Photo Taking and Impulsive Baking

So far this year, my life has been pretty crazy.  The first half of the year came with many changes and misfortunes. The good news is that things are really starting to look up for me in some magical ways.

I haven’t blogged since March, isn’t that wild? Back in April, I was a part of an art exhibit where people were blindfolded and led through the museum in groups of four. I was the “gustoception” (taste) piece. I am going to dedicate my next blog to talking about that experience, because it was really interesting. The following weekend in April, my dad passed away. As a result, April was unexpectedly a busy month for me.

In May, I took my first photography course to learn my camera a little better and I’m so glad I did. The quality of my photos has improved tremendously. The class has already paid off and it has made me even more excited about my trips to Colorado and Europe. I plan on doing another food porn blog when I return from Europe in September. I just know I am going to consume lots of yummy food and wine.

I spent most of June helping my new boyfriend find a place/get settled in Austin. Now it’s July and it’s getting really hot in Texas. Maybe it’s because it’s my birthday month, but I have been baking a lot lately: cheesecake, blueberry muffins, cherry cobbler, cookies (of many varieties) and even a lemon blueberry cake.

Though I am not posting a new recipe here, I wanted to share a couple of photos from my photography class and re-blog the cookie recipe. During the first class, the instructor (Carlos Austin of Austin Photography) and I made a deal — if I brought food to the last class, he would show me how to photograph it. I showed him my post from the loaded oatmeal cookies that I like to make on the regular, and we both agreed that I needed better photos. Practice makes perfect, right?

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This is a photo of what we did to set up our station. I took this photo on my phone, so please don’t judge the quality. My real camera is the one you see on the tripod.

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This is the final product with my crazy cloth.  

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This is the final product on a black cloth, with interesting lighting techniques.

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This is a photo of the lemon blueberry cake I made for a birthday. Thank you, Carlos, for the mad skills.

Those are candied lemon peels that I made for the garnish. I am thinking about posting this recipe, because it was super deLIZcious. I wish I would have taken a photo of it when it was sliced. That just might be a reason good enough to make it again. We’ll see, because blueberries are rocking right now.

My next post will be about the art exhibit that I was a part of back in April. I have already started it, just need to get my chocolate mousse recipe together. Chances are, you will see that post from me sometime in August. I am heading to Colorado this Saturday with my new boyfriend for a week. Should be back in full swing and hopefully posting monthly again when I return. Cheers and happy eating!

Loaded Oatmeal Cookies

Hello! I do apologize for being so out of touch this past month. Working a new job and keeping up with life has kept me very busy!

The Cocktails and Mocktails Recipe Challenge was a lot of fun and a great success. Dutch Lovin’ came in a very close second place and could not have done it with out your help. Major thanks to all of my (very big) family and friends for all of your support. We are thrilled to have been apart of our first ever (and hopefully not the last) online recipe challenge for Marx Foods.

In other news, Kyle and I have booked our trip to New York for The Food Experiments‘ National Championship, sponsored by  the Brooklyn Brewery. We are very excited, as this will be our first time to ever go to New York. The competition will be on December 16th. Please, tell all of your friends that are in the New York area, because we are going to be cooking up something extra special. The experimenting will commence this weekend.

As for the cookies, I made these a couple of weeks ago as a gift for a friend at work. They were super delicious and honestly, the most decadent oatmeal cookies that I have ever made. Don’t let the picture fool you; those are definitely dried blueberries. Someone did mention to me that there were a lot of ingredients and I concur. However, every ingredient is worth the flavor. I hope you enjoy them as much as we did. Happy baking!

Loaded Oatmeal Cookies[Please click on the image to enlarge the recipe.]