In The Kitchen With Design*Sponge

Augh! Finally! Have you seen this? I’m on Design*Sponge’s In The Kitchen this week and I can’t tell you how much of an honor it is.

I think it may have been about six months ago when Grace and Kristina asked me to submit something, but I lagged and lagged and didn’t just want to give her something I’ve run before. I felt it had to be new and original, and then I spent about the next 5 months or so trying to figure out what that could possibly be.

The idea hit me when a grower at my local farmers’ market had a box of beet greens for practically nothing. I’ve been a huge fan of beet greens for some time and was thrilled to be able to take home a nice hefty bag of those stems. Not that I don’t like the beets, but I didn’t particularly feel like roasting, ya know? And the idea was born: share one of my favorite recipe for greens. And it’s a dish that can be vegan, vegetarian or not, it’s really versatile and so completely delicious.

Remember folks, you don’t have to discard the tops of beets. Eat them!

So head on over to Design*Sponge to check it out!

And yes, that’s my home office there and me in my bathtub. I bet you had no idea I was so wacky, what, with me being Mr. Serious all the time.

* * * * * * *

As a little behind-the-scenes, here’s what it took to get the greens & polenta shot as well as an outtake.


Clockwise from top left

1. Yes, that’s my man on the floor. What he won’t do for a good picture. In this case I rushed him so that I could eat the dish which I promptly did while sitting on the garage floor. I’m so romantic.

2. A bigger view of the surface and the set tray. Don’t think those extra little bits of pancetta went to waste. They didn’t.

3. Here’s an outtake of the recipe shot. This was
my original image but I didn’t feel as if you could see enough of beet
greens. Hey, it happens.

4. Here’s the set I put together for shot before I decided to do an overhead. I have a collection of old wood that comes in handy. That big white thing is my scrim which diffuses light and creates a much softer spill. It basically becomes a big giant softbox. It’s not always necessary but the sun was pretty bright that morning.


  1. says

    Reminds me of Universal Studios!! All the grand things that they do on the screen in such a tiny confined space off the screen!

    You’re artists!

    Hi Adam! Thanks for helping Matt help me!!!

  2. says

    i’m so excited you were on design sponge – wowee! the photos were gorgeous as always.

    beets were my favourite as a kid – but i’ve never had the greens. thanks for the push to try ’em – i will!

  3. says

    congrats on the D*S feature — glad they love you as much as we do.

    Love the behind-the-scenes, and happy to see that Adam is home. :)

    I am so envious of you — and my other food-photo pals — who have room to keep your gear out, or even space to set up somewhere that isn’t the kitchen table :)

  4. says

    I am so envious of that bathroom of yours! Gorgeous. I love your blog, and have been reading for a while. I always smile after I read it, and that’s a good sign…

  5. says

    So excited to see your blog via Design Sponge. Looking forward to reading more!

    (Your banner makes me want to run out and find some peas to munch on!)

  6. says

    Is that your dedicated shooting table for most home projects? If so, for background changes, do you drape different fabrics or have painted woods you prop in the background?

    And, slightly related, how necessary is (and cheap can I get) a monitor for use while shooting?

  7. says

    I hope you don’t mind that I gushed about how great you were and how much the ENTIRE food loving community needs to see/read your work.

    As far as I’m concerned, you rule.

    Yours in food,

  8. ayngelina says

    Love that you included the behind the scenes and also the discarded shot. You were right, it looks much better from above.

  9. says

    Congrats on the Design Sponge feature. You have a gorgeous blog, so it is a well deserved spotlight.

    I love the behind-the-scenes to your food photography. In my humble chicago abode there are only two places where I get enough sunlight to take photos. And me with no place to store a big beautiful bounce.

  10. says

    I made this dish the other night for a dinner party and it was DELICIOUS! We all loved the spice and the richness of flavors.

    Thank you for helping me get over my fear of cooking Italian polenta from scratch!


  11. says

    WOW! I was just yearning for some beet greens, I’m totally serious! Thanks for the great recipe, and I really like your blog! will be back!

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