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Friday, December 27, 2013

Head and Shoulders Above The Competition




You might think that this post is going to be about the utter redundancy of candles on a table that is clearly being lit with a photographic light with a mega wattage resembling that of the sun. The vegetables are practically cowering from it as their shadows attempt to escape.

“What we need here to complete this picture are several candles,” someone thought as they adjusted their shades. “They will set just the right tone by providing a warm and cozy glow to offset the harsh reality of being served an entirely raw vegetable platter.” Perhaps the cook imagined that the camera lights would flash-cook them when the photo was taken.

There was a time, in the late 1970s, when food stylists reflexively added candles to every shot, as if candles suggested class and comfort. But every type of candle has clearly been lit only seconds from the shutter clicking, so that no wax be allowed to spoil the elegance. The candle, perhaps is also meant to suggest the hearth, the cooking flame from whence the food has so recently been removed.

But you’re wrong.

This isn’t about that at all.

It’s about using untoasted sesame seeds for a garnish. Dandruff, anyone?

Gourmet Christmas Cookbook, Ideals Publishing Corp., 1978

Also from this book: Ho Ho Ho Hum

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