I learned to cook before the internet.
I learned to cook before Pinterest. I learned to cook in a time when the term “food blog” wasn’t a thing. I grew up in a house filled with more cookbooks than you can count, and my mother’s back issues of Gourmet Magazine were piled on every surface. Despite this, when I moved out and had to fend for myself, I reached for cookbooks with the words “easy” and “fast” in the titles. These inexpensive and cheaply produced cookbooks were filled with bland, unimaginative recipes. The recipes were definitely fast, and in some cases easy, and occasionally edible … but in this world you get what you pay for. If they had pictures at all, they were terrible illustrations that definitely didn’t whet your appetite. They provided instructions on how to “cook” at home, but they didn’t inspire me to be creative, and to do more with food.
It wasn’t until years later that I realized a few key truths about food. First, while it is possible to make delicious food quickly and simply, “fast & easy” are rarely terms you want in a cookbook. Second, no matter how simple or complicated your recipe is … if your food looks good when you’re done, it is going to taste better. This is why we don’t eat in the dark … seeing our food is just as important as smelling and tasting it. This is why food and beverage photography is so important.
Which brings me to the reason we are here in the first place: Shameless self- promotion of my food and beverage photography business! It’s true. I put together this whole publication just to show off my photography skills and hopefully get you to hire me for your next project. As I’m sure you know, self-promotion is a key element to any photographer’s business, much like salt is a key element to the food that we eat. You see what I did there?
Salt is the focus of this premier issue of The Insatiable Lens. Salt makes the difference between good food and bad food. Too little and your food is drab and boring. Too much, and your food is just down right inedible. But once you figure out how to properly season your food … magic starts to happen. And I’m not just talking about “add salt and pepper to taste” (although that is important). I’m talking about cooking a whole fish completely encased in salt (see page 12). I’m talking about cooking your food on a salt block that is 600 million years old (see page 16). And I’m talking about adding salt to cocktails and desserts – let me just tell you how awesome salt + chocolate is (see page 8).
The Insatiable Lens is not just about food and cooking though. It’s also about my passion for food and beverage photography. My goal is to share a few recipes, a little knowledge, and of course whet your appetite with beautiful photography. Enjoy!
Photographer and Editor in Chief