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Erin's interview

Interview by Lydia Interview by Lydia

We interviewed Erin!

Visit the blog: The Spiffy Cookie.

See profile page and recipes

"I feel like my entire life has revolved around food."

Hello Erin, so tell us...

When did you begin your blog, and what inspired you to start it?

I started my blog in November of 2010 after being an avid food blog reader. I am a graduate student working on my PhD in a microbiology lab and my labmates had been suggesting I start my own for many months. I finally caved once I realized how much easier it would make sharing recipes I had made with family and friends who requested the recipes. As a bonus, it turned out to be a lot of fun.

How many hours per week do you spend on your blog?

It is hard to estimate the time I spend on my blog as it is sporadic throughout the day. I check and respond to e-mail, post on Twitter/Facebook/G+/Pinterest, read and comment on other blogs, and edit pictures and posts whenever I have a spare moment in between my work in the lab. I do most of my cooking and recipe write ups on the weekends and then cook quicker prep recipes during the week. It takes a lot of time management skills to be in graduate school and have a blog!

Are you involved in the blogging community - how do you attract new readers?

Yes and I think it is necessary both to connect with other bloggers and to attract readers. But I don't feel like I actively do anything to specifically attract readers. I try to be true to myself, and post recipes that I think others would want to make and enjoy for themselves.

What is your earliest food memory?

I feel like my entire life has revolved around food. My earliest food memory is probably helping my dad make cookies. He had a recipe that made 12 dozen cookies and as a result used a huge bowl for all that dough. I always tried to stir it but being so young I was not very strong or effective.

Which of your recipes would you suggest to readers for a perfect meal?

While blogging, one of my favorite discoveries has been how to make lighter alfredo sauce. I have made several different variations but my favorite is the Guiltless Cajun Chicken Alfredo. It's creamy and tastes incredibly sinful, but there is no heavy cream! I also love the Chicken Pesto Lasagna Rolls. They are easy to prepare but look fancy and taste even better. However, the most popular recipe on my blog is the Cream Cheese Chicken Enchiladas.

If you could be a contestant or guest on any cooking show what show would you choose?

I think being a contestant would be too stressful. I would much rather be a judge so that I could eat all that good food! Or maybe just a guest on a cooking show or news station where I would know ahead of time what I would be preparing.

Is there any dish, ingredient or type of food you refuse to cook?

I really do not enjoy seafood. However I have cooked it once for someone else, and I prepared chicken for myself so I suppose there isn't anything I refuse to cook so long as I am able to find a dependable recipe!

Who are your culinary idols?

Honestly, I do not really have any popular culinary idol. However, I have always highly regarded my grandmother's ability to whip up a delicious meal out of seemingly random ingredients and leftovers. As a result, I am always striving to find new ways to use up leftovers in my own home.

What are your goals for your blog? Where would you like to see it in the next year? Five years?

I am continuously working on my photography skills and hope to continue to improve them. When it comes to recipes, to me the picture is as important as clear directions. I also would like to get better at food-scape layouts that I can manage with a busy schedule. In five years? I just hope to still be doing what I enjoy :-).

Thank you Erin for answering our questions and see you soon!
Published by Lydia - 07/25/2013

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