Hey there and welcome to my food blog! I’m Taylor – a fun-loving, 20-something girl about town who’s been living in downtown Toronto on Bloor Street for over six years. My blog aims to help other busy people like me eat healthier, more homemade foods – with the occasional treat of course!
I initially started this blog as a new way to enjoy my love of food and capture some of the easy and fun meals I was making as a busy full-time graduate student and freelance writer. When I moved out from my parents’ home at 18, I immediately realized how tricky it was to buy groceries as a single person on a budget and create delicious meals that were both fast and healthy.
Like most university students, I gained more than the “Freshman 15” my first couple years away from home. I mean, who wouldn’t go crazy with so many different options to eat out in downtown Toronto?! I was like a kid in a candy store, eating my way through the city!
I’d get Thai takeout one night in between classes, then I would head on over to my favourite burger joint a couple days later. Whether it was comfort food on nights away from my family that first year of school, or celebrations and nights out with new friends at trendy restaurants, I ate out a whole heck of a lot and it really made me miss cooking – for both fun and health.
I had always grown up around good home cooking and knew how to eat healthy, but I found it so difficult to make single servings for myself, or use leftovers in creative ways or plan out a whole week’s worth of meals based around my busy school and work schedules. Isn’t that the case these days – we’re all passionate foodies with little time to actually do any cooking?
Well, I think I missed cooking so much because it’s always been in my blood – I’d just like to think it’s gotten a bit more sophisticated as we move through each generation. My great grandmother, for instance, raised four children in the Great Depression, and used to create a hearty soup for the family from a five-cent dog bone.
Her daughter, my grandmother, wasn’t a great cook (in fact, her idea of spaghetti sauce was tomato soup!) but she taught me everything I need to know about baking, which sparked my interest in cooking. By the time I was a teenager, I was occasionally forcing my family to try new types of food. I can still remember the first thing I made on my own: a Kung Pao Shrimp recipe that I had cut out of the newspaper!
I’ve since become more adventurous in my cooking, and I think I have my love of dining out to thank for that. I became exposed to so many different types of cuisine in my first year of university, and now I’d like to think I use my, ahem, “sophisticated” (LOL) palate to try different spins on traditional dishes and find new ways to elevate my favourites. Ultimately though, my goal has been to cut down on the amount of processed food I used to eat and find the cosmopolitan side of eating in. It’s possible, believe me!
Not only have I experimented more than ever with food through developing recipes for my blog, I also put together recipe videos once a week so you can see step-by-step how I make my recipes!
Here are just a few of my most favourite recipes on the blog:
- Bang Bang Shrimp Bibimbap Noodle Bowls
- Tahini Coconut Energy Bites
- Open-Faced Steak Caprese Sandwiches
- Salted Iced Coconut Milk Caramel Macchiatos
- Calamari Takeout Boxes
- Homemade Mint Chocolate Fudgsicles
- Spicy Shrimp Sushi Stacks
- Jalapeno Popper Burgers
- Mini Grilled Cheese Appetizers
If you’re wondering what I’m up to nowadays, I’m still a freelance writer and now photographer with a Master’s degree in Journalism from Ryerson University – after almost seven years of school I finally graduated!!!
I’m also lucky enough to be able to work on this blog full time! Yes, I literally cook and photograph food as my day job. I can’t believe this is my life either sometimes. 😉 For more of a look into my life as a full-time blogger, you can check out my income reports – they detail what I have learned through building the blog from scratch and they show my budding income as a freelancer and business owner!
Though I’ve had different relationships with food over the years, it’s becoming more important to me than ever to eat what’s seasonally available in Canada, and I try to incorporate as many plant-based options as the star of each of my meals. I eat local when my budget allows it, and it’s important to me that what I eat and feature on my blog is wholesome, seasonal and mostly homemade.
When you have a busy lifestyle, it can be hard to commit to whatever diet or food fad is out there, so I say it’s time to forget about the complications of cooking. We’re only human, and food should be about enjoyment and social connection.
Rather than commit to a special diet or restrict ourselves, I think it’s time for all of us to just get back in the kitchen, and start cooking again! Find your groove and your style, what you like and dislike. Be adventurous, or be simple. But most of all, be authentic to what your own food philosophy is and what your time constraints are.
I’ll be along for the ride! <3
*Headshots courtesy Kennedy Robinson