Behind The Scenes

“When a few weeks go by without a post, that’s when I know you’re busy with a project.”

That’s what some readers have told me through the years, and they couldn’t be more right. Because self-improvement is paramount, I force myself to take on projects that scare the s**t out of me. I’d prefer to be cozy in my comfort zone forever but there’s nothing like using my fears to drive me and give me clarity. Fear, after all, is an opportunity to improve and evolve.

Over the past two weeks, I’ve been working hard on something that will see fruition in June. I can’t say much about it now except that I’m honored and humbled by what I’ve been asked to do. I’m working through my fears, running on sleepless nights, and feeling the exhilaration of being stretched creatively.

Here’s a behind the scenes look at what I’ve been up to.

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The many ways to photograph an egg, especially if it’s as charming as this brown colored one with spots.

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Cracking open a few eggs to find the perfect rounded top to make the perfect fried egg.

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A plethora of props: plates and things that make my heart go pitter-patter.

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Just the right plate for what I need right now.

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Baking a batch of … no, they’re not cinnamon rolls. You’ll find out what they are in June.

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Spice in between the spaces of light and shadows.

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Halfway through the project, I’m feeling out of sorts so I decide to break away and bake something for myself. I want something shortbread-like with lots of streusel (!) and this one’s just the ticket. A sweet from the Lombardy region of Italy, this is a torta sbrisolona; a giant cookie, crisp and crumbly. I break off and nibble on large pieces and promptly fall in love. My daughter has to forcibly remove me from the vicinity for the sake of my sanity (and waistline).

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On Easter, I take a one-day break and upon request, bake the Banoffee Pie from my book.

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Last shoot of the project: preparing shards of chocolate for the final layout.

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