Here's how it works:
At the start of each month I will set a theme. Anyone who wants to join in can make food, interpreting the theme in their own way and submit a photograph and description for the chance to win a small prize and a Home Baked Challenge winners blog badge (I can already hear you squealing with joy)!
The "Home Baked" part refers to my blog name so you aren't boxed in with just baking - your item can be baked, boiled, fried, steamed, grilled, roasted, frozen, raw or any other method you choose. Likewise, they can be sweet or savoury, a meal or treat, cakes or sweets, gluten free, vegan or catering to other dietary needs - as long as you make the item and it is edible, the sky is your limit.
I will set the submission deadline with each theme announcement at the start of the month - this will give you approximately 3 weeks to come up with an idea, create it, photograph it and upload it. You can enter more than one item, if you choose, and cooks of all ages are welcome to participate.
Judges will be Cameron, myself and one other guest judge each month. Obviously, because it's an online challenge, we wont be able to judge submissions based on taste or texture. Judging criteria will be presentation and originality of concept.
I see the joy of the challenge really being in the creative process and sharing as a community of home cooks rather than being fiercely competitive. I will be joining in too, but obviously not to win, just for fun.
I have set up a Flickr group so we can pool all entries over the year. You don't have to join the Flickr group in order to participate, it is simply to make things easier for guest judges so they can view entries on the Flickr group rather than having an inbox full of food! Flickr is free to join but if you'd really rather not, I will happily post your entries through my account, with your permission (you can email entries to me at homebakedonline at gmail dot com). Also, you don't have to be a Flickr member to view the group.
I've also made a blog button for everyone who participates or wants to support the challenge by spreading the word.
You can find the HTML code for the button at the top of the right hand sidebar of this blog. It's the first time I've done blog buttons and I found it quite challenging to make - do let me know if you're having problems with it and I'll do my best to fix it!
So, what do you think? Do you fancy joining in?
I'll announce the theme for January on Monday. I really hope to see you then!
Saturday, 2 January 2010
Introducing the Home Baked Challenge!
I'd like to get a bit more interactive here on the Home Baked blog this year. I stumbled across this website where they hold cupcake baking/decorating competitions on a set theme each month. The closest one to me is a fairly long train ride away which would probably destroy any prettiness I create so instead I thought this would be a great kind of idea to do in blog land. From there, the idea of the Home Baked Challenge was born!