There are no rules on the playground …

33 recipes styled and photographed in 3 days.  I believe it’s true what they say, (whoever they are) “If you do what you love it doesn’t feel like work at all”.  My job as a stylist feels more like getting paid to play.   A food shoot feels like a playground where I get to goof around making things pretty with other creative friends – art directors, party stylists, and photographers.  When the team comes together something magical happens and the flow of artistic energy feels easy and whimsical. Nothing is forced and from the outside looking in we make it look so easy.  I think the most delicious things in life are always that way … easy.

I just finished a 3 day photo shoot with a talented group of creatives.  What made this project unique was that I developed all 33 recipes, and then was able to prop &  food style them all –  kind of exciting.   The best part of the whole shoot was sitting around the prop table showing off my children (props) with friends who could appreciate all my pretty things.  I knew I had a new friend in the photographer, Alice, when I saw that she was continuing to photograph the propped set – even after I took the food away.  By the end of the first day we were on the same page, smiling and having fun while she took pictures of plates, platters, and spoons.  I can hardly wait to see all of the photos and will be sharing the recipe links  with you once the work is published.

In the same way summer recipes should be easy and in the natural flow of the season, but pretty, always pretty.  Colorful ripe melon tossed with a good quality fruity olive oil, honey, and mint … perfection. The honey and olive oil mix together with the juice from the melon to create a sumptuous sauce that will pool at the bottom of your glass,  so be sure to serve this with a spoon.  I love to sprinkle the sea salt right at the end so it crunches in my teeth with each bite. I’m sure you could just serve this salad in a bowl, but I think food always tastes better served in a pretty dish. I find most of my vintage glassware at the Goodwill.  Mix matched glasses look fabulous on a buffet table, give it a try. 

I would like to tell you the salad inspired the styling… but it’s the opposite.  I  started with the vintage inspired paper and then got carried away playing with props, the pretty glass, and then the salad. What can I tell you… there are no rules on my playground. 


Mint & Melon salad with honey, olive oil & sea salt
Recipe type: side dish , appetizer
Prep time:
Total time:
Serves: 4-6
  • ½ cantaloupe melon, peeled-seeded-cut into bite size pieces or melon balls
  • ½ ripe honeydew melon, peeled-seeded-cut into bite size pieces or melon balls
  • 5 mint leaves rolled together lengthwise and cut into thin slices (chiffonade)
  • ¼ cup of honey
  • 3 Tablespoons of good quality olive oil
  • 2 generous pinches of sea salt
  1. In a large serving bowl stir to combine the melon, mint, honey and olive oil - chill.
  2. Just before serving, toss the fruit with the sea salt, serve cold.


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