The blogging world can be a little female-heavy, especially where Jewish food blogs are concerned. Not that that’s a bad thing, being a female Jewish food blogger myself. But it was a lovely change of pace to chat with Yosef Silver a few weeks ago of This American Bite, who definitely has some unique perspectives on cooking and blogging. I learned his home is largely gluten free and dairy free: I could never survive.
Stay tuned for Yosef’s recipe for eggplant dip tomorrow, and in the meantime enjoy learning more about this daddy food blogger based out of Kansas City.
I noticed your blog describes your style as “whole food cooking.” How do you define “whole food?”
We eat real food. We don’t believe in “kid food” or processed food. We are very particular about what our kids will eat and we don’t want to buy too many items that come from a factory. We are also gluten free and dairy free out in our home. My wife, who is a nutritionist, has really influenced the healthy eating side of me. It amazes me how much people don’t want to cook. Food isn’t just about the food for me: it’s also about family dinner, togetherness. Wholesomeness.
When I was waiting to receive my green card and wasn’t working, I was cooking a lot. And at some point I wanted a way to record what I was making, and what was good. I began writing for myself, and people enjoyed it. I am not sure at what point it really grew. I don’t write for an audience, although I am conscience what my readers enjoy because I love sharing.If I am not enjoying what I am making, then the quality of my food suffers.
You are originally from England – how does that influence your cooking?
I was raised by mom and it was just the two of us. No matter how busy my mom was, there was always a home-cooked meal. We always had dinner together no matter what was going on. And we continue that tradition for our kids.
We also love having guests at the house. It’s our normal. When we don’t have guests for Shabbat dinner, our kids are like, “um what is going on?” Shabbat for me is very much about community and enjoying a special meal together. If I am cooking for you, it’s a statement of our relationship. If I am angry with someone, I have a hard time cooking for them.
Is that how your wife knows you are mad at her?
Ha, she will eat anyway.
I noticed you recently collaborated on a recipe with Melinda from KitchenTested and used Marmite. I always thought that was an Australian thing?
Marmite = British. Vegemite = Australian
Marmite gives dishes a real beefy, stocky flavor. For example, I put it in my chicken soup and my split pea soup.
When my mom comes from Israel she brings me like 10 of them. And so I gave one to Melinda and we decided to collaborate on a dish when I visited NY in February.
We were brainstorming what we were going to do with it. And when we came up with the aioli, I wasn’t sure it was going to work. But the result, Scotch Eggs with Honey Marmite Aioli, was delicious. For me it reminds me of my childhood. It’s the kind of thing that people love or hate, there is no middle ground.
What advice would you give to someone else who wants to blog?
Just do it. Don’t worry about your domain, or what it looks like. Just start writing. Even if you write in a google doc and start sending out to your friends for the first couple of months, just start doing it. And if your content and recipes are awesome, then it won’t matter what it’s called.
What’s on the horizon for This American bite and Yosef?
I ask myself this all the time. I would love to write a book.
I love the connections I am making through writing about food, like Melinda of KitchenTested and Whitney of Jewhungry. I love the online marketing field, and I love food. I love anything that combines both. Not sure where it will take met yet.
Pronounced: shuh-BAHT or shah-BAHT, Origin: Hebrew, the Sabbath, from sundown Friday to sundown Saturday.