If I’m going to all this trouble to write a blog, clearly I’m obsessed with baking. On my lunch break, if I’m eating at my desk, I’m usually reading the articles in the Dining & Wine section of the New York Times, or checking out other food blogs (two of my favorites right now are Baking For the Office and Baked Bree). When I’m out walking the dog, I’m checking my Twitter feed to see what Bon Appetit, Christopher Kimball (America’s Test Kitchen), or Martha Stewart (among others) might be tweeting about. Or, I might be using other apps to catch up on the latest food news while waiting at the doctor’s office. In short, if I’m not baking or writing about baking, I’m usually reading about it (except when playing Angry Birds, of course).
I’ve scoured the iTunes App Store and have downloaded a lot of food related apps. While some of them have been total disappointments, here are two of my favorites:
Hands down, this is the best app I have on my devices. Updated with new issues about every two weeks, Gourmet Live shows what can be done with today’s app/publishing technology. After the print version folded in late 2009, they reinvented themselves with a superb iPhone and iPad app that brings you interesting stories and recipes with each new issue. Other magazines should take note–they didn’t just “recreate” an e-version of their magazine, they took a different approach with navigation and structure.
You earn “rewards” (special recipe collections) by reading the articles. You can preview them for 7 days. If you like a recipe collection, you can buy it for $0.99 from within the app. An additional option is “SuperFavorites,” where for a yearly fee of $9.99 you can save anything to your favorites, even recipes from within reward collections. The only downside is that if you have two or more devices (i.e., iPhone and iPad), you have to pay for SuperFavorites twice. Bummer. I have SuperFavorites on my iPad because it’s easier to cook the recipes from the iPad’s larger screen.
No Apple device? Not to worry – you can read most of the app content at their blog site.
Martha Stewart Cookies
Like anything Martha Stewart does, the app is visually beautiful (a plus for design-minded folks like me). There is a varied selection of recipes that come with the app itself ($4.99) and you can buy add-on recipe packs for $0.99 each. This past Christmas there was a free pack sponsored by McCormick spices (thanks!).
Standard features include marking recipes as “favorites” or adding notes to them. There is also a wealth of additional content within the app:
In addition to videos, there are baking tips, an equipment glossary and packaging ideas (with links to the MSL website for free templates).
I’ll share more of my favorite apps with you in future posts. In the meantime, leave a comment and let me know what apps (or websites) you visit for baking inspiration!
Peace and Good Baking!