If there is one community I am incredibly proud to be a part of, it is the food blogging community. I can’t remember the last time I came across such a supportive and welcoming group of people. So willing to share, to teach, to befriend. And the exceptional thing is, most have never even met face-to-face. Their friendships have developed through their blogs: over comments on photography, over a review of a favorite childhood restaurant, over a shared dislike of gruyere cheese, over a shared love of pie.
If you haven’t heard, a fellow food blogger, Jennifer Perillo, lost her husband last month. He died suddenly from a heart attack, leaving behind Jennie and their two young daughters.
What followed Michael’s sudden and tragic death, however, was something remarkable to witness. To celebrate the life of her husband, Jennie asked us to bake a creamy peanut butter pie, Mikey’s favorite, and share it with someone we love. Immediately, responses began flooding in, and #apieformikey was a trending topic on Twitter before most of those pies even made it out of the oven.
Over the last few weeks, thousands of bloggers have come together to bake and share their peanut butter pies. People from all over the world have been affected by Mikey’s death and Jennie’s story. I’ve seen all renditions of the recipe, from Peanut Butter Banana Cream Pie Parfaits, to Gluten-Free Chocolate Tofu Peanut Butter Pie, and baked by bloggers from around the globe, from Spain to Germany.
To help the Perillo family, Shauna Ahern of Gluten-Free Girl and the Chef has set up #afundforjennie through . They are trying to raise funds through several online auctions hosted by individual bloggers. 100% of the proceeds with go to the family, and there have already been several donations
Being a cookbook publisher, we’ve been living in the traditional, printed world for 30-some years now. It’s all the publishing industry has known up until very recently. But we have been so inspired by what we’ve seen in this world—the blogging world. And there’s not much of a question when it comes to who the tightest-knit bloggers are. Food bloggers not only share their love of food, both writing about it and experiencing it, they also share their love of living everyday, with each other, in a way that few other blog communities do.
That’s why we look forward to conferences such as the International Food Blogger Conference. It’s a chance to connect with a community that’s at once broad yet personal, vibrant in its outreach and its ability to connect people on a one-to-one level. I revel in those moments, and I look forward to doing it with others this weekend.
-Adam Salomone, Harvard Common Press