Getting to Know Dara the Cookin Canuck
Upon landing on Dara’s blog, Cookin’ Canuck, two things happened simultaneously…I felt welcomed, I had to interview this gal! You know what ya’ll? I love it that god gifted me with a woman’s intuition, and a true soft-spot for foodies. Read on and make sure to “land” on her blog too!
Who is your favorite chef, celebrity or otherwise? What is it about that person that inspires you the most?
If I had to narrow it down, I would pick two chefs from my hometown of Vancouver, Canada. Vikram Vij and Hidekazu Tojo are masters of Indian and Japanese cuisine, respectively, and eating at their restaurants is an event – one that I wish I could do over and over again. They both came from humble beginnings and worked hard to get to where they are today. And their food…oh, their food. Quite simply, it is out of this world.
If you had the power to banish one food from the earth what would it be? Why?
This is an easy one. Custard. And pudding. Every since I was a kid, the consistency alone has been enough to send a chill up my spine. My family things I’m a little nutty because I’ll happily consume platefuls of raw fish, but can’t stand the thought of a simple bowl of pudding.
What online foodie community events or groups do you participate in and support? Why are they important to you?
One of the most surprising things about starting a blog was the immediate benefit of being a part of a very welcoming community. This summer I am hosting 6-week online grilling event with one of my blogging friends, Marla of Family Fresh Cooking. While we are giving away some fantastic prizes, the main purpose of the event is to allow people to share their recipes and to introduce our readers to other blogs. We are finishing up week 3 of the event and it has been a lot of fun to see people get so excited about sharing their recipes.
What are the three things that make your food blog different from others?
When I first started visiting other food blogs, I was amazed at the sheer volume of them on the internet. As much as I would like to visit each and every one of them, there are simply not enough hours in the day. So, I started to ask myself, “What makes me bookmark a site and look forward to visiting regularly?” The answer was three-fold: innovative recipes that actually work, attractive photos and entertaining writing. While I still have work to do in each of those areas, I have really tried to make my blog a place that people look forward to visiting. Also, I am very excited about a new series of how-to tutorials that I started a couple of months ago. My hope is that we can all learn to cook well together, starting with the most fundamental skills.
Talk to us about the things you do to encourage your boys to get involved in food and cooking.
My boys, particularly my 7-year old, enjoy food as much as I do. They often ask what they can do to help me with the meal. So, we pull out a cutting board and small knife, and they get to work peeling carrots and chopping vegetables. I believe that if kids help to prepare the meal, even in a small way, they take pride in that and are more willing to eat the food on their plates because they helped to create it.
Dara Michalski is the recipe developer, writer and photographer behind the blog, Cookin’ Canuck. She readily admits that she dreams about recipes and has several cooking magazines stashed by her bed at all times.
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