Wednesday, November 17, 2010
I was sick the entire last week. It wasn't really a good feeling finding myself resting while part of me want to go out and play. Nothing was more desirable than good health, I kept on stressing that out to myself in the middle of medicated drowsiness and unwanted naps.
In that condition, nothing was really fun at all. Food was basically tasteless, and plain water just turned disgusting. I couldn't bring myself to think about cakes and bakes, they simply disgusted me.
I was browsing my photo folders one cold afternoon thinking I might find something interesting to put up for a new post. Photos that normally appealed to me had to try three times harder to impress my sight and I realized my eyes were craving for a colorful feast. Nothing plain and monotonous could claim any split of attention. And after a long search, I had to stop at these photos. Only these few seemed to electrify me, put my mind in ease.
And for that moment I was so grateful to myself for ever taking photos of these colorful fruits. In time of need, they were here.... projecting hopes of flavor, freshness and.... health. And just like that, I felt good and believed that recovery was just a second away.
Sunday, October 31, 2010
It is heart warming to see the donation pools being set up all over the city. Seems like every one in this country is directly involved in helping out the victims of flood that has been terrorizing many provinces in Thailands. In time like this, any form of help is meaningful. Some choose to be at the spot helping out with food preparation and transport, some are involved in the medication and treatment, while others are contributing materials, either food, clean drinking water, medicine, or money.
The management office of our apartment has arranged to collect donations from the residents here. Recommended donation items are clothes, medicine, rice, and canned food. T just reminded me to accumulate our old clothes to give away for this good cause. Rice and canned food are also in our donation list.
Experiencing all this in our neighborhood just raised a question why my office has not shown any interest in extending any help at all. Nothing has been initiated so far… is it because everyone is just too busy and carried away with their duties and projects?
While rain is still pouring all over in various places around the country and there is no sign that it is going to stop any sooner, all we can hope is that more people are moved to help.
Tuesday, October 19, 2010
If you have noticed, I have never used raspberries or cranberries in any of my baking and dessert. I could drool over their beautiful look in the magazines but their pricing never failed to make me switch to something else. In fact, raspberries and cranberries are considered the most expensive imported fruits in Thailand. Luckily from the presentation point of view, they are replaceable by strawberries which are priced half or one third.
While locally grown in the Northern part of Thailand, Thai strawberries are not in the same quality as the imported ones, either in size, appearance and price. That is the reason why imported strawberries are made available in most of the supermarkets and somehow affordable for almost everyone from all walks of life. On the other hand, raspberries and cranberries are only sold in the high class supermarkets.
Thai strawberries are in the market only at a very limited period of time – normally at the end of the year. I used to feel so happy during those months because I could line up many recipes that involve strawberries and bake to my utmost joy. But unfortunately, my enthusiasm towards local strawberry had gradually diminish over the years as I couldn’t help but notice that regardless its external look was very closed to the imported strawberry, its internal look quickly put me off. Once sliced, local strawberry showed plain red flesh without the tint of white or pinkish shades. This was just not appealing to the eyes when served on the plates or photographed.
Since then I had switched to imported strawberries. And as time went by, I had encountered different kinds of strawberries. Those from USA are big and the most beautiful of all, Australian ones have longish shape which are unique, and Korean ones are cutest due to their tiny and closed to perfect heart shape (displayed in these pictures).
Do feel free to share with me the look of your local strawberries and the kind of strawberry that is your favorite.
Thursday, October 7, 2010
It has been raining most of the time here in Bangkok. While there is strong sunlight in the morning we can usually tell that it will be raining cats and dogs in the late afternoon or early evening. Apparently all of us working in the office hate evening rain since there will be bad traffic jam following that slows down our traveling home. No matter what transport one takes, or worse if he drives a car, a traffic jam in Bangkok is a total disaster.
While we have spent most part of the day at work, we can't help but miss home and expect to arrive there as fast as possible. Obviously this is not possible in times of heavy rain as cars slow down and traffic is unavoidably congested. I am sure there are times when those who are caught in the traffic jam think about imaginary fly-over streets where cars can be lifted up to take the magical pathway that will lead them to where they are heading to. More like a comforting thought in the midst of frustration.
On the other hand, rain brings cool weather that is nice. The sound of raindrops is soothing and relaxing. That reminds me - or maybe most of you readers, of how fun it was playing in the rain when we were children. Adults just don't do much of that anymore..
Rain always has that magic that somehow uplifts our mood and quickly brings a smile. Unless if we have an important meeting to attend and we are late, or say, friends call to cancel dinner or movie.
While tonight it is not raining and the sky is clear. Simply have the urge to rush back home. But just before that, let me send some of the pictures that I have been intending to post for sometime now. Hope you enjoy them and have a great evening, raining or not raining...
Monday, September 20, 2010
It is September and things are just rolling very fast these days to the extent that within a blink of the eyes, day just turns to another. I wonder, is it time to plan for a year-end holiday?
Checking into the flights online, I got to learn that seats are selling out quickly and as each day passes by, the airfare is just getting more and more expensive. Year-end period that covers both Christmas and New Year holiday is the peakest season when everyobody is suddenly so into getting away and willing to pay no matter how much it takes.
I, in the other hand, feel terribly happy residing in a country like Thailand where there are many options of places to go. That means I don't necessarily have to go overseas just to get away. There are plenty domestic holiday destinations available throughout Thailand that promise fun, beautiful scenery, and good time. And I think back of the places I have been to, I quickly realize there are many places new and waiting for me to explore.
So my destination for this year is most probably a national park on the mountain. Living a city life makes me long for trees, fresh air, and the smell of forest. I can't remember my last mountain trip, seems like years ago. Now that I have figured out where I want to go, it feels right to say that I am looking forward to year-end holiday...
How about you? Are you planning to go somewhere?
Monday, September 13, 2010
There are just abundant of beautiful objects around me. Sometimes I can not decide what to shoot first. Among the long list there are fruits in my fridge, props that I just got recently in the flea market, parfait in my freezer, a couple of vivid color fabrics, flowers that my boyfriend just finished arranging last night, or that luxurious-looking glass vase. Which one should pose for me first?
In my small living room that I quickly converted into a mini studio, there are plenty of props lying around. The tripod is always there at the side of my computer, one big black bucket filled with colorful paper for backdrop is sitting quietly at the corner. Next to it is a whole stack of wooden backdrops - in many different shades and textures. And at the center there I have my table where everything photographic will be happening... and don't forget the white board reflectors.
This living room is full of light in the morning. I am so pleased I had picked this unit from the beginning. The windows are facing the East - for some reasons I always go for the East. And it has never being planned that I would be taking lots of photos here. It just happened I picked the right unit with the correct natural light windows. So thank God!
And there goes the thought that for whatever unit I might want to move to next time, it must have windows that are facing the East.
About the objects I like to shoot.. my preference is always fruits and flowers. Vegetables could be fun too especially the beautiful ones like tomatoes, chilies and paprica. For storage wise, I fancy vegetables that last long like pumpkins. I remember keeping them like weeks and they hardly changed in shape or color. And did I mention eggplants already?
Eggplant's colors and shapes are appealing to me.... Either dark or vivid purple, fresh or pale green, or white. Long, rounded, or even weird shapes. Anything goes..
Monday, September 6, 2010
The most loyal friend comes by every morning without a miss, bringing his glary being glowing through the soft fabrics of my curtain.
He is bright and promising. He is warm and energizing. He is the first sign that a new hope is present everyday. And he has been good to me…
Each morning he firmly says “Hello!” with his gentle tone of voice. Sometimes I ignored him. I regretted it. And ever since I had grown to like him even more, just like every great creation in the nature.
I realized how profoundly I needed him, appreciated him, and missed him everytime he didn’t come around. Simply to my relief, he has never been absent without a clear excuse. He is reliable and trustworthy. I can count on him.
It scares me to understand that I can not live without him. The fish in my pond will cease living. No flowers bloom. Parsley and mint are left with scentless empty names. No heat, no contrast, no shadow, no energy.
Without him there is no reflecting glasses, no light… no life.
Tuesday, August 31, 2010
Welcome everyone to Take in Paris, a twin blog of Bake in Paris but with slightly different content!
After crafting within Bake in Paris for 20 months - that is baking and taking food photographs, I realized there has been a need for an expression outside the food box and into more general still-life photography. Apparently there are many beautiful objects around me that are patiently waiting to be captured which happened to be non food.
Fruits and flowers are two major objects that have been part of my desire which have not been presented as much as I wanted. Posting flower or fruit photographs solely without any accompanying recipe seems incomplete for Bake in Paris as I believe readers are expecting to view something that they can cook or bake. There is where Take in Paris comes into picture.
While fruits and flowers are just props in Bake in Paris, just like a cake stand or a porcelain bowl, in Take in Paris they will be the primadonna and be put under the spot light. And lots of other objects which I like to show like home and fashion accessories, plants, garments, etc. will now be possible.
This blog was planned after observing a bottle neck in my photo archive. The non-food photos are piling up so I had to find a way out. A.s.a.p!
And then the Leites Culinaria Photo Contest Winner announcement gave me a momentum this morning! After sitting in the 10 finalist chair for over 3 weeks, my Mini Strawberry Financier photo finally being picked as the third winner! It is really my honor to win such prestigious contest.
Oh boy, my little dream of having my photo viewed by Aran of Canelle et Vanille came true with a prize. That is so cool. Thanks to David Leite of Leite's Culinaria and the whole panel of judges: Aran Goyoaga of Cannelle et Vanille, Ben Fink, Erika Oliveira, former art director of Gourmet, and Karen Mordechai of Sunday Suppers.
And that is the reason why I like to mark this special occasion to launch Take in Paris. For my very first post, I just want you to relax and enjoy the flower photographs. There is no recipe, no ingredients, baking temperature, baking tray or melting butter to worry about. Simply a sighting pleasure...
Monday, August 30, 2010
A graphic designer who found his passion of baking along the intriguing journey that involved Sydney, Jakarta, Singapore, and Bangkok.
While reminiscing his first sweet encounter with the world of baking through a Lemon Meringue Pie recipe in a landlord's kitchen, he has since accepted cakes and dessert as the essential part of his life.
And in turn, various baking courses have introduced him to the meaning of delicacy, quality, aesthetics, and supreme taste.
The constant effort to capture the look of his cakes and desserts stretched his arms wide open to embrace blogging, food styling, and photography. All were seemingly coherent with his years of graphic design practice.
Only when his creations appeared in a dessert magazine and several food photo contests this year, he was determined to explore this exciting path of blending baking, food styling, and photography.
Currently residing in Bangkok, he hopes to interact and make friends with everyone with the same interest, worldwide...
To share ideas or comments, feel free to email Kris
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