November 15, 2017
Culinary Crafts Thanksgiving Game Plan!
November 10, 2017
Friday Instagram of the Week!
August 4, 2017
Step-by-Step with Mary Crafts: Mom’s Perfect Pie Crust
August 1, 2017
Mom’s Prize-Winning Pie!
June 29, 2017
How to Smoke Cheese the Cool Way
"You want your smoke to be a very thin, grey (almost bluish), wispy kind of smoke. If your smoke is thick and heavy, the combustion levels of your fire may be too cold." -Ryan Crafts, Grill Master
Options for Cold Smoking If you don’t have a traditional smoker, and even if you do, you may not know your options as far as cold smoking. Here are a few easy ones:
Smoking Gun A smoking gun sounds a little suspicious, but it’s actually the simplest, quickest, and cleanest way to smoke foods at home. All you do is insert the tube into a sealed space with your food, put wood chips in your gun, turn it on, and start smokin'. In a matter of minutes you can add that smoky flavor to almost anything.Here’s one we recommend:
Here's how we use a similar smoking gun and a glass chamber to flavor a beverage:
Here we're using them at a Smoke themed station at our YouTube Channel launch party:Smoking Maze or Cylinder This would probably be your most versatile option for cold smoking. Simply fill the chamber with sawdust or pellets and light it from one end. All you need is an enclosed, outdoor container. A gas or kettle grill would work just fine! Our favorite is the A-MAZE-N Smoker, it comes in a maze or cylinder form! Kettle or Gas Grill When cold smoking in a kettle or gas grill one must utilize space and temperature to create enough heat to smoke, but not enough to cook. For easily melting foods like cheese, you might want to place your food on top of a container filled with ice. Keep the heat very low and off to one side to ensure for the lowest heat possible. Wood chips can be put directly on top of the charcoal or, in a gas grill, the wood chip drawer or box. Here's a graphic of what that would look like in a charcoal grill: Traditional Smoker Much like the kettle grill, in order to cold smoke in a traditional smoker you must create a barrier between the heat source and your food. Ice in a tin could work (above), or filling up your drip tray with ice every 20 minutes or so will also do the trick. Many traditional smokers also have attachments for cold smoking, like this one for a Bradley Smoker:Yes, that's right, you can smoke pretty much anything, and we do! Have a Happy Forth of July weekend, and this year enjoy smokin' as well as grillin' --
Ryan and the Culinary Crafts Team
June 19, 2017
The Ice Cream Sandwich of Ice Cream Sandwiches
June 1, 2017
Upscale, Country Picnic Wedding at the Utah State Capitol!
March 23, 2017
Setting the Perfect Table
The LinenThe right tablecloth or linen is the first thing down on the table. A clean, crisp, white, linen that hangs just to the floor can be a great fit for any event, but get creative. Bring some colors in, use some unique patterns or fabrics. Don't hesitate to get out the sewing machine and quickly hem or surge an edge on your favorite fabric. Add a pop of color with a runner or additional cloth overlay. Be mindful of textures and how they go together. Consider renting your linens. BBJ Linen is one of our favorite places to get cutting edge linens!
The CenterpieceGet creative with your arrangements. Fresh florals can be used in almost any situation of Setting the Perfect Table and tailored to fit the feel of the party. However, don't be tied down to florals alone, add in votive candles, tiles, mirrors, beads, etc. For themed parties, use anything from sports caps to wood boxes to tiki torches. One thing to keep in mind is that while a tall and wide centerpiece will certainly be breathtaking at first glance, it can detract from table conversation once guests are seated. If it blocks the view of guests who are opposite one another, it can be bothersome. Here are some of our favorite experts to get centerpieces!
- Artisan Bloom
- Orchid Dynasty
- Decoration Inc
- Five Penny Floral
- In the Event
- SceneMakers - A Modern Display Company
The ServicewarePick a china pattern that fits the event. If you have space and budget, add a charger or service plate to the place setting. The flatware should look cohesive with the china and be set according to common etiquette. An entire book could be written about place setting etiquette, so I won't go into too much detail. But keep the flatware half an inch from the edge of the table and work outside in, meaning that the flatware should be placed in the order it will be used throughout dinner service working from the outside towards the plate. I love this picture from rootedinfoods.com that shows a traditional formal setting. In most circumstances, you won't have all of these pieces set and you won't set more than 3 pieces of flatware to left and right of the plate at a time, but this shows where the appropriate location for pretty much anything you could think of would go. If you wish to rent china for Setting the Perfect Table check out one of our favorite places to rent here.
The AccoutermentsIt is always helpful to think through the evening and plan the additional needs on the table accordingly. Salt and pepper shakers, water pitchers, place cards, table numbers, etc. Keep in mind that the additional items placed on the table may clutter the clutter and detract from the rest of the table. I hope these quick tips help you at your next big event and remember, life is too short to eat bad food. Check out more Salt Lake City, Park City, and Utah County catering at www.culinarycrafts.com!
December 28, 2016
Happy New Years! Recipe for Black-Eyed Peas
- 2 pounds black-eyed peas, soaked overnight if possible
- 2 pounds smoked ham hock, meaty ham bone or slab bacon (Daily's is our local favorite!)
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 large onion, peeled and stuck with 2 cloves
- 1 bay leaf
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- ½ teaspoon allspice
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper
- 2 pounds collard greens, cut in 1-inch ribbons (about 8 cups)
- 1 bunch scallions, cleaned and chopped, for garnish
- Drain peas and put them in a large Dutch oven or heavy-bottomed soup pot. Add ham hock or bone (if using slab bacon, cut it into 2-inch chunks), cover with 10 cups water and turn heat to high. Add salt, onion stuck with cloves, bay leaf, black pepper and allspice.
- Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a gentle simmer. Skim off and discard any foam that rises to the surface. Simmer for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, until peas are tender. Throughout cooking, add water as necessary, always keeping liquid level 1 inch above surface, stirring with wooden spoon occasionally. Turn off heat. Check broth for salt and adjust seasoning. Mixture should be fairly brothy. With a pair of tongs, remove ham hock, ham bone or bacon. Chop meat and skin in rough pieces and set aside.
- Put a large wide skillet over medium-high heat. Add vegetable oil and heat until wavy. Add garlic and red pepper and let sizzle without browning. Add collard greens and stir to coat. Season with salt and add 1 cup water, stirring to help wilt greens. Add chopped ham and reduce heat to medium, then cover with lid slightly ajar and cook until greens are soft, about 20 minutes. Check seasoning.
- To serve, put greens and meat in low soup bowls, then ladle over hot black-eyed peas. Sprinkle with scallions.
October 7, 2016