Meet the Judges: Jennifer Farley of Savory Simple

We continue our “Meet the Judges” series with Jennifer Farley, culinary school graduate and blogger extraordinaire! Jennifer’s evocative food writing has been featured on such high-profile websites as Williams-Sonoma and Washington Eats. Here, she shares a little more about her passion as well as some great insights into turning recipes into an artform!

Jennifer Farley, Author of Savory Simple

Jennifer Farley of Savory Simple

Maddie: Tell us a little about yourself and your blog!
Jennifer: I’ve always loved food, but it wasn’t until my mid-20s that I developed a passion for cooking.  Several years ago I decided to change careers and attend culinary school. In 2010 I graduated from L’Academie de Cuisine in Gaithersburg, MD.  I’ve been cooking and baking professionally ever since! I currently work as a cooking instructor and social media marketer.  Savory Simple was originally created to document my time in school, but has evolved into a creative outlet for recipe development and food photography.


Maddie: What’s your typical breakfast?
Jennifer: I have a green smoothie every morning, typically consisting of almond milk, a banana, an apple, almond butter, flax seed and spinach.  It’s filling, delicious, and energizing.

Maddie: What key elements do you look for in a good recipe?

Jennifer: If someone takes the time to include cook time and yield information, I’m more likely to try the recipe.  That indicates attention to detail and testing.  I also really like a quality photo that shows me what the finished product will look like.

Maddie: Speaking of photos, what role do you think visuals play in recipes?
Jennifer: If I find a recipe online or in a cookbook, I want to see what it looks like and I want the photo to make me hungry.  Sharp, bright and colorful photos sell the food.  We eat with our eyes first.

Maddie: In food writing, there’s a fine balance between information and anecdotes. What are your tips for including personal touches without overwhelming the content?
Jennifer: Personally, I don’t read long anecdotes or stories that don’t relate to the recipe itself.  I follow a lot of blogs.  I don’t mind a paragraph or two, but I prefer not to have to skim over irrelevant photos and anecdotes in order to get to the recipe.  I think it’s similar to the philosophy behind food photography.  Highlight the food and focus on the important details.  On my own site I often include a paragraph about current life events or details about the inspiration behind the recipe, but that’s usually it.  I know a lot of people love reading blogs for the stories, though, so it’s a matter of preference.

Maddie: Finally, what are you most looking forward to in this contest?
Jennifer: Finding new and delicious recipes to try!

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