Make Your Food Pop: A Quick Lesson In Color

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Header Image with Tortilla Shells

I took a visit to Old Town in San Diego a few weeks ago, and was inspired to create those fresh warm tortillas that they are so known for. After living in So Cal for 20 years, I realized I have never made homemade tortillas, and to my surprise they were quite easy.

After searching on the internet, I found a few recipes worth looking at. I took the parts I liked from each one and blended into my own creation. Once I mastered the consistency of the dough and the thickness, all was smooth sailing. Basically, flour, water, and  few other ingredients. Mix and roll flat. Cook on a hot skillet and viola! Homemade tortillas.

The first batch didn’t go as planned. They turned out a bit more like bad pancakes. Too thick. Second batch, I rerolled and got them much thinner.  The consistency was right and the flavor was great.

I had recently been to a cooking demonstration at South Coast Winery in Temecula and they served us pulled pork tacos. So I figured why not give it a try.  Homemade tortillas, pulled pork, a fresh salsa verde recipe. Good stuff.

The challenge to this series of shots was the colors. Lets face it, a  tortilla shell isn’t giving us lots of great color for a yummy image. So we should take a quick color lesson from the color wheel. The three primary colors are red, blue and yellow. The three secondary colors are purple, orange and green. Tertiary colors result when primary colors are mixed with secondary colors. And if you have seen a color wheel, then colors on the opposite side of the color wheel are complementary. For instance, blue and orange are complementary, just like red and green, and purple and yellow. These colors contrast with each other, yet at the same time make each other active and visually appealing to the eye. So you see white isn’t really in the mix, nor is brown from the cook marks. So we had to spice it up to make it look appealing, hence the salsa verde and tomatoes.

Salsa Verde and Tomato on TacoTwo Taco Plates on Table

The complementary red and green work well in these images. They seem to give it much more energy.

Tomato on Tortilla Shell

With this image we kept with the primary color of yellow from the tomato and the blue of the plate. This simple tortilla recipe was a fun exercise in playing with color. It’s easy to pull out a color wheel and see what works together. Then thinking how you could plate a meal based on color of ingredients and table settings. I encourage everyone to give it a try!

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