Tag Archives: Boston food photographers

Turkey Vegetable Meatloaf

The idea of “Project Use All The Food Products In My Kitchen” kind of got launched with I made a gluten-free version of my grandmother’s banana bread. I had come home from the market one afternoon, stood in front of my pantry, and played a game of Tetris to make everything fit. It’s somewhat organized – spices are on a little rack, bottles are next to it, boxes are lined up… But I realized I kept buying new ingredients for recipes and not using enough of what I already have. I’ve also been eating out way too much, and rather see that money either in my bank account or spent on a vacation. Or on the road bike I’ve been lusting over for longer than I care to admit. Or on a gorgeous pair of shoes. 😉

Anyway, this food clutter situation extends into my freezer. For the next few weeks, there’s seriously no reason to purchase anything other than vegetables, fruit, milk, eggs, and maybe bread. And that’s how this turkey meatloaf recipe came to be. What did I have on hand, and what could I make with it? A package of ground turkey in the freezer, a red onion that had nothing better to do than be cooked in butter, a portobello mushroom that overstayed it’s welcome, and oh hey – some baby spinach would probably taste great and add some awesome color. The only bread crumbs I had were gluten-free, so those got thrown in. I didn’t have enough ketchup for a traditional meatloaf recipe, but I did have a jar of Dave’s Gourmet Red Heirloom Organic Pasta Sauce that I found on sale at Whole Foods a few weeks ago! (I often see Dave’s Gourmet sauces in Home Goods too. Always fun to save a few pennies by buying it there.)

turkey vegetable meatloaf recipe

Um, I don’t ever want to eat “regular” meatloaf again. This will be my go-to recipe. Jeff says it’s addictive. We almost polished off the ENTIRE loaf for dinner, restraining ourselves and leaving two pieces for the next day’s lunch. I made this a little over a week ago while on the verge of getting sick, so I made it again this weekend just to make sure my tastebuds weren’t off…

I might go back into the kitchen after writing this and have thirds!

 

5.0 from 1 reviews
Turkey Vegetable Meatloaf
Author: 
Recipe type: Dinner
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
 
Ingredients
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup red onion, chopped
  • 2 medium (or 1 large) portobello mushroom, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • A handful of baby spinach
  • 1¼ lbs ground turkey
  • ½ cup bread crumbs (substitute gluten-free bread crumbs, if you'd like)
  • 1 egg
  • ¾ cup Dave's Gourmet Red Heirloom Organic Pasta Sauce
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon pepper
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Melt the butter in a skillet.
  3. Add the onion, mushroom, and garlic and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the spinach when the mixture has a minute or so left to cook.
  4. Spoon mixture into a bowl to cool for a few minutes.
  5. Combine turkey, bread crumbs, egg, pasta sauce, salt, pepper, and the vegetable mixture.
  6. Spread the meatloaf into an 8x4 loaf pan. (I lined mine with parchment paper.)
  7. Bake for 50-55 minutes.

 

Side Note – This is not a sponsored post. I seriously had a jar of Dave’s Gourmet sauce sitting around, begging to be used.

 

Mmmmm, bacon! Food Photography for Bacon Lab

The quest for the perfect slice of bacon is on! It seems like it’s everywhere these days, appearing on traditional BLT sandwiches, to donuts and ice cream. Kim Courtney of Bacon Lab is on a mission to create a flavored, shelf-stable bacon product and recently launched a Kickstarter campaign to get her vision off the ground. I recently spent an afternoon photographing (and tasting!) the four flavors she’s developed so far – maple and brown sugar, bourbon, sriracha, and chocolate and almond. Bacon Lab has already received a mention on Boston Magazine’s website, and has a little under a month to reach the fundraising goal.

Bacon Lab Cambridge MA

Boston Food Photographer

Boston Food Photographer

Mama’s banana bread, with a twist!

The cool, rainy, dreary weather created an irresistible urge to play in the kitchen… As I went through my cookbooks, I found a little book my mother put together a few years ago, containing several of my grandmother’s favorite dessert recipes. Her banana bread was always delicious, and I luckily had a few overripe bananas on hand.

I also have a variety of flours I’ve been wanting to experiment with. I stocked up on almond, millet, quinoa, and other types of gluten-free flours awhile ago for a few different cookbook recipes. So instead of using the all-purpose flour the recipe called for, I created my own flour combination. Regular wheat flour (all-purpose flour) is made by grinding roots and grains together, and each gluten-free flour is a particular kind of grain, starch, bean, or nut. They taste best when a few are combined together.

I chose quinoa, millet, and buckwheat flours for a few simple reasons. I never tried quinoa or buckwheat flours, and I had just a little bit of millet leftover. I also wanted to use millet flour because it’s slightly sweet and adds a crumbly texture to baked goods. Quinoa flour was an easy choice because I’ve seen several recipes for cakes and cupcakes that use it, and I read that buckwheat flour pairs great with chocolate. (Have to love anything that pairs well with chocolate!)

Back to Mama’s recipe. The first ingredient – 1/2 cup of shortening. That was quickly replaced with a 1/2 stick of unsalted butter. The 2 cups of all-purpose flour was replaced with 2/3 cups of each gluten-free flour. Chocolate isn’t in her original recipe, but I had a bag of semi-sweet chips on hand, so why not add that too?

Gluten-Free Banana Bread

The first attempt was pretty decent. The loaf could have stayed in the oven for another 10 minutes – it took a lot longer to bake than what Mama’s recipe instructed. It also came out really sweet, and a bit dense for my liking. So I tried again. I cut down the sugar from 1 1/2 cups to 1 cup, and traded in the semi-sweet chocolate chips for dark chocolate. I also made sure the butter was at room temperature before mixing it in with the sugar, and mixed it for a lot longer than what I did the first time around. (It took about 6-7 minutes for the sugar and butter to cream together.)

The result was much better the second time around. While banana bread isn’t meant to be light and spongy, it came out less dense than the first loaf. Cutting down the sugar and changing the chocolate was another good call. This is a rich bread – not a super sweet cake. That, and dark chocolate rules. Enjoy the weekend!

Gluten-Free Banana Bread

Mama's (Gluten-Free!) Banana Bread
Author: 
Recipe type: Gluten-Free
Cuisine: Dessert
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
 
The prep time is approximate.
Ingredients
  • ½ cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • ¼ cup sour milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • ⅔ cup quinoa flour
  • ⅔ cup millet flour
  • ⅔ cup buckwheat flour
  • ¼ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¾ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 2-3 mashed ripe bananas
  • 1 11.5 package of extra dark chocolate chips
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. To make sour milk, add 1 teaspoon of vinegar to the ¼ cup of milk.
  3. Prepare the flour mixture - in a bowl, whisk together all the dry ingredients until well combined.
  4. In a separate large mixing bowl, mix together the butter and sugar.
  5. Beat in the eggs, then add the sour milk and vanilla. Mix until everything is combined.
  6. Continuing to mix the wet ingredients, gradually add the dry.
  7. Once the dry ingredients are fully mixed in, add the bananas.
  8. Pour in the chocolate chips and fold into the batter.
  9. Line a 5" x 9" loaf pan with parchment paper, and pour the mixture in.
  10. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour 30 minutes.

 

Food Blog Forum – Brunch at Whole Foods in Orlando

Food Blog Forum

 The brunch at Whole Foods in Orlando gets a separate post because I was able to photograph food in decent light. (And the other posts were getting lengthy… 😉 )

Mason jar parfaits, BBQ pork on habanero corn bread, quinoa breakfast salad, strawberry caprese… After all the excitement of the weekend, a leisurely Sunday brunch was a great way to unwind and spend more time with new friends. I’m not going to “talk” too much in this post… I’ll let the photos speak for themselves.

Food Blog Forum

Food Blog Forum

Food Blog Forum

 Food Blog Forum

Food Blog Forum

Food Blog Forum

Food Blog Forum

Food Blog Forum

Food Blog Forum

Whole Foods Orlando

Todd Porter and Diane Cu

Loved seeing Diane and Todd again!

I met some really cool, wonderful, talented people during the conference. Some of them are writers, others are chefs, and most simply enjoy sharing their love of cooking and food. I hope you take a few minutes to check out their blogs!

In no particular order:

Julius of Droolius

Erin of Eat Bake Drink Cook

Vijay of NoshOnIt.com

Annelies of The Food Poet

Kiran of KiranTarun.com

Kasey of Kasey’s Kitchen

Charles of Local Forkful

Lindsey of Love and Olive Oil

Heather of Heather Likes Food

Katie of Katie’s Cucina

Ashley of Couture Palate

Tricia of Once a Month Mom

Stephanie of Macaroni and Cheesecake

Jessica of Cooking Bright

Happy New Year!

Happy 2013!!! I hope you had a wonderful time on Monday night! I rang in the new year with some of my favorite people.

NYE at The Burren in Somerville, MA

Photo from Annette’s Instagram account. Thanks, Annette!

NYE at The Burren in Somerville, MA

Back in November, I reflected on the past year and how grateful I am for supportive friends and family, and how my photography business grew in such a short amount of time. This site isn’t even a year old yet, and I’m still a bit speechless over the wonderful clients and opportunities that came along. So where will it go from here?

I hope to double the amount of clients I work with. I love working with restaurants and small businesses – it never feels like work and I love seeing them happy with the results! It’s fun helping clients promote their products and business. I also photographed some awesome events, and look forward to working with those organizations again in 2013. I already booked a new client and can’t wait to photograph their Valentine’s Day chocolate collection.

I hope to complete my camera kit. I upgraded my gear a few months ago, but still need to purchase a flash and another lens. Okay, maybe two lenses. And another camera body. I don’t want to drop a lot of money on rentals, and there’s only so many times Jeff is going to let me borrow his. 😉

I will learn how to shoot video on my DSLR. Work got so busy, I never got a chance to play around with shooting video with my new camera! I’ve worked in TV for almost 11 years, so I’m excited to start offering another service to clients.

I hope to be in a position to rent a studio space by the end of 2013. Right now I work on location, and work on personal projects in my living room. Food photography props are neatly tucked away all over my apartment. It would be nice to have them organized in one place that doesn’t take up my actual living space. I’d love to work in a studio space filled with sunlight. (I sit in a dark room all day at my 9-5 job. I need more vitamin D in my life!)

 

Let’s see, what else… Last year my personal goals were to double the amount of money I put into my savings account each month. Done. I wanted to cook more instead of eating frozen meals. Done. Every year I say I want to run a 5k and never do. I did it a few weeks ago, and managed not to re-injure my knee. Yay!

Somerville Jingle Bell Run 2012

Somerville Jingle Bell Run 2012

The resolution I failed miserably at? Calling friends who live far away more often. I don’t know what happened. (I’m sorry!!! 🙁  ) We exchanged emails and Facebook messages, and I visited a few in Los Angeles earlier this year… But I need to pick up the phone more often. Or get out of the dark ages and use Skype more. Or Google+ chat…or something.

So this year I will pick up the phone more often. I will cook at home even more instead of eating out. Even though my rent is about to go up a lot, I will keep saving money.

So what are your goals and resolutions this year? Any big, exciting projects or trips coming up?