The issue follows the November, 2011, debut Readers' Issue, with more pages of readers' food tips and comforting recipes that are as easy to prepare as they are delicious.
"Our first Readers' Issue last summer was a resounding success," said Taste's
editor Sumien Brink (@Sumienbrink), who had no reservations about producing a second one. "Mimicking the incredible popularity of user-generated content in the virtual world, readers respond extremely well to the ideas of their food-loving peers. While Taste's
food editors always strive to develop their recipes with feet firmly grounded in the 'real world', somehow, one's fellow readers' recipes are deemed more 'doable' when 'home-tested' and created with the 'real life' budgetry and time restrictions. As a result, the so-called 'intimidation factor' disappears completely, and, because the outcomes are so impressive, readers are more confident with giving them a go.
"It's three times the work of a normal issue, but really worth it," Brink added. "The trick is striking the right balance between reader submission and editorial control, so that our featured readers' recipes are as accurate and picture-perfect as our regular Taste
content. It requires incredible teamwork to produce these issues, but we are fortunate to have both abundant inspiring readers who shared their best with us and sterling online and editorial teams, who pulled it all together in brilliant Taste
Food editor Abigail Donnelly concurred: "It's a wonderfully interactive process that puts us in touch with our readers - their practical needs, their challenges and their tastes - more than anything else we do. We get to forge real relationships with these valuable people, which we draw on throughout the year when we require a sounding board for ideas."
Comforting winter food with a special focus on South African ingredients was the theme of the questionnaire put to readers on 25 April, both in the May issue and online, with questions like: Which truly South African ingredient can't you live without, what is your favourite winter fruit and your best recipe using it, and what's your most treasured family dish? The closing date for submission was 5 May, leaving little time for the Taste
team to collate, review and test the results, let alone produce and photograph in time for a 1 June print deadline.
The results will brighten the darkest and chilliest winter day with delicious ideas for what to cook. "A Bumper Crop" offers the five best reader recipes using winter's harvest of fruit and veg, with winning dishes like Shelly Grobler's "Sticky Brinjal Jam with Halloumi and Crispy Vine Leaves", and Jan Hendrik van der Westhuizen's "Poached Naartjie Crepes with Salted Caramel Sauce".
Besides the recipes, there is also tons of valuable info on readers' top "go-to guys", from best butcher to top coffee haunts to most-loved chocolatier. And, because everyone loves a winter tipple, the magazine raises the bar even further with readers' top picks of best-loved watering holes - both comfy and swanky - from Umhlanga to Cape Town's CBD.
Dig a bit further into the July issue and you'll find great features like a modern-day funghi forager's tale; a piece on gourmet food trucks, the latest food trend occupying South African streets with great eats; regular contributor Luke Dale-Roberts' ode to onions, the unsung heroes of the kitchen; and a culinary interpretation of majestic Prague.
The July Readers' Issue is available at Woolworths stores, as well as selected Exclusive Books, CNA, Dischem and Engen outlets now.
For more information or to download Woolworths Taste
recipes, go to www.Tastemag.co.za
and follow @Tastyones