Name: Jacqueline (Jax) Delisle
Blog name: Cooking With Jax
Where were you born? Hinton, Alberta (though I grew up in Brule, Alberta)
Where are you living now? Hinton, Alberta
Why did you start your blog?
Everyone was always asking me for my recipes, so I created a blog as a way to document them not only for myself, but also as way to streamline the process of sharing them with friends and family.
How did you decide on your blog name?
My full name is Jacqueline, though my brother has always called me “Jax”. Naming the blog “Cooking With Jax” felt like I was sharing a more personal side of myself. Now, everyone knows me as Jax, because of the blog.
What do you blog about?
My blog focuses on original, from scratch recipes. Every recipe you see on my blog is created from real, wholesome ingredients. I want people to think of my recipes like the kind their Grandmothers would make, and be comforted by them.
Is your blog your business, your hobby or something in between?
It started as a hobby, but quickly escalated into a business. While the majority of my income isn’t necessarily a direct part of the blog, the blog is a big reason why amazing opportunities keep on happening.
What post on your blog most encapsulates you and why?
I really love a good personal challenge, especially when cooking is involved. I was gifted with an old-fashioned pasta maker, and immediately made it my personal mission to master pasta. I now teach pasta classes, and this homemade pasta recipe has become one of my signature dishes.
Which post do you wish received more love and why?
This recipe for Single Serving Mac & Cheese Au Gratin. The recipe is really solid, and I was really proud of the impromptu photo I took of my husband holding a mugful. It’s one of my favourite recipes, and I was a little disappointed when it didn’t receive nearly as much love as I thought it would.
Which post’s success surprised you and why?
The very first blog post (apple pie breakfast) I ever posted went crazy viral on Christmas Eve the year I started my blog, amassing millions of views in a very short amount of time. It has had countless features and re-publications since, and every time I post it, it does extremely well. Some really big publications and celebrities have shared this recipe, and I’m constantly surprised when a new feature pops up on my radar. The post is over 6 years old, and it still brings in an insane amount of traffic.
What’s your biggest challenge as a blogger?
Not having enough hours in the day. I adore all of the experiences and opportunities that blogging has brought me, though I truly feel like there just isn’t enough time accomplish everything that I want to. There are so many cool things happening in the industry right now, and I want to experience more of them than time permits.
What is the biggest lesson you’ve learned as a blogger?
Always say yes to opportunities that make your heart beat a little fast, no matter how scary they might be. Some of the coolest life experiences I have ever had were simply because I took a leap of faith and believed in myself when it would have been a very easy choice not to.
Share a couple of your favourite food blogs to read. Why do you like them? (include URLs).
I adore Bakeaholic Mama – Carrie and started blogging around the same time and we really connected. We’ve surprisingly never met in person, but I consider her one of my best blogging buddies, and her recipes are exactly the kind that I make in my own kitchen.
Karly from Buns in My Oven is just downright funny. The voice she uses on her blog matches my inner dialogue, and her writing is every bit as great as her recipes are.
Sugar Loves Spices is blog created by a wonderful couple from Edmonton, Loreto and Nicoletta. Edmonton is the closest city to my hometown and I travel there often, so we’ve met up a couple of times over fine Edmonton pastries and some great local farmer’s markets. I adore their style of cooking and food photography, and following their blog makes me feel closer to my Italian heritage.
Favourite food - care to share a recipe or a restaurant destination?
My Grandparent’s recipe for “Creamy Curried Chicken”. They came up with the recipe together during their early days of marriage and our whole family absolutely adores it. It’s both easy and inexpensive to make, and comes in at the top of the list of most nostalgic foods from my childhood. They make it for me whenever I visit them at their home on Vancouver Island, or whens it’s a special occasion, like someone's birthday, we can always expect creamy curried chicken on the menu. It’s become my family’s signature recipe.
What are you working on next for your blog?
I have a summer kids camp coming up where we incorporate science, art, gardening, and cooking all in one. I hosted a similar kids camp last year, and it was so much fun I decided to make it a full 2 weeks this summer. I blog all of the recipe that we create at camp, print out recipe cards, and send a follow up e-mail with recipe links to all the parents. On the final day, the students will create a 100% from scratch meal to take home for their entire family to enjoy, using the new skills they acquired in camp. We will also be helping out at a community kitchen for a day where we make a hearty, from scratch meal that we will serve to members of our community that are in need of a warm meal.
What else should we know about you that may or not be in your “About Me” page?
My friends joke that I am a “Jax of all trades”, but it’s really the best way to describe me. In addition to blogging, I work as the Executive Director at a local charity that focuses on music and art, I write arts and culture for my local newspaper, I co-own a social media marketing company with a friend, and my husband and I own a residential electrical company. I love every single minute of it – being bored just isn’t an option for me. I thrive on busy.
What makes your blog unique?
The focus of my blog is homemade, from scratch recipes. Instead of using canned cream soup in a recipe, I show people how to make a cream sauce starting with a roux instead. My blog has a really vintage, old-fashioned feeling to it, and I think that’s unique in today’s culture of over indulgence of processed foods.
What part of the FBC site do you find most useful?
It’s impossible to choose just one part. I really love all of the blogger resources that are available on the website. The “Where to Eat this Weekend” section has been incredibly useful to me when traveling to new cities. I really like the “Members Only Opportunities” as well, I think it’s amazing that Food Bloggers of Canada works so hard at connecting bloggers and brands.
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