Chic Spotlight: Bryn Mooth, writes4food
Cincy Chic: What is writes4food about?
Bryn Mooth, Founder of writes4food:I share easy recipes inspired by local, seasonal ingredients, along with cooking tips and kitchen wisdom. My goal is to get people into the kitchen, to help them cook instinctively and without fuss and to prompt them to use whole ingredients from local farmers and producers.
Cincy Chic: When and how did you get started?
Mooth: I started the blog as a creative outlet in 2010. I was working in magazine publishing (for HOW, a multi-media brand of the local publisher, F+W), and was looking for a sideline project that would let me write for fun, not for work. I come from a long line of talented home cooks; my husband, Rob, and I love to cook, so cooking and recipes seemed a logical topic.
Cincy Chic: What inspired the blog?
Mooth: At the time, there wasn’t the proliferation of food blogs that you see now. (These days, of course, it seems like everyone’s a food blogger.) I loved the blogs Chocolate & Zucchini and 101 Cookbooks – both of which are published by writers in terrific food cities (Paris and San Francisco, respectively). I wanted to create something in that vein that focused on ingredients I could find here in Cincinnati.
Cincy Chic: What types of topics do you cover?
Mooth: I’m a compulsive farmers’ market shopper, so most of the recipes I share focus on local, seasonal ingredients. I don’t review restaurants. I don’t cover the local “foodie” scene. (I hate the word ‘foodie’!) In the summer, I write about things like corn and tomatoes. In the winter, I write about squash and roast chicken.
Cincy Chic: What makes writes4food unique?
Mooth: With so many food blogs out there, I think the one thing that distinguishes each one is the writer’s sensibility. writes4food isn’t complicated, it isn’t trendy, it isn’t gourmet. It’s all about fresh, local food, simply prepared.
Cincy Chic: How has the blog grown since you first started writing?
Mooth: Readership has grown, of course, and the library of recipes has grown. I went from an open-source WordPress theme to a custom-designed layout, so it’s much better looking than it was at the beginning. I guess the biggest change is in the photography – I have a much better camera that, without any input from me, manages to take much better food shots than the crummy point-and-shoot I used when I started. Not that the photography’s stellar (it’s not my strong suit), but it has grown up with the blog. And any changes in the blog’s content are prompted by whatever’s in season.
|Bryn Mooth, author of writes4food|
Cincy Chic: What do you love the most about blogging?
Mooth: From a personal perspective, I love that writes4food has evolved into my own personal recipe collection – it’s like a cookbook that lives online. (On a related note: I do have a real, ink-on-paper cookbook coming out in October: “The Findlay Market Cookbook.”) I refer to the recipes on writes4food myself, quite often.
From a broader perspective, I love the idea of encouraging readers to enjoy cooking – teaching them that it’s not hard to do, and that if they start with really great ingredients, they barely have to expend any effort to create a really delicious meal.
Cincy Chic: What’s been your favorite post so far?
Mooth: A series of posts, actually – called The Clara Project. Long story short: In 2012, I found a collection of vintage recipes at an antique shop in Milford. Many of the recipe cards were signed, Clara Shenefelt. I’m really inspired by old-fashioned recipes and my own family recipes, so I started sharing one of Clara’s recipes per week on my blog. Eventually (thanks to a feature in the Enquirer’s Wednesday food section in the summer of 2013), I learned who Clara was, and actually met her and her daughter. Clara was 98 when we met; she passed away earlier this year.
Cincy Chic: Is there anything new on the horizon for writes4food?
Mooth: Lately, I’ve been previewing a few recipes from “The Findlay Market Cookbook” – and will probably continue to write about that when the book is published in a few weeks.
Cincy Chic: Where can readers go to learn more and follow along?
Mooth: Find me at writes4food.com – and sign up to receive a newsletter when a new recipe is published.