, on this particular day, the light was good and everything went off according to plan (meaning that I remembered the remote control so the camera was untouched on it’s tripod for a perfectly still shot). A frozen food photo miracle (next time I’ll iron the tablecloth ;))
2. My Most Overlooked Post
I remember how much I loved this Soba Shots post when I put it up in April 2010 — “So clever!” I thought.
Too clever, I now know. Consomme, frozen in silicone shot-glass molds, filled with cold soba noodles and garnished with a squeeze of lime. Served in a warm bowl, so that the consomme melts in front of the diner. A perfect summer starter that is hardly practical for most.
But the biggest disappointment about this post was that neither foodgawker nor tastespotting accepted any of my photos for this post. I get why now, but back then, I was still figuring out their aesthetics, and I was so disappointed not to get any attention after spending a long time getting the perfect shot.
3. My Most Helpful Post
Some of the favourite posts I’ve done include homemade recipes for pantry staples that most of us buy at the store. Homemade condiments are popular, but my Top Five Friday — 5 Easy Cheeses to Make at Home from September 2010 points readers to recipes for Mascarpone, Ricotta, Yogurt Cheese, Halloumi, Queso Blanco as well as a bonus recipe for Creme Fraiche.
4. My Most Successful Post
My recipe for Cauliflower and Smoked Cheddar Soup from September of this year caught the fancy of a fellow food blogger and on-line friend, Carolyn of All Day I Dream About Food. She blew my mind (and my blog stats out of the water for a few days) when she devoted a whole post to my soup and Island Vittles.
Thanks to Carolyn, I now have a number of new enthusiastic readers and I still get clicks from her post everyday.
5. My Most Popular Post
To be honest, my Frikadeller post is actually the 6th most popular of all time on Island Vittles. The other posts listed here are, for the most part, higher on that list than these little Danish meatballs, but the very fact that this much-maligned, over-served dish from my childhood (sorry Mom) is on the list at all surprises the heck out of me.
Note: They are delicious — once my adult self had had enough separation time, I craved them so much with my whole soul that I had to call up my mom for the recipe and eat a little crow so I could make myself some…
6. My Most Controversial Post
I avoid controversy and conflict with every fibre of my being.
Keeping that in mind, I would have to say that my Cold Oil French Fry post from March 2010 causes more people more questions (in person and email) than any other recipe on my site.
And it does work. Simply cover yukon golds with cold vegetable oil, turn them on med-high and stir them a couple of times during cooking. You’ll have light, crispy and golden french fries in about 25 minutes. No blanching, no double frying.
Don’t believe me? Try it yourself!
7. The Post that Makes Me Most Proud
A second blog? Isn’t one enough? — You’re not kidding! But food from fiction is a hot theme right now, and I’m excited to explore a niche within the larger world of food blogging.
The Rolls with Minced Pigeon & Truffles from December 2010 was the inaugural post for my Food from Fiction category. I sent a short email to Diana Gabaldon’s Canadian publicist with a five-question food-related email interview. Much to my surprise, I had a yes back from Diana by the end of the day.
This post, with its recipe and interview, is by far the most visited page on Island Vittles — it’s thousands of clicks ahead of number two (the Cold-Oil Fries above) — and it’s success is what has encouraged me to start, with Diana’s blessing, Outlander Kitchen. If you’re a fan of well-written time-travel/history/romance/fantasy novels AND good food, stop by sometime.
And now it is my duty (and pleasure!) to pass on this meme to six other superlative bloggers:
Go at it girls…(unless you’ve done it before, or you don’t have the time — heck, it took me over 2 months — you’ve got all the time in the world!)