Name: Julie Kinch and Debbie Fraser
Blog name: Cooks with Cocktails
Where were you born? Julie was born in Chilliwack, BC and Debbie was born in Red Deer, Alberta
Where are you living now? Julie lives in Abbotsford and Debbie lives in Chilliwack. We live about 20 mins apart.
Why did you start your blog?
There are two kinds of people in this world. Those who think about food all the time and those who do not. We are the former. We think about food constantly and we are passionate about cooking with real food. We started Cooks with Cocktails as an outlet for our passion. Doing what we love, cooking and creating food and cocktails, makes us happy.
How did you decide on your blog name?
It is insane how difficult this decision was! We thought about a name for at least 6 months! Then one day, we were cooking dinner together, and we were drinking cocktails, as we do, and it was like a lightbulb went on. We’re “Cooks with Cocktails”.
What do you blog about?
We post food recipes and a cocktail recipe every Friday. This year we have decided to focus in a little on casual entertaining. Our goal is to give you food, cocktail and menu ideas for any kind of entertaining you might be doing, making entertaining easy, fun, and of course help you to impress the crap out of your guests.
What post on your blog most encapsulates you?
Our Sausage, Spinach, and Wine Fetuccine really shows who we are as cooks. This recipe was literally thrown together without a recipe and turned out amazing. It was also made entirely from scratch and it goes fantastic with wine 😉
Grilled Lobster with Lemon and Herb Butter also gives an indication of who we are. We found this lobster at Pike Place Market on a trip to Seattle and we had to have it. We love to travel, find awesome local ingredients and create something beautiful with them.
Which post do you wish received more love and why?
Hot Onion and Gruyere Dip is our all-time favorite guilty pleasure appetizer. Its creamy and cheezy with the amazing flavors of caramelized onions and prosciutto. For some reason its never really done that great. People don’t know what they are missing out on, let me tell ya!
Another is our Wild Asparagus Tart. It is one of our favorite appetizers! Its easy to make, and everyone that tries it can’t stop talking about how good it is, but its never really quite got the recognition it deserves.
Which post’s success surprised you and why?
The Ultimate Crispy Baked Onion Rings. This post has been a hit on pinterest since we first posted it and has continued to be one of our most viewed and pinned posts. For good reason! These onion rings are awesome! But we really didn’t expect them to be such a success.
Hot Buttered Rum. It was our first viral post and I don’t think the photographs are particularly awesome, but people on pinterest seemed to love it and we had almost 100,000 visits to our blog in just a few days. And this was back when we were getting around 15,000 a month so it was a BIG deal. I can’t blame them though, this is an awesome recipe and one of our favorite hot cocktails to sip on.
What’s your biggest challenge as a blogger?
Finding time to do everything! I work a full time job, Debbie does the books for their company, my boyfriend and I have renovated 2 houses since this blog started, Debbie and I do agility with our puppies, and then we work 30 – 40 hours a week on the blog as well. If only we could add a couple extra hours on to each day…
Share a couple of your favourite food blogs to read. Why do you like them?
Both Debbie and I read SO many blogs! I have a special fondness for baking blogs as I love to bake, but I just don’t do it too much so I fit in my jeans! A couple of our favorite blogs are:
Half Baked Harvest - I love Tieghan's photography and her recipes always have great flavor combinations!
Butter and Brioche - Thaila makes the most beautiful baked creations. I don’t bake too much, but when I do, her blog is always my first stop to find something amazing.
Favourite food - care to share a recipe or a restaurant destination?
Our first ever post was a remake from a restaurant named The Cactus Club. Butternut Squash Ravioli with Prawns, Fried Sage, and Truffle Butter Sauce. We love it and have it every time we go to the Cactus Club, but now that we have figured out the recipe we can make it at home too!
What are you working on next for your blog?
We just got an awesome redesign done for our blog. We are so excited to see how our new design helps us connect with our readers. This year we are also working on improving the SEO of our existing blog posts and updating some old crappy pictures of some of our most popular posts. The Wild Asparagus Tart and the Butternut Squash Ravioli will be two of the posts that get updated photos.
What else should we know about you that may or not be in your “About Me” page?
We are mother and daughter but we are also best friends. We share a love of food and cooking but we also do a multitude of other things together. We each have a dog that we are in love with and our dogs are also sisters! We have been doing agility with them for just over a year now and have done one fun competition so far. Our puppies are doing awesome! In the summer our families go camping and quadding together pretty much every second weekend. In the winter we go snowmobiling with our men (who are obsessed with it). We both run or workout almost daily(especially with our puppies) and we ran a half marathon in 2014. We both like to garden, growing herbs, vegetables, and flowers. We’re really into nutrition even though we love to indulge once in a while. There seems like a million things I am forgetting, but I think you get the picture 🙂
What makes your blog unique?
This is a tough question because we post recipes like everyone else, but I think what makes us unique, or what will make us unique as we progress, is the entertaining focus we are beginning to curate on our blog. We also post a cocktail recipe every Friday and I haven’t seen any other blogs that post cocktails regularly.
What part of the FBC site do you find most useful?
Follow Cooks With Cocktails on Social Media.