As an art historian, I find the artist’s conceptual process to be incredibly intriguing, it lends readability and a deeper understanding to the artwork. In interviews, I am often asked to describe my methods of adapting an artwork into a recipe and truth be told, my approach varies greatly from post to post. There is a general formula I tend to follow and as this blog nears the two-year mark, I decided to share my creative process for the recipe below. In the beginning of each month, I sit down with a calendar and begin combing through my image archives. I try to post a new entry once every five days and so I map out the month, reserving two Mondays to cook and photograph all of the dishes. I queue up artworks that pique my interest and begin listing out the ingredients depicted in each one. As an example, Still Life of Asparagus, pictured below by Nicolas-Henry Jeaurat de Bertry features butter, onion, garlic and white asparagus. After listing the ingredients, I start arranging and rearranging the signature item which ended up being the white asparagus in the recipe below. I tend to start with the recipe title and from the title, work out the ingredient proportions and method of cooking. With the soufflé edged with asparagus, I had a clear picture of how the finish dish should look but was unsure if the recipe would actually work the way I intended. Lucky for me, the soufflé emerged better than I had imagined and the asparagus, when plucked from the soufflé, acted as a vehicle to transport the spongy egg, an aspect I had not anticipated.
Nicolas-Henry Jeaurat de Bertry, Still Life of Asparagus, 18th century
oil on canvas on panel, 25.5 x 36 cm, Private collection
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