I had a surreal experience the other day. My husband called from Wal-Mart saying he’d found my photograph on the cover of a magazine. He bought a few and brought them home to share with family and friends. Was he talking about my work? No, it couldn’t be.
It seems like my photographs have always done two things. Local work I’d see all the time but didn't leave, or sent far away never to be seen again. This was different. My work went far away and came back to my little Idaho town.
Although a new experience for me, I have to look at it and wince a little bit. The shot that almost didn’t happen. I think of pain and nausea too. Not something I’d like to relate to a beautiful summer picnic!
There were only a couple days to throw together a menu, test and shoot. Beckett Media had an emergency deadline that makes other deadlines look like a stroll in the park. I was lucky to be one of the photographers they reached out to for help.
With some help of my own from well, everyone, I was able to pull it off until I got to the end of my grilling shots. I stepped back a bit too far and fell off my deck. Hard.
Protecting my camera and in searing horrible pain I still had to shoot the cover picnic shot. I’d badly torn a thigh muscle and beat the heck out of my knees. I all but had to be carried, vomiting, to the next site for the shot. I couldn’t set anything up, but had to rely on friends and family to set up my next shot. All of them male! How many men do you see decorating tables? It wasn’t as perfect as I wanted but there was nothing I could do but shoot. I couldn’t even see clearly at this point anyway and relied on instinct and habit.
I did my best under the circumstances thanks to everyone who held me together, but nowhere near what I could have done. Still, editor Hillary Black made my work beautiful. She’s a genius.
The magazine’s been out for a while now so I feel like I can share with you these recipes without causing a problem. If you want a copy of your own it’s “The Summer Grilling Guide” from Beckett Entertainment Plus. It should be out until the end of summer.
Garlicky Bacon Pizza with Summer Vegetables
1 (12 to 14 inch) pizza dough, stretched onto a pan
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
Alfredo sauce (from the refrigerated section of your store)
3/4 cup mozzarella, shredded
1/2 cup Fontina, shredded
1 medium zucchini, sliced into rounds
5 slices thick sliced bacon, cooked and cut into chunks
1 1/2 cups mini heirloom or other small tomatoes, halved
3 tablespoons chopped scallions
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
3 tablespoons dried Parmesan
Salt & pepper to taste
1. Preheat the grill on high to 500 degrees, with the lid closed. Brush a good quality pizza pan lightly with olive oil, and sprinkle with cornmeal. Set aside.
2. Stretch and roll out the pizza dough until thin, and place on the pan. Brush the top with 1 tablespoon olive oil, and then spoon on as much Alfredo sauce as desired.
3. Top pizza with the mozzarella, zucchini, Fontina, bacon, tomatoes, scallions, minced garlic and dried Parmesan. Season with salt and pepper.
4. Set pizza on the grill and close the lid. Cook for 5 to 8 minutes or until cooked through.
2 ¼ teaspoons active dry yeast
1 teaspoon honey or sugar
1 cup lukewarm water
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 cups unbleached all purpose flour
1 tablespoon dried parsley
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon salt
Place water, yeast, and honey or sugar into a stand mixer bowl. Stir to combine and set aside for 10 minutes.
Place the rest of the ingredients in the bowl and knead with a dough hook on low speed for 5 to 10 minutes. Remove the dough from the bowl and knead by hand on a clean surface for another minute. Pat into a circle.
Lightly oil a large bowl and place the dough inside, flipping once to coat with oil. Cover and let rise in a warm place for 30 minutes.
Makes two large pizzas.
From "Summer Grilling Guide" from Beckett Entertainment Plus 2010. Recipes & photographs by Laura Flowers.