Monthly Archives: October 2013

Apple Cinnamon Caramel Cookies (and a studio photography class!)

Photos of apples

I know they are very similar, but which photo do you guys like more? I cannot make up my mind! (Seriously, leave a comment below. I want to add one of them to my portfolio, and cannot decide which one I like more!)

I LOVE working with natural light, especially when it comes to food photography. L-O-V-E. Working with it comes naturally to me, and I love the challenge of adjusting to the weather outside. (Or maybe it has something to do with being cooped up  in a dark control room 40 hours a week… This gal needs her vitamin D!)

But the days are getting short (*SOB*) and I want more photographic flexibility. I’ve played around with studio lights before, used speedlights for portrait photography, but wanted to learn more about lighting glass, reflective objects, and anything involving more studio based commercial photography. So I signed up for a 10-week workshop at New England School of Photography.

The classes in which we photographed reflective objects and food couldn’t have come at a better time because I felt overwhelmed by the amount of apples in my kitchen. (I’m totally experimenting with light and backgrounds in these classes, so the styling between the images above and below are intentional – I’m not going for storytelling! 🙂 )

Apples are easy to transport to class, as are cookies. And I wanted to try using some cinnamon goat milk caramel from Fat Toad Farm in a cake or cookie recipe, so this became a great opportunity to experiment in making another gluten-free cookie. They came out pretty well! The cookies kind of have the texture of a very light and airy cake.

AppleCookies-066

Apple Cinnamon Caramel Cookies
Author: 
Recipe type: Gluten-Free Cookies
Cuisine: Dessert
Serves: 16-18 cookies
 
Ingredients
  • ½ cup quinoa flour
  • ¼ cup millet flour
  • ¼ cup brown rice flour
  • ½ cup quinoa flakes
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • ⅔ packed cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon Fat Toad Farm cinnamon goat milk caramel
  • 1 large cortland apple
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment paper.
  2. Combine the flours, quinoa flakes, baking soda, and set aside.
  3. In a separate bowl, beat the butter and sugar together until light and pale in color.
  4. Stir in the egg, then add the vanilla and flour mixture.
  5. Mix until incorporated.
  6. Fold in the caramel and apples.
  7. Drop heaping tablespoons of batter onto the baking sheets. They will spread while baking, so leave plenty of space between them. Place in the oven and bake for 15 minutes, or until the edges start to darken. Remove from the oven and cool on a cooling rack. Store in an airtight container.

EH Chocolatier’s CSC (Community Supported Chocolate!)

CSA’s are pretty fantastic and convenient, but Boston’s first community supported chocolate?! YES. It’s starting up next month, and runs through March 2014. This was a really fun photography project to work on! Find out more about EH Chocolatier’s CSC program here.

EH Chocolatier

LONDON! (Part 2)

London-3357

Sloooowly catching up on blog posts! More about that “time-when-I-dropped-everything-and-ran-away-across-the-pond-for-six-days”! I’m not going to bore you with photos of the changing of the guard ceremony in front of Buckingham Palace – I’m sure you’ve seen photos of the London guards before. And I couldn’t take photos inside many of the museums I visited. (The National Portrait Gallery, The Tate Modern, The British Museum…) But if you’re ever in London, you have to go to The British Library! I’m a total literature/history/music geek, so I spent a few hours drooling over Jane Austin’s writing desk, the original copy of Handel’s “Messiah”, Beatles lyrics scribbled on scrap paper, and The Magna Carta, to name a few. It’s absolutely incredible to be surrounded by such history.

We also took in a view of the city on the London Eye.

London Skyline Photos

Things to do in London

And saw some really entertaining street performers.

Thames River Street Performers

London Street Performers

And ate some ice cream. 🙂 Melissa and I never saw a shell-like ice cream “cone”.

London Street Food

And we visited Westminster Abbey. Photography is prohibited in most areas of the abbey, so I can’t share too much of my visit. But the abbey is stunning, and much larger than what I imagined. I had no idea that behind the alter we’ve all seen on television, there’s a huge section where kings and queens are entombed. Again, the history geek in me completely freaked out! Kings, queens, writers like Tennyson and Charles Dickens, and scientist Issac Newton are buried in the abbey.

London-2

London-3393

And then – please don’t be too jealous 😉 – we spent a day at Harry Potter Studios London. It’s not an amusement park – it’s the actual sound stages that the movie was filmed on. And it totally honors all the people who worked behind the scenes to make the magic happen for all of us, which makes this television director very happy. 🙂 The amount of detail that went into every single aspect of the film series is astounding. I think I photographed every inch of the place!

Things to do in London

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Things to do in London

Things to do in London

It tastes like butterscotch soda. 🙂

IMG_3618

As the ultimate Harry Potter fan, Melissa may have experienced the best birthday ever. Happy birthday, Missy!

Things to do in London

Eventually, it was time to return to reality. I’ve been wanting to visit London since high school, and now it’s finally checked off my list. I have no idea where my next travel adventure will take me, but it will probably be somewhere here at home. A cab driver laughed at me about visiting London before seeing the Grand Canyon… She has a very good point. 🙂

London-3707

LONDON! (Somerset House – elBulli / Ferran Adrià & the Art of Food)

Let’s call this the “time-when-I-dropped-everything-and-ran-away-across-the-pond-for-six-days”. The summer was incredibly busy between the full time job, a large food photography project, photographing a few weddings, and spending some weekends away. It was wonderful and fun, but I was pulled in so many different directions that I needed to hit the “reset” button. So when my old college roomie Melissa mentioned she was travelling to London, and invited me to join her, I jumped at the opportunity. Okay, maybe I didn’t jump…there was much indecision over the cost of travelling to London. I’ve been working so hard to save money, and London is not a bargain destination. But I never traveled there, so I chose to seize the opportunity.

London

 I had a half-day to myself before Melissa arrived, so I spent the morning wandering around. I absolutely love getting aclamated to new cities by wandering around. I love taking in the sites, the locals, getting a sense of how roads twist around, exploring little odd shops, and visiting cafes. During my walk, I came across the Somerset House, which I had been told about when I arrived. What happened to be on exhibit? Ferran Adrià and The Art of Food!

Exhibits in London

The exhibit was an overview of how Ferran Adrià began his career as a chef and went on to be one of the world’s top chefs. He developed art through culinary and scientific creativity, and created a new philosophy about food. During the beginning of his career, a chef told him that “creativity means not copying”, which drove Adrià to develop a style of his own. (And if you’re from the Boston area – are you familiar with Harvard’s Science and Cooking Lecture series? This guy had a *little* something to do with it! Or Modernist Cuisine, anyone?)

So I wanted to share a few photos from the exhibit! There was sooo much to look at, read, and take in, but I picked a bunch of my favorites from the exhibit to share.

Ferran Adrià and the Art of Food

Principles of elBulli

Exhibits in London

Exhibits in London

Everyone who dined at elBulli received a box of chocolates at the end of their meal.

Exhibits in London

The Art of Food Exhibit London elBulli exhibit London el Bulli exhibit London

elBulli London museum exhibit

I sat in front of this food photography wall for quite some time… How incredible would it be to have your work displayed like this?!

The Somerset House London

A film is projected onto a white table cloth. Sit down, and feel as if you’re enjoying a meal at elBulli!

Ferran Adrià

Many illustrations about the science of cooking.

 

The Science of Cooking

Science! (of cooking)

Ferran Adrià

Yes, Ferran Adrià is this guy. 😉

Part 2 of my trip to London coming sometime soon!