I’m pleased to report that one of my images was chosen for the cover of the August 2014 Issue of Feast Magazine. This is the Feast 50 issue, and there are tons of amazing photographs of food and beverages by myself and the other amazing photographers that I have the pleasure of working with. Pick up a copy at your local newstand or you can read the issue online at feastmagazine.com
I love making pizza at home, and have gotten pretty good at a variety of different styles and crusts. When I make pizza at home, in general, it is much more healthy than it is when I go out for a pie, if for no other reason than I make my pizza’s smaller at home, and I usually go with minimal toppings for both taste and practicality (home made pizzas can get easily bogged down with heavy toppings). As I’ve mentioned in earlier posts, I’m spending the year being trained in better eating habits and exercise by the Precision Nutrition (PN) program (so far the results have been pretty amazing). Part of this weekend’s lesson was the challenge to make a truly healthy pizza. As usual, I started with a base recipe found in Gourmet Nutrition (a PN publication) and made a few changes based on my personal preferences and what I had around the house for ingredients.
Now that the weather is finally on the nicer side of “when the hell will spring get here anyway” I’ve been wearing shorts, finally. Over the decade that I lived in NYC I think I owned and wore one single pair of shorts, and then I probably only wore them in the privacy of my 250 square foot studio apartment in East Harlem. I don’t think I was every chided for wearing shorts in New York, but I always suspected that people would secretly talk trash about my pale knees if wore shorts in public. However, now that I live in the city where some dudes think it’s totally ok to wear flip-flops to the bar on a Saturday night, I have found that I don’t have the same qualms as I did on the east coast, and I wear shorts all the freakin’ time. Where was I going with that? Oh yeah, it’s warm enough to wear shorts! Hooray!
I’ve been trying to eat healthier things these days, and one of the things that I’ve been trying to cut down on is gluten. I don’t have a gluten allergy or intolerance, and I’m certainly not going to give up bread. However, some people think that we would all feel better physically if we cut down on the gluten a bit anyway, so I’m giving it a shot. I picked up some cellophane noodles (otherwise known as mung bean noodles) at my local Asian market with the idea that they would be healthier for me. After checking out the nutritional information online, I’m not so sure that they are. They have more calories, more carbs, and seemingly less intrinsic value as a nutritional source than regular old wheat noodles. That said, they are gluten-free, so they have that going for them. Oh, and they are also wonderful to eat.
Keeping my energy up during big shoots is important. Sometimes I’m too busy to take the time to sit down and eat something. Other times I forget about eating entirely. When we have a craft services table set up for big shoots, I can sometimes grab a bite in between things, but on the smaller shoots, sometimes it is helpful to have something quick and healthy that I can munch on. This week’s healthy food from the studio is a little strange, but bear with me: protein bars made out of black beans.
You know what is delicious? Mayonnaise. You know what is really bad for you? Mayonnaise. Since I’ve been on this whole health kick lately, I have been avoiding things like mayonnaise and all of the wonderful things that you can make with mayonnaise. But then I discovered Greek yogurt (about three years after the rest of the country) and have been substituting it for mayo in just about every recipe that I’ve tried. 100 grams of mayo has 680 calories and 75 grams of fat. The same amount of Greek yogurt has 59 calories and only .4 grams of fat. So it’s a no brainer. Sometimes all it takes to substitute yogurt for mayo is a little pinch more of salt. In a lot of cases you can’t taste the difference at all. Lunch at the studio today was one of my new favorite recipes using Greek yogurt … Avocado Egg Salad.
I rarely eat what I photograph. I’m not getting any younger over here, and when you spend your day photographing food and booze … well, it can be tough to stay in shape. So, one of the biggest reasons I don’t eat everything I photograph is because I don’t want to turn into a big tub of goo. There are other reasons of course, – you can read about them in a post from a couple of months back, Do You Get To Eat That? – but health is a big one.
It is freezing cold in St. Louis (today’s high is in the single digits). Luckily for me, this week has been filled with mostly in-house work. Other than a few excursions to the grocery store, and quick dog-walks, I’ve been pretty much been holed up in my warm(ish) studio shooting food and beverages. I am working on new portfolio work, and doing some testing of some new equipment. Lotsa fun!
Dr. Wife and I have been using Green Bean Delivery for a few months now, and although we have gotten a number of things that we didn’t particularly care for (and occasionally have struggled to use up everything we get each week) overall we’ve been fairly pleased with the service. When you are as busy as we are, having a few fresh ingredients brought to your door is a nice luxury. Over the last couple of weeks we’ve been getting some delicious rainbow carrots in our bin, and although we are starting to get a little bit of a backlog in carrots (after all, there are only so many carrots you can eat), this particular batch of carrots is particularly pretty.
When I was growing up there was a black walnut tree growing in an alley at the end of our property. All that I knew about it was that it dropped messy green golfball-sized seeds everywhere which would stain your hands black if you tried to break them open to get at the nuts inside. Now that I am a grown-up I’ve discovered just how awesome black walnuts are. Despite the fact that they are a pricey due to the difficulty in hulling and their relative scarcity, they are one of my favorite nuts. Their distinctive rich flavor is something that I look forward to each fall.