December 13, 2019
In food blogging, people taking pictures of food is a common sight. So common, in fact, that we’ve stopped noticing the person sitting in a cafe clicking a platter of sautéed mushrooms from all angles instead of relishing it.
After all, a pretty food photo gets you a modicum of likes on Instagram. A beautiful one increases the count, and a truly delicious one gets you shares. The more appealing they are, the better the engagement.
It is safe to say social media salivates over all-things-food with the pictures being the most important. But is that the entire firmament of food blogging? Incredible snaps?
We’re betting every food blogger is screaming no in Darth Vader’s voice.
The images have to be just good enough to lure the visitor into reading the text. It is the text that must be interesting enough to try the recipe. Because it’s when they try your recipe (or are tempted to do so), that readers become loyal followers.
The Tricks On How To Write Food Content Well
In ancient times of dial-up, all your needed was a grand recipe, and your food blog took off. Then came broadband (and more prevalent usage of the internet), and it blew the blogging game out of the park. Along with the great recipe, readers wanted photographs that told a mouth-watering narrative.
Today, food blogging demands so much more:
- A recipe with all-that-jazz (you’re on your own for this one)
- A slow dancing melody of photos (we’ll talk about it in another post)
- Content that makes the stomach rumble with hunger (read on, to know how)
Begin With Reading
Like an overbaked cake, inspiration tends to run dry quickly when writing about food. If you want a well-articulated food blog, you need to read. A novel on cuisines, a post by a fellow blogger, or even the works of Anthony Bourdain, anything works.
The trick is to read regularly, and you’ll learn a lot about how to draft blogs better.
Then Move To Titles
If you want a follower to do more than hit like on your Instagram post and actually read the blog (or the caption), you need a title that hooks them in. Something like “It Takes 10 Minutes To Make This Mulled Apple Cider” accomplishes the task. How? Because the current generation is lazy AF. Anything that can be made in a jiffy is a big seller!
Next, Work On Description
The golden rule to writing about food is “be good at describing things.” Instead of telling the reader, show them. You have to make them feel as if they were sitting next to you on the table or working beside you in the kitchen.
How do you bring the person inside the scene? You become their eyes, ears, and mouth!
Telling: Next, add butter to the batter.
Showing: Right after the third whip, the batter took a paste-like consistency, and that’s when I mixed a pat of butter, about a teaspoon worth.
Also, Avoid The Word “Tasty”
Anyone, we literally mean anyone, can say the food was tasty. It takes a true epicurean to explain the goodness of it. After the first few blogs, if every dish is “tasty” or “delicious,” then consider yourself in troubled waters.
The idea is to keep your blog free of “tasty,” and you’ll already be a better writer. Instead, try appetizing, scrumptious, luscious, piquant.
Do Learn More Adjectives
Your palette of adjectives has to be as complex as your palette of flavours. Don’t stick to using adjectives that describe the taste. Express everything you feel when using an ingredient or sampling a recipe. This includes the look, the fragrance, and the texture.
Example: a spice can be brash and bossy. It can be an enlivener of the recipe with a hot aroma that takes you by surprise.
Of Course, Be More Curious
Facts make everything more interesting, and food blogs are no different. Be curious beyond the plate. Think:
- How was the dish made?
- Where are the roots of the dish?
- What are the ingredients?
- Where do they come from?
They open a whole new outlook and encourage you to write more competently. Besides, if you, as a gastronome, are unaware of something, then the reader will be too, and they’ll thank you for the information.
Or Tell A Story
Nothing hooks in a reader like information wrapped into a story. Find a tale connected to the café, drink, ingredient, or recipe you are blogging about. A real memory serves best because everyone has similar stories related to food.
Example: “I grew up eating my mom’s carrot cakes…hurriedly made with whole wheat flour, sugar or jaggery (whatever caught her fancy) …”
Travel Or Collaborate With A Travel Blogger
Travel? Really? That’s the advice we give on how to write food content well?
With utmost gravitas, yes.
When you cook or eat, you do so within your social and cultural bubble. Therefore, when you write about it, you do so from within those boundaries. Travelling not only helps you explore the cuisine, but it also affords you a broader perspective, which benefits your writing.
Example: A wanderer would know that for a country, so in love with mustard sauce, the US rarely uses any mustard seeds in their grub.
Can’t travel or won’t travel? Then get in touch with a travel blogger and talk about all things nourishing. Ask for their input on a dish or drink and then use it in your blog!
Finally, Find Your Food Blogging Voice
The last bit of advice on writing kickass content on food is to find your style and voice. Then hone it like a chopping knife’s edge.
It takes time and experiment. But you will get there. And, once you do, standing out from the hoi polloi is as easy as boiling water.