Thursday, October 30, 2014

Life Lessons {BluehourPDX}

In case you missed it on Instagram {@merecdavison} this week I had the opportunity to attend a dinner at Bluehour Portland and enjoy Chef Kyo Koo's creations!  Not only did we get to eat delicious food, we had the opportunity to create!!  The group of 10 bloggers and a few of the always lovely LGP Ladies split up and were able to spend time with the kitchen crew and drink masters--learning a few of their tricks.  

My salad game is a disaster

Michelle, Pech and I teamed up with recent culinary grad and oh-so-nice Sarah, to make a frisee salad with crisp apple, hazelnuts, fried sweet potato and hazelnut vinaigrette.  The best part??  It was topped with FRIED CELERY LEAVES!!!  So amazing!!  

After watching her take such care and consideration making the dish, I realized that my salad game is a disaster.  1.) I need to start hand tossing all of my ingredients. 2.) Plating rings help make things pretty.  3.) Again, fried celery leaves!

Chef Kyo came out several times to explain the dishes and his philosophy behind them.  

I was a huge fan of the Haiga Rice Risotto with mushrooms, pinenuts and acorn squash.  It was hard to pinpoint what made this different from traditional risotto until Kyo shared that he uses a Haiga Rice instead of traditional arborio.  He described it as "not quite brown, but not quite white" rice.  The just-in-between genealogy gives this a really unique flavor.

You know this is on my grocery list!

Smash the Rosemary

Gigi, mixologist extraordinaire, taught us all how to make the Templeton Abbey.  When I say taught, I mean, taught!  She explained the reasoning behind every step, why she selects the ingredients and how it all comes together.

Tip: This drink includes muddled cucumbers and rosemary.  To dress the finished drink, we smashed a generous piece of rosemary to float on top.  The smashing releases rosemary oils that will spread out on top of the drink and remind your nose of what you are drinking.

What to Order Next Time

While everything we tasted was really delicious I certainly had my favorites!  Favorites that are worthy of ordering again.  

Because, love languages!

Smoked Duck Breast and Sausage

Why?  The seasonings were on point!

The Boozy Collins

Berries, booze, plenty of rosemary and not-too-sweet!

Sansa Apple Cheesecake

This is in no way basic!!  The textures and flavors were a perfect marriage of Fall flavors that I would eat year round!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Tique Box {Holiday Box Giveaway}

Photo Courtesy of Tique Box

Have you heard??  Tique Box is giving away one of their limited edition Holiday Boxes!!  Just click over and enter to win.  The giveaway closes in 2-days, so don't wait!!

Friday, October 24, 2014

Crafts {Canvas Painting}

 Today's post is from a project I actually did in the Spring.  As a lover of beautiful things, home decor, and, craft projects this canvas paintings has become one of the most talked about pieces in my home.  While the final product is not what I had originally planned on making, it is one that I absolutely love.  I layered colors and textures, while using different techniques.  

Ultimately, I followed my gut and let go of the plan-- Isn't that the way all art is made?
{See the paintings process below}

Stretched Canvas
Acrylic Paint {Lavender, Peach, White, Red, Navy, Silver, Gold}
Various Brushes
Disposable Plate

Dry Brushing
Globs of Paint
Sponge Painting
Thick Application

I selected colors that I enjoy and can be found in items I already own.  I plan on doing something similar with darker hues for holiday and winter decor!

What kind of art do you keep in your home?  Do you enjoy painting?  How do you relax?