Barefoot Mondays: Lemon Fusilli with Arugula

Happy Monday!

This week felt like a whirlwind. I’m not surprised that I’m posting late. There have been a lot of late nights and early mornings lately…but I’m not skipping a  Barefoot Monday!


It felt like a week in photographs. Including the photos you see here, when I did the maternity and engagement photo shoots I shot in RAW because I have read everywhere that it’s the way to go with DSLR’s. Before I tell you about my new favorite pasta dish, let’s talk photo editing. Usually I shoot in JPEG with little editing, so I did both, just in case.  Good idea. It was my first time ever shooting in RAW and boy was I surprised when my photos looked dark and grainy on the computer.


Why would anyone want this? I thought..after lots of coffee after work, I started playing with the photos in my editing program, Adobe Lightroom 3.4, I learned that the grain went away when adjusting the noise reduction, but finding that balance between keeping your photos sharp and losing sharpness to noise reduction was a big challenge, but it comes with learning!


I’ve heard once you go RAW you never go back and for me I think that’s true. I couldn’t wait to show my husband the differences. I’m hooked. My favorite feature in editing is the camera calibration profile options.  I think of it like Instagram filters. You have a photo that you love, it’s pretty darn good on it’s own but once you put it through a filter it can’t compare to the original, right?

If your as crazy as me you go back and forth until you find the filter that looks the best.In Lightroom, if you don’t change anything, it displays as Adobe Standard. If you want your photo to look like it does on your camera’s display, there’s an option for that too called Camera Standard.


If not, you can start out with a “filter”.  My favorites are Camera Landscape and Camera Portrait and it’s a nice base to work with. Also, I’m addicted to highlight priority, can you tell? I just love it. Whether you want a little burning or brightening on the edges of your photos it ads some drama and nice color. It’s like choosing between a border or not in Instagram, I’m usually all about the border. It’s just a little extra.

I’m basically teaching myself my way around my camera (a CanonRebel T2i) and learning in the dark how to be a photographer and I’m loving every, single, minute of it, but I know there’s more to learn, more than I can teach myself. I don’t claim to be a professional. That’s like saying I’m a chef! Not even close, but they are my hobbies. It makes me happy. I really enjoy food photography and learned that I love “human” photography too. I have been lucky to have some amazing subjects to work with. Witnessing a friend strut her stuff in fashion, a glowing mom to be or a couple in love, getting some fresh air (and exercise!) tapping into your creative energy and then giving them their photos, it’s a joy.

My next move is to take a photography class. We’ll talk more later.


So if photography is not your hobby but cooking is, I have another addiction to confess…it’s this pasta, Barefoot Contessa’s Lemon Fusilli with Arugula. I had a bit of a field day at Whole Foods and got some beautiful ingredients to work with. Busy day? Busy week? This is a relatively quick dinner, perfect for a weeknight.

The pasta starts with a little olive oil, some garlic – that smell! Add in some heavy cream and fresh lemon juice, go no further, you know you have a good sauce starting here. Add in cooked fusilli, arugula, parmesan and cherry tomatoes to your lemony, creamy alfredo sauce and your ready for a dish you could easily get at your favorite restaurant. I made it twice this week! I’m not joking, this is delicious.


This pasta is great for company too, I’m sure Mrs. Garten would tell us that. This was probably the first time that I got everything ready before I cooked. I zested and juiced the lemons, cut the tomatoes, etc. it definitely cut my stress level in half. Then my husband came down to me climbing on our table in my pajamas hanging almost out my kitchen window taking photos…I live on a semi-busy street in the city.

You could prepare everything and cook it a short time before your guests arrive or like me, cook while my guests mingle among themselves and with me! I like to compare myself to Gilmore Girl’s Suki, watching me cook is either entertaining, cute, funny or nerve-wracking. Maybe all of the above!

Promise me you will try it, it’s perfect for summer!

You can find the recipe here!

Or you could open Barefoot Contessa at Home to page 120

Garten, Ina. “Lemon fusilli with arugula” Recipe. Barefoot Contessa at home. New York: Clarkson Potter/Publishers, 2006. pp.120. Print.

Goodnight, the time! <3

{ Stay Tuned, next Monday:}

A lemony dessert & Graduation celebration


9 thoughts on “Barefoot Mondays: Lemon Fusilli with Arugula

    • That made my day, thank you! I’m learning :) I’m so glad to have found your blog, all of your recipes look and sound so delicious! I love the idea of saving recipes this way too! Much easier and fun! Lighting is a tough one for me too. Lately I have been shooting in natural light near a window and cheat with Lightroom :)

  1. Pingback: An Unexpected Love | Sarah's Brand New Chapter

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