Three years ago, exactly to the date, I was letting you in on a pretty big move in my life. Both in my immediate geography and career. When I was asked by the creative director of Time Inc Books in Birmingham, Al to come work for them as Senior Photographer three years ago, the timing was perfect. I was ready for a little more time in one place with the possibility to work with dedicated and talented food and prop stylists everyday.
I put my whole heart into it, I learned so much more than I could ever think of. Meant some wonderful people in the world of publishing. Editors, graphic designers, recipe developers and test kitchen professionals who have fed my soul and belly with beautiful pages and great food.
I am so happy that I answered yes to the offer three years ago but now, it is time. We are moving back to Charleston, SC. I resigned from my position and I am going back to being a freelance photographer!
After my father in law passed away, we made a promise to my mother in law to be present to take care of her. Be present. Be in the present. That has always been the pushing force for us. Charleston, back home, is where we need to be. After two years not being able to find work, my husband got his position back at the College and is a happy fish again. I am excited about the world unfolding before me and already have my head going wild with ideas about collaborations, work, projects. Life is always on the other side of fear.
I am looking forward to more time for workshops, travels, work, work and more work. Because I love what I do and hope to be doing this for a long long time. Thank you all for wishing us well on our new adventures three years ago. Hope you will be excited as I am to follow my new adventures along.
Once again, bear with me as I pack boxes and more boxes and settle into our new life (and new studio space!). In the meantime, it's Friday. That means tacos and drinks in this house! Pork Belly Tacos With Cilantro Avocado Cream to be precise.
Makes 4 tacos:
4 corn tortillas
8 1/4-inch thick pork belly slices
4 large or 8 small Bibb lettuce leaves
1/2 medium red onion, sliced
1 ripe avocado, pitted and skinned
1 garlic clove
1/4 cilantro, roughly chopped
1 jalapeno, cut in half, stems and seeds removed
juice and zest of 1/2 a lime
1/2 creme fraiche or sour cream
2 Tb to 1/4 cup light cream or half&half
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 to 3/4 cup cotija cheese
1/2 to 3/4 cup cotija cheese
fresh cilantro to garnish
On a grill or in a skillet place on the stove on medium high heat, grill the tortillas until warm and just blistered on both sides. Remove from the heat, cover with foil and keep warm.
In a skillet set over medium heat, cook the pork belly slices until crispy like bacon, about 15 minutes, flipping them every so often (just like you would bacon, but will take longer due to their thickness).
Drain on paper towels.
In a food processor, place the avocado, garlic. cilantro jalapeno, lime zest and juice and process until smooth. Remove from food processor and place in a large bowl. Add the creme fraiche or sour cream and stir with a spoon. Add enough light cream or half&half to make it a drizzle consistency. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Assemble the tacos by layering one tortilla with one large or a couple of smaller Bibb lettuce leaves, one slice pork belly cut up, cojita cheese, red onion slices, fresh cilantro and the avocado-cilantro cream.