Thursday, September 27, 2012

Still Life iPhoneography Workshop at 3rd Ward

All images © Valery Rizzo, shot on the iPhone 4s

Hi everyone, I am now an instructor for With Food in Mind and have been asked to teach a workshop about Still Life iPhoneography at 3rd Ward. Learn how to take GOOD photographs of food with your iPhone.

With Food in Mind produces projects at the intersection of food, visual culture and social change. They work with visual and performing artists, architects, musicians, writers, chefs, cooks, farmers and foragers to create grade school curricula, adult workshops, exhibitions, publications and events.

3rd Ward, for those of you that don't already know, is a multi-disiplinary workspace and education center in Bushwick, Brooklyn.

The workshop will be on Saturday, October 20th from 10am - 1pm. Register by October 13th. Interested? Click here

All images © Valery Rizzo

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Spelt Berries and Cucumbers with Garden Update

All images © Valery Rizzo

As you know I have been having lots of fun with my garden this year. I did much better than last year, I may even try composting next year. I also learned that as long as I kept the birds and squirrels fed they would leave my vegetables for alone. I made all kinds of light and healthy dishes all summer long with tomatoes, cucumbers, string beans, eggplants, basil, spearmint and other herbs from the garden. I presently have several red bell peppers I am anxiously waiting to harvest and bunches of strawberries if I get to them before the birds do.

The spelt berry and cucumber recipe was adapted slightly from Mario Batali's book Molto Gusto. I used spelt berries instead of farro which I found at the Park Slope Food Coop and the cherry tomatoes, cucumbers and basil were from my garden.

Spelt and Cucumbers with Cherry Tomatoes, Red Onion and Basil

1 1/2 cups spelt berries

2 or 3 medium cucumbers, cut into 1/4 inch triangles (I used Diva cukes but Kirbies would also work nicely)

1/2 of a red onion, cut into 1/4 inch dice

1 large handful of cherry tomatoes, halved

1 handful fresh basil leaves, thinly sliced (chiffonade) I throw in the tiniest leaves, whole

1/4 cup Lambrusco vinegar

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

Fresh ground black pepper

Sea salt

Combine spelt berries and water to cover by 2 inches in a large saucepan and bring to a simmer, skimming off the foam. Reduce the heat to a bare simmer and cook until berries are just tender, about 1 1/2 hours.

Drain spelt berries and transfer to a large bowl. Add cucumbers, onions, tomatoes and basil, mixing well. Add vinegar, olive oil, salt and fresh pepper, mix well and serve, or let stand at room temperature for 1 hour to bring out the flavors. This can also be made ahead of time and refrigerated for up to 3 days. 

Serves 4 to 6 people.