12 Jun

But is it art?

By Silver Blue

When I had my kitchen renovated in 2009 (thanks to Mom and Dad), I was left with a very tough decision. What to use to keep the walls from being blank and bare. It shouldn’t have been that big of an issue, just find some prints I liked and put them on the wall, right? After all, isn’t that what everyone else (who doesn’t USE a kitchen) does? Somehow, cookie-cutter wasn’t going to cut it for me. (One of the photos contains a word that is NSFW, but it was on a retail package.)

A suggestion was made that since I like photographing the food I make, to use it. You know, it made sense. That way, I could rotate the photos as I saw fit, and it would be things that meant something to me on display. So, I went for it. (Each photo is signed “Silver Blue” and dated with the year it was taken.)

The original backsplash, featured lacquered scallops, a still-life of a bread basket, and three different types of soups (Soup à la Crécy (a carrot based soup), Spicy Sweet Potato Soup, and a Cranberry Wild Rice Soup).

The second iteration had a close up of the Chef Cherished Teddy (wearing his “Kiss the Cook” apron), Boiled Custard, and the Still Life.

I then acquired hyper-caffeinated coffee (thanks to the housemate, Sandi, who vacationed in New Orleans), and the middle picture was removed and replaced with:

The coffee came in Censored and Non-Censored Packaging. Of course, may as well have a photo of the Wannabe Gourmet in his kitchen, yes?

The wall by the stove became:

Displaying the Strawberry Mousse Chocolat, Pavlovas, London Broil with Mushroom Risotto and veggies, and a Spicy Beef and Broccoli soup with garlic Crostini.

The photos have been rotated as well, with the inclusion of me, offering coffee:

(taken on my late Grandmother’s porch, the day of her funeral) — and this photo came down when the hyper-caffeinated coffee photo went on display. It was replaced with:

An artistic take on an out-of-focus shot made with my Blackberry at “Perfectly Franks” (hot dog and hamburger place) in the University Village on the campus where I work. There was something about the way this photo came together in this surreal sort of way…cartoon? Pen drawing? I liked it, and it went up. Of course, things are meant to be changed so…

The current wall. Notice how the boiled custard returned, the Pavlova disappeared, and the Chorizo pasta (from yesterday’s post) are now featured. (When do I decide to change? Well, honestly, when my local photo developer has a sale on 8x10s. LOL)

Finally, I had some dead space above the doorway. Nothing wrong with empty wallspace, but…it seemed to be asking for something. Something big. Something tasty.

So, I acquiesced with a giant picture of “the perfect burger” (which you’ll find over on The Wannabe Gourmet). I’ve yet to find another photo that works as well as that one, however. (I’ll do a feature on the renovation of the kitchen at a later date.)

Silver Blue, who answers the subject with “Art is in the eye of the beholder.”

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10 Jun

Taste Bud Temptations

By Silver Blue | 2 comments


First off, a note about comments: If you wish to comment (and I welcome them), you have to click on the name of the post, which will open it, and the comment box is at the bottom of the screen.

I make no apologies for my love of cooking. I love deconstructing recipes to their base flavours and seeing if there are ways to lighten the calorie count without compromising taste or texture.

Whether from the land or sea, food takes many forms that interest me. Here, I present some photos that didn’t make it to The Wannabe Gourmet, and some that did. As I say over there, I’m no food stylist, nor am I a professional photographer. To that end, what you see is what I eat. Most likely within minutes of taking the picture. There are no tricks of the trade (toothpicks, food dye, Photoshop) involved.

Ebelskiver, a pancake puff that can be made savory or sweet. Here, they’re filled with finely diced ham, feather shredded cheese, and sauteed scallions:

3 or 4 of these delicacies, along with a fresh crisp green salad is all that it takes for a filling meal. Of course, you need a specialized pan to make them (Williams Sonoma sells an Ebelskiver Pan, and Bed Bath & Beyond calls it a “Pancake Puff Pan.” You can guess which is cheaper. Ergo, you can also tell which will last you longer and gives you the more consistent results. (Because of the specialty pan, this didn’t make The Wannabe Gourmet.)

Scallops, two ways:

Baked scallops (topped with fresh breadcrumbs and fresh grated Parmesan cheese) along with sauteed veggies. Sweet as a nut, and so very tasty. Step up the class (and calorie count), and lower the amount you can comfortably consume with Coquilles St. Jacques:

Enrobed in a Bechemel sauce (a white sauce made of a roux (flour and butter) and cream), sauteed scallops and scallions are topped with finely shredded cheese and placed under the broiler just long enough to brown the cheese. A dish this size (a standard soup bowl) could feed two or even three comfortably when served with veggies, a salad, or even fruit.

Another dish that didn’t make it to The Wannabe Gourmet was this simplistic Chorizo based pasta sauce with steamed broccoli and fruit cup. The thing I loved about this photo is the glass the fruit cup is in. There’s no liquid in it. I merely chilled it before placing the fruit in it, and the condensation on the inside of the glass gave it an awesome look. Why didn’t it make the cut? The only recipe would for a pasta sauce (with sliced Chorizo). Angel hair pasta (fresh or dried), steamed broccoli, and a fruit cup need no recipes.

Finally, we need a dessert. Something light. Meringue is a classic light dessert, and when served with a whipped cream and fruit, becomes a Pavlova:

The hardest thing about this dish is finding the non-humid, non-rainy day to make it. They are so very tasty, however. 🙂

I’ve not even begun to scratch the surface with the food photos however…but we have lots of time ahead of us…no need in attempting to do it all in one sitting!

Silver Blue, who is in need of a good cup of tea.

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Days of Silver Blue

May 2021

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