TASTY! | Kyle Tatum, above, and John Boerger, opposite, just launched QueerIntheKitchen.com, a website dedicated to putting gay twists on familiar recipes. (Arnold Wayne Jones/Dallas Voice)
Like many good gayboys, Kyle Tatum and John Boerger grew up in their mothers’ kitchens … only they liked to cook more than their families did.
“I grew up in a big family and we’d make something cheap easy and would feed the seven of us,” says Boerger. “I was a picky eater, so my mom said, ‘If you want something other than what I’m making for dinner, there’s the kitchen.”
Since then, Boerger and Tatum (both hairdressers by day) have savored the personal pursuits of braising, baking and simmering; when they met several years ago, they bonded over their mutual love for TV chef Ina Garten.
Then about a year ago, they decided they wanted to share their love of food with the world, “so we decided to write a cookbook!” explains Tatum.
Well, not bad, just expensive. What they really wanted to do was share their huge archives of recipes — some stolen from family members, some culled over years of trial-and-error, and most personalized with a sassy gay twist — with others. And if a book was out of the question (at least for now), there was always the web.
Barely a month old, the website started as a lark — a way for Boerger and Tatum to let their friends and family in on the secrets of entertaining with food. But already, it has grown beyond what they imagined.
“Facebook has put us all over the map,” Tatum says. “We are getting [viewers] popping up as far away as the Philippines!”
There’s hardly a better time of year to start the site; with the holidays upon us,
QueerIntheKitchen.com has spent the last few weeks planning comfort-food recipes of classics. And they have some advice for how you can have a Thanksgiving feast that’s more fun than infuriating.
“About a month ago, we held our fake early Thanksgiving,” Boerger explains, and have spent the last few weeks posting those recipes and photos so that people can prepare for the onslaught this week.
“There’s so much food on Thanksgiving that nothing ever shines — you just dump a lot of stuff on your plate and eat it,” Boerger says. “To focus on any one dish seems selfish, so nothing is too complicated.”
They have concentrated on the staples while adding their twists: Mac and cheese, green bean casserole, a buttermilk pie; Tatum even shares his version of a fried turkey for those who want to try something new.
“John likes to bake — I don’t have the patience for it,” Tatum says. Ironically, though, Boerger recently posted a chocolate layer cake recipe even though he doesn’t like sweets and rarely touches dessert himself.
“I love to do desserts because they get the most attention, even though I don’t eat them at all,” he says. “And they photograph better.”
Spoken like a true budding cookbook writer.
This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition November 16, 2012.