Author Archives: TurnTable Kitchen

About TurnTable Kitchen

Turntable Kitchen is a site connecting food and music, based in Seattle. Run by an inspired couple: Kasey and Matthew, it features recipes with a focus on local, fresh ingredients, hand-selected ‘Musical Pairings,’ album reviews and musings on their city livin’ and country hoppin’ adventures. They aim to introduce food lovers to music and vice versa. Turntable Kitchen is a place to come home to, travel with and turn up the volume on.

5 Reasons Caesarstone is the Perfect Surface for Brilliant Food Photos

When we first moved into our 1930s brick tudor home in Seattle, I immediately pined for a kitchen that we could not only live in, but work in. Luckily, it took us nearly two years to start a renovation that I began planning before we had even settled in. For me, the kitchen is the heart and soul of our house, but it is also the place where I recipe test and photograph a lot of my creations for our website and vinyl subscription service that pairs food and music.

We evaluated many options for our countertops and backsplash and after settling on Caesarstone for our counters (and many hours spent on Pinterest), I wondered why we wouldn’t extend it to the backsplash as well. I’m so glad we made the decision. We’ve been living in (and loving) our remodeled kitchen for several months now and I have shot countless dishes in it. Today I wanted to share my approach to food photography, and how Caesarstone fits in.
Photography: Kasey Fleisher Hickey | 5143 White Attica

Minimalist Mess (That’s Easy to Clean Up)

My approach to food photography is what I might call a “minimalist mess.” I’m not one to cover my counters with melted ice cream per se, but sometimes, a shot requires a spill - and nothing is easier to clean than my Caesarstone! I opt for an environmentally friendly solution of 50/50 water and vinegar, then wipe off with water and a soft cloth. Even red wine doesn’t leave so much as a tint.

Matte Stoneware and Bright Colors

Over the years, I’ve realized that no matter how many plates, napkins and silverware I own, I tend to turn to a few favorites over and over again. Matte stoneware, in neutral colors have been my go-to, but recently I’ve been loving the bold contrast of color, which creates a stark contrast between the food and on the plate and the veined White Attica Caesarstone. Green herbs pop and the yolks of an egg look extra orange, especially when shot from overhead.

Multi-Dimensional and Lived In

One of my favorite things about our Caesarstone countertop and backsplash combination is that I’m able to capture a scene, but still create an artistic shot. Years ago, I learned from photographer Penny de los Santos that the perfect angle for a shot is ¾ (or 30-60 degrees), and while I still love this approach, I’ve taken to doing a lot of side shots. The White Attica backsplash acts almost as a reflection board, and the lighting it creates is almost ethereal.

Wide and Airy

When I first began taking photos of food, I found myself zooming in. Way in. But I’ve realized that my preferred photos are actually zoomed out. I like capturing the space around the food; often zooming out allows me to really highlight an ingredient or capture the “feeling” or “season” of a room, as silly as it might sound, especially when there are fresh flowers or a pot of steaming hot coffee in the background of a shot.

Always a Classic

I’m the girl who owns a dozen striped tees and wears the same necklace every day of the week: I’m all about a classic look. Unsurprisingly, when it came to choosing colors and materials for our kitchen, we really focused on timelessness: brass pulls and knobs, navy lowers, hardwood floors and a stone color that wouldn’t feel dated. There’s always a new trend when it comes to food photography, but what I love about the style I’ve really settled into is it feels like it won’t ever go out of style.

Our kitchen renovation infused me with a renewed energy and passion for cooking and photography, and I’m excited about all the things I’ll cook up (and photograph!) in the future.

For more TurnTable Kitchen:

A Modern Update for Turntable Kitchen's 1930s Home

A Modern Update for Turntable Kitchen’s 1930s Home

This post feels like a long time coming. If you’ve been following us on Instagram, you know that we spent a good chunk of our summer living through a kitchen remodel. And when I say living, I mean living: we literally lived in our home (with our three kids, no less) over the 6 weeks or so that it took to complete. Overall, I’d say, it went better than expected: we grilled out A LOT, I only had a few meltdowns (mostly all clustered towards the end), and when it was all said and done, we were blown away by the results.

We learned a lot along the way, including that nothing ever goes to plan, and renovating an old house sort of becomes a game of Domino: once one piece tumbles, the rest follow. For us, it involved dealing with issues related to settling, needing to move a wall two more inches than we had planned, and modifying a cabinet front.

For months, I felt like I had a third, very time-intensive part-time job. But man, was it WORTH IT. I can’t emphasize how much delight and joy I get every time I walk through the archway between the dining room and kitchen (we had our contractor match the opening to the other archways in our home, and it feels like it’s been there forever!).

As a family that lives and works out of our home, we knew that we needed to upgrade to a modern kitchen. We needed more space, or more functional space. We needed an oven and stovetop that we could rely on. We needed a refrigerator that could easily store enough groceries for a family of five.

Going down to the studs gave us an opportunity to not only address our needs, but also thoughtfully approach how we wanted the heart of our home to look.

Selecting the Countertop Material and Backsplash

We wanted to compliment the rich navy lower cabinets with a crisp, fresh, and timeless countertop and turned to Caesarstone‘s quartz surfaces (the stone is molded and pressed into slabs and is known for its durability). We opted for one of the colors in their 2017 collection called White Attica, which features gorgeous gray veining, and after much back and forth, and incredible guidance from our local fabricators, we opted to extend it all the way up to a full-height backsplash. Now that we’ve been living with it for several months, I can tell you that it was definitely a good choice for us. Granite and Marble Specialties recommended that we use the same slab for both the counter and backsplash (the fabricators cut the stone for us for the backsplash) in order to create a seamless transition. It’s ridiculously easy to clean (I usually wipe down with a mixture of vinegar and water, then wipe clean with water) and makes the space feel so spacious.


We hope this kitchen will be the site of many new discoveries (both food and music-related) and we are thrilled to welcome you — virtually — into our home.


For more kitchen renovations: Sydne Summer's Kitchen Reveal | Oh! Farmhouse Kitchen Reveal