Sorry for the Scarface reference. I actually haven’t even seen the movie, but I figure I might as well take this blog titling opportunity to infuse some Al Pacino-esque attitude into my day. Honestly now… when you have the opportunity to quote Al Pacino in some way, shape, or form, you just go ahead and do it. No questions asked.
So bam. Scarface quote done. Next up, The Godfather.
Wait, you protest. Is this blog shifting its focus to cinema? What the heck does Al Pacino have to do with anything? Is this a segue into Italian food?
No, no, and no. The Al Pacino business is a bit of a non-sequitor. I apologize…but the blog title a reckless and foolhardy attempt to throw you into some random discussion of classic films from the 70s.
I DO have a new friend for you all to meet. I bought him (her?) yesterday.
Here’s a hint….
Can you see it? I’ll get a little closer for you.
Now can you guess?
I bought a DSLR!
This, my friends, is a Nikon D3000….my first DSLR camera and newest obsession!
Don’t mind my incredibly cool white shag rug in the following picture. As evidenced by the Al Pacino talk, I’m old school like that.
I bought him/her/it yesterday at Best Buy, and I’m absolutely thrilled with the camera! While I absolutely love my little point and shoot (and he has been so good and faithful to me over the past couple months of food blog pictures), the Nikon D3000 is a huge step up in quality.
I didn’t get a chance to shoot outside over the weekend because it’s been hot as all get-out here in Hartford. I’m going to wait for a more comfortable, better lit day before I take my new cam for an outside photo shoot and see what it’s really capable of.
I also have a 50 mm f1.8 lens on the way, which is supposed to be great for food photography! Now, I just need to give my camera a name…and a gender, I guess.
Alright. Now that you’ve said hello to my little friend (last Scarface reference, I promise!), I’d like to show you what it can do.
My oatmeal came alive today when shooting with the Nikon.
This was a simple batch of whipped banana oats w/raspberries, a few chocolate chips, PB, and granola.
I used the stock lens for these shots, and I was amazed at how sharp the images were! The 50mm lens is probably going to blow my mind considering that I’m impressed with the images produced using the stock lens.
Lunch included some leftovers from last night’s Greek Whole Wheat Orzo salad.
I also had an apple + cinnamon on the side.
Ah! I love the shallow depth of field you can achieve with the larger apertures. It’s hard to achieve that same blurred effect with the point and shoot.
Before saddling up for a 45-minute Power Yoga session in my room (courtesy of yogadownload.com), I enjoyed a green monster.
This yummy guy contained:
- 1/2 frozen banana
- 1/2 scoop Vanilla protein powder
- two handfuls spinach
- 1/4 avocado (on its last legs)
- 1/2 cup soy milk, 1/2 cup water
- lots of ice
Gotta love the green…especially when the Nikon is around to capture it.
The Power Yoga session (Power Yoga 5 from yogadownload.com) was the perfect choice for my cross-training day! It loosened up my tight muscles from running while offering up some nice arm strength and core work. Yet, it wasn’t sooo challenging that I couldn’t complete it unlike the last time I did yoga when Dave Farmar’s podcast nearly killed my triceps. This session was geared more for beginner-intermediate yogis rather than advanced practitioners, and that suited me just fine. I’m nowhere near advanced.
Adventures in Baking
After my lovely encounter with my yoga mat, I gathered up some ingredients to make brownies for my roommate who is leaving Hartford tomorrow! She’s all done with her AmeriCorps service for the year, so she’s heading back home to Ohio…crazy how time flies. In another month, I too will be flying the coop for greener pastures.
In honor of her last day in Hartford and her remarkable ability to put up with my ridiculousness, I decided to whip up some of Ms. How Sweet’s Ooey Gooey Fudgey Brownies.
Before we get to the end result, let me just tell you that these babies are DIVINE. Possibly the best brownies I’ve ever had. Jess’s recipe is all kinds of fantastic. It delivers on all fronts: the brownies are ooey. They are gooey. They are fudgey.
They are everything brownies should be. They will dance around in my dreams for years to come.
It all started off with some melted chocolate, some sugar, and a whole lot of butter.
The surprise ingredient was added to the mix…
Marshmallows! Just like Jessica promises in the recipe, they magically melt into the batter while cooking, and the end result is the stuff foodie dreams are made of.
How can you resist this? Droooooool….
While the brownies baked in the oven, I had a food photo session with the mini mallows. Is it obvious that I’m having way too much fun with this camera?
They’re so cute. Miniature food is just meant for photography.
The Tower of Babel.
Down it comes.
After enough nerdy food shots, the brownies were done! Hooray, hooray!
The marshmallows created a crispy outer layer just beckoning to be cut into.
I happily obliged.
Crispy outer layer, fudgey insides.
Sheer brownie perfection.
If heaven exists, it will be filled with these brownies.
You guys would be proud of my self-control. I only had ONE. I savored every crumb of that one piece…and honestly, if I wasn’t making them for another person, I would have probably eaten 15. They’re that good!
Thankfully, my intention to give them as a gift is reigning in my massive love of brownies. My thighs will probably thank me in the morning for this unlikely display of self-discipline.
After coming up with the brilliant idea to bake when it’s 90 something degrees outside, I didn’t feel like stepping near the oven again this evening. I instead whipped up a no-cook sardine salad with mini whole wheat pitas for dipping.
The mini pitas are from TJ’s. They’re cute too…just like the mini mallows.
The sardine salad contained:
- one tin of sardines pack in olive oil
- orange bell pepper
- sundried tomatoes
- dried dill, oregano, basil, pepper
- a couple of glugs of white balsamic vinegar
For something that took me about 5 minutes to whip up, it was pretty darn tasty.
Because I can’t resist playing around with the aperture….
Tahdah! That’s my dinner.
Simple, delicious, and very light. It was just what I wanted on this hot and muggy summer evening.
Alright friends, I’ve probably bombarded you with more pictures than you can handle. I think it’s obvious I love my new camera. If any of you are even remotely considering getting a DSLR, take my advice and get one as soon as you can. Even though it’s an expensive investment, it’s definitely worth the money.