I can’t get enough of the strawberries that are popping up at the market now. Our neighborhood berry stand has set up with its hand-written sign declaring “Soon”, which is always a cause for celebration in our house – they can’t arrive soon enough!
I grabbed some strawberries while out shopping this morning, and now here I sit before a pile of beautiful strawberries, my mind still whirling from the day I spent at the BlogHer Food ’12 Conference. To say it was a stimulating, enjoyable and rewarding time is an understatement. I can’t tell you what a treat it was to meet, connect and share with such talented, creative, generous people.
I’m sorting through my notes from the conference - so much to process. I need a salad.
Looking at my beautiful pile of strawberries, I decide to make a simple strawberry vinaigrette. Strawberries, white wine vinegar and agave syrup get a quick whiz in the food processor and yield a bright, fruity, rosy pink dressing. I drizzle some over fresh mozzarella and baby spinach for a riff on caprese salad and it makes a delightful lunch.
Ah, now I can concentrate! First of all, did I mention how well we ate at the conference?
Breakfast included pretty dishes of yogurt with fruit and the fanciest glasses of orange juice I have ever seen.
At lunch, a deconstructed potato salad and chilled gazpacho were two of the choices.
And later, at the cocktail reception, house smoked salmon and chocolate dipped strawberry sorbet confections lined the table. All of the food was prepared with great care and artfully presented.
They spoke about their personal backgrounds and encouraged us to think about who we are, what our story is and how we want to tell it – there is a story in every moment. Todd said, “Life is about capturing moments with your heart and paying attention to the details.” Diane told us, “Food is nourishing and comfort...and most importantly about friendship.” I could not agree with them more. I met them later, after their talk, and a warm hug from Diane left me feeling like I’d known her longer than just that day.
Ultimately, I came away from the day grateful to be part of such a supportive, gracious, kind community of food bloggers, both in person and online.
Diane and Todd shared a quote from Julia Child that is a recipe for life, “Find something you're passionate about and keep tremendously interested in it.” I think that’s right. For me that’s family, friends, food, writing, photography.
And today, maybe there was even a story in my pile of beautiful strawberries.
Makes 1 1/2 cups
2 1/2 cups strawberries, sliced
4 tablespoons white wine vinegar
1 tablespoon agave syrup
A pinch of kosher salt
Puree all the ingredients in a food processor until smooth. Store vinaigrette in a covered jar in the fridge for up to one week.