web analytics
0 Flares Filament.io 0 Flares ×
Welcome to today’s Blogger Spotlight – SnoWhite from Finding Joy in My Kitchen!  I’m so happy to have you here today!!

 

I’m a 20-something college biology professor by day, and the chief cook and kitchen manager in our home at night.  I’m passionate about food; where it comes from, how our bodies respond to it (yes, I’m a biology nerd), the environmental impact of our food choices, and how we prepare it in our homes.  God has given me a desire to serve my family through cooking, and I desire to share those recipes with other people through our cooking blog.  My husband, Frog Prince, and I enjoy cooking together and finding healthy ways to feed our family.  We love playing strategy board games like Agricola, and going out on walks/hikes together.  This fall we moved into our first house and are enjoying the joys of being homeowners…like shoveling our driveway after 18 inches of snow fell and our snow blower decided it wasn’t going to start!  If you’re curious why we go by Frog Prince and SnoWhite… stop by and check out our story.

What inspired you to first start writing your blog?

Having just moved 600+ miles away from home for graduate school, I ventured out on my own and started cooking for myself.  I desired to make healthy food choices, but that was really challenging with my food allergy.  I’m allergic to all tree nuts, and tree nuts are now in just about everything.  Try to find a good, whole grain loaf of bread without nuts, or a warning about them… trust me, it’s tough.  I chose to start building on the cooking skills I learned from my mom and farming grandmother’s and began learning how to cook everything from scratch.  Along the way, food went from being something scary and potentially life threatening to something that brought me great joy in preparing it, cooking it, eating it and serving it to family and friends.

Finding Joy in My Kitchen came about because of this joy to share recipes!  When I had successfully made some yummy dish for Frog Prince and I, I would call my mom and ask her to try the recipe.  My mom would say, “oh, that sounds good”, but never try my recipes!  When I asked her why not, she said it was hard for her to try recipes without seeing photos too.  So, I began posting recipes on my blog.  Finding Joy in My Kitchen was created shortly after I married Frog Prince, and has become a place for us to share our recipes with others in the hopes that you too will find joy in your kitchen!

What kinds of posts are your favorite to write?  What do your readers seem to like the most?

I love a good dessert recipe.  I think I love writing dessert posts because we’re drawn to desserts, and I love sharing simple ways to make desserts healthier by swapping in whole grains, using applesauce in place of oil and adding veggies in the mix from time to time.  I made black bean brownies for New Years Eve and they were gone within minutes.

My readers are enjoying pasta dishes right now – both the Cheesy Ham and Pasta Bake and Spinach Chicken Pasta are the top  viewed recipe as of today.

Do you plan a weekly menu?  If so, what inspires your menu?

Since my husband and I work full time, menu planning is a must for us.  We sit down every Thursday over dinner and plan the next week’s menu.  We plan seasonally based on what produce is in season and what’s on sale in the grocery stores so that we stick within our budget too.  This works great for us since Frog Prince does the grocery shopping on Friday!  My husband is often the inspiration for the menu — I ask him what he wants to eat, and we go from there.

What is your favorite kind of food to make?

Oh, goodness.  What kind of food don’t I like to make — that’s a better question!  I love a good pie, but I haven’t mastered a good pie crust yet.  I have a date with my grandmother so she can teach me how she makes her amazing pie crust.

What is your favorite recipe posted on your blog?

My favorite recipe is a dessert – Dark Chocolate Raspberry Cake.  It’s easy to make and delicious enough to impress.  Frog Prince and I often make a half recipe for just the two of us and bake it in a pie plate!  It would be a perfect dessert for a special occasion – say, Valentine’s Day.

 
Will you show us your kitchen?  What is your favorite thing about your kitchen?  

Frog Prince and I just moved into our first home in August, and we’ve been busy renovating the kitchen!  The big official reveal is coming this month, but here’s a sneak peak at our space:

I love our new counter tops, the counter space {a huge improvement from our tiny apartment kitchen!}, and our large sink; but I love the cabinet my father built for us the most.  This cabinet has three huge drawer and two side compartments that have pull out shelves with all our flour and baking supplies.  I can’t share any more at this point, but, stop by later this month for our kitchen tour!

 

What is your best tip for getting dinner on the table?

There are two “rules” in our house that make dinner time less stressful at our house: (1) Everyone cooks, and (2) Menu Planning.  When we plan our menu, we first look at our weeknights to determine which nights we need a fast meal.  Those nights we rely on the crockpot, or a recipe that can be made in 30-minutes or less.  Of course, plans can change during the day, and we have a list of stand-by recipes, like rice cooker mac and cheese with broccoli, that will get us fed in a pinch.

Secondly, everyone helps in the kitchen.  Frog Prince and I enjoy connecting in the kitchen; making dinner together while talking about the day.  It’s amazing how fast things come together if one of us shreds cheese while the other chops veggies.  We like the idea of the kitchen being central in our home and by having each of us take a role in dinner we can enjoy family time together as well as make the meal prep less stressful and time consuming.

Where do most of your recipes come from?  (Family favorites, you make them up, magazines, cookbooks, etc.)

Most of my recipes come from other bloggers and family members.  I love recipes that are tried and true.  While gourmet cooking may look beautiful and inciting, I’d rather try a recipe that I know has family approval.  I love recipes that use ingredients I have on hand, and don’t send me to the store hunting for something obscure I won’t ever use again.  Those are the recipes I often highlight on my blog on Fridays for Friday Favorites.  Don’t be surprised if you see your own recipe there; I love cooking up recipes from bloggers like you!

What would you eat as your last supper?

I’d love to have all of my favorite foods:  a good slice of my mom’s whole wheat bread, oats of some sort (maybe granola, or in a dessert), cherries, blueberries, zucchini, cheese, and ice cream.  What would matter most, is that the meal was prepared by and shared with family and friends.

What is your favorite part about blogging?

What I love most about blogging is the ability to connect with people who have similar passions.  I love how good food and recipes can spark a friendship and share the joy of cooking among people.  It brightens my day when someone shares a story about a recipe or food with me.  And, I love hearing stories of how people are finding joy in their kitchen too.

What kind of camera/lens/equipment do you use?
I don’t use anything fancy to take photos.  Right now I’m shooting with a Sony Cybershot or a Cannon PowerShot A95.  Both are old cameras, and I’m pretty confident I’ve ruined their ability to take a descent distance shot since I constantly take close up photos!  I love that they are easy to use, and small — makes them easy to have with me in the kitchen.
Any suggestions or hints to have great food photos?

I’m certainly not qualified to give photography advice.  I will say that I’ve learned a few things over the past two years: (1) don’t be afraid to move food out of the kitchen to find great lighting, (2) get close to your food for a photo – your family and friend’s won’t mind, (3) use the macro feature on your camera, and (4) don’t use a flash.

 

What kind of food did you eat growing up?  Do you cook the same kinds of things today?

I come from two farming families.  Both my parents grew up on farms, so I have great home-cooked foods in my food history.  I recently learned that my grandmother made 8 loaves of bread twice each week!  My mom, too, is an amazing cook; especially when it comes to breads and baked goods.  We ate a lot of easy skillet meals, hotdishes, and soups, which I still love today.  I make many of the recipes we ate growing up, especially desserts and breads.  I’ve tweaked them a bit, recently making my favorite broccoli hotdish using leftover homemade wild rice stuffing rather than boxed stuffing, and my mom’s BBQ turkey and vegetable meatloaf with less packaged ingredients, but there’s nothing like eating a favorite childhood recipe for dinner.

What was the first dish you ever cooked?

I’m sure it was making Christmas goodies with my mom!  Or, maybe Chex Mix?  But, the first recipe I made from scratch completely on my own was an apple pie. I was so proud I even called my grandmother.

 

When you really want to cheat, what do you eat?

When I don’t want to cook something from scratch, the easiest things for me to cheat on are Cheez-its.  Not that it’s hard to make my own… but sometimes that red box looks so tempting it’s hard to resist.  My husband cheats on pretzels.  I have yet to find a good recipe for hard pretzels.

 

If you could travel anywhere in the world – just for the food – where would you go?

Traveling with food allergies is hard; but there are two places I’d love to go.  First, I’d love to visit Italy!!  Second, I’d go back in time and have dinner with my great Aunt Annie.

What is the best thing you’ve ever eaten?  The strangest?

Some of the best food I ate was when I traveled to Ecuador and the Galapagos Islands.  Fresh fruits (especially Babaco!) and fresh squeezed juices top my list.  That’s also where I’ve encountered the strangest food — roasted Guinea pig.  I couldn’t eat it.

What are your favorite blogs to read?

I have a whole list of my favorites — but, right now I’m really enjoying What Megan’s Making.

Take us through a typical day of eating in your house.

Breakfast is usually waffles, pancakes, baked oatmeal, muffins or granola.  If we have a weekend, I’ll make something special like homemade bagels (prepped the night before), cinnamon rolls, or breakfast pizza.  We pack our lunches the night before, so there’s no stress about making those in the morning.  I love lunches because they are usually leftovers from dinner the night before.  If we don’t have leftovers, sandwiches and soup (we usually always have some in the freezer) are our go-to lunch.  Dinners are our favorite meal to cook together; and then we often make a dessert too.  Weekends are a bit more relaxed and we make snacks for the week – granola bars, dried fruit, bread, crackers, etc., can all be found in our kitchen on most weekends.  We eat lots of snacks too, a handful of dried cherries, craisins or apples; cheese and crackers, or yogurt are yummy eats around here.

What is your best tip for saving money on groceries?

Plan your menu around what’s on sale.  We have standard go-to recipes when asparagus is one sale, for example.  If asparagus isn’t on sale, and we’ve dwindled our healthy stockpile, then we wait.  There’s something exciting about eating foods when they are in season; they are special and we can enjoy them a plenty when they are in their prime and less expensive.

 

What is your best tip to becoming a successful blogger?

Let God show you what your passions are, and then use them to the best of your ability.  Write from your heart and share you experiences with others.  Then, visit other blogs, comment and respond to comments; building a relationship with your readers.  Let God do the rest!

————————–

Thank you so much for chatting with us SnoWhite!!  If you want to see more of Finding Joy in My Kitchen, here is where you can find her:

Website:  Finding Joy in My Kitchen
Facebook:  Finding Joy in My Kitchen
Twitter:  @joyinmykitchen

&nbsp

0 Flares Twitter 0 Facebook 0 Pin It Share 0 Google+ 0 Email -- Filament.io 0 Flares ×
twitter fb fb fb

7 Responses to Finding Joy in My Kitchen {Blogger Spotlight}

  1. Becky at VintageMixer says:

    dark chocolate raspberry cake sounds delicious!

    And I love your blogger interviews!

  2. Ann says:

    Very interesting. I want to make that Dark Chocolate Raspberry Cake. Looks great.

  3. Joanne says:

    You always feature some of my favorite bloggers! SnoWhite is one of the most prolific gals I know! Great interview.

  4. Monet says:

    I can't wait to explore her blog! You always bring such great people to this series…I'm looking forward to getting to know her more. Her dark chocolate raspberry cake looks amazing. Thank you for sharing this sweetness! I hope you have a wonderful end of your week.

  5. Martha A. says:

    Can't wait to see the rest of your kitchen….I want to re-do mine sometime….but not enough money right now.

  6. msiagal1usa says:

    Welcome to blogging—looking forward to seeing your pics and recipes. And of cos' your rest of your kitchen. I love large kitchen with lots of cabinets and gadgets. Kitchen is just an inspirational place to be!

  7. SnoWhite says:

    Thanks for your feedback; it was an honor to be featured today.

    Hope you enjoy the cake — it's delicious.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>