Recently, I was asked to take photos for a Chef Event at the Key Room with Cheryl Forberg RD, nutritionist for the NBC show, The Biggest Loser. Cheryl Forberg is not only a James Beard award-winning chef and a New York Times bestselling author, she is also one of the few professional chefs in the country who is a registered dietitian. Her menu for the evening included recipes from her book, Flavor First, among which was my favorite dish, Grilled Shrimp with Fire-Roasted Cocktail Sauce.
Chef Forberg explained that she substitutes fire-roasted tomatoes in many of her recipes that require canned tomatoes, which adds flavor without adding additional fat. The fire-roasted tomatoes coupled with a bit of horseradish provided just the right kick to the cocktail sauce. I even went out and bought some fire-roasted tomatoes from Whole Foods the very next day!
The main course of the evening was a delicious and flavourful Spicy Beef Satay with Portobello Mushrooms and Spinach paired with wines provided by La Playa Vineyards.
Chef Rachelle Boucher hosted the evening and helped with the cooking as Chef Forberg taught not only how to prepare her recipes, but also shared tips about eating more healthily.
Because I was asked to take pictures for the event, I was able to shoot images of the chefs cooking and teaching in the front, as well as sneak into the kitchen and catch the behind the scenes action, which is what I enjoy most about food photography. I love capturing the energy of the kitchen and telling the story of the meals being prepared.
The menu was completed with Pumpkin Flan and Ginger Currant Biscotti, which had a wonderfully crumbly texture (compared to many break a tooth biscotti I’ve tried) due to the combination of whole wheat flour and cornmeal. There were some extra biscotti leftover, so my intention was to take them home to share with my kids, but they were so good, I’ll have to make the recipe myself for them to actually ever try some!
It was a great evening for a wonderful cause! Cheryl Forberg has such a warm and approachable style to her teaching, and I appreciate that her recipes are flavourful and fresh, utilizing ingredients that are both healthful and accessible for the home cook. You can find and try all the delicious recipes on the menu here.