Phew! The past two weeks have literally disappeared, I did not intend to be away from this space for so long. I have an exciting new job that allows me to write even more about art but with it came a very tight deadline. So at the moment, my time is very limited. I did however manage to make my hands look giant in this Mx photograph and to grab a copy of the May issue of MINDFood Magazine where Feasting on Art had a great little mention. Thanks to both publications for the press! I also would like to wish my Mom a Happy Mother’s Day, I love you so much!!

In other news, my two wonderfully creative friends Ness & Mel of parliament of two** recently launched their first joint jewelery line. I did a few portraits for them several months ago and am absolutely loving the new collection. The brooches are inspired by medical illustrations and feature quirky titles like this little gem, the snail: pass the salt. Click here to visit their website, shop, blog, and Facebook page. Be sure to grab a brooch before they all sell out!

Bartolomeo Bimbi, Cherries, 1699
Poggio a Caiano, Villa Medicea

The Florentine still life painter Bartolomeo Bimbi (1648-1729) enjoyed the patronage of the Medici family and to this day, several of his works can still be found in the Medici villas (including the painting above). Bimbi worked in a large scale and his paintings are often referred to as “portraits” due to their scientific focus on various botanic species and anomalies of nature, an interest pursued by his patron. He often painted many varieties of the same species upon his canvases which acted as inventory for Cosimo III (1). The idyllic landscape in which Bimbi placed the opulent cherries echoes their iconographic meaning, the fruit of paradise (2).

sour cherry turnover

{Sour Cherry Turnovers with Goat Cheese}

Adapted from Bon Appetit, July 2008
time: 45 minutes, serves 8

300 g frozen pitted cherries, thawed
1/4 c sugar
1 tsp flour
1 tsp fresh lemon juice
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 sheets frozen puff pastry, thawed
goat cheese to serve

Combine the cherries, sugar, flour, lemon juice and vanilla extract in a small saucepan. Over medium heat, bring to a boil and let simmer 5-8 minutes until the compote has thickened slightly. Set aside to cool.

Line a tray with parchment paper and preheat the oven to 190C (375F). Use a large glass or small bowl to mark 8 circles in the puff pastry and cut with a sharp knife. On one half of the pastry cut three small holes to allow the steam to escape.

Spoon cherry compote on the half of the pastry without the holes and fold the pastry to make a semi-circle. Press down sealing the edges and crimp with a fork. Line the turnovers on the parchment paper and bake for about 30 minutes until the tops are golden and the juices are bubbling out of the holes. Serve warm with soft goat cheese.

sour cherry turnover