Unless you count the time I pretended to be busy with a fax machine behind Jeremy Kyle in his Central News reporting days, I’ve never been on TV. Coming soon however, on a download device near you, will be dozens of food bloggers, including myself, confessing their darkest culinary horrors on film. We’re talking serious bones in cupboards. Only it’s more spatchcock than Hitchcock.
These Kitchen Confidential interviews were the parting shot of the inaugural Food Blogger Connect held in Levant Lebanese restaurant, London on Saturday 28th November. Bribed with goodie bags put together by our wonderful hostess Bethany Kehdy of Dirty Kitchen Secrets bursting with olives, cheese and pannetone, we had to get past a film crew on the way out and they wanted to know all about us. We were softened up with easy stuff first. Why were we food bloggers? Tell us about your blog. Who were our favourite bloggers? What was our favourite food? Then came the killer question: What is yourdirty kitchen secret?
Worryingly enough, none of us seemed to struggle to come out with anything. I’ll let you wait until the short film is available to hear what my skeleton was but let me tease you with this: one of us cooks Pot Noodles in their underwear – no hang on, that doesn’t sound right – one of us eats Pot Noodles and the other one cooks in their underwear. This is how rumours start. I should shut up and just tell you about the day.
As I looked around the restaurant I had the strangest feeling that I kept recognising lots of people yet I’d never met any of them before. Everyone was checking out name badges before exclaiming “Oh hello! It’s you!” We had some time, but oh so short, to mingle and chat, eat our food before we sat down to the presentations.
Other people have taken far better pictures of the table laiden with food. Mine either looked really dark or horribly bleached out with the flash. Here though is a semi-presentable shot of the delicious Lebanese goodies we were treated to; felafel, roasted courgettes, fresh pittas, garlicky hummus, pastries filled with minced lamb, fatoosh salad. Everything was very tasty and lots of us went up for seconds.
After our food I did a scout round all the tables to take pictures of as many people as I could so you can all see who was there. Apologies to anyone who I missed.
After our food it was time for getting down to business and listening to talks on different aspects of food blogging. Jeanne from “Cook Sister” spoke to us about the BloggerAid Cook Book, writing style alongside Jamie of “Life’s a Feast” and also copyright issues.
Kang “London Eater” gave two talks on the more technical side of photography and social media. He was apparently nervous but this didn’t show and he was very entertaining.
Jamie “Life’s a Feast” talking about writing style and where she finds inspiration.
It was all very good stuff and there was lots of scribbling in notebooks going on. We were starting to run over our time slot with the restaurant so there were some hurried hip hip hoorays for Bethany and the team behind her who had pulled the day together; Jeanne, Jamie, Meeta, Mowie, Hilda and Bethany’s husband Chris who did all the filming. Apologies if I’ve missed anyone out.
This was a thoroughly enjoyable event and within the hour people were tweeting “When’s the next one?”
Next morning, a smaller group of us went to Marylebone Farmers Market and then for lunch at The Natural Kitchen. Sadly it poured with rain but this didn’t dampen our appetite to chat and we were in the cafe for over two hours still talking about food, blogs, more food, more blog stuff. I haven’t had so much fun in ages and came away with lots of new friends who were now “real” and not just 140 character cyber chums.
I will leave you now with a final photo emailed to me by Sunita. I didn’t manage to take any photos of myself on Saturday and on Sunday I only took my titchy camera which promptly spat it’s battery out. So here below I can prove I was there!
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