Saturday, February 6, 2010

snow picnic

I started planning this meal when I was on the train en route to an artist residency in Vermont. (VSC) It's taken me quite some time to finally pull it together, but I am so very happy with it. I am a conceptual artist and this is very much a conceptual menu. I was listening to Moonlight in Vermont, one of my all time favorite songs, and was struck by the "icy fingerwaves" bit. I always get excited when I see something in a blog or cookbook called a snow picnic, but am invariably let down by the chili/ hot chocolate/flannel that seems to be what most people consider a proper snow picnic. (Not that I don't like those things because I do!) Trouble is, in my head a snow picnic is all about icy fingerwaves and après ski 30's elegance. I think this hearkens back to my childhood- I have a vivid memory of being someplace (don't even remember where...) with my family for a ski trip and there being some sort of après ski fondue situation in the lodge at happy hour. It was really just a marketing ploy and not very impressive in reality, but at the time it seemed incredibly glamorous to me. So I guess in a way I have been planning this meal since then. I decided to use mainly white foods because I think they look elegant and they are sort the opposite of the chili/hot chocolate approach. I was influenced tremendously by the worn barnwood structures all over vermont and they crop up in the photos too. Île flottante were the first thing I decided to make because they seem like the most elegant snow dessert I could think of-- and their other name, oeufs à la neige, means snow eggs. I stuck with a lunch menu because dinner outside in the snow seems less practical, but then again this isn't really a menu chosen for it's practicality. The landscape photos were taken in vermont during my residency, food photos done back at home, the life photos are from the life photo archive, (which is brilliant, btw) threw in a bunch of vintage clip art because I am generally obsessed with it and the sempervivums are from my garden. How amazing is that snow bar?!

Pennies in a stream
Falling leaves, a sycamore
Moonlight in Vermont

Icy finger-waves
Ski trails on a mountainside
Snowlight in Vermont

Telegraph cables, they sing down the highway
And travel each bend in the road
People who meet in this romantic setting
Are so hypnotized by the lovely...


Rachel said...

ABSOLUTELY sublime! Beyond anything I have seen before! You have created a masterpiece - thank you for sharing these exquisite images and recipes. Congratulations on your amazing work!

Jessie said...

Thanks- that is so sweet of you!