Frequently Asked Questions
The Daring Kitchen is the home of The Daring Bakers and The Daring Cooks. The premise of both groups is to create one recipe each month, given to us by a monthly host. We all create the same exact recipe and then post about it on our personal blogs on a designated date.
We don’t have many.. but they are important:
You must participate 8 months out of 12. Okay this was a necessary rule back when we first started out.. basically because we'd find more and more people joining just to get on our blogroll to drive traffic to their blogs - yet they would never participate. Obviously, those days are over.. we've over 9,000 members strong now and 99% of our members join because they love a challenge and are seeking a supportive and helpful community to learn to cook and bake better.. so the 4 out of 12 months rule has been removed. PLEASE try to participate as much as you can - it's FUN! But you won't be demoted if you can't.
NOW WITH THAT SAID - I cannot promise that a day won't come when I'll go through all of our members and delete those who haven't participated in years.. because our blogroll is GIGANTIC as it is.. I know many would like that done now, but it's a very time consuming endeavor and frankly, I don't have that kind of time. The blogroll has always been my nemesis and hopefully one day we'll figure out a way to keep it short and sweet, featuring only our participating members.. but for now.. it is what it is.
- Participating means that you create the challenge recipe, photograph it (if at all possible) and then post your thoughts on the final outcome of your challenge with photos on your own blog once a month (twice if you join both groups).
- If you can’t post on the designated date, but you did the challenge, post late. NEVER EARLY.
- You must comment in the “Cannot Participate This Month” thread that is created each month in the private forums, if you cannot participate. This will ensure your membership stays in good standing if you need to miss here or there. Please do not abuse this by commenting more months than not that you won’t be participating.
Keep in mind, 4 misses in 12 months is the maximum any member can miss, regardless of commenting or not. If you miss 2 or more challenges in a row WITHOUT commenting in the above mentioned threads, your blog will be removed from the blogroll and your account will be demoted so you’ll no longer be able to see the private forums.
2. You must create the challenge as written. You can only change something if it falls within the following exceptions.
- You may omit or substitute an ingredient if that ingredient is harmful to your health. Diabetics, Gluten-free, Lactose Intolerant, Allergy, etc. would fit in under this exemption.
- You may omit or substitute an ingredient if it is offensive to your lifestyle. Vegetarians, Vegans, Raw diets, etc. would fit in under this exemption.
- You can omit or substitute an ingredient if it is offensive to your religion.
- You can omit or substitute an ingredient if it's too expensive.
- You can omit or substitute an ingredient if it's unavailable or too hard to find locally.
- Any other changes can only be made if the host decrees it in his/her recipe announcement. DO NOT take advantage of the room for creativity that most hosts give us. Stay within his/her guidelines, please.
3. Keep all challenges secret from outside the Daring Kitchen private forums. This means any public forums, in our personal blog posts, any social networks.. etc. Keeping it a secret from those who are not members of the Daring Kitchen is half the fun!
Four. Regardless of how many times you comment in the “Can’t participate this month” thread of the private forums, if you miss more than 4 challenges, you’ll be removed.
See "What Are The Rules" for an updated answer to this question.
If you haven’t left a comment regarding missing 2 in a row, you’ll be removed.
See "What are the rules" for an updated answer to this question.
Registering allows you to leave comments and communicate in the public areas such as the public forums, member spotlights, cookbook reviews and FoodTalk articles. And that’s it. You won’t be able to see the private forums or participate in the challenges.
To become an Official DK member, you must check the box next to the group(s) you want to join during the registration process. And then there is a waiting period.
To help keep challenges a secret, there is a waiting period before new members become "official". It works like this:
Daring Bakers - If you register with the website, making sure to check the Daring Baker box during registration, for example, on:
January 1 - 27 your first official challenge will be on February 1st.
January 28 - 31 your first official challenge will be on March 1st.
Daring Baker registration closes at midnight (eastern standard time) on the 27th.
Daring Cooks - Becoming a Daring Cook is a little confusing because the challenges start in the middle of the month instead of the first of the month. If you register on with the website, making sure to check the Daring Cook box during registration, on:
January 1-14 your first official challenge will be on January 17th.
January 15-31 your first official challenge will be on February 17th.
Daring Cook registration closes at midnight (eastern standard time) on the 14th.
Regardless of when your first challenge starts, you will be sent an email prior, letting you know your membership has become official. If you feel you haven't heard anything after the waiting period, please check your spam folders. If the alert isn't there, then contact us immediately and we'll figure out what the issue is.
YES. As of January 2010 the DK system now sends new members notices that they've officially been approved. After you've received the notice it's up to the member to check into the forums on the 1st for the Daring Bakers and/or the 17th for the Daring Cooks to find out what the new challenge is. Please keep in mind though - we're not perfect. Our system is being built as we go and there is always room for error, we're still growing. So the only true way to find out if you've been approved is to click on the forums button to see if the private forums for the group(s) you've joined appears. Do this on the 1st (bakers) and the 17th (cooks).
We also highly recommend checking back at least one more time during the month to make sure no changes have been made to the challenge recipe, as any changes are not emailed to members either.
At this time (01/01/10), there is a bug in our system. It doesn’t warn new users that the user name they’ve chosen has already been taken. So if you get the error once you try to log back in with the temporary password and have chosen a pretty common user name, the only thing you can do is register all over again with a different user name. If your next choice is questionable, you can use the contact form and to have the name checked to see if it's already in use.
If this happens, go to your profile page which can be found by clicking “My Account” on your personal menu located on the right sidebar. Once the next screen opens, click on the “Apply for a Role” tab. If neither of the 2 boxes are checked, that means you didn’t check which group you wanted to join when you registered. And that’s why you can’t see the private forums. You’re registered on the website, but not for a group. Email Lis at email@example.com with this information and what group(s) you want to join and we’ll update your account for you as soon as possible.
If you checked one or both boxes they shouldn't even appear (if you checked the Daring Bakers box only, the Daring Cooks box should be the only one you can see), meaning there’s another issue. Please go to the CONTACT section of the website and make sure to choose “Web Site Feedback” in the category section. Don’t forget to include your user name, your first name, when you joined and details regarding your problem.
When you can see the private forums, you’re in baby!
Membership opens on the first of the month for the Daring Bakers.
Membership opens on the 17th of each month for the Daring Cooks.
Membership closes on the 27th of each month for the Daring Bakers.
Membership closes on the 14th of each month for the Daring Cooks. Daring Cooks challenges start in the middle of one month and end in the middle of the next month.
New challenge recipe is announced on the 1st of each month.
In the Daring Bakers’ private forum aptly titled “The Daring Bakers’ Challenges”
You post your finished challenge on your own blog on the 27th of each month, known as the “reveal date”. If life gets in the way and you cannot post on the 27th, you will have one week’s grace period. So you can post after the 27th, but NEVER before.
The 2 mandatory lines that must be included at the beginning of your blog post, are for search purposes. This is how many members find your challenge posts. They will Google (or whatever their favorite search engine is) the 2 mandatory blog checking lines and visit those blogs that pop up in the search results.
You can find the lines in the new challenge recipe post and they are always designated with "Blog Checking Lines:" title.
This phenomenon is NOT mandatory. A couple years ago, members starting posting their finished challenge photos in the PRIVATE forums to get support from the other members, to show off because they were proud of what they accomplished, and/or to commiserate with photos of failures. Regardless of their reasoning, it snowballed into a fun side activity for our members. It’s just something fun to do.
New challenge recipes are announced on the 17th of each month.
In the Daring Cooks’ private forum also aptly titled “The Daring Cooks’ Challenges”
You post your finished challenge on your blog (including the 2 mandatory lines) on the 14th of each month, known as the “reveal date”. If life gets in the way and you cannot post on the 14th, you will have one week’s grace period. So you can post after the 14th, but NEVER before.
YES! Same rules apply to every member, regardless if they own a blog or not.
You’ve got a couple options here.
- The obvious one is to open up a blog. You can own a blog for challenges only and don’t have to write something on it every day like a blogger does.
- You can post in the non-blogging members’ section of the Daring Kitchen. For more info, look here: http://thedaringkitchen.com/in-the-kitchen/non-blogging-members-new-home...
As of today, 01/01/10, yes, you should let Lisa (firstname.lastname@example.org) know that you are a non-blogging member so she can adjust your account allowing you to post to the non-blogging members’ section on the reveal date.
- If you’ve opened a blog for challenges only – then no. Just remember to include the 2 mandatory blog-checking lines.
- If you’ve posted on the non-blogging members’ section of the DK, Lis usually publishes the non-blogging member posts on the reveal date and then checks in again a few days later to publish any more that are ready. If you don’t see your post up on the non-blogging members’ section a week after the reveal date, then email Lis to let her know.
Yes – as soon as your post is published by Lis or Ivonne, it will appear in the public non-blogging members’ section found here: http://thedaringkitchen.com/reveals/nonblogger
- Please make sure to attach the photo (preferably in .jpg format) to the email. DO NOT EMBED THE PHOTO INTO THE EMAIL OR THE QUESTIONNAIRE.
- Please make sure the photo is longer in width than in height.
**Unfortunately the Members in the Spotlight section has been disabled for the time being.. reason is time issues. Sorry, kids. Hopefully we'll get the section back up in the future.
FoodTalk is a weekly food related article published on the front page of The Daring Kitchen, always written by Daring Kitchen members.
We’d be honored if you’d like to volunteer to write an article (or more) for The Daring Kitchen! Email Lis at email@example.com to get on the roster.
Unfortunately, at this time, we cannot pay our volunteers for their time and efforts. Writing for FoodTalk is strictly voluntary.. but if you volunteer, please follow through. Each author gets a by-line with a link back to their blog.
NO! We will never ask you to buy special equipment for a challenge. Each host/hostess is required to figure out an alternative route if a recipe calls for a specific piece of equipment.
NO! As stated above, all members are responsible for checking the private forums for the recipes.
Usually they are not. The challenges are lessons in a sense.. ways to improve your baking and/or cooking skills through support from our members and guidance from our host(s).
On occasion, a challenge will be sponsored by a company that will offer a prize or prizes. When those challenges happen, we'll let you know in the new challenge announcement post (bakers - 1st of the month / cooks - 17th of the month).
Why yes we do!
- First, there is the slide show on the front page.
- We have two groups on Flickr. Daring Bakers Look Good! and Daring Cooks Look Good! All you have to do is go to Flickr and sign up - but keep in mind, if you do not specifically say you are a member of the Daring Kitchen in your request to join, you'll be denied. If you are denied you're usually sent a reason why, and 100% of the time it's because we aren't sure if you are a member.
- Lisa snags photos from the private forum thread “Show Your Finished (DB or DC) Challenge Here!” all throughout the month and then features them in the slide show.
- If you’d like your photo included in the slide show, please make sure to upload it into the above referenced thread (there’s a new thread for each challenge, but they are all similarly named) as early as you can (definitely before 10 a.m. EST on the day of the reveal).
- Your photo must be AT LEAST 435 pixels in length by 300 pixels in height. Bigger is fine, Lis can resize it. Smaller is okay, Lis will try to resize and if it doesn’t get wonkey, she’ll use it. Photos that are longer in height than in width will not be used.