About pat

Visual thinker, first got interested in digital imagery in the early days of Omni magazine, back when it used to review what had happened at SIGGraph. I worked in the 3D software field for 23 years. Lifelong enjoyment of gardening grew over time; I was a Master Gardener (briefly) and had a vegetable and herb allotment garden in Toronto to grow vegetables, as well as perennial gardens at home. Gardening and enjoying fresh produce also raised my interest in cooking with really good local food. As more restaurants in Toronto are offering local fare, I enjoy dining out and sampling the visions the different chefs have.

Photo shoot: Jonny Blonde food truck

Back in early May, I went to Burlington to photograph the food that Jonny Blonde was putting together for his food truck. Jonny delights in using local product whenever possible, and sources his meats in the rich farming lands around Hamilton and Burlington. I did not know that the area mills more dry mustard than anywhere else in the world!

He launched his food truck this past weekend, so I’m publicizing my pictures that I took of some of the food that he’ll provide at catered events or on his truck.

I took lots of lighting equipment with me to Burlington, but ended up mostly using natural light coming through the door, sometimes augmented with a bounced flash, mostly with reflectors and mirrors for fill lighting.

Chicken skewers

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Wondering about my allotment garden?

It’s growing! Actually, I need to make another trip down there, either today (late afternoon) or tomorrow morning.

Things are happening.

Here is the section that contains kale, curly endive, lettuce, eggplants, and two types of basil. So far, the weather’s been cool-ish, which has favoured the lettuce types. I expect that the warmer weather crops will gain the upper hand in the near future.

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Dinner on my deck

Sometimes I do cook for myself! Shocking, isn’t it?

Tonight’s dinner required a fair amount of preparation and thought. I wanted to have grits. They have to soak. So I put them on this morning. I decided that the meat I’d have for dinner would be some short ribs I got at Witteveen’s when I hit the St. Lawrence Market yesterday. They needed to have some kind of a yummy marinade, so I used a sauce that Oliver and Melissa gave me last year (I hadn’t opened it yet!) and diluted it with a little Johnny Walker Red, and put the short ribs in a container to marinate for the day. Continue reading

Tasty Tabule

It’s (almost) summer, and I love Mediterranean food in the summer. I’ve reverted to having hummus for breakfast (home made, of course). Today for lunch I finally went to Tabule, which opened a little while ago where the Riverside Cafe had its first home, on Queen Street East, just west of Degrassi.

Lunch time… I thought I might get one of their interesting Caesar’s to drink (hmm, harissa in a Caesar! Why not?); alas, out of clamato juice. Continue reading

The allotment garden, almost mid-June

I went down to the allotment to weed and put my last few veggies in. Some more tomatoes (these ones are called rainbow, and it looks like they mature into a range of colours, which would be pretty on a plate), some hot cherry peppers, and green and yellow zucchini.

I was probably there for about 3 hours. I also harvested some lettuce (I’ll take a picture of my harvest tomorrow in daylight: the storm was coming in and it was too dark outside to shoot, and I was too bagged to set up some proper lighting). Did lots of weeding – I could always tell when it was mint or dill that was coming up, because there are lots of those volunteering in my garden. Continue reading

This is what shrimp should taste like

I’ve grown tired and suspicious of the enormous shrimp we get from Asia. Not much flavour, environmentally destructive a lot of the time, and contaminated with who knows what some of the time.

Well yesterday Hooked posted that they’d be getting some GaspĂ© shrimp in today, and that thet would be sweet and wonderful. How could I resist?

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