After years of accumulating brightly colored oven-to-table serving pieces (cobalt tureen, sage bowl, etc.) I realize that I have purchased entirely the wrong cookware. This throws a wrench in my efforts to downsize before moving to Atlanta.
I had planned to simplify–save my oven-to-table cookware and get rid of my china. (At our house, we serve ourselves from the cooking container because I am usually far too lazy to transfer anything into a bowl or platter.) But now I’ve learned that my stone cookware isn’t conducive to photo shoots–and my china is.
My discovery stems from repeated visits to food photographer Meeta Wolf’s blog (www.whatsforlunchhoney.net). Analysis of Ms. Wolf’s approach to composing amazing photographs reveals that the serving container and background of superior food photographs should be neutral to allow the colors of the food to take center stage. Yes, she uses a little red accent along the rim of her soup bowl, a yellow pinstripe up the length of her casually tossed dishtowel, or tosses a handful of herbs and berries on the table in front of her cobler. But only when the color of those accents coordinates with the colors of the food.
Check Meeta’s photos out for yourself. Not a bright colored piece of serving ware in sight.
My photos up to this point have been the opposite. The visual dominance of the cookware overpowers the food. Hmmm.
(See below for what the chicken really looked like before being posed.)
Now I have no idea what to do. Replace both cookware and china with a new set of all-white oven-to-tableware for the sake of glamorous web postings? Or should I keep the China and the stoneware? After all, my beloved red roaster has faithfully turned out crispy, golden roast chickens and very cheesy lasagnas for as long as I can remember.
I prefer not to accumulate more belongings. I believe that ultimately, less is more. But how does a person figure out which less will be the more?
By the way, sometime when you are roasting chicken, try filling the roasting pan and chicken cavity with sliced onions and carrots. Then pour 2/3 cup of Ouzo into the cavity and roast as usual. The Ouzo gives the onions a terrific flavor. And I don’t even like licorice.