Happy Monday, friends! How was the weekend?
Mine was INSANE in the best possible way. I’m running on fumes, so I apologize in advance if this post goes a little…wacky.
I thought it would be fun to do a little recap of the How Sweet Eats Brunchshop that happened this weekend because it was seriously one of the coolest things I’ve ever done. My life isn’t all that interesting outside of work, so when I actually have plans on the weekend, you better believe that I’m psyched to tell you about it!
Hopefully you guys know who Jessica Merchant is. If not, she runs the incredible blog How Sweet It Is. Her writing is hysterical, her recipes are delicious, and her photography skills are beyond amazing. Not to mention that she’s one of the most genuine, hard-working people I know. If you recall, I started working for Jessica about a month and a half ago, and I’ve already learned so so much from her. It’s seriously THE BEST when you can network and connect with like-minded peeps!
Brunchshop was a chance to do just that; it was a way to connect with creatives in the food space that are driven by a love of food, photography, and entrepreneurship.
And the fact that it was held at the single most beautiful kitchen I have ever seen and that it was filled with some crazy-delicious food were just the cherries on top.
SO. DeLallo. aka. the largest importer/exporter of olives in the United States, aka. my happy place. I grew up on this brand, so it was awesome heading to their headquarters for such an amazing event! They have this GORGEOUS guest house/giant a$$ kitchen on their property that’s simply breathtaking. It’s all modern, white, open shelving, giant gas stove, a huge fridge, an espresso machine built into the wall – I would move there in a heartbeat. Unfortunately, I didn’t take too many pictures of the property, but this post from A Spicy Perspective will show you exactly what I mean.
And the FOOD. Oh, the food. Organic whole milk yogurt from Naturi. FOUR different types of gluten free, paleo, and vegan granola from Blissful Eats. MIMOSAS. And SO many Italian goodies from DeLallo – I was in HEAVEN.
The day was split into a few different parts:
1. YOGURT PARFAITS! Before we did anything (besides sip on a mimosa), Jessica encouraged us to take a photo of our yogurt creations to kind of act as a “starting point.” This little number was made up of Naturi’s Vanilla + Cinnamon yogurt, Blissful Eats’ No Nutty Chocolate Chip Granola, berries, pineapple, chia seeds, and a drizzle of raw honey. It’s been a while since I had yogurt, but eating Naturi’s is seriously like eating dessert. It’s the richest, creamiest yogurt I’ve ever had! And the granola…I’m snacking on some right now. #nuffsaid
2. PHOTOGRAPHY TIPS! From none other than Jessica herself! She showed us her starting point (aka. her first picture from the blog), as well as how her photography has progressed. It sort of “humanized” her for us. For a food blogger like me, Jessica is like, THE person you aspire to be. The fact that she has worked her way up from less than stellar photos at the start of her blogging career really gave me, and I’m sure the rest of the group, some encouragement about the future of my own photography skills! She also styled a pasta dish for us, and she even showed us how to shoot those coveted “steam shots” she has perfected over the years!
3. AVO TOAST! So, I’m the worst food blogger ever because I had never had avocado toast before this event. I KNOW. Why it took me this long is beyond me. BUT. We utilized everything that Jessica spoke about before to craft our perfect avo toast photo. Honestly, I was much too excited to bite into my first ever avocado toast to really focus on snapping the perfect photo, but I did manage to get one in! This delicious combo was made up of gluten free bread, sliced avocado, sea salt, DeLallo roasted red peppers, and balsamic glaze. I’d say this was quite an admirable first attempt!
4. CHEESEBOARD STYLING! I’m horrible, and I actually skipped this part. BUT it was just because SO many awesome people showed up at the event that I just had to talk to. People literally came from all over the country to attend this Brunchshop, so you better believe I was absolutely blown away by my fellow attendees.
While I’m a firm believer that weekends are toooootally meant for relaxation after a long week at work, I think there’s something to be said about expanding your knowledge and meeting new people, too. I’m a serious introvert and I usually become somewhat of a hermit on the weekends, but this kind of event was perfect for me. While most of us had never met before, I sort of felt like we all knew each other. We’re all creatives trying to make a name for ourselves in the food blogging arena. We had similar stories, similar inspirations, similar passions…it was so fun connecting and learning with these ladies!
This was definitely a weekend to remember, so thank you for letting me share my experiences with you! I’ll have a brand new dessert recipe to share with you tomorrow AM!! Get excited; it’s EPIC.
Andandand! Remember: I’m still looking for feedback for my Gluten Free Copycat eCookbook idea (Twix or Oatmeal Cream Pies?! Thin Mints or Trefoils?! Tell me what you love!), and you can do that here!
Thank you so much, friends!
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