I’ve made SO many food friends through my blog that I thought it would be a good idea to introduce you to some of the people I really admire. I know, there are only so many Fridays but I plan on living a long time, so hopefully I can interview you too!
My first interview is with Marnely Rodriguez-Murray – the newly married and fantastically happy @Nella22. Why Marnely? For me, it’s an honor to interview her first because when I went to Twitter for the first time, she was the first person to be truly kind to me.
Not that everyone isn’t nice, Marnely went out of her way to make me feel welcome and worthy of talking to. Maybe your first days on your blog or Twitter or Facebook saw floods of people knocking on your door but that’s not how it was for me – so I was determined to do the hard yards and earn my spot.
How did I do that? I watched what Marnely did and that’s what I did. Simple eh?
Not only was she kind to me on Twitter but I found myself spending more and more time on her blog and drooling over the fantastic food she creates. Her recipes inspire me to tweak for new flavors and textures in my own cooking.
Many of us are pretty good with a knife and a spatula but Marnely graduated from the Culinary Institute of New York and I love that place. The restaurants at the school show off the sort of food graduating chefs can prepare. You eat and then you go into that gorgeous courtyard and walk around. slowly. You’re too full to move at a fast pace. That’s the sort of food Marnely creates.
She’s not only got the education but she’s also worked some cool jobs for a food lover. She was an overnight bread baker in Colorado, a chocolate maker in Virginia (swoon) and a pastry cook on Martha’s Vineyard.
Marnely is very proud of her Caribbean heritage, growing up in Santo Domingo in the Dominican Republic, she loves the cuisine of the Caribbean. She says she’s on “an endless search for Caribbean flavors, new adventures and gastronomic inspiration” which she can share through her food writing and recipe development.
I want to know more about the food she loved as a child. Food memories are very important to me. Like Marnely, I have moved far away from where I grew up and special foods trigger happy thoughts of years gone by.
Her favorite food is a banana and her food addiction is coffee. I suspect that now that she’s married, she’s definitely hooked on love.
Please visit her blog, Cooking With Books, for great recipes, cooking tips, reviews and you’ll find inspiration and a lovely new friend. How she has the time for all she gets done, I honestly don’t know.
These are a few of my favorite recipes you’ll find on her blog. When I saw that cranberry swirl muffin I instantly started to salivate. Imagine that muffin coming up to your lips along with a cup of Marnely’s favorite coffee? Insanely delicious, I tell you!
There are heaps of food bloggers around the world and while most of them are wonderful writers, photographers and cooks, Marnely puts the personal touch on everything she does. She’s one of those people who always make the time to do or say the right thing. She’s also made over 59,000, yes that’s fifty nine thousand, tweets. Talk about keeping up with the food community! I keep telling myself she started first.
And now for a recipe from the divine Miss Nelly. I chose these nutty Mexican Wedding Cookies because I think they sound (and look) wonderful.
- ¾ cup flour + 1 tablespoon
- ¼ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp ground vanilla powder
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 2 tbsp almond flour
- 1 tbsp cornstarch
- ¼ cup butter, softened
- ¼ cup Artisana Raw Pecan Butter
- Preheat oven to 350F.
- Mix all the dry ingredients.
- Add butter and pecan butter and knead in until dough comes together (crumbly dough, but when squeezed in your palm, it stays formed)
- Rest in fridge for an hour and roll into small balls. Place on lined baking sheet and bake until dried. (Or press into a rounded teaspoon and slide out! You'll have flat bottomed cookies!)
- Allow to cool for 10-15 minutes and then roll in powdered sugar. Joe the Baker suggested adding spices such as cinnamon to your powdered sugar for a more adult taste!
- Enjoy, at a Mexican wedding or on a random weekday!