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About Our Contests

These are not your usual contests. We have a slightly nutty system but it works.

With two books under our belt, we thought we'd try some new projects on for size. First up was the Food52 Holiday Survival Guide for iPad. Now, you're competing for fame, glory, and if applicable, a little extra something from our sponsor. And remember, contest finalists, Community Picks, and Wildcard Winners get prime placement in our recipe search and are always most likely to be featured in future books and apps.

Here's how our contests work:

  1. Every other Monday, we'll solicit recipes for different themes (e.g. Your Best Shrimp Recipe, Your Best Chilled Soup, Your Best Summer Cocktail). You'll have until 6:00 PM EST the following Tuesday to submit your recipes.
  2. The next Wednesday, we'll announce the list of candidates for Community Picks, which we'll turn over to you — the Food52 community — to test anonymously. We'll accept up to 3 testers per recipe to ensure that recipes work well in different kitchens, for different cooks. You'll have until the following Wednesday to send your testing notes (up to 100 words) to [email protected]. If a recipe becomes a Community Pick, the best-written review will be added to the recipe's headnote — so make it count! You can find more on the process here.
  3. Over the next week we'll test the recipes you liked best, and the following Thursday we'll whittle it down to 2 finalists and all our winning Community Picks. We'll photograph both of the finalists and as many Community Picks as we can.
  4. Then, you'll have a week to check out the finalists and cast your votes (good old democracy).
  5. After the cutoff on the next Wednesday at noon, we'll tally up the votes and announce the winner!

We'll end up with recipes — created by all of us — that we love!

Recipe Contest Rules

  1. If a recipe is not chosen as a winner for one contest, you may re-submit the same recipe for a future contest. (For example, Mom's Mud Pie could be submitted for Your Best Farm to Table Recipe and later for Your Best Kid-Friendly Recipe).
  2. You may only vote once for each contest, but you may vote for your own recipe.
  3. This is all in the spirit of good fun. No harassing your fellow competitors, or we'll send you a year's supply of durian.
  4. You may only submit recipes that are your own. If your recipe was inspired by another source, that's okay — just tell us how you changed it. We'd love for the inspiration behind your recipes to be part of the conversation. Plagiarism, however, is not encouraged. If you plagiarize, people will call you out and you'll look lame. In case you're wondering how we interpret an acceptably inspired recipe, here you go:

Example of original recipe:

Magnolia's Vanilla Cupcakes

From More from Magnolia: Recipes from the World-Famous Bakery and Allysa Torey's Home Kitchen by Allysa Torey

Cupcakes:

  • 1 1/2 cups self-rising flour
  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Line two 12-cup muffin tins with cupcake papers.
  3. In a small bowl, combine the flours. Set aside.
  4. In a large bowl, on the medium speed of an electric mixer, cream the butter until smooth. Add the sugar gradually and beat until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the dry ingredients in three parts, alternating with the milk and the vanilla. With each addition, beat until the ingredients are incorporated but do not overbeat. Using a rubber spatula, scrape down the batter in the bowl to make sure the ingredients are well blended. Carefully spoon the batter into the cupcake liners, filling them about three-quarters full. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted into the center of the cupcake comes out clean. Cool the cupcakes in the tins for 15 minutes. Remove from from the tins and cool completely on a wire rack before icing. Makes about 2 dozen cupcakes.

Icing:

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • 6-8 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  1. Place the butter in a large mixing bowl. Add 4 cups of the sugar and then the milk and vanilla. On the medium speed of an electric mixer, beat until smooth and creamy, about 3-5 minutes. Gradually add the remaining sugar, 1 cup at a time, beating well after each addition (about 2 minutes), until the icing is thick enough to be of good spreading consistency. You may not need to add all of the sugar. If desired, add a few drops of food coloring and mix thoroughly. (Use and store the icing at room temperature because icing will set if chilled.) Icing can be stored in an airtight container for up to 3 days. Makes enough for 2 dozen cupcakes.

Example of acceptably inspired recipe:

Anise Cupcakes with Chocolate Icing

Inspired by Magnolia's Vanilla Cupcakes in More from Magnolia: Recipes from the World-Famous Bakery and Allysa Torey's Home Kitchen by Allysa Torey

Cupcakes:

  • 1 1/2 cups self-rising flour
  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons crushed aniseed
  • 1/2 teaspoon anise extract
  • Zest of 1/2 a lemon
  • 1 1/4 cups milk
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Line two 12-cup muffin pans with cupcake papers.
  3. Combine the flours.
  4. In a the bowl of a mixer fitted with a whisk, cream the butter on medium speed. Add the sugar gradually and beat until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Mix in the aniseed, anise extract and lemon zest. With the mixer on low speed, add the dry ingredients, alternating with the milk. Mix just until smooth. Divide the batter among the cupcake papers. Bake until a cake tester inserted into the center of the cupcake comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes. Cool the cupcakes in the pans for 15 minutes, then remove from the pans and cool on a baking rack. Makes about 2 dozen cupcakes.

Icing:

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, melted
  • 5 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 1/2 cup milk
  1. Place the butter in a mixer fitted with a whisk. Beat in the melted chocolate. Gradually beat in 3 cups of sugar, then add just enough milk to loosen the icing; continue beating until very smooth, about 3 minutes. Gradually add the remaining sugar, beating well after each addition. The icing should be smooth and spreadable. Makes enough for 2 dozen cupcakes.