There are a few web sites out there that I find completely indispensable, and the first of those are actually two sites: www.foodgawker.com and www.tastespotting.com. I’ve told so many people about these sites that I thought it was time that I mentioned them here. Tastespotting was the first of its kind, but for some reason was disabled for a few months and as an homage to its popularity, FoodGawker was born. At some point, Tastespotting fixed whatever it was that temporarily sidelined them and re-launched its site, and the two have become the definitive “food porn” sites ever since.
Besides offering a fantastic “visual potluck” for its readers, I’ve discovered that these sites are more than just a pretty face. In order to be included in these pages, you have to be pretty talented at two things: cooking and photography. And as I’ve used these sites, I’ve learned that if you care enough about your cooking to take exceptionally high-quality images of the food as it is being cooked, then you have just pre-qualified yourself as a worthy chef whose recipes deserve attention.
Both sites are incredibly easy to use. In the mood for a chicken dish, but don’t know what to make? Search “chicken,” and let your eyes take over. Craving something with lime chipotle flavor? Put those two words in quotes and voila – a cornucopia of choices. Planning a party and don’t know what kind of menu to serve? Look up the word “party,” and allow yourself to get lost in the menu planning. Vegan, like my BFF’s hubby? Yup – just plug in the word “vegan,” and marvel at the gorgeous and obviously delicious meals that come to light.
In finding recipes for special dietary considerations, remember this: where there’s one, more are likely to follow. Each and every picture in these sites link to that blogger’s own site, and often it is not the first of its kind. So if you do find a great vegan recipe, live on that bloggers site for some time. You may have meal ideas for a month just from one good hit. And the same holds true for flavor. If you happen to love their recipes – even the carnivorous ones – bookmark those sites and visit often.
Your eyes … and your stomach … will thank you!