Tag Archives: pizza pasta salad

Just Plummy: Tomato Tart & Pizza Pasta Salad & Plum Delicious Cobbler

8 Aug

Cooked in a super-hot oven, the cheese browns, the pastry cooks and the tomatoes caramelize in about 25 minutes

I forgot my phone at home on Saturday; I was rushing out the door at the butt-crack of dawn for a double-shoot at two restaurants in the East Village. As I sprinted to make the express train, I had a feeling it wasn’t in either of my bulging bags, but I just didn’t have time to launch a real search.

Friday night, I face-planted in bed around 10:00 pm, a Grandma-tastic record, even for me. Failing to perform my ritual bag check the night before an early call, my Saturday morning was a frenzied blur of notebook, key and wallet grabbing.

I got to the train station feeling under-caffeinated, ill-prepared for my video interviews, sweating and out of breath. But I couldn’t help but emit a little cackle of glee after searching my bags and confirming that my phone was at home, most likely under a groaning pile of other stuff I was supposed to bring that day. I was expecting calls from colleagues, family, friends and a real estate agent, but I couldn’t help but feel like I’d cashed in an 8-hour get out of jail free card. Freedom! The only people who could harass me were the ones who would be physically in front of me.

All of my colleagues on the shoots were equally ill-rested; two other producers, a camera guy and a sound guy and I loaded our gear into a cab and gunned it for Prince Street, only to find that the restaurant where we were supposed to hold the shoot wasn’t open. We finally found a subterranean entrance, and after picking our way through trash-strewn alleys, unlit hallways and a maze of concrete, we found a loud and clanging kitchen filled with more people hovering on the knife-edge of exhausted, hysterical delirium.

The shoots were inspiring; I’ve conducted hundreds of in-person, over the phone and email interviews over the years, but I’m just getting into the world of video interviews. Thankfully, the company I’m working for knows I’m green and they’re actually willing to spend time training me on how to light and frame shots, run a shoot from start to finish and wrap up shooting scripts, etc., until I’m up to speed, an increasingly rare occurrence in our hyper-fast-forward media world where if you ain’t got the skills right out of the gate, you’re never going to make it into the race.

The restaurateurs were amazing New York City and world citizens all around, but they also reminded me, yet again, of how easy it is to make tiny tweaks to my everyday life that have potentially global consequences. During our wide-ranging discussions about local food and community causes, they reminded me that shopping for cheap-o specials at the grocery store is fine (not everyone can afford to go to the greenmarket every day, least of all me) – as long as you do your research and leave the rabbit marked “Made in China” in the case, and put down the Mexican tomatoes in the middle of the summer. There are fresher, yummier ones from a small New Jersey farm, just a few feet down the aisle. Read the labels; it’s that simple.

After a phone-free work day on Saturday, Stephen and I spent a work and phone-free Sunday tooling around the kitchen. We made a delicious Tomato Tart, a whacky Pizza Pasta Salad and a truly toothsome Plum Cobbler. Dig in below!

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