The second of those popular blogs - Cafe Delites

"Life is too short for bland and boring. It’s about finding balance and falling in love with food all over again!" Karina

Continuing with my exploration of the 'top' Australian food blogs here is the second - Cafe Delites and no there is no accent on the e in Café, which is a bit odd.


It's another site which just offers recipes. Well I guess that's not quite fair as one of the categories she has is a weekly meal plan in which recipes are gathered together for each day's meal, presumably from the archive of recipes on the site.


The lady behind the site is called Karina, and has recovered from Hodgkinson's Lymphoma, is married with children and has written a book about her experiences, including a difficult childhood. So all power to her for getting on with her life and making a success of her site. And she does seem to be successful. Her Facebook page seems to have 5,342,411 followers, which is huge. And there are oodles of advertisements all over every page which I find very annoying - at the side, here and there between slabs of text, so that you are never quite sure whether you are reading text or an ad. But I can't blame her for that. It's a way of making money, and even the best websites in the world do it.

She also won a competition run by the Australia's Best Recipes website. It was the Home Cook Hero - Classic Australian competition and she won it with a recipe for Lamington french toast with raspberry jam syrup. A somewhat decadent though most likely delicious dish, which goes to show that this website is not into healthy for healthy's sake.


I don't know how often a new recipe is posted, but most of the recipes do seem to be hers, though I did find one that was credited to somebody else - well from another website in fact. And I just found another, so they are probably scattered throughout. But I don't know how many would be like that. 'Today's' featured recipe is for Easy coconut shrimp curry which she describes as being "inspired by our Tikka masala". I also do not know who is included in 'our' as there is no acknowledgement anywhere of anyone else being involved, other than the lady who took the photographs of Karina. I think Karina takes the food photographs herself though. After all this website apparently began as an Instagram account back in 2014, so she must be into photographing food. Usefully above and below the recipe there are pictures of other shrimp recipes, and also recipes for naan and garlic butter rice. And before you get to the recipe proper you go through summaries, with photographs, of the various stages and processes. So pretty easy.


"Keep it simple. My husband’s best advice with everything in life…but especially food. And it works. Over complicating foods with too many spices and flavour combinations (which I have done), can ruin it just as quickly, even if your intentions are good."


Interestingly she also has videos - I don't know whether every recipe has one, but they don't seem to be attached to the actual recipe. For example whilst scrolling through this particular recipe you will come across a video for ' World's best fudgiest brownies' but nowhere do you come across a video of the dish you are making. Very odd. I suppose it's a way of getting you to explore the website and the other recipes, but not very helpful if you are attempting a particular dish.


If you are looking for something specific there is a Search facility and you can also browse the various, but few categories that she has.


I suppose I am not being fair to these websites, in that I don't try their recipes. Well I wouldn't be able to try today's shrimp recipe because of David's aversion to shrimps but still I could try something. Interesting, by the way, that she refers to them as shrimps and not prawns. I guess it's a sort of cookbook online, with borrowings - always acknowledged - from here and there, and there's nothing wrong with that. And they all do seem to be achievable. A Coles Magazine kind of touch. Well it's what we are all looking for these days I guess. Here is a quote from Jane Grigson, who was talking back in the 1980s when there was not quite the same number of inspirational sources of recipes - or of ingredients either.


"We have enough masterpieces, what we need is a better standard of ordinariness." Jane Grigson


And I am not really being derogatory when I apply this to this website - and the magazines, and cookbooks we can access today. After all, in my youth the home cook would never have dared attempt Coconut shrimp curry and would certainly not have considered Tikka to be an everyday dish, available in a prepackaged form in your local supermarket. It's the difference between MasterChef and Jamie Oliver making do in his own kitchen isn't it? Maybe I'll have a look in a day or so and see if the featured recipe is something I could attempt.


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