One man’s trash is another man’s treasure, the old saying goes. Photographer Kristin Teig knows that all too well—she’s been dumpster-diving in the name of art long before salvaged wood and freeganism became cool.

An art student in Italy at the time, she struggled to find the right medium of expression, collection found objects and dabbling in painting. It wasn’t until a fateful Christmas dinner with her photography instructor that she finally found her calling. Sampling what seemed like an endless parade of beautiful dishes—pork with baked apples, boiled onions, custards, Neapolitan sweets—Teig was entranced by the visual display of food. After the extravagant, six-hour meal, she told her instructor she wanted to shoot food.

Thankfully for us, she did just that.

The Boston-based shutterbug has photographed for the likes of Travel + Leisure, Kinfolk, GQ, and local Beantown pubs. From capturing pastry chef Brian Mercury take on the slow and steady process of harvesting salt, to distilling the charm (and quirk) of a classic New England diner, Teig deftly oscillates between drawing viewers in close to the action and keeping her edible subjects slightly shrouded in mystery.

Let’s just say, we’re intrigued. The ebbing give-and-take quality of Teig’s favorite images results in some fantastic food photos.

Follow Kristen on Instagram @kteig.