The crazy year 2020 is almost over and I think it is about time to review it. With this blog post I am taking part in the “food blog review 2020” (in German) from the blog Feed me up before you go-go and below I am going to answer the eight questions for my blog.
#1 What was your most popular recipe in 2020?
The most popular recipe was definitely these brownie cookies. It has been the most clicked, most rated (more than 300 reviews!), and most baked recipe of my blog. I do understand why my readers love it so much, I love it, too. As a chocoholic, 2020 required more chocolate than ever. If you can get chocolate in cookie form, what is not there to like? I have also made a version with sourdough in case you started your sourdough in 2020 and don’t know what to do with the discards. Brownie cookies with sourdough are a wonderful variation, or you can try these vegan brownies with sourdough.
Melt-in-your-mouth brownie cookies
I have also made a video of these brownie cookies:
#2 Which three blog posts did you personally find most important?
Number 1 is definitely the blog post about my favorite café in Munich called “Wir machen Cupcakes”. The first lockdown in spring was already hard on it, now I just hope it will survive the second lockdown. If you wonder whether your café will make it or not, contact the owner and ask how you can support. Many offer vouchers, delivery, anything to keep them going. You will be surprised to see how grateful owners are if you just show your concern and offer some help.
Number 2 is this recipe for German spice cookies or Pfeffernüsse, which was passed down from my grandma. She was an amazing baker. She never seemed to measure anything, everything was by touch and feel, yet everything always tasted amazing. Unfortunately, she passed away recently, but I had the honor of receiving a handwritten recipe booklet from her. I hold it very dear. Obviously the recipes are rather brief, many times you will not find any measurements or oven temperatures. I have gotten used to that. Regardless, I have managed to make her apple strudel, gingerbread for the Christmas tree, and said Pfeffernüsse from this precious recipe book.
Number 3 is this blog post about how to ship a cookie box successfully, which contains lots of tips and tricks and tons of cookie recipes. I have been shipping cookie boxes for many years already, I have even shipped fancy cakes such as Sachertorte and also shipped internationally. I don’t think I have ever had as much traffic people googling for tips and tricks. But I cannot blame you, during these weird times we do need to remind our loved ones that we are thinking about them even if we cannot see them. And mind you, cookies can be sent all year round, you don’t need to do it only during the season. Nothing is more exciting than a cookie box full of homemade cookies during a time when you least expect it.
#3 Which three blogs inspired you the most?
Volker from volkermampft (in German) invented a wonderful blogging event, in which you get to choose a recipe from another food blogger. It is so much fun looking at other blogs and deciding for a recipe. I often have a hard time since there are so many wonderful recipes out there. I started with the classic red riding hood cake from Brot und Rosen, followed by plum dumplings with semolina from Esskalation, after that quince paste from Blog Corum and most recently parfait with cranberry sauce from Barbaras Spielwiese. I hope that Volker keeps organizing these events for a long time, I am looking forward to getting to know further wonderful blogs.
Then I need to mention Zorra from the blog Kochtopf (in German), she has been organizing blog events of various kinds for many years. I have done a few and have to say, wow, she is my personal hero for doing this all the time. I especially like the baking together she organizes every month. We all bake the same recipe on the same day and share our results later on. If I took part in it, you will find a lot of the posts in my breakfast and bread category.
And lastly, I need to mention one inspiring article, which is from Mara about getting ready for her wedding (in German) Mara’s blog Life is full of goodies (in German) is amazing. That particular article is long, but it is funny and I was truly impressed by the amount of time and effort she put into her wedding cake, all of the decorations, and the entire set-up. Seriously, I have no idea how she did it. Maybe I was so touched by it because I hope to bake two wedding cakes in 2021. My own wedding took place more than ten years ago and if I had only made half of what she did, I would have probably died of stress. I really don’t know how she did it. If you don’t speak German, just check out the photos. Everything, the wedding cake, the centerpieces, everything was made by her. It is incredible.
#4 Which recipe you published in 2020 you have made yourself most often and why?
This is the runner-up, it is my beloved chocolate raspberry cake. As written before, I needed a lot of chocolate in 2020. I personally love the combination of raspberries with chocolate, so I decided to invent a recipe with precisely this combination. Apparently you love it, too. At least I got a huge crowd baking this cake, so many readers clicked on the recipe and have left reviews and comments, it is wonderful. As soon as I became aware that this was such a beloved recipe, I had to make sure I got it all right and had to bake it several times. I also decided to make a video and was requested to make this flavor combination for a cake I sold.
#5 Which cooking or blogging problem did you encounter in 2020 and how did you tackle it?
If you are running a blog, believe me, there are many problems, many challenges, so many things to learn and to tackle. I personally find it very hard to narrow it down to only one. One of the things I have been dreaming of doing is offering baking classes. First our move from the north of Germany to the south got in the way and then the Corona virus hit us. For that reason I didn’t tackle it for a long time. At least I managed to offer one virtual baking class in December 2020 with about 14 participants, some of them even including their children. We made Christmas cookies and it was so much fun. I am a teacher at heart and I do enjoy teaching. I also realized that I have been baking for so long, I forgot the feeling of being a beginner. It was so cool to see what people were struggling with and helping them with tips and tricks of the trade. I hope I can tackle this even more in 2021.
#6 What was your biggest discovery this year, which recipe, technique, food stuff, flavor, etc. opened a completely new world to you?
I don’t think that you always discover new worlds, especially not in 2020 where most of us stayed at home most of the time. I also didn’t follow the Dalgona coffee fad or the banana bread fad. I did try them, but somehow got tired rather quickly and decided not to publish any recipe as I was not fully happy. But despite the fact that we all stayed at home and didn’t have as much exposure to new stuff, I did get into something very new. I started shooting recipe videos. For that reason I established a new category with all recipe videos on my blog. For sure this category is going to grow over time. Making a video is a super exciting yet also tiring process. I have to admit, when I filmed above chocolate raspberry cake, it took an entire day with many breaks in between. It is amazing how much time goes into filming and also the editting later on.
#7 What was the best or funniest search term that somebody used to find your blog?
This is a very recent one from December and said “Christmas cookies for women”. This got me thinking how Christmas cookies for women differ from Christmas cookies for guys. If you are looking for anything that may solve problems of women, I would definitely mention these brownie cookies, chocolate is perfect for PMSing or other gloomy happenings. This is coming from a chocoholic.
#8 What do you wish for your blog in 2021?
I do feel that fewer people comment on my blog than before. Somehow people do not mind leaving comments on Pinterest or Instagram, but I don’t know why they have such a hard time commenting on blogs. I can only encourage you to do so, many other readers will benefit from it, problems you may encounter, may be more common than you think or maybe you will help to improve the recipe. Only if you are willing to share how it went, there is the chance to improve and learn.
GabiWednesday December 30th, 2020 at 09:26 AM
Deine Blogwünsche für 2021 kann ich nur unterstreichen – es ist sooo schade, dass sich das alles in die Social Media Kanäle zerfasert 🙁
JennyWednesday December 30th, 2020 at 09:37 AM
Ja, oder? Mal schauen wie sich das weiter entwickelt…
JulianeWednesday December 30th, 2020 at 08:25 PM
Ein toller Rückblick! Und Deine Brownie-Cookies sehen ja einfach umwerfend aus, die kommen gleich mal auf meine Nachbackliste. Den Beitrag übers Verpacken und Verschicken von Plätzchen finde ich auch super – über so ein liebevoll und sorgfältig gepacktes Päckchen freut sich sicherlich jede*r! 🙂
Ich wünsche Dir einen guten Rutsch ins neue Jahr!
Viele Grüße und “schöner Tag noch!”
JennyWednesday December 30th, 2020 at 09:00 PM
Danke dir, liebe Juliane! Wünsche ich dir auch! Und falls du die Cookies nachbäckst, melde dich gern!
KatrinThursday December 31st, 2020 at 02:40 PM
Die Schoko-Himbeertorte sieht auch so fantastisch aus, verdient auf einem der vorderen Plätze. Es ist wirklich interessant durch die Foodblogbilanzen zu stöbern… Ich wünsche dir einen guten Rutsch ins neue Jahr.
Liebe Grüße, Katrin
JennyThursday December 31st, 2020 at 02:43 PM
Danke, Katrin. Solltest du sie nachbacken, berichte gerne!
SabrinaThursday December 31st, 2020 at 03:22 PM
Ich liebe Pfeffernüsse – den Beitrag sollte ich mir schon mal fürs nächste Jahr merken. Und die Torte sieht grandios aus, aber ich fürchte, dafür fehlt mir die Geduld.
Hab einen guten Start ins neue Jahr!
JennyThursday December 31st, 2020 at 03:54 PM
Liebe Sabrina, das klingt sehr gut, ich finde ja man kann Pfeffernüsse immer essen, aber wie dem auch sei, ich hoffe auch, dass ihr/du einen guten Start habt.
UlrikeThursday December 31st, 2020 at 05:36 PM
Die Pizza mit Mozzarella hat uns heute ein feines Silvesteressen bereitet, im nächsten Jahr werde ich sie im Rahmen der Aktion “Koch mein Rezept” verbloggen.
Ich wünsche euch ein wunderbares Jahr 2021
JennyThursday December 31st, 2020 at 05:40 PM
Juchhei, das freut mich, bin gespannt!
Isabelle/das ÜberSee-MädchenThursday December 31st, 2020 at 05:57 PM
Schoko + Himbeer klingt aber auch unschlagbar, liebe Jenny. Ich finde das mit den Kommentaren auch schade, aber ich erwische mich selbst dabei, mir kaum Zeit dafür zu nehmen. Umso schöner, wenn man durch so eine Aktion mal wieder ins Stöbern kommt. Diese Brownie-Cookies sehen übrigens wirklich köstlich aus! Und Rezeptvideos sind eine meiner Baustellen… Viele Grüße vom Bodensee und guten Rutsch!
PS: Mein Bananenbrot kann ich dir sehr empfehlen, liebe ich seit Jahren 😉
JennyThursday December 31st, 2020 at 08:30 PM
Liebe Isabelle, dir auch einen guten Rutsch!
Dani LeberkasThursday December 31st, 2020 at 08:20 PM
Danke für die Erinnerung an die Quittenpaste und einen guten Rutsch in ein hoffentlich besseres 2021!
JennyThursday December 31st, 2020 at 08:30 PM
DanielaFriday January 1st, 2021 at 12:55 PM
Cookies mit Sauerteig?! Das klingt ja echt spannend. Vielen Dank für den Einblick in dein Foodblogger-Jahr.
Ein frohes Neues und viele Grüße,
JennyFriday January 1st, 2021 at 01:47 PM
Danke Dani, genau, mit Sauerteig. Dir auch einen guten Start ins Jahr 2021!
BarbaraFriday January 1st, 2021 at 08:43 PM
danke für die schöne Jahresbilanz – die gefällt mir ausgesprochen gut. Und ja, mir ging’s auch so, dieses Jahr stieg der Schokoladenumsatz kräftig an. Schokolade ist ja auch bekannt dafür, glücklich zu machen und das haben wir dieses Jahr alle gebraucht. Deine Himbeer-Schoko-Torte schaue ich mir gleich an; die habe ich verpasst. Einen Devil’s Food Cake mit Himbeeren und Chili habe ich mal gemacht, mit ganz viel Schokolade.
Das mit den Kommentaren und Fragen und Antworten fällt mir auch auf, früher hat das auch auf Blogs geklappt. Keine Ahnung, warum und wann das verloren ging. Lass’ uns einfach wieder starten!!! 🙂
JennyFriday January 1st, 2021 at 08:44 PM
Danke Barbara, guter Plan 🙂
Tom von Mehr GenussSunday January 3rd, 2021 at 07:04 PM
Brownie-Cookies? Zu verlockend… Das darf ich meiner Freundin nicht erzählen… Ansonsten darf ich jeden Sonntag nur noch backen 😉 …
Frohes neues und beste Grüße
JennySunday January 3rd, 2021 at 07:06 PM
Lieber Tom, da bist du nicht der einzige, ich backe sie auch ständig 😉