Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Lemon and Ginger Sweet Rolls

Here is something that you do not see coming out of my oven very often, at least not made by my own hands....... sweet bread! Recently I was gifted with a six month subscription to Fine Cooking. For the most part, I do not make much use of  it because of the amount of "nutritionlessness" within its pages. Well, it was one of those snowy and cold New England nights and nothing warms my heart like a good enriched dough swirled with butter and spices and covered in a glaze. I got pretty creative with this one. I started off with a lemon and ginger dough; then went with a brown sugar and nutmeg interior swirl, and finished the rolls off with a lightly-scented almond glaze. 
I am continuing to experiment with my new Nikon camera. I am particularly fond of the semi-manual shutter speed and aperture mode right now and I used those features to take some photos of this bake. I am slowly learning. I am so glad we got a new camera because it is motivating me to not only bake more often, but also to be more creative with how I display my breads and creations. This makes my wife Kelly happy and it also involves her a lot more in the process. I think that it's kind of cute. She gets all excited about what basket to use, where to place the boards, and what books to have in the background. Actually she is quite helpful and we make a great team.

When I saw the freshly grated lemon zest and the ground ginger in the bowl, I realized this could be an awesome artistic photo. I played around with focus and lighting and I came up with this picture. I really like how the bowl is slightly out of focus and blurred in the foreground and how the color of the lemon zest is so bright and fresh looking. The earth tones from the ginger round out the picture. I think that this picture almost captures the aroma from the lemon and that is why I love it so much.
There is something about Macro photography that I really love, and because of this my goal is to get a decent Macro lens down the road. I want one that I can dedicate to taking food macro photography. For now I will settle for the camera mode. (I have done some research and it looks like a great lens will set me back close to $450…used!) I really enjoy taking food pictures from angles that we normally do not view food from. For this one, I went down to the level of the medium, in this case, the dough lathered with butter and sprinkled heavily with light brown sugar and a light dusting of freshly grated nutmeg. I got as close as I could. It captures the light in an almost romantic way. My job is in the field of food addiction in Boston and I also serve as a consultant to a substance and food treatment center in Toronto. Trust me. I really know how romantic sugar can be!
 I took this picture rather quickly. Kelly was in a rush to get it into the oven and I was in the way. There is something about it that I really like. All of the buns cuddled up together to stay warm, and there is a wonderful shine to them from the egg yolk and water wash. I was playing with aperture settings again to take this picture, but it is hard to notice the gradient of focus because the other rolls are so close to my primary subject.
 Kelly and I took a few pictures of the finished product after the almond glaze was drizzled. The best part about this glaze is the use of a technique that I learned many years ago from one of my professors in culinary school. Basically, you make a claw with all of your fingers (none of them touching one another) and dip your fingers into the glaze and then shake your hand side-to-side rather vigorously over the rolls. The final result is something like this. I was trying to have a main roll in focus and to have others out of focus in the background, again we used an Aperture setting. What fun it is to bake, photograph the results with Kelly, and finally to eat these rolls.

Bake On
-DW, The Rye King

1 comment :

  1. OMG...I am one of those food addicts you spoke of....they look divine and would be too many and the pan full would not be enough!!! The pictures are great!!! Glad you are enjoying your new camera!