Baked pumpkin with porcini mushrooms and bacon

pumpkin

Pumpkins are so versatile. The things you can do with pumpkins are endless. If you’ve never cooked one before, you’re in for a real treat.

Ingredients:

- 1 pumpkin

- 5 cloves garlic, peeled and cut in small pieces

- olive oil

- 1 red onion peeled and chopped

- salt

- pepper

- 1 tablespoon turmeric

- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg

- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

- 200 g bacon cut in small pieces

- 200 g porcini mushrooms

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 450ºF. Cut the lid off the pumpkin and reserve it. Scoop out the seeds with a spoon and keep them to one side.

Heat a frying pan over a medium heat. Pour in a splash of olive oil, then add the chopped onion, chopped garlic, bacon and turmeric . Cook gently for 10 minutes until bacon is made. Add the mushrooms, the nutmeg and cinnamon. Season with salt and pepper.

Put the pumpkin on a baking tray. Add inside the mushroom mix. Put in the oven for 1 hour and 20 min. Take the lid off and leave it for another 20 min.  The pumpkin is ready when you can easily push a knife into it. Bring it to the table and open it up in front of everyone. Cut it into thick wedges and tuck in, leaving the skin. Serve with seasonal greens.

Enjoy!

pumpkin

 

pumpkin

Pumpkin soup with turmeric

pumpkin soup

Better pumpkin soup in the world. You can see the pumpkins that I used in the photos.I was so surprised that are so good. I don’t know the name of this type of pumpkin, but it is so good.

pumpkin soup

pumpkin soup

 

Ingredients:

- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter

- 3  pumpkins , halved and seeded

- salt and freshly ground pepper

- 1 medium onion, chopped

- 3 cloves garlic, minced

- 1 teaspoon turmeric

- 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

- 8 cups chicken or vegetable stock

pumpkin soup

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line one baking sheet with parchment paper. Coat it with 1 tablespoon butter, and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon water. Season flesh of pumpkins generously with salt; place cut-side down on sheet. Roast until tender, 30 to 45 minutes.

Meanwhile, melt remaining 4 tablespoons butter in pan. Add onions and cook until translucent. Add garlic, turmeric  and nutmeg. Cook and stir frequently, for 2 minutes. Set aside.

When pumpkin is cool enough to handle, using a spoon, scrape flesh from skin into the pan. Stir in stock, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat; reduce to a simmer, and cook over low heat for 30 minutes. Blend soup using an immersion blender or in batches in a blender. Season with salt and pepper. Serve the soup with pumpkin seeds and cheese. Enjoy!

pumpkin soup

One Lovely Blog Award

onelovelyblogaward

I was happy to be nominated  for One Lovely Blog award, by Noemie from  Noémie’s Kitchen. I am so happy  that I can help and inspire people to cook and take good photos of food. So thank you so much Noemie.

The rules for this nomination seem to be quite straight forward so here it comes:

Rules for winning

1. Thank the person who has nominated you. Provide a link to his/her blog.

2. List the rules and display the award pic.

3. Include 7 facts about yourself.

4. Nominate some other bloggers and let them know that they have been nominated.

5. Display the award logo and follow the blogger who nominated you.

So here it goes:

7 facts about myself

1- I love food so much and taking photos of food became like a second nature to me.

2- I don’t like fish soup. Never tried it and never will even I love to try new food.

3- Love chocolate.

4- I love traveling. Love seeing new places, hear new stories.

5- One of my dreams is to go in a safari in Africa.

6-  I don’t like too much broccoli

7- I always look for inspiration. You can find it everywhere.

The nominations for this award will be:

1 Ruhlman photography

2 La Petite paniere

3 Love life eat

4 Frugal Feeding

5 Food by Linda

Those sites are an inspiration for me. Check them out and you will not regret. We all have something to learn from each other.

Beetroot smoothie

Beetroot smoothie

Beets contain a host of beneficial nutrients, but should never be drunk by themselves in large quantities.  Beetroot juice contains magnesium, phosphorous, sodium, calcium, iron, copper, selenium, zinc and manganese – all of which are essential to a healthy immune system.

Beets are extremely helpful in creating red blood cells. Red blood cells carry oxygen to the entire body, so it is imperative to support these guys from the inside out.

Ingredients:

- 1 small beetroot

- 1 peeled banana

- 1/2 lemon juice

- 1 cup water or soy milk

Directions:

Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. Pour into glasses.

Enjoy!

Broccoli puree

Broccoli puree

Not all of us love broccoli. I am not a fan, but I need to eat broccoli because is very healthy. My little boy loves broccoli. So I prepare it for me with more spices so I can feel less of it taste. Here is a recipe for a broccoli puree which you can eat with bread or put in mini tarts as appetizer.

Ingredients:

- 1 big broccoli

- 2-3 cloves garlic

- salt

- fresh ground pepper

- ginger (depends on your taste)

- still water

Broccoli puree

Directions:

Place broccoli into steamer rack and steam over medium heat until the broccoli is very tender, about 12 minutes. Transfer the broccoli to the bowl of a food processor. Add the garlic and a little bit of water. Process until the broccoli is pureed and almost smooth. If you need more water just add during the process. You can use a blender too. When is done add salt, pepper and ginger. Enjoy!

You can add also potatoes to the mix to have even less broccoli.
Broccoli puree

Types of food photography

beet root salad_res

There are three main types of food photography: Packaging, Advertising, and Editorial.

1. Packaging

Packaging tends to be the most technical, tedious, and anal-retentive type of food photography. Product packaging shots need to show whatever the subject is in the best possible light. The food should be as clear and should have as much detail as possible. Since the photograph is used on package of a product, it is important to show exactly what is in the box and nothing more. The color, the number of pieces and the product itself should be shown as realistically as possible. Lighting must be relatively flat to show maximum detail and there is definitely not room for special effects.  Most details of the shoot regarding cropping, propping, and backgrounds will be pre-determined.  Your input and creativity will be put on the back burner.  Most of the time at the shoot will be spent poking very small details and dropping images into layouts to see if everything fits just right.  Legal technicalities are carefully considered here and being aware of laws and legal issues is helpful. This kind of work is the toughest.

2.  Advertising

This type of photography is not just used for ads but also for menus, brochures and bill boards. Props, supporting objects can be used more generously and creatively. This type of food photography tends to be less tedious than packaging, but still can be quite restrictive because of layout parameters.  There is usually a layout, and everyone expects that the final photo to end up looking very close to the Artist’s illustration.   There is usually some room for taking advantage of unforeseen opportunities such as props or lighting special effects, but the end result must communicate the idea behind the photograph. There are some constraints here but not as many as in Packaging type Food Photography. In addition, not all the food in the shot needs to be real.  Since these photos can be used on bill boards and large ads in the magazine, the quality of photograph needs to be very high. This translates to high megapixel and high-end cameras.

3. Editorial

This is my favorite one and of most photographers. Food photographs for editorial are often more about cooking-related products than food itself, giving the stylist and photographer a lot of freedom. Editorial photography has broadly saying no limit to creativity and  the most important thing is “making a beautiful image”.  This kind of shot usually makes “lighting” the big issue of the photo.

glazed quinces with chocolate syrup_res

There are also the other types of food photography: recipes, restaurants, stock photography, video and television websites, blogs and eBooks.

4. Recipes

This is the most common form of food photography. The shots require an edible finished dish and should represent the best representation of the recipe. They are for magazines article, cookbook or website.

5. Restaurants

This shots tend to be for editorial purpose : feature in magazines, advertising or menus. In most of the shots the chef prepare the food and you don’t use a food stylist.

6. Stock photography

There is a good market for this type of food photography. Can provide a modest income.  You can use images which were not used for a commissioned shoot. Stock agencies are looking for images that follow popular trends, and they have a “which list” for their contributing photographers.

7. Video and television

This days, a photographer can use his DSLRs with all their lenses, to record short, HD video for all different kind of food subjects.

8. Websites, blogs and eBooks

This is very similar to editorial photography and in fact can be called as a subset of editorial type of food photography. Most of this photography is done at home without much pomp and show, by the amateur.  Is usually taken in natural light, is focused on the food  and attempts to make you “eat the food off the screen”. This days there is a new market for professionals for food blog photography.

pears and yogurt tart_res

 

Summer dessert

summer dessert

First day of fall is here. But, for me, is still summer. So, summer delight dessert on the table in the morning, and is still feels like summer. Outside are 12 degrees Celsius in the morning , but in the middle of the day is 25 degrees. So…. love the weather, love the summer, love the sweet thing in the glass…

Ingredients:

- 100 ml home made yogurt

- 4 tablespoons gluten-free cereals

- 1 cup of blackberries

Directions:

Make layers in the glass with yogurt, cereals and at the end, blackberries. Leave it in the fridge till it served. Enjoy!

summer dessert

Blackberry smoothie

blackberry smoothie

I think you are tired of so many smoothie recipes, but, I am thinking about your health and energy so I have another one. We have in our garden blackberries. This is their time so we use them as much as we can fresh,organic and full with aroma.

Ingredients:

- 1 cup blackberries

- 1 peeled banana

- 1 cup water or soy milk

Directions:

Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. Pour into glasses.

Nice and easy, this smoothie is great for breakfast or between meals. Enjoy!

blackberry smoothieblackberry smoothie

Honeydew melon smoothie

honeydew melon smoothie

This healthy smoothie makes a great quick breakfast or snack and is  full of healthy ingredients. Is lightly sweet and creamy with a very refreshing flavor, a perfect smoothie for those hot summer days!

Ingredients:

- 1/2 cups seeded and chopped honeydew melon

- 1 peeled banana

- 1 cup vanilla soy milk (or yogurt)

- 1/2 cup ice cubs

Directions:

Place all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. Pour into glasses.

honeydew melon smoothie