Well, it’s finally come. A Crust Eaten is one year old today. This past year has been so much fun: writing again for the first time in a long time, sharing my kitchen concoctions, which would have previously been condemned to a nameless grave in the depths of our bellies, and discovering so many talented bloggers across the world who have inspired and emboldened me more than I can say.
Keep it local
Surprisingly, or maybe not, the most popular posts on A Crust Eaten over the past year have been those on local Folkestone businesses which thrills me beyond belief. I did have a quiet hope when I started this blog that, in a way, it might become a foodie’s guide to Kent, featuring all the great places that make this county so fantastic.
I have been one of the first in line to tell you all about new businesses opening as Folkestone flourishes: from Manifest Coffee’s unique café culture, to Kipp’s new take on the micropub, to Copper and Spices’ fantastic modern Indian fusion, all of which have taken Folkestone by storm.
It’s all about the food
As far as recipes go, the most popular ones are a mixture of the obvious and the surprising. One of my earliest posts, John Legend’s macaroni and cheese, probably gets a good handful of search engine hits a week − people just love mac n’ cheese.
Next on the popularity charts, though, are the beetroot and halloumi sliders which is more of a shocker. Delicious as they were − and they really were − beetroot is not at the top of most people’s list of favorite foods. I suppose, though, as people think more about what they eat and about balanced diets and vegetarian alternatives, things like beetroot sliders, and in fact all of the Meatless Monday posts, have been particularly relevant and hopefully have inspired people to try something a bit outside their comfort zone.
Beyond Meatless Mondays and bright purple food, the Jamie Oliver recipes really get people Googling and stopping by the blog which is great: Cider-braised Pork Belly and Stilton and Cauliflower Soup have had especially steady interest, but then Mr Oliver can usually be counted on for good recipes.
Finding inspiration in others
Having a blog has made me more aware of all the great blogs there are out there. Food is something that brings us all together, whether around a table or hovering over our computer screens trying to keep up with the trends and being inspired by words and photos from around the world. I’ve discovered Emily at Five and Spice, who just had a baby but is still cranking out gorgeous dishes that are just begging to be cooked, Darya at Tortore whose diverse dishes and genuine writing style just draw you in, Amanda at What’s Cooking whose warmth and tempting, thoughtful recipes make me stop by her blog again and again. These and a multitude of other blogs have helped me along the way and opened my eyes to what makes a successful food blog and what makes good food.
I’ve found that blogging, blogging well, is much harder than I thought. It takes more time than I expected and has been much more rewarding than I ever imagined. The past year has been a learning curve and I expect the next year to be no different, except that I might get it right more frequently than I get it wrong. Thanks to all of you loyal readers and one-time looky Lous who have made me feel like there’s someone out there reading and cooking along with me.