I learned from my query this week that my friend amamgets’ quirky kitchen ritual is having everything perfectly in place, arranged like a photo shoot before she actual begins cooking. Amamgets is an amazing cook as well as a serious photographer, so her mis en place fetish is really just good time management. She can take a few photos, cook dinner and call it a day. I also learned from several uberbloggers, most notably The Amateur Gourmet, that photographs dramatically enhance a blog’s appeal. Readers appreciate the intimacy and, afterall the purpose of the blog is to increase readership and keep any and all loyal reader(s) pleased. Hence, my attempt with the photos yesterday.
Tonight I share with you my mis en place.
Of course, I could have taken photographs that actually detail my preparation of the Salmon Steaks with Pistachio Butter. But in the spirit of intimacy I give you the reality upon which the success of my cooking adventures hinge this evening: red wine (it’s Friday night!) and as the recipe reveals, pistachios. My inspiration originally comes from the McAllen, Texas Junior League Cookbook Some Like it Hot. I have a growing collection of Junior League Cookbooks from around the country, but this particular gem comes from a compilation of recipes from over 200 Junior League Cookbooks in The Centennial Cookbook. Call me old-fashioned (please not an anti-feminist), but I always wonder what Mrs. Robert So-And-So’s kitchen was like as she prepared meals for her family. What was her most coveted kitchen utensil? Did she have quirky habits? The recipes are so real, reflecting the lives of thousands of community volunteers and homemakers around our country. For the record, I am a Jr. League drop out — a story which would require an entire post, hum…perhaps entire blog. In my defense it doesn’t involve anything risque or illegal.
- 12 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 3 tablespoons pistachio nuts, shelled
- 1/2 lime zest
In a food processor, cream the butter. Add the pistachios and lime zest. Process until well blended and creamy. Store butter in refrigerator until read to serve with salmon.
So the photo doesn’t really do the meal justice. Here is my personal plea: if you like the concept of photography on my blog, please let Husband know that I need a new and improved digital camera. You can reach him by posting here or at his blog The Spaghetti Bender. Please don’t let me down. I need this camera. You need this camera.
My long-time reader(s) will note that I have yet to post a blog about baking or desserts. After the swell of the holidays I put baking pleasures on hiatus. But, after reading over 700 Junior League recipes last night, the temptation to make dessert was too much. I gave in to a simple, yet sure to please, Peanut Butter Pie with Pretzel Crust from the Reading, PA League.
First I made a simple pie crust with finely crushed pretzels, sugar and butter. Then I whipped cream cheese, confectioners’ sugar, peanut butter and Cool Whip together for what promises to be too much. I tried to download some photojournalistic evidence of this pie, but after three attempts I have failed. Funny, two glasses of wine ago the photos above were simple to mis en place.