Over the weekend I became enthralled with a woman I never even knew existed until a few days ago. Penny De Los Santos is amazing! Her food photography class on creativelive.com held me captive for three straight days.
Penny is a fabulous photographer and a beautiful person. I love her sense of humor, her style, the way she gets right in there for the perfect shot. And she’s so easy-going. I’d love to spend a day peppering her with questions about the places she has traveled, the people she has met and the photos she has made. Her talent and eye for beauty have inspired me in so many ways. What a fabulous way to live…doing what you love day after day. Penny’s passion shows through in every story she tells, every picture she makes. She’s the real deal, in my opinion.
Her best advice? “If you’re not doing what you love, why not? Whatever you want to do, you can do it.”
She is absolutely right. And it makes me think of another inspiring person I learned more about over the weekend. I watched the Justin Bieber documentary Never Say Neverwith my kids (don't laugh; it was really good!). If that story doesn’t make you want to dream big and follow your dreams, I don’t know what would. A Canadian kid with a great voice, was discovered on YouTube. A couple of years later he sold out Madison Square Garden in 22 minutes. In his short career he has done things no other person has done. And he’s only 17.
Penny De Los Santos and Justin Bieber are an odd pair to talk about in the same breath, I’ll admit. But you know what I love about both of them? From the little I have seen, I get a strong feeling that they are both genuine people who have their priorities straight. In other words, their hearts are in the right places. And their stories make me smile.
All of my rambling has absolutely nothing to do with this recipe. Except that I shot these photos before I watched Penny’s class, and I hope that in the coming weeks and months I can start to show some improvement from the great tips I picked up over the weekend. If you didn't catch the class you can order a download at http://www.creativelive.com/courses/food-photography-penny-de-los-santos.
This pasta was, in fact, delicious. The stars of the show were the fresh asparagus and the basil that I snipped from my very own, newly acquired plant. Hooray for spring!
It’s an easy, quick dish you can whip up after a long workday. And I've found the time passes faster if you drink a glass (or two) of wine while cooking.
Cook 4 ounces of linguine in boiling water until al dente, about 8-10 minutes. Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil over medium high heat. Mince two cloves of garlic and sauté for a minute or two. Add 2 cups of shrimp and saute. Steam 3 cups chopped asparagus until crisp-tender, 1-2 minutes. Add to shrimp and garlic. Add one cup cooked peas, and the zest and juice of one lemon. Season with salt and pepper.
Serve vegetables and shrimp over linguine. Garnish with a drizzle of olive oil, a sprinkling of fresh basil and a dash of red pepper flakes if you’d like a little heat. And Parmesan cheese would be good too. I didn’t think about it until after the fact, but it would have been delicious.
Hope everyone had a great weekend!