Oh the Controversy!

by Cate on October 20, 2005

Who’da thunk it? Controversy in the food blogging world? Well, seems there is.

Julie Powell gained a little notoriety when she started a Julie/Julia food blog a few years ago. She started it to get herself out of a rut. She was a temping secretary and a little bit down on herself, so she came up with the challenge of making every single recipe in Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking in her small NYC apartment, with one year to do it.

She blogged about it during the process, but stopped when Julia Child passed away. Her “challenge” sparked interest in a book deal, and the book, Julie and Julia: 365 Days, 524 Recipes, 1 Tiny Apartment came out recently, netting her a nice six-figure advance with the promise of a second book to follow.

I’ll admit it, I bought the book, especially because being a fellow food blogger, I was interested in what she had to say. That was before the controversy. It seems Julie has forgotten her roots, and so quickly at that.

She’s given a few recent interviews that have left food bloggers with a bad taste in their mouth, no pun intended. To quote Ms. Powell:

I’m going to get in a lot of trouble, but the truth is, I actually find most food blogs really boring. I try to look at other people’s blogs and they have pretty pictures and they’re so proud — but really, I just don’t care. I don’t know anything about that person, and I don’t know why it’s important to them. Food in itself becomes just a mass of prejudices and snobbery and everyone looks like a prat when they write about food.

Ouch. As one of the beginning food bloggers, she is slamming a genre that she really helped to create. She was on Martha Stewart this morning, and as I watched it tonight, after reading the recent quotes Julie has given, I found the whole thing bothersome and, quite frankly, disappointing. Not everybody remembers where they came from … just find it in really poor form and I’m certainly not alone. I’m going to stop now though, as I don’t want to give her any more publicity. ;)

No dinner report tonight. My parents came over to visit with Nicholas, and since I also had a computer guy coming to try to troubleshoot the dreaded DSL problems I’m still having, we opted for Chinese take-out.

I’ve put up some of the recipes from last night’s Supper Club on my side bar, and on the Supper Club web site as well, with the rest to follow tomorrow.

Until then… this “boring food blogger” is off to catch up on some Tivo.

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{ 14 comments… read them below or add one }

Erika October 20, 2005 at 2:30 am

That’s sad about Julie. She obviously doesn’t know what she’s missing by slamming the foodie blogs as we know it. I don’t think life would be the same if I didn’t get my daily dose of food blogging.

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vlb5757 October 20, 2005 at 2:31 am

I linked to Too Many Chefs to read all the comments about the Julie/Julia book. I wonder what Julia herself would say about all of this. I read every one of the posts and just have no desire to read Julie’s blog or purchase her book. The best way anyone can repay her not so nice comments about fellow food bloggers, is one-not to continue to discuss her and two-spend your hard earned cash on some other book.

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Sara October 20, 2005 at 2:40 am

As interested in her book as I once was, I too have opted not to read or write about her. While my blog may not be award-winning or terribly impressive, it makes me happy, and I’d like to think that the people who read it on a somewhat regular basis enjoy it too. If she doesn’t care about food bloggers, too bad for her. She is blowing off the one group that would actually be interested in her book.

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Joe October 20, 2005 at 3:20 am

I saw her on Martha too today. *rolls eyes* .. thats all I have to say about her.. =)

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linsleyd October 20, 2005 at 1:56 pm

I caught her on Martha at lunch today and I’m very disappointed in her comments especially since I followed her blog religiously.
So quickly they forget…;0)

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Alicat October 20, 2005 at 3:28 pm

Listen up everyone:

I can tell you what she said about this:

On her new blog she said in the comments section that THE REPORTERS are at fault FOR WHAT SHE SAID.

So either they supposedly skewed what she said, or took it out of context. Either way, I say BULLSHIT JULIE.

She knew exactly what she was saying, and did it anyways.

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it's only fuel October 20, 2005 at 5:00 pm

Well, one point to remember is that nobody loves a baby as much as it’s mom….that being said….I’m sure not ALL of you food bloggers care as much about other blogs as you do your own. Right?

I think she was wrong for what she said, but I can certainly understand if she was just being honest. It doesn’t make her words any less hurtful, just seen in a different light.

It’s not going to keep me from blogging on my lame little food blog though! I’ll probably pass on her book and blog though. Party solidarity and all:D

KT
http://www.ghettocracklins.blogspot.com

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Gia-Gina October 20, 2005 at 5:22 pm

I am so upset she made it to Martha Stewart, what a mistake. I wish she would not get anymore positive publicity.

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adam October 20, 2005 at 9:43 pm

I believe that there is some validity in her comments, except that she made them in such a global sense, it can’t possibly apply to the whole food blogging world. Personally, I think there are a lot of snobbish food sites out there, but there’s also a bunch of good stuff. It’s the same way with cookbooks. There are a lot of cookbooks out there, but many of them, while may be well produced and pretty, just aren’t pratical.

I had to look up the word “prat.” Wow, I”m really offended. No one has EVER called me an ass before. :)

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WhiteTrashBBQ October 21, 2005 at 12:56 am

Its ashame that she’s taking to trahing us food bloggers. We’ll see what happens to her once her intial publicity dies down. It sounds to me that she’s a one hit wonder.

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Jennifer October 21, 2005 at 3:13 am

Her 15 minutes are probably almost over and she’s just trying to stretch them out as much as she can. :)

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Sadaf Trimarchi October 21, 2005 at 3:36 pm

I began reading her blog near the tail end of her quest, and I enjoyed it. I think I’ll still get her book because in my opinion she writes well.

I’m going to give her the benefit of the doubt about her comments because I know personally how easy it is to have your statements skewed in print. You never know what angle the writer is going for unless they are upfront, and that rarely happens. And for all we know maybe her comments were twisted to generate some artificial drama or controversy.

Just my two cents.

S

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Anonymous October 23, 2005 at 12:39 am

One great Food-related blog is more of an online magazine:

superchefblog by Juliette Rossant.

Of course, it does not blog food recipes or photos but follows top chefs in terms of business and media.

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Anonymous March 3, 2007 at 8:51 am

How is Julie forgetting her roots? Her original food blog was a really interesting read. I’d say she’s in another league from the people who write about just what they eat. I found the personality in her blog to be compelling.

I’d say that people who take a comment like that so personally are a tad defensive and perhaps know deep down that they’re not really all that interesting. The truth hurts, no?

That said, there are other interesting food blogs out there. I know mine isn’t one of them, though.

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