Yes Ellie & I did it again – another sunrise breakfast at the Tessellated Pavement, but more on that later.
What do you say when your chef friend asks you to come & cook, wash up & taste the food for her 2 day photo shoot for her Seafood Everyday Cookbook – YES PLEASE! (And as a bonus I actually got paid to do it too!! I told Ellie I would have done it for free because it was so much fun, not to mention absolutely delicious!)
Day 1: Sunday 1st May – Job 1 purchase some ingredients on the way down to Ellie’s place at Eaglehawk Neck. When I woke up bright & early there was the most amazing sunrise & then as I started to drive into the city I heard thunder, saw lightning & then it bucketed down with rain! I was hoping the light would still be ok for Ellie’s photos today. I had nothing to fear as when I arrived at Ellie’s at about 9.30am she had already started some of the prep – her dining table was covered with lots of crockery, cloths & cutlery. She had a table by the window set up with backgrounds reflectors & her camera on the tripod. She had already cooked a crayfish for a couple of the recipes later on in the day. I was asked to make & prep some of the recipes so Elli’e could just finish them off before taking her photos for the book & then I got to taste them all!! I was so busy trying to cook, eat & wash up (she doesn’t have a dishwasher) that I didn’t get a chance to take many of my own photos – I did get some quick shots on my iPhone before I consumed them, so I could use them on our designated instagram breaks throughout the day, to make all my friends super jealous!!
Surprise Potato Bake
Thermomix Hollandaise Sauce
1 of the many oyster recipes
Crayfish with Hollandaise Sauce
Fresh pasta for 4 different recipes
On the first day we completed 19 recipes – which included about 6 different styles of oysters YUM! I was in my element because I could use Ellie’s 2 Thermomix for certain elements of the recipes too. I learnt so many tips and ideas form Ellie over the 2 days. You won’t believe the first dish I had to prep was risotto (or otherwise know as “Hot Wet Rice” & yes we showed the Katering show video of the two Kate’s making risotto to Ellie’s hubby at the end of day 2 & we all had a good laugh).
I used the Thermomix for fresh pasta dough & left it to rest, Ellie had already made the bread dough in the Thermie before I arrived & then I learnt how to shape it for a cob loaf & 2 baguettes – we let it proof again & then baked in the oven. It’ s a bit of a blur but I will try to remember everything the best I can – octopus salad with peas & feta was amazing! I also had another salad with fish, risotto & feta balls with octopus, salmon & bacon pancakes – so good!! I made Ellie’s awesome potato & sweet potato surprise bake. (I’m drooling in my mouth as i remember tasting all these amazing dishes). A cauliflower puree was another element for one of the dishes that was easy to make in the Thermomix, as well as onion jam & beetroot relish – Ellie wanted a grated texture for the beetroot relish & took great delight in the fact I had to use a grater to hand grate the beetroot by hand instead of using the Thermomix. I also made pastry in the Thermomix too.
Dish of the day was hard to choose but I have to say the crayfish topped with Thermomix hollandaise was so special, plus it looked amazing too!
Guess what we had for dinner that night? Yes leftovers!! I couldn’t believe I could fit anything in!! After dinner we looked at the days photos & they looked amazing they even made me hungry looking at them!! I rolled out the pasta dough & cooked it ready for 4 different pasta dishes we would shoot tomorrow. I also made the steamed Dill & Feta Omelette with Smoked Salmon recipe we were taking to the Tessellated Pavement in the morning for Ellie to get the cover photo for her cookbook. We had learnt a lot form our previous breakfast at the Tessellated Pavement, to take a little with us as possible. So we packed 1 picnic basket of things & worked out how we were going to style it. We had an early night so we would be fresh in the morning for our big photo shoot.
Day 2: Monday 2nd May, after I woke up multiple times in the early morning it was time to officially wake up at 5.45am. We had a quick cuppa & grabbed our food, Tasmanian sparkling wine & picnic basket of props to arrive at the Tessellated Pavement about 6.30, after setting up in one spot we moved to another spot so we could get more of the pavement into the shot. We got so many amazing photos, Ellie was quick to post a picture to instagram of our sunrise breakfast picnic hoping she could get over 100 likes. Check out Ellie’s Instagram account to have a look. We had the whole place to ourselves & after a few adjustments we had it just right to shoot away for about 1/2 an hour or so. It was so exciting, relaxing & peaceful. I could not wipe the smile off my face.
After packing up, I had to drink the wine in the glasses, because we couldn’t waste such good quality Tasmanian sparkling wine & Ellie couldn’t drink because she had to have her A game on for the rest of the days big photo shoot. Anyway just as I was downing the last of the wine in the glass a lady & her dog walked past, she smiled asking if we were celebrating?! After all it was only just after 7am on a Monday morning!! Too funny!
A very quick look at the mornings photos on the computer & Ellie confirmed she had got her cover photo – It looks amazing!!
Anyway back to work, first things first, more breakfast!! We hadn’t eaten the omelette we took to the morning shoot & had brought it back home with us so take some more photos with the most amazing breakfast you will ever have – Salmon rashers with French toast & maple syrup, so amazing!!
After breakfast was photographed & then eaten it was time to get onto the 13 more recipes for the day including all the mussel recipes. We also had Ellie’s 2 youngest children helping us today so I added child entertainer to my list of jobs, it was so much fun & we all wore our special aprons too! Yes I had the job of making sure the bottle of sparkling wine didn’t get wasted & so I had a matching wine to my seafood tasting today until just after lunchtime 🙂 I got to make a spicy seafood laksa & we made another crayfish recipe too, oh & some yummy squid pasta, just to mention a few of the days recipes.
The cooking, eating, washing up & photos continued for the rest of the day & we finished about 4pm. We had multiple instagram checking breaks as we saw Ellie’s likes for her photo sky rocket through the day. Then we all went for a walk to the beach which was just what we needed after 2 epic days.
I stayed for dinner to help Ellie & her family eat some of the days delicious leftovers – we had another mini leftover degustation for dinner as the fridge was very full!! I don’t think I will ever need to eat again – well maybe not till breakfast anyway!
Oh wow, I thought I was in heaven, having a 2 day seafood degustation with a total of 34 dishes, I feel so grateful to have been given this amazing experience. I loved hearing stories Ellie shared with me about her restaurant days where she was the chef & owner at the Mussel Boys in Tarana, quite a few of the recipes from her restaurant are in the cookbook too. Also Ellie’s Instagram photo from the morning was shared by “Australia” on Instagram on got over 46,000 likes!!
Even if I had not had this awesome experience I would still be rushing out to buy this cookbook the recipes are amazing & the photos look sensational – much better than these ones I took on my iPhone 🙂 The Seafood Everyday Cookbook will hopefully be available to purchase in Dec 2016. Congrats Ellie on an outstandingly awesome job! I love your work! (I think I am still in a food coma)
This was a foodie dream come true, especially for my friend & Chef Eloise Emmett see her blog post here. What a magical spot at Bangor with a glorious view & we say long table – yes it was a looooooong table – It don’t even think the person at the other end of the table would even hear you asking to pass the salt!
We got to help pick the last of the grapes – pinot noir (we found out later the wine won’t be ready till another 3 years from the grapes we picked today)
Matt gave us a lesson in grape picking before we could start – one of the main things was don’t cut yourself, we all managed to get that one right – It was also important not to pick any under ripe grapes at this will effect the wine in a negative way! No pressure at all!!
So what about the food & the menu?The menu featured seafood & local produce of course. We started with mugs os creamy seafood chowder – this was good because it gave a bit more time to take more photos of the food on the table before everyone sat down & ate 🙂 And of course we had to have the Bangor oysters too – They are amazing! I think I sat in the right spot because the people around me either couldn’t eat them or didn’t like oysters!!
One of my favourite Ellie salads – Greek salad with octopus!!
Smoked salmon & potato salad
Of course there was delicious Bangor Wine & we had a Seafood Lasagne too not to mention freshly baked bread & cheese plates.
For dessert we had chocolate profiteroles, apple & rhubarb crumble cake, brownies by Isobel & poached pears with a red wine syrup.
And just like that our magical lunch was over & it was time to pack up! I am so grateful to have been a part of this wonderful day. I left full & happy, what wonderful bunch of people we met while picking grapes & eating a gourmet seafood feast!
Have you been to the coolest looking butcher in town? Huon Valley Meat Co have amazing top quality hormone free, grass feed meat. Sometimes it can be a challenge to style meat so we gave it go! It was the perfect day for it because someone had brought in their Thermomix from home for some recipe development – guess what was the star of this photo shoot? See my styling & photography buddy Ellie’s photos on her blog.
Fancy a seat while you are waiting.?
Maybe some inspiration or condiments ?
How awesome is this slicer & chopping board?
How about some meat??
Of course we had to buy some meat to take some home too for an awesome cook up, so much flavour & such good products, do yourself a favour & drop on in.
You may have been “instaspamed” when we had breakfast at the Pigeonhole Cafe, I was joined by Ellie of course & you can see her pictures here. The Pigeonhole Cafe have had their Thermomix for a few good weeks so it was a perfect excuse to do some taste testing & photography all in one. All the produce for the cafe is sourced from their own Weston Farm so it really is paddock to plate. It’s so awesome seeing all their preserves & pickles on the back wall of the cafe.
All good food styling & photography sessions must begin with coffee to keep our energy levels up!
The Chef Alex Mullan served us his favourite dishes, starting with the Pork Rillettes made from a pig from their own farm with an apple & rose hip paste, served with house made pickles & toasts. Even the greens & flowers are from the farm. Alex explained that he tries to make every thing he can from scratch & I can certainly relate to that! This dish was so amazing!! Not only did it look so good that I took about 20 shots of it (while drooling) but it was so balanced & full of flavour.
House made pickles
Next fresh lightly roasted figs with mascarpone cheese & caramelised honey on sourdough – I’m still in a food coma!!
Chai tea & more coffee required
Then the “Divorced Eggs” A combo of hot & cold with baked eggs – once I heard there was chipotle I was sold 🙂 So good!!
Now I think it might be time for 2 “ladies” to eat 3 breakfasts!! Let’s get some action shots – well at the very least slow motion posed eating shots!
We had a wonderful morning & want to thank the amazing team at Pigeon Hole Cafe’ for being so accomodating, allowing us to have a long breakfast with our cameras & tripods in the front of the cafe’.
While driving home from our Food Styling Photography course, we were talking about the sunrise on the Tessellated Pavements & Ellie said it was one of the most iconic & photographed spots in Tassie. I said, why don’t we do a food shoot there?! And we decided to run with it big time. With only a couple of weeks left of sunrise capturing available at the Tessellated Pavements we needed to get cracking! I couldn’t help it, I wanted to change the words to the song “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” to Breakfast at Tessellated. So we had our theme tune sorted now lots of other things to organise.
Our mission: To set up a beautiful delicious breakfast using Tasmanian produce, in time to capture the sunrise reflection on the tessellated pavement – Food photography for “posh ladies” – table for 4.
Props: I had seen the perfect trestle table that I just had to have but it wouldn’t fit in my small car! I wanted to take my wooden dining chairs too. We had a carafe, my Nana’s tea cups & saucers, napkins, table runner, vase & foliage, glasses & champagne flutes, candles & candelabra.
Sunday early evening scout out: We realised that it was a fair 5 min walk to the Tessellated Pavement from the carpark & it included stairs. So we needed to take a little as possible to make a maximum of 2 trips each. There was a perfect spot with a log up out of the way & this would make perfect seats for us so no chairs needed. Ellie had some old fence palings & I brought my husband’s workshop wooden horses to act as the legs for our portable table. We styled it up the night before at Ellie’s house (thankfully she leaves only 5 mins drive away).
I set the alarm for 5.30am but woke up at 4, we had packed everything the night before & only had a couple of last min things to prepare before we left. Lucky we remembered the torch!! We had 1 person that did 2 trips & everyone else did 1. We got to work setting up our camera’s Taking photos while setting up the table & styling the food. Our photography teacher from TAFE even showed up!
Well we thought it was well worth the effort, I have learnt a lot, (what to do & what not to do), an amazing few hours enjoying the sunrise & serenity not to mention the awesome company, delicious local food & drinks. How on earth will we be able to top this?!
I had only been looking forward to this weekend for about 5 months (because it was rescheduled from Nov15) After my busy week at Thermofest I was quite exhausted but still excited to be heading with my camera & iPhone to a fun weekend food styling, with self taught expert stylist & photographer JJ from 84th & 3rd, while eating Ellie‘s delicious food. I stopped at Salamanca Market on the way down to Highcroft to collect a couple of bunches of Lisa Kingston Flowers gorgeous arrangements (My wonderful friend Ulla from Dragonfly Farm grows the proteas for her) Also collected some cucumbers for our special smoothie & a stopped at one of my favourite places Bangor Wine & Oyster Shed for a bottle of their amazing sparkling wine, some fresh oysters & shucking knife – I also grabbed a sneaky coffee 🙂
I arrived at the new location it had ended up being a 1 hour drive from Hobart, from the outside I wondered if I had made a mistake & gone to the wrong address? I later found out was a rustic CWA hall with amazing old tables & retro chairs gorgeous natural light flooding in through the windows, in other words a dream come true. There were 7 of us on the first including Ellie & JJ. Oh and did I mention Ellie brought her Thermomix too!!
So there was a big table set up with lots of props & cloths. A little taste of Ellie’s collection & JJ had brought a few things too. So our first mission; can you make canned soup look good? Answer YES!! We had pumpkin soup, tomato soup & cream of asparagus soup. And Ellie had some fresh baguettes she had made (dough made in the Thermomix of course). We had been all given some Olsson’s Salt in our goodie bags too, so great practice for product placement 😉
I was instantly drawn to the tomato soup & this is what happened!!
This is one of my favourite shots!!
Now it’s time for LUNCH!! (no we didn’t eat the soup!!) When I say time for lunch it means that after about 1/2 of taking lots of pics on our cameras & phones from every angle & every dish we can eat!! Ellie made my favourite octopus salad YUM!!
Vegan Tomato Tart
After lunch we moved onto balls – yes round things that are so popular in so many different flavours but it is hard to make them look good or is it?
We have had this honeycomb for a while so decided to get a last few shots before we ate it 🙂
Now we haven’t eaten for at least an hour or so lets set up for dinner outside with fairy lights – this was a dream of Elli’s for the last workshop in August 15 but alas the weather stopped us, but not today it was just perfect! We brought the table & chairs outside & set the table. Then got ready for the fresh oysters, Ellie shucked then quickly in front of us & cracked opened the sparkling wine from Bangor Oyster Shed.
What an absolutely awesome feast we had potato & hot smoked salmon salad, fennel & pepper berry beef with goats cheese, roast beetroot and hazelnut salad and a marinated shark on an Asian style salad. Check out Ellie’s blog for her photos & recipes!
Day 2: Breakfast & then picnic lunch in a pear orchard, how dreamy!!
I made JJ’s smoothie recipe in the Thermomix – yes I carried the Thermomix on my lap on the way in the car too!! JJ will post her recipe soon for me to share but you get a hint when you look in the bowl!!
JJ made her delicious baked apples & Ellie made my new favourite breakfast French Toast with Salmon rashers & maple syrup – AMAZING!!
And now it’s time to picnic – a short drive away & we are in a magic place, a local pear orchard.
Another delicious scene to shoot, eat & drink 🙂 Feeling so lucky & had such a great time too!
Here is a snapshot of images taken on my iPhone & some behind the scenes shots too!