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Archive for March, 2009

SoFoBoMo

I took the pledge : to make a photography book… in 31 days…yep today at 2h22 am…
… what have I gotten myself into now…

SoFoBoMo is short for Solo Photo Book Month – a group event where a bunch of photographers all make solo photo books start to finish, in 31 days, at more or less the same time. It’s modeled loosely on NaNoWriMo, where participating writers all write novels in a month, and NaSoAlMo, where musicians write and record solo albums in a month.

This time around, the fuzzy month is any 31 day period you please, provided that it starts no earlier than May 1, 2009, and ends no later than June 30, 2009, at midnight in your local time zone. I have to use pictures taken during this 31 day period only, and not use old pictures. No cheating here.

So let say I start on May 15, I have until June 15 to finish the book (PDF file) and send it to SoFoBoMo. It is feasable but I need to get my head organized, starting by going back to sleep and dream about this new adventure… as if I did not have enough adventure in my life at the present time : moving to another country in exactly 3 days!!!!!

Taking about personal pledge…

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Update : Wednesday, March 31, 2009

Ok, after a night of dreaming endlessly about my new devil project SoFoBoMo, here is my plan.
First and foremost, the focus is on the ending project: ‘What do I want to see at the end of this project?’ ‘Do I want to publish one day or do I just want to play around with my emotion on papers?’
The answer is : ‘I want to publish’.

Step two, ‘What is the main subject of this photography book?’
The answer is: I want to build many pages of photos taken in Querétaro, Mexico, during the spring season this year when all the flowers and the trees are blowing. To each one of these photos, I will inspire myself to attach a recipe and the photo of the final product, that reflects the food connected to the colors, the feelings and the passion coming from the photo that talks to me every time I take a picture. In 2007, I published a cooking book when I was living over there and every day was an inspiration to me to create from the smell of foods everywhere in Mexico, so typical to this country. Almost feelings that can hardly be describe.

Step three, now that I made up my mind on the subject of the book, ‘How am I going to put it all together?’, ‘Where do I start?’
The answer is: I used Microsoft Publisher for my cooking book. It was a breeze to design and built the front and back page of the book. Then, I used Microsoft Word to write my book, including colors pictures here and there. When the product was final, I used Lulu Publishing to upload the book in PDF file. It was practically a plug and play with a minimal fee to pay. Now that I have an account with them and that I already know my way around, I might do the same steps this time with book. To answer the question ‘Where do I start?’, well I need to see the final product in my head before I do anything else, so lets keep on going with my thinking hat here and lets be carefully not to jump too quickly to far.

Step four, and this one is very important to me : ‘I made a pledge to myself to produce, at the end of those 31 days, 35 pictures or more, without cheating or anything that sort.’
The answer: Oh it is very clear in my head that I will play the game and will finish it.

Step five, ‘Where do I find the recipes for each photography?’
The answer is: In my head. Very simple. The feeling on the moment of taking a photo will drive my taste bud to invent a recipe attached to this feeling. Now, it is not going to be a piece of cake here. On top of taking photography and building a book about it, I will do double duty in inventing a recipe and cooking it or baking it and write it down afterward. Also, the text of the recipe has to be well placed over or beside or below the photo of nature. And to make matters harder, I also need a photography of the food done in the recipe. Oh, I’m going to have a great time here…

Step six, ‘What will be the title of the book?’
The answer is: Ah, the famous title, the famous question… To me, a title comes when the book is completed, only then, it will give me its title. For the moment, I am going to use the draft title : ‘One bite at a time’

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Garlic Flan

Garlic Flan : little white upside down entrées made in ceramic molds, just big enough for individual serving, oh this recipe has to be part of La Belle Aurore blog. I don’t have a picture for this one, as I’am between boxes packing away to another country within the next 3 days. Yep, moving again, I just love new adventure.

Before packing away my portable computer, I had to write down this marvelous recipe, just in case my gigantic collection of cookbooks get lost between three moving trucks (it is a long story here : I have to divide my stuff in three respective piles, one for each country the pile will go…).

*For the soft at heart here, this recipe is full of flavor because of the high content of fat in this.

Separate the cloves from a large head of garlic. Without peeling, place the cloves in boiling water for 5 minutes. Cool, and squeeze out the garlic. Mince and crush the cloves with a fork, then stir into 2 cups of real cream. Bring cream and garlic just to a simmer in a saucepan. Add a little ground nutmeg, salt and pepper. Remove from the flame and beat in 4 egg yolks. Pour into 6 individual molds, well-oiled, or into a shallow baking pan. Bake in a bains-marie at 350F for 20 minutes or until set. Cool for 10 minutes before unmolding.

Remind me of a French Quiche without the cheese in it.

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Fat, fat and fat

Craving food all the time? EAT MORE FAT
Don’t know what to eat anymore? EAT MORE FAT
Don’t even know what is healthy and what is not? EAT MORE FAT
We are so mixed up in trying to eat healthy that we are getting sicker by the minute and forgetting what we REALLY love to eat. Make a list of your favorite food (not junk crap), REAL FOOD and you might be surprise of what your taste bud is telling you…

I listen to my heart and eat fat! Sorry for the low-fatties, this book is a counter top kitchen book, one to cook from all the time. I love to make sauces and finally, I can use all those left over little pots of fatty dripping I have been accumulating in my fridge.

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Scientific Name: Solanum elaeagnifolium•
A perennial herb, blooms in the summer.•
Fruits are eaten by javelina, seeds eaten by quail.• Toxic to livestock.•
Native people crushed the berries and used them to curdle milk for cheese making.

And this is my Silverleaf Nightshade that I have found around my house. So I gave it a try. I crushed a small yellow fruit between my fingers and extrac the juice from it. I dropped the fruit at the bottom of a tumb glasse little jar and filled it up with some regular whole milk.

Two hours later, the milk has coagulated. Vegetable Rennet all the way. I knew the indians did find a way of making cheese without the animal rennet. Just knew it…

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I cannot believe I made Ricotta cheese at 3h45pm today and at 5h30pm, I had warm ricotta cheese served with my turkey leg… wow. I did it. I am so pround of myself and it was a breeze to make. Being 3 weeks away from my moving to another country and having to put most of my kitchen in storage, I am racing presently to develop new recipes and bringing new knowledges with me. Saussage last week, this week : Cheese homade… Yes, this is what cooking is all about baby!

To make cheese, I just followed the step by step instruction on this cooking blog : I’ll will eat you

I believe in simple method also, the method of making cheese our parents were using. This site done by a David B. Fankhauser, Ph.D., Professor of Biology and Chemistry University of Cincinnati Clermont College tells it all. Mr Frankhauser uses simple ways of making cheese at home, and using what we already have handy. We do not have to buy expensive stuffs and order with internet impossible stuffs. His site also includes links for others cheese sites, including forums and all. My kind of guy!

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