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Monday, October 31, 2011

Cocktail Couture: Watershed Gin Pumpkin Drop

We Cbusr's sure do love our hometown booze! Columbus is getting some well-deserved local and national recognition for our distilleries, wineries, and breweries. In honor of these fine establishments, I've partnered with fellow Edible Columbus contributor Jenna Brucoli of the fantastic design and fashion blog, Jenna Sais Quois, to bring you Cocktail Couture.

Haute couture refers to the creation of exclusive custom-fitted clothing, usually made from high-quality, expensive fabric and sewn with extreme attention to detail and, often using time-consuming, hand-executed techniques. Well, in relation to these cocktail and accessory pairings, the hand-crafted alcohol is couture. The creators are dedicated to their craft, making award-winning bottles of gin, vodka, whiskey, wine and Tessora (similar to limoncello.)

Our first recipe uses Watershed Gin. Even gin-haters will enjoy this cocktail! (I have proof, I tested the cocktail out on a number of gin-haters.) This makes a fun punch, or if made more concentrated, it's great for shots or mini-cocktails. It's a perfect fall drink, and could be made even more fun with floating spider rings, a sugared rim, or served in hollowed out mini pumpkins.

Pumpkin Drop

1.            1 oz. Watershed Gin
2.            1 oz. pumpkin puree
3.            1 1/2 oz. fresh lemon juice
4.            1 1/2 oz. simple syrup
5.            Ginger Ale

Combine the gin, pumpkin, lemon juice and simple syrup in a cocktail shaker half-filled with ice, and shake briskly until combined. Strain into a shot glass or small highball glass and top off with Ginger Ale. The Ginger Ale can be substituted with champagne, sparkling wine, or cream soda. They're all good!

Here's the link to Jenna's post, with a twist.

In honor of Halloween, I couldn't resist adding a few of my favorite pumpkin photos. Keep an eye out for more Cocktail Couture to come!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Homemade Peach Cobbler Food Photographer | Columbus Ohio

Although peaches are no longer in season in Ohio, I just couldn't wait to post this until next year! So the next time you find yourself with a whole bunch of wonderful peaches, MAKE THIS RECIPE.

It is possible that I will never be satisfied with another peach now that I've found Branstool Orchards. I'd heard the hype, but I didn't believe it until I broke down and tried one of their peaches. I now know why they sell an entire TRUCK of peaches within an hour at the Farmer's Market. It's like you remember what a peach is supposed to taste like! I could photograph these peaches all day long, they deserve the limelight.

Of course, they are perfect on their own, so why make cobbler out of them? Well, because they perish quickly and I'd hate to see a peach like this go to waste! Even eating 3-4 a day, I couldn't get through all of them fast enough, hence the cobbler.

The recipe is below, just keep scrolling!

Here's the recipe, borrowed from and adapted a little:

* 1/2 cup unsalted butter
* 1 cup all-purpose flour
* 2 cups sugar, divided
* 1 tablespoon baking powder
* Pinch of salt
* 3/4 cup milk
* 4 cups fresh peach slices
* 1 tablespoon lemon juice
* Handful of fresh sage leaves
* Ground cinnamon or nutmeg (optional)

* Melt butter in a 13- x 9-inch baking dish.
* Combine flour, 1 cup sugar, baking powder, and salt; add milk, stirring just until dry ingredients are moistened. Pour batter over butter (do not stir).
* Bring remaining 1 cup sugar, peach slices, and lemon juice to a boil over high heat, stirring constantly; pour over batter (do not stir). Sprinkle with cinnamon, if desired. Take the sage leaves and sprinkle over the top.
* Bake at 375° for 40 to 45 minutes or until golden brown. Serve cobbler warm or cool.

Now, for more pictures! This is a photography blog, after all.

The sage leaves were an addition of mine. I LOVE sage, and didn't want to see mine going to waste in my garden, so I figured it couldn't be a horrible idea, and added them at the last second. Put in as much or as little sage as you'd like. I only did about 8 leaves, but had I known it would be my favorite element, I would've added 15-20. Because they were on top, they caramelized and were super tasty!

Now, for the finished product! (Oh sorry, not the cobbler, just the pictures of the cobbler. Don't cry, it's ok.) I splurged the day I was making this and had bought some flowers from the Farmer's Market, which I never do. (I'm afraid my cats will eat them, that's all.) They drew me in, they were maybe the prettiest flowers I've ever seen, and they unknowingly would compliment my peach cobbler perfectly!

This is a really easy dish, I encourage even the least confident home cooks to try it! Just make sure you use really great peaches. :)

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

The Library Dish: Reasons This Food Photographer Loves Libraries

Who uses libraries anymore, you ask?
I do. And here's why!

1. Librarians are like your mother. They know everything.
Well, even if they DON'T know it, they know how to research to find it! Librarians are super smart, they're even required to have a Master's Degree in Library Sciences. Did you know that?

2. If you don't have electricity, the library might.

The library is just far enough away that if my electricity is out, the library's might not be. This is super important if I have a deadline looming with no working internet/computer. The library will let me use theirs FOR FREE.

3. Who doesn't want free entertainment?

Editing and retouching thousands of photos can get tedious and lonely. The library fills the gap with many an audio book, t.v. show and song. If it weren't for the library, all my profits would've ended up at Netflix and Half-Priced Books.

4. The legal mumbo-jumbo.

How did I learn everything I know about copyright laws? The library. Not only is it nice I don't have to buy the boring books, but the library encourages me to actually READ them. When I buy a book, I set it on my nightstand and promptly forget about it. But if it's a library book, I know it has an expiration date. Having that expiration date hovering over my head is what gets me to actually READ the book. It's like my conscience nagging at me.

5. Martha Stewart, Bon Appetit, and Paula Dean

I love me a food magazine and cookbook! Instead of having a million magazines cluttering up my house, I get them all from the library, stare at the pretty pictures for a while, then return them. I get my food porn fix then I move on. It's the perfect paper relationship.

Why do YOU love the library?

Support the Westerville Public Library by voting YES on Issue 19 on November 8th!