Behind-the-Scenes: Cookbook Photo Shoot

October 13, 2011


Move that salsa. Stack those tortillas. Which bowl? What spoon? Green or blue plate?

It’s all about the details, people.

Last week, my kitchen (along with my living room and the teensy garden out back) was transformed into a staging area for photos (and props,camera equipment, scattered cups of coffee, assorted cookies, and the occasional bottle of vin rouge). It meant getting up at 6 a.m., and cooking often until 9 or 10 p.m., but it flew by so fast, and was actually so much fun that if my book designer and photographer hadn’t hopped back on the big plane for Philly, I’d still be in the kitchen cooking away and who knows what trouble we’d be in by now.


I loved every bit of the time that I spent with these two; we worked together like we’d done this a thousand times before. Amanda Richmond, who’s designing the book, seemed to instinctively know I was trying to achieve, design-wise, and she took us there every day. You know how you have a friend (or two if you’re lucky) who, in some ways, knows you even better than yourself? Amanda and I were like that –  in perfect sync from the start.

Plus, no one scatters crumbs like Amanda. She is bread-ripping, tortilla-tearing pro. I love her for that especially.


Steve (aka “Stevie”) Legato captured it all on his big ‘ol Canon, clickclickclicking until we were all in agreement that we had the shot that we needed. Fueled by double espressos and handfuls of peanut M&Ms, and a mix of everything from Bhangra and Blues to Johnny Cash, the Stones, and loads of Motown, we’d know that Stevie had gotten the shot when he’d play the air guitar (he’s in a Rush cover band back in Philly).

Gosh, my apartment is so much more quiet now. Seems strange.




On the last day, we wandered around Montmartre, where we shot what we hope to be the book’s cover, and the Marais, where Amanda and I shopped a tiny bit, and drank more coffee until it was time to swap out the java for some bubbles. We toasted. We giggled and we toasted some more. When we said goodbye, we all felt like it wasn’t goodbye goodbye, merely, `a bientôt…because after all, I’ve already started outlining book #2.

P.S. Check out Amanda Richmond’s take on the photo shoot on her great new blog, Butterologie.




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Tomato and Homemade Ricotta Tart
October 17, 2011 at 11:36 PM

{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

Steff @ The Kitchen Trials October 13, 2011 at 7:07 AM

So much fun & craziness! I’m tres happy for you & cannot wait to your cookbook to my collection. Sending you congratulatory hugs & champagne toasts!

Andrea Beane October 13, 2011 at 7:11 AM

Great fun. Can hardly wait for the hardcover.

Stephanie October 13, 2011 at 7:55 AM

I cannot wait to get my hands on this book and see all the pictures!!*

Joyce @friendsdriftinn October 13, 2011 at 8:03 AM

Hard work…but reaping the rewards. Congrats!

AlexisfromTexas October 13, 2011 at 10:02 AM

Can’t WAIT for the cookbook!!! =)

Carina October 13, 2011 at 2:58 PM

Can’t wait to see the book. My crab-apple + maple syrup cooking friend has been speaking very highly of it.

marianna sneideraitis October 14, 2011 at 8:42 AM

I already pre-ordered the cookbook on Amazon. I get tons of energy and inspiration from you blog.

Houses Gardens People October 14, 2011 at 9:32 AM

I loved the behind-the-scenes look at the photo shoot. See what happens when you visualize your dreams? They come true!

Tari October 16, 2011 at 12:52 PM

so happy for you, and for all of us that can’t wait for the book!

Reanee October 16, 2011 at 2:32 PM

Success!!! Love that you love what you are doing! We cannot wait to have your book!!! Any chance you will go on a book tour? Would love to have a signed copy:))))

Lindsey January 9, 2012 at 5:23 AM

SO SO cool! I can’t wait to get my hands on your book =)

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