Growing up, many a family dinners were spent around a big plate of freshly blanched asparagus during Spring. When I saw the first asparagus at Boone Hall Farms, I could not resist. We're eating lots of them! In salads with a lemon honey vinaigrette. In soups with a dab of creme fraiche. Charred with a sprinkle of sea salt and oregano. The farm also had the first strawberries of the season which is a good thing because I suspect a rabbit is eating the wild strawberries I planted last year.
I love Spring. Everything and everyone takes on a new attitude. It's a rebirth. Since submitting the final book files to the printers last Monday, I have been experiencing my own rebirth so to speak. In a little over 5 weeks, four months of hard work will be coming together in a lovely binded package. So surreal. I gave it, I gave you my all. I have worked with the most wonderful team of editors and designers. So many emotions.
Elated, calm, sleepy. I gave myself an entire day of doing stuff. Walking downtown with the dogs, taking B. out for dinner. Just stuff. Then it was back to shoots and new clients. Normalcy in craziness suits me fine it seems. Just as Heidi very mentioned in a post, after the work day is over, I crave repetition to keep me grounded. By the way, her new cookbook is stunning! I can't wait to start cooking from it!
Simple things. On repeat. Favorite songs. Baking cookies. Eating asparagus and grilling fish almost daily. Simple things are essential to my inner peace. Living on the water, going to the dock to check on our crab traps or to the marina to get freshly caught fish is one of my little pleasures. When the fish guy showed up with freshly caught red snapper, you can bet I put a couple in my basket!
Our evening ritual now that the days are longer and the temperatures appropriate for shorts and t-shirts is to sit on the back deck with a cold drink while we grill and make small plates of salads, grilled bread with tomatoes and garlic, crunchy carrots and aioli. Grilled snapper with oregano served with roasted baby mixed peppers and asparagus. This is a typical dinner for us. Nothing grand but everything fresh and accompanied by simple preparations.
If only around dinner time, we can enjoy time slow down a bit. I certainly hope you will be able to crank the grill soon and enjoy simple and fresh flavors such as these.
Ah! I keep forgetting an important update: the book title has changed from "Foodography" to "Plate To Pixel. Digital Food Photography and Styling" the cover has been redesigned a little (see here) but it's taking some time for booksellers to update their data base. The book will be available online worldwide through your country's amazon page around late April and on bookstores shelves early May. Yep. It's coming up soon!
Grilled Red Snapper With Roasted Mixed Peppers and Asparagus:
two small fresh red snappers
1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano
salt and pepper to taste
1-2 cups mixed baby peppers left whole (or 1 small red and 1 small yellow peppers sliced lengthwise)
1 pound asparagus
Prepare the fish:
Preheat the grill to medium high.
Brush the red snappers with olive oil and sprinkle them with the oregano and salt and pepper to taste. Place on the grill racks and cook 4-5 minutes on each side.
In the meantime, preheat the oven to 375F (you can prepare the veggies on the grill too). Wash the asparagus. Break the bottom stems off and discard. Toss the asparagus spears and peppers in some olive oil, then place them on a parchment paper or Silpat lined baking sheet. Season with salt and pepper. Roast the vegetables for 12-14 minutes, or until tender and cooked through.