A couple of months ago, I was presented with the most amazing opportunity! My friend Irvin of Eat The Love and I were invited to lead a panel at Blog Her Food in Atlanta, GA. The subject? Design & Branding for Food Bloggers 101. Irvin and I worked hard on our presentation, and it was so rewarding. I felt like our work paid off -with so many people asking follow up questions and inquiring whether our slides would be available online. We assured everyone, we would share– all 165+ slides!
Irvin has posted part 1 which encompasses defining your brand and creating a logo and part 2 about color palettes and mood board. As part of our presentation at Blog Her Food, we created a little joint venture; it’s called Chit Chat & Chew. During our branding exercise, we chose some adjectives like “Sweet, Bright, Fun, Quirky, Smart, Bold, & Friendly”. You might notice that they suit us pretty well- if you follow our blogs at all. (Irvin talks about how to define your brand in much further detail in part 1). We also chose a bright & sunny color palette balanced by some sophisticated neutrals. On this slide are some images we picked for inspiration, this is called a mood board. Finally you’ll see our logo which is a simple wordmark.
For the purposes of this project, we decided to make believe that Chit Chat & Chew was an existing site that was in need of a redesign. … get the recipe
I am in the midst of a move, which means I’m packing boxes, cleaning house, and sneaking in my writing time just about whenever I can. Cooking, however, has just not been on the list of priorities. This is partly because I’m so incredibly busy, partly because I am ready to say goodbye to my old kitchen with it’s funky stove, mismatched 80’s tile and hideous cabinetry (one cabinet actually has $25 marked in grease pencil high in the corner). I am so ready to move into our new 1940’s era house which still has it’s 1940’s era tile (turquoise and black!!), even the paper lining the shelves in the cabinets is adorably vintage and in great condition. New appliances are on the way, AND I got to pick them out and contributed some extra money to upgrade them.
This house is so perfect for us. In the past, when I’ve closed my eyes, and pictured a home, it looks like this, with light streaming in from all sides. With mouldings that feature little details like swag bows. With skylights all over and a basement for hanging charcuterie and keeping my home canning projects! With a big garden (well, pile of weeds which will soon be a garden). With plenty of space for Joshua to work on his various projects but not be too far away like he was in our last house. It’s just perfect.
But back to the present… take out! In the form of sushi, dim sum, … get the recipe
I often wonder what it’s like to live the life of a full time food-writer. Would I wake up in the morning, flip open my calendar to see it chock full of assignments and exciting travel? Would I look over notes from my editor as I sipped my morning cup of maté. Could I generally take my time answering emails until I’d walked the dog and fed the chickens? Yes, in my full-time food writer fantasy, I have chickens.
As it stands now, I write two-three pieces a week for The Tomato Tart, two per month for Mission Local and I’ve just been bumped up to two per week for Treehugger’s Green Wine Guide (starting September 1). I also work a pretty cool full-time job for an amazing company which I am fortunate to actually love.
Still, it was fabulous when, on Fourth of July weekend, I had the full-on fancy pants food writer fantasy fulfilled. Thanks to my amazing friend Steven Holt of The Ritz Carlton Northern California, I was treated to a behind the scenes kitchen tour and three-hour brunch at the Ritz Carlton Half Moon Bay. Previously, I had only enjoyed cocktails and Bellinis at this ocean-front hotel, but the brunch at their restaurant Navio has a fantastic reputation so I was really excited to sit down and eat as well as get a good behind-the-scenes peek at their kitchens.
The day could not have been more perfect. Anyone who is familiar with the California … get the recipe
This post is the second in a series on pies, tarts, and galettes in all their many forms.
Vive la France! Vive la de Tarte à la tomate. It’s an exciting day for two reasons. It’s my 101st post, so
I’m going to do a giveway did a givewaway of some of my favorite things- what those are, you’ll just have to wait and find out but they’ll involve edibles and kitchen tools! It’s also Bastille Day, and while I’m sure the French side of my family would very much approve of my newfound pastry making skills, I am not sure how well my latest interpretation of a tomato tart would be received. You see, in France, a tomato tart is just that, a tart with tomatoes perhaps a bit of cheese and some herbs not much beyond that.
It should be quite obvious that I adore tomato tarts considering the name of this blog (it’s The Tomato Tart in case you were wondering). Why I don’t even correct people anymore when they say, “Oh, hey, you’re The Tomato Tart”. If you ask my, the perfect tomato tart begins with oven roasted tomatoes, which you sprinkle with just a little bit of sea salt. The oven roasting does two things, it brings out the sweetness of the tart releases some of the tomato’s natural moisture- lessening the chances of a soggy bottom (ew).
My tomato tart took a rather revolutionary turn for the All-American one June day, when … get the recipe
It’s been about six months now that I’ve been participating in the Vintage Recipe Swap hosted by Christianna of Burwell General Store. I love reworking the recipes from her junk store find which is part cookbook, part hymnal. Last month brought about the epic Donut Vodka which was awesome & disastrous all at once, so for this month’s Jelly Cake I wanted to make a surefire hit.
Like my fellow swapper, Lindsay (Rosemarried), I tend to favor the savoury things in life, even when having desserts. When the subject of a jelly cake came up, two things came to mind:
1. I had to incorporate tomato jam
It’s the middle of July, and tomatoes are at their peak of sweetness reminding us with each juicy bite that they are, in fact, fruits. Tiny cherry tomatoes are especially perfect for jam. Bright, tart, and sweet I don’t bother seeding or peeling these lovely little fruits. I especially love pairing them with citrus. In this case Meyer Lemons from a friend’s yard.
Now, you may be asking yourself what the heck a cakewich is. Well, I’ve had this silly cake mold for about a year, and I decided this was the perfect time to break it out. The mold creates a cake that looks like one giant sandwich about eight inches across and four inches high. The illusion is so good, that no matter what I tried putting into the photos for scale, it still just looks … get the recipe
Last Saturday was fantastic. I mean really really great. I woke up, walked the dog, fussed around the kitchen a bit. Made some tart dough, got dressed in favorite summer dress and headed downtown to attend a cooking demo at Macy’s in union square.
I must admit this was my first time attending one of the culinary council’s demos (I’ll definitely go again). So, why now? Two words. Dominique Crenn. Chef Crenn is one of the hottest chefs in the country right now, and though I haven’t had the chance to dine at her extraordinary restaurant, Atelier Crenn, it has been at the top of my list since it opened earlier this year. I have it on excellent authority that we will be doing the 11 course tasting menu on my birthday!
I arrived early for the demo and had a chance to chat with Chef Crenn, a recent champ on Iron Chef (battle yogurt vs. Chef Symon). I dug her instantly and was thrilled to find that we share many of the same food philosophies. She spoke passionately of food as art, of soulful cooking, and of spending time eating and enjoying conversation and laughter with the people you love being an important part of an excellent meal. (see, I told you we shared a lot in our food Philosophy).
Helping with the demo/MCing the event was the utterly charming Liam Mayclem the host of Foodie Chap on KCBS. I also can’t say enough good … get the recipe