Spaghetti with bottarga, the must-order at La Ciccia.
As an editor, I always wonder if our readers have any idea what goes into creating a page in the magazine. A page that they might glance at for a second while sweating it out on the treadmill. Or maybe in the waiting room of the dentist's office. Of course there's the hope that you pour over my every word and our photographer's every image and our art director's every layout. But I know—you've got a life to live, right?
Still, if you've gotten this far into this blog, maybe you're dying to find out more. In that case, read on.
For a page in our upcoming July issue, I decided we needed to tackle the real issue with summer in this city: The fact that faced with all this amazing, sun-kissed produce, we're often socked in fog. The quandry? Trying to reconcile the season's juicy, sweet peaches with the cold weather around here. So I asked four notable chefs to cook up some key ingredients (such as corn, tomatoes, and peaches) two ways—one fitting for the fog and one ideal for dining al fresco.
With eight recipes in my pocket, we then had to make them all and shoot them. When you see the dishes on the page, they'll be no bigger than a couple inches round. That doesn't mean our stylist Lauren Godfrey didn't shop for the ingredients and cook them up for real (and then clean up for real too). Or that our photographer Chris Rochelle didn't achingly ponder every angle of the pan-fried bacon-wrapped tomatoes on a bed of lettuce with mayo (mmmmm—we can thank Nojo for that recipe). Or that I didn't drag all my favorite Eva Zeisel white plates out of my closet to donate to the cause.
There are benefits to producing these kind of multi-faceted pages, however—namely, getting to taste all the recipes once they're done. Aziza pastry chef Melissa Chou came up with a recipe of fresh peaches with basil, whipped goat cheese mousse, and a honey-balsamic drizzle that was pretty darn epic. I'm going to remember the marriage of those flavors for a while. In fact I think I'm going to recreate it this weekend when I'm up in Sonoma, in some 95 degree heat.
For all of the recipes, pick up a copy of our July issue, on stands June 20th. This page is going to be worth your time.