Online Dish: Creative Biting With Three Local Food Bloggers

By | March 01, 2014
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Creative Biting


Jessica Turcotte and her husband, Pierre, weren’t always the healthy eaters and chefs they are today. Inspired by her late grandmother’s zest for cooking and her own pursuit to eat more mindfully, Jessica decided to teach herself to cook, and slowly, she began to master the kitchen. Since eliminating frozen meals and packaged, processed foods from their diets — a lifestyle change that led the couple to a svelte, collective weight loss — Jessica and Pierre now look forward to enjoying nutritious, homemade meals together on a daily basis. Simple, Clean, & Homemade is a delicious compilation of kitchen trials and successes (but mostly successes!), in which Jessica shares everything from personal recipes to cooking and baking advice. “I’m on a journey to make flavorful, interesting, new dishes,” she says, “and the blog reflects that journey.” Although the couple prefers meals prepared with both Asian and South American ingredients — among their favorite dishes are Carnitas, chili verde, stir fry, and egg rolls — Simple, Clean, & Homemade highlights easy-to-make recipes from all over the globe. As for those homemade desserts? Just a glimpse of Jessica’s Blueberry Muffins will excite your sweet tooth.

Visit to whip up a batch yourself!


Though they haven’t had any formal training, Mark Schnieder and Michelle Bell are certainly well-versed in The Art of Eating. The couple’s blog, which made its debut just over one year ago, tells the tale of two appetites residing in Pittsburgh — a city “known for putting French fries on a sandwich.” Browse the first few entries, filled with thoughtful dining reviews and tasty at-home recipes, and you’ll notice immediately that Mark and Michelle not only share a passion for food — but a passion for sharing, as well. “Sharing a meal is a great opportunity to connect with family and friends,” Michelle explains. “Our blog is another avenue for us to share our love of food with others.” Around the city, this culinary couple travels quickly, logging dining experiences at Beechview’s Crested Duck, Highland Park’s Smiling Banana Leaf, and Brookline’s Le Cupcake Shoppe, to name a few from the ever-expanding list. In their own kitchen, Mark and Michelle enjoy teaming up to create bold, ethnic dishes, regularly using staple spices cumin, ginger, and paprika. “Because of our different backgrounds, we both offer unique approaches to food,” says Michelle. “Yet, each of our families shared home-cooked meals every night — and that is [a tradition] Mark and I have continued.”


Do you ever wish you could record the creative, inspirational, and downright hilarious conversations shared among your friends at brunch? So did the producers of BrunchBurgh, before they unraveled a plan to create the city’s first brunch-themed podcast. Consisting of two-part team Mary Stewart, producer and host, and Alex Murphy, audio engineer, BrunchBurgh stems from the group’s passion for “brunch culture” and Pittsburgh’s blossoming food scene. “We share our brunch conversations with interesting people, projects, and companies,” Stewart says of the podcast. “Everyone has a story to tell.” Interesting stories, indeed. The team has covered a wild variety of topics and interviewees — from zombies and Sriracha with artist Eric Singer, to the makings of a healthy relationship with writer Megan Dietz and acupuncturist Debbie Hardin, to small movie theater culture with Row House Cinema owner Brian Mendelssohn. And, much to our delight, these thought-provoking interviews are among the many features of the BrunchBurgh blog. The appropriately named “Brunch List” holds the group’s favorite locales, neatly organized by neighborhood. Visit the blog to check it out! The podcasts are available for listening on the blog itself, and through iTunes.

+ Follow BrunchBurgh on Twitter @brunchburgh!


Share your tweets with @edibleAllegheny and some of our favorite foodie accounts!

La Palapa Pittsburgh
You don’t have to travel far to get a taste of La Palapa’s authentic Mexican cuisine, served in South Side and the Strip. Follow for daily specials and news.

Superior Motors
Chef Kevin Sousa’s soon-to-be Braddock restaurant is making waves around town. Track its progress and happenings straight from your Twitter feed.

Off the Grid
Get an inside look at Pittsburgh’s elite wine and food events with Kate and Jack, a couple immersed in our city’s food flair.

Frankferd Farms
This Saxonburg farm keeps our Twitter feed fresh with its organic and local specialties. Follow along with us for stock updates and sales.

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