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Wednesday, January 26, 2022

These poached eggs are not perfect. This is what makes them beautiful.

Author: Genevieve Co, New York Times

It was approaching midnight on day 8 of the two-week photo shoot when I rolled out the dough for a sheet of crackers. Using a long ruler as a guide, I cut out perfect rectangles and then forked the straight lines of the dots. It looked perfect in the oven. On his way out, he leaned over the parchment paper and wrinkled like a shirt stuffed into a drawer.

Disappointed, I decided that the next morning I would do another batch. When photographer Romulo Janes arrived, I showed him the spoiled crackers and said that I would prepare another tray.

He stopped me and said – really scolded me – that these wrinkles make the baked dough beautiful. I thought he just said it to be nice because this was my first solo cookbook, but he took a pot and put it under his camera. Even before his monitors were set up, he took a picture. He motioned me to his place and grinned, showing me the image in the viewfinder.

“See? It’s great,” he said. “Let’s eat.”

In a world where everything that is not perfect seems unacceptable, Romulo helped me find beauty in imperfections, to see how mistakes can lead to something amazing and perhaps even better. It was a master class on grace, as was his habit of taking time to share a meal with those around him. In these years of grief and in this period of heightened sense of loss, I often think of Romulo, who died of cancer in June. I remember him and especially the two lessons he taught me that day and again on every shoot.

Romulo’s food photography is often known for her genuine love for what’s on the other side of the lens. But those who were on set with him know that his images also convey how he appreciated the people who cooked the food – how he worked with us, flaws and all that, and turned our dishes into beautiful things, and then collected us at the table to share in them.

In most photo shoots, breakfast is about sips of coffee and pieces of muffins as it prepares. But Romulo encouraged us to start each day with a hot lunch together, even if we just wanted to work. One morning he went into the kitchen to prepare breakfast for us. He longed for poached eggs on a buttered English muffin and wanted to make each of us individually. The stylists, assistants, and I gathered around the stove, where Romulo put a pan of water on the flame.

World Nation News Deskhttps://www.worldnationnews.com
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