Alida Ryder’s journey from blog to book
Describe yourself in one sentence.
I’m a 6ft1″ mom, wife and food-obsessive who laughs at dirty jokes and spends too much money on shoes. Oh, I also love a good G&T.
Tell us a little about how your blog came about.
I started my blog in 2009 after being a stay-at-home-mom for a year to twins Abigail and Aidan. I was driving my husband insane because I was bored and he suggested I channel my love of food into a food blog. I didn’t even know what a blog was but decided to start one and slowly but surely found that even though I had been a good cook my whole life, I have a much bigger passion for it than I initially thought. I decided to just blog about what I served my family every night and I soon gained a loyal following. In 2010 I won the SA Blog Awards for Best Food blog and Best New Blog and that catapulted me into this exciting industry.
Tell us a little about your book.
My book is based on my blog so it’s what I call a ‘general’ cookbook. It covers many cuisines and everything from pasta to baked goods. I wanted the book to truly show who I am as a cook. I don’t prefer one cuisine over another and I truly put a lot of love and care into what I cook for my family. Just like my blog, all of the dishes were tried on my friends and family. I was very fortunate that Penguin wanted me to be 100% creatively involved in my book so I did all the photography and styling (with some help from my husband, Chris).
What are the 3 most popular recipes from your Simply Delicious blog?
1. Banana cream pie
Crisp pie shell, creamy custard-like filling and lots of fresh bananas. Topped with whipped cream and chocolate shavings. This recipe has been pinned over 26 000 times. Give this recipe a try.
2. Bacon mielie bread
Really, not much needs to be said for this. Bacon IN mielie bread? Yes please! Pinned over 30 000 times, here’s how to make it.
3. My ultimate BLT
This is my absolute favourite sandwich at the moment and I don’t even like BLTs. Toasted sourdough topped with a smoky, home-made aioli, crispy bacon, slow-roasted tomatoes and iceberg lettuce. What’s not to love? Here’s the recipe.
About the book, Simple & Delicious
Alida Ryder’s new book, Simple & Delicious, is full of recipes that, as a busy mom, she cooks regularly. She makes even relatively complicated dishes easy and simple to prepare with recipes for quick weeknight dinners as well as more elaborate dinner-party meals.