It seems you can't scroll through Facebook anymore without coming across another slick, quick video recipe.
A Tip Hero video tutorial demonstrating how to make baked apple roses went viral prior to Thanksgiving and has garnered 200 million views on Facebook. Red velvet brain cakes and other edible zombie frights were trending last week.
Rayna Marlee Schwartz, a freelance prop and craft stylist in Toronto, saw the apple roses recipe — which involves rolling slices of the fruit with puff pastry and baking them in a muffin tin to resemble a flower — online and decided to give it a try.
"I think the videos are really great because … it breaks it down step by step and I know I (can) watch it over and over again as I go," said Schwartz, 28, who shared her results on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.
"(And) I thought it was pretty cool that after making these apple roses, I clicked on the hashtag and was like 'Wow, look at all the others' and got to see people from all over the world doing the same thing I was doing.
"I didn't even realize it at the time. I thought that was pretty special."
Katherine Holland, a 31-year-old Toronto-based photographer, was also lured by the video recipe and said she appreciated that she could see the whole process from start to finish in just over a minute.
"Whereas if you're watching … the Food Network, to make one of those things you're committing to 35 minutes and by the time you're done you're like: 'I have no interest in this anymore. That is the amount of time I could have actually made that,'" she said.
If there's a drawback to getting hooked on the social media recipe trend it's trying to find the right instructions when you need them, said Nada Bakraky, 29, who also shared a photo of her apple roses on Twitter and Instagram.
"I made these pumpkin cream cheese muffins before from Pinterest, but when I went to find it again there were so many variations I couldn't figure out which was the one I'd used the first time," said Bakraky.
"I started writing them down in my own cookbook. But I've stopped buying cookbooks. Everything's online."
She also admits that her tech toys have taken some abuse since discovering online recipes.
"My iPad, when I'm baking, it's covered with flour and egg and everything. It's just thrown on the kitchen counter. I'm touching it with my dirty hands," she said.
"(But) so far it's been OK," she added with a laugh.
Holland, who can't eat gluten, dairy or eggs, said she also loves that online recipes commonly have comments attached that help her make her own tweaks.
"People says things like, 'I changed out these six things,' or 'I cooked this for an extra eight minutes and I found this solved this problem,'" said Holland.
"You'd never get that from a cookbook."
Even the pros have embraced the online chatter around recipes and are adapting.
British-based chef Yotam Ottolenghi, owner of five London restaurants and author of the new "Nopi" cookbook, started using Twitter about four years ago and now also posts on Instagram, Pinterest and Facebook.
"It's been very useful for me, first of all, to engage with people and understand what's going on and also because I like to get a good idea of what people do with the food," he said while visiting Toronto.
"I think it's really important when you write cookbooks to get this kind of input of what's actually happening."
When Gourmet magazine abruptly shut its doors in 2009, Editor-in-Chief Ruth Reichl said she was buoyed by the sympathetic Twitter community and embraced the interactivity social media offered.
"I'd always felt totally alone in my kitchen and suddenly with Twitter it was like I was cooking with a group of people and I could actually say, 'I have these bananas. What should I do?' And people from all over the world would answer me," Reichl said while in Toronto to promote her new book "Ruth Reichl: My Kitchen Year."
"It was exciting. It was like having the Gourmet test kitchen right there in my own kitchen."
Source: The Canadian Press