Expert Food Blogger Interview: Coley Cooks

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This is the first of our series of expert food blogger interviews and we’re more than happy to welcome Nicole Gaffney – a chef, writer & certified food nerd – but you can call her Coley and she runs the popular food blog Coley Cooks.

Coley is a personal chef turned tv personality best known for being second runner up on the 10th season of Food Network Star. She has been featured on The Rachael Ray Show, House Hunters, My Family Recipe Rocks, The Chef’s Kitchen, Best of the Best, and QVC.  Each week on her blog Coley Cooks she posts a quick and easy video recipe, in addition to a slightly more intricate recipe in regular food blog format. Whether you’re a novice or a pro, there’s a little something for everyone on Coley Cooks.

The Interview

Please introduce yourself and your blog.

My name is Nicole Gaffney but everyone calls me Coley. Coley Cooks is my blog where I post weekly recipes and videos of the food I love to eat.

Why and when did you start your food blog?

I started blogging in 2013 as a way to express my feelings about food separate from my work as a personal chef. In 2015 I became more serious about blogging, rebranded myself and started posting regularly.

Where did your love for cooking come from?

My Sicilian grandfather. He loved to cook and watch his family eat his creations. I totally inherited that trait.

Where do you get your cooking inspiration from?

Mostly from traveling, eating out at restaurants and from reading other blogs, cook books and food magazines.

Do you have a favourite chef?

I love so many, but I’d probably have to say Susan Feniger. I think she’s great.

Which is your favourite restaurant?

Steve and Cookies is my favorite local restaurant

What is your favourite/signature dish?

This is such a tough question, but I’d have to say my recipe for Spiedini alla Siciliana First of all, it’s delicious. Second, it’s a family recipe I grew up eating and only recently rediscovered. It’s a really unique dish that isn’t very common, and since posting it, I’ve had several people from around the country reach out to say they’ve grown up eating something similar as well, which I think is really cool.

What has been your best foodie experience?

Traveling to Italy this past year.

What has been your worst foodie experience?

Coming in 3rd place on the reality cooking series “Food Network Star.” It was an overall positive experience, but winning would have been far better.

Do you have any hints of tips for people starting a food blog? 

Read other blogs, comment and let other people know you exist. Invest in a decent camera and learn why good food photography is so important.

We thank Coley for her time and insight into her world of food blogging and we highly recommend her blog Coley Cooks if you love great recipes and videos (definitely check out the Sweet Potato & Bacon Hash Breakfast Video, it looks amazing!).

If you’re a food blogger and would like to take part in our expert food blogger interview series, please drop us an email