Toffee & Tea is No More...
This might be a shocker, but Toffee & Tea is now… Jun & Tonic! No I’m not shutting down the blog (as the clickbait-y title might’ve suggested), just changing its name.
I know, it’s weird, pretty cheesy, maybe even facepalm-worthy, but those are also the exact words people have used to describe me. So in embracing this odd, geeky, maybe vaguely cool(?) side of me (jk I’m not cool), I've decided - out with Toffee & Tea, in with Jun & Tonic.
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Not that I didn’t like the name Toffee & Tea though! I did initially like how it alliterates (I'm weird like that), but truth be told, I stuck with it mostly because all the other vaguely clever blog names I could come up with were taken (until now, that is). So I started with a really bad blog named Toffee & Tea, with the first posts being about my cooking exploits in a medieval Cambridge dorm with my roommate at the time, who now that I think about it, was quite possibly the one who set me off on this whole food career. (Here's your credit, Tam-sy. :P). Unfortunately for you guys, and luckily for me, those embarrassing first posts have been lost to the depths of the internet since I messed around with web hosting.
Anyway, I don't know why I thought blogging was a good idea at the time, but since then, I've continued posting about food, recipes, cooking failures and disasters, or any random musings about food really. But during those times, blogging has always played second fiddle to whatever bigger thing I was doing at the time, whether it was college, culinary school, internships, or working in the States. It was partly because I was busy with those things, but mostly because I just lacked the self-discipline to post consistently and took ages to write.
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But this year, along with this brand new blog and blog name, I want to write about food a little more. I want to continue learning about food, about its intersections with culture, science, politics, memories, life in general. I want to discover the lesser known food stories in Malaysia and beyond, and tell it to the world like they deserve to be told (like this little short essay I did for NeoCha about Malaysian cheese!). Most of all, I want to fall deeper in love with food and cooking.
Because in the three years since I first forayed into this food-journey-soul-searching-thing (really just another version of Eat Pray Love eh?), I think I've found something worthwhile, something fulfilling, something to pour my heart into. I might even go so far as to say I've found my passion..? (Blergh, that word. Gosh how did I get so sentimental?? Kill me already.)
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So here’s me growing up. Here's me pledging to write more this year, to contribute to this volatile food industry that is so broken in places, yet contains so many hidden gems, capable of engaging all the human senses and emotions like nothing else. Here's me embracing my inner food geek that bit more, sharing my joy and passion *cringe* for food. And so, symbolic to this shift in focus, I'm swapping out my (toffee &) tea for a grown-ass G&T. (Wait, hold up. Naming a blog after a cocktail isn’t exactly the most grownup thing to do now is it..? Am I really just becoming more basic!?)
Maybe this all sounds a bit idealistic, but I know I've barely scratched the surface when it comes to learning about food. I also know (from what little SEO I have) that I’ve still got a long way to go in terms of blogging and writing. And though I’ll probably never be as cool as Molly Yeh, who lives and blogs on a farm, or be able to cook and speak about food as well as Bourdain or Dan Barber, or have the aesthetic eye of amazing photographers like Linda Lomelino or Our Food Stories, or be as ruthless with prose as Mandy Lee and her pups, or achieve the writing heights of MFK Fisher and Michael Pollan, I still want to do this because I love food, and I want others to love it too.
So for better or worse, Jun & Tonic is here to stay. Well, maybe at least until I am spontaneously inspired by yet another blog name change / called to return to work at another kitchen somewhere in the world / get distracted by the 82798 things that I could possibly get distracted by. I'm only kidding. But for now, I will walk this path and see where it takes me.
For now, I will write for food.
(P.S. Dear reader, please keep me accountable because I am terrible at self-discipline, and procrastination is still my best friend. Much thanks, Jun.)