Just A Recipe Blog Follow Up.. - Wolfie's Cooking Tales Blog at Allrecipes.com - 279757

Wolfie's Cooking Tales

Just a recipe blog follow up.. 
Jul. 17, 2012 1:47 pm 
Updated: Jul. 24, 2012 3:53 pm
Awhile back, I posted a blog about my disdain over rating recipes that were not really the recipe at all but actually the reviewers complete overhaul of the original recipe. Responses were both good and not so good, which is fine. If you blog, you can expect view points on all sides.. it is what makes us interesting after all.

Since then, I've spent a great deal of time 'chatting' with other AR folk and I have to say.. these are some of the nicest darn folks I've ever not met in person!  What is really interesting is the recipe rating issue seems to be a hot topic, even amongst friends. And while many people, who I do find very nice, strongly disagreed with my view point, I find as I read more and more reviews, there are plenty of people who find mass altering, then reviewing, maddening.  (And do please note.. I say MASS altering. I am not talking about the tweak for diet, Aunt Harriets tummy or lack of pickled ginger).  Here's an example I pulled from a recipe I was looking for lettuce wraps:

"Chef**** said he/she made some minor changes and then rated this recipe. I read 18 ingredient changes made. Minor? Honestly, this just makes me nuts. I have made this recipe and loved it, only change was to used fresh minced ginger, since like so many I did not have pickled ginger. This is in my stack of favorites. Thanks for the recipe without the 18 minor changes. Really!"

Interesting.  Is 18 changes too much to really rate the recipe? I don't know. I don't have that answer.  I read some reviews last night where one poster simply posted (in all caps)  DO NOT RATE A RECIPE YOU HAVE NOT TRIED. Because someone had. No joke.  The review right above it said (and I'm paraphrasing here) "What a stupid recipe. Not even worth my whisk".  Ouch.

When it gets right down to it, I think its not so much the altering or tweaking, etc.  I think its the spirit of the review.   You can hate something- and still be nice about it.  In the example I gave above, apparently Chef so and so must have had something not so nice to say about the recipe..even though it tasted the way it did due to THEIR alterations!

Anyway.. as someone said in my original blog, it is just food at the end of the day.  If you are going to review, even with all sorts of changes, at the very least.. make the review useful.  "What a stupid recipe?"  Well, if that is your review, then tell me WHY is it stupid? Did it make funny faces at you? Did it call you names? What?   There was one more that said "So bad, don't know where to start." And that was it.  What was bad? The typing? The timing? What?    At least tell me what you found wrong so I can learn- otherwise, whats the point? And if not to impart wisdom, why rate at all? Just some of Wolfie's musings and ponderings for the day...
Jul. 17, 2012 2:22 pm
Like I have said before, I would like to be able to comment and not rate a recipe, for these very reasons. When I see a review, where the reviewer is clearly rude and has not made the recipe, I report it to AR. They are usually really good at taking care of those reviews.
Jul. 17, 2012 2:26 pm
I know, Baking Nana. Maybe this is something you can share in Seattle? Or did you already go? I also read last night that some people 'troll' AR just looking to put down some nasty reviews. Why? Why would anyone want to do that? Crazy..
Jul. 17, 2012 2:33 pm
MrsWolfie - I have no idea what satisfaction the 'trolls' get from doing that or posting nasty comments on blogs. It is beyond me. Crazy indeed! As for Seattle - nope we have not gone yet, next week. I did share with AR my blog - all the comments and did a synopsis of the various ideas.
Jul. 17, 2012 2:38 pm
Awesome, have a wonderful trip! You'll be three hours from me.. we're north of Seattle in the Clark County area. Cannot WAIT to hear what you gleaned from the AR folks!
Jul. 17, 2012 3:02 pm
Well said MW! I do enjoy the tweaks and recommendations of most of the reviewers! My rule of thumb is to try the recipe as is... adjusting just the seasonings to our diet needs or taste preferences... but that is it! Have I ever made major changes to a recipe and reviewed it... no! There is an option to tweak and submit you're tweaked or revised recipe for others to be able to view and review!!! I wonder if those obnoxious reviewer ever do that? Thanks for just another point to ponder!
Jul. 17, 2012 3:06 pm
My guess, Terry, would be no. Someone who is willing to be that obnoxious probably does it for attention. What bothers me is it is at the expense of someone else's feelings.. and I don't like for folks to get hurt.
Jul. 17, 2012 3:17 pm
Just one word... Ditto!
Jul. 18, 2012 11:41 am
on the topic, catch my blog today 7/18 Wed. "Waste Not Want Not".
Jul. 18, 2012 1:19 pm
I will! Hi, Covergirl! :)
Jul. 18, 2012 1:46 pm
Sorry this has nothing to do with your blog but I saw your comment about pickled ginger. I am going to have to google what the difference is between pickled and preserved. I saw something somewhere that said you could buy fresh ginger, slice it and then cover it with vodka to preserve it for your Asian dishes. I did and it works great. Just thought I would share that with you.
Jul. 18, 2012 3:28 pm
Thanks, Cat! And once you are done pickling the ginger, you have a nice shot to enjoy before dinner! :) Let me know what you find about pickling vs preserving.
Jul. 18, 2012 3:34 pm
http://allrecipes.com/recipe/homemade-pickled-ginger-gari/ **** I needed it for something a while back and couldn't find it in my local store so I bought fresh and did this. It tastes just like what my favorite Japanese restaurant serves.
Jul. 18, 2012 4:20 pm
Thanks, BSM!!
Jul. 18, 2012 7:24 pm
Trust me, you do not want to drink the ginger vodka without some kind of mixer! I did find out about the pickled ginger and crystallized. I grow ginger so I should be able to have pink pickled ginger.
Jul. 19, 2012 12:08 am
How do you grow ginger? I would love to know how!
Jul. 19, 2012 6:02 am
Actually, MrsWolfie, I don't read every review. If there are several reviews, I look to see who has made the recipe in the last year, because I know that there are "trends" in tastes. I will glance at the low star ratings, but it's pretty easy to see when someone has just goofed, or has nothing helpful to say. It's an open forum, after all, and if I don't agree, I simply pass on by! I also have some favorite reviewers whom I follow, and I am on the lookout to read their comments. Over time, I have learned that I usually agree with them!
Jul. 19, 2012 8:35 am
Yes, Bibi! I'm getting to that point, too. There are a few reviewers who I have already figured out 'review' just to toot their own horn and really don't want to help the cook, or the ARers, with their insight. I personally try to be as helpful and constructive as I can be but since we don't have a comment section for reviewers themselves (other then to just rate the recipe in response) we have to do what we can.
Jul. 19, 2012 1:33 pm
yes please and continue to do so, I for one have greatly benefited from the advice and suggestions.
Jul. 19, 2012 2:03 pm
Covergirl, did you recognize the example I used in my blog??? :)
Jul. 19, 2012 4:26 pm
there are a few to choose from. I vote for positive constructive commentary.
Jul. 20, 2012 4:50 am
Nice update to your previous blog.
Jul. 20, 2012 1:39 pm
Thanks, Magnolia!! I'm always interested in other peoples thoughts.
Jul. 21, 2012 2:03 pm
You are so right! So many cooks, so many opinions (= Loved the last paragraph! '"What a stupid recipe?" Well, if that is your review, then tell me WHY is it stupid? Did it make funny faces at you? Did it call you names? What?'
Jul. 22, 2012 1:00 am
Well, Barb, its true! Why say something like "Your recipe was stupid" and end it with no more words. Tell me why my recipe was stupid. And furthermore, how can a recipe be stupid? Its a recipe, for crimminesakes!! Sometimes reviewers just make me shake my head and shake it more!!
Jul. 22, 2012 10:03 am
Can I just mention I made John Chandlers "Worlds Best Lasagna" for my son's send off dinner on Friday and I cannot get over how good it is. I did not change anything- I was short one can of tomato sauce but since I was trying to cut the recipe somewhat in half I thought I would be OK and I was. It did nothing to alter the flavor.. his timing and mixture of seasonings is so good.. if you haven't tried this recipe, you really need to. The sauce will blow you away.
Jul. 24, 2012 9:27 am
Seriously not trying to beat a dead horse here but here is just another (and I swear my last) example of being completely misusing the rating system. This reviewer says "Awesome recipe!" but she didn't even MAKE the recipe.. Awesome awesome recipe! In fact, the best I've had on allrecipes yet! I strayed pretty far from the original recipe so I apologize to the Chef but it turned out just awesome. First, I cut the chicken in small strips then dipped in an egg wash and coated in a flour/Italian bread crumb mix with paprika, black pepper, oregano, sweet basil, and salt. Then I fried with onions and minced garlic - it turned out incredibly yummy. Then set aside the chicken and use that pan to simmer additional onions, red peppers and chicken broth. In the meantime I prepared the asparagus: arrange so tips are even then rubberband and blanche in hot water for 1-2 min until bright green. Put in cold water to stop cooking then arrange in an even layer on cookie sheet. Lightly brush with olive oil and then salt. Cook for 5 min in 400 degree oven until sizzling. Then cut into 1 inch pieces and throw into the skillet with the chicken, red peppers, etc at the very end. I also found it needed a lot more sauce and probably would've doubled the sauce. (Of course I added more stuff too so I definitely needed more.) I hardly used any milk mainly the heavy cream in the sauce. Breading the chicken and mixing it in with the sauce and pasta helped thicken the sauce a bit as well (I did mix everything together at the end). I know a lot of reviewers said the sauce was a bit runny. My husband and I about died when we ate this it was just so incredible. We're looking forward to the leftovers for dinner tonight!!!! Thank
Jul. 24, 2012 3:40 pm
I am a tweaker no doubt about that at all, and yes I do leave my review. I never completely overall a recipe. But I do think that the review I write both benefits me if I want to make this recipe in the future and give other cooks an idea what works! I do think its so unfair, when you read some of the terrible comments people write and once again I contact AR if they have not even tried the recipe. Lets face it some of these recipe have been in peoples families for generations and its so unfair when people belittle something that is loved by someone else. I think the comments should be wrote in a helpful way to others if possible and an as an insult to the submitter!
Jul. 24, 2012 3:41 pm
oops should read and NOT as an insult to the submitter!!!
Jul. 24, 2012 3:53 pm
Here here Apple!! I think what I found maddening about this particular one was she starts off by saying "Oh this recipe was so awesome" and then goes on to basically compliment an entirely other dish. Instead, why not say 'Thanks for the idea.. I give you five stars for it.. and I'm going to give myself five stars for what I came up with'. You know? I also pointed out about recipes being very personal to some people and boy, did I get poo-pooed for that one!!
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About Me
Running at top speed mama to two, I love to write and cook. My blog focuses on cooking stories tied into life with my wild ones. I'm passionate about my wonderful children, husband, Siamese cat and coming soon puppy. I'm also an avid deleter of spam so enjoy!!
My favorite things to cook
PIZZA! Macaroni and Cheese, pesto carbonara, homemade wontons, egg rolls, spaghetti, tuna croquettes and PIZZA!.
My favorite family cooking traditions
Every year when we decorate our Christmas tree, I serve fried rice balls with marinara sauce. Over the last couple of years, I've developed a tradition of serving a taco bar on New Years eve night.
My cooking triumphs
The first time I made bulgogi marinade for my husband. He'd not had it before and raved about the meat after he grilled it.
My cooking tragedies
The night I was making homemade wontons and due to humidity, they all decided to stick to each other. Wonton balls, anyone?
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