food - Culinary Crafts

REPOST: A Bar Inspired Sophisticated Wedding Reception

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Culinary Crafts is so excited to be guest posting today! Utah Bride & Groom Magazine is one of our favorite magazines for wedding trends and inspiration – and we are so honored to be able to add our voice to their stellar blog! Today, we’d love to showcase a beautiful wedding that we did recently that was chock full of divine eats and breathtaking elegance, all in the heart of Salt Lake City.

When we initially met with Lacey and Steven, the bride told us that she envisioned an incredibly elegant wedding at the McCune Mansion (with a GORGEOUS designer dress from Modern Trousseau) and AMAZING, romantic florals. But, she had a twist in store for us!  This bride wanted an sophisticated wedding reception BUT she wanted all of the food and beverages to be bar inspired!  How fun is that? She told us that she wanted to create an intimate atmosphere of total comfort and warmth for her guests – and, boy, was it fun for us to create a menu with such a contrast! I love the juxtaposition between the two styles.  Thank you also to Melissa Kelsey Photography for the fantastic photos!  Check it out!

A Bar Inspired Sophisticated Wedding Reception http://www.culinarycrafts.com/bar-inspired-wedding/

This was such a fun couple and the stunning bride was about as bubbly as could be! Plus that gown!!! LOVE! Not to be out dressed, the groom, who’s a proud Scotsman, naturally wore full Scottish wedding attire which included a dashing kilt!  Such a stylish couple.

A Bar Inspired Sophisticated Wedding Reception http://www.culinarycrafts.com/bar-inspired-wedding/

For this event, we really wanted to mix the feeling of high style elegance and romance with our re-envisioned takes on bar bites and libations for that added twist of fun.  So, of course we made sure that the drinks had that bar classics vibe, but with a feeling of refinement.  So, we concocted standby favorites and gave them a twist (literally and figuratively) and came up with fun, customized names that fit the couple to a ’T’!  Plus, the added touch of the hand drawn calligraphy from Karli Noel was such a pretty presentation!

A Bar Inspired Sophisticated Wedding Reception http://www.culinarycrafts.com/bar-inspired-wedding/

A party is no fun unless the food and drink is plentiful and delectable! We love to greet the guests with hors d’oeuvres during a cocktail hour that allows guests to mingle and chat before dinner and for this very special menu of ‘bar bites elevated’, we dreamed up some really amazing eats!  We served the guests Mini Chicken & Waffles drizzled with Maple Syrup and Mary’s Signature Danger Tots with Cheddar Cheese, Bacon, and Jalapeño.  Seriously yummy – and FUN!

A Bar Inspired Sophisticated Wedding Reception http://www.culinarycrafts.com/bar-inspired-wedding/

Isn’t this reception space gorgeous?  We loved the polished look of the golden charges which tied in the golden accents throughout the McCune Mansion.  Plus, the chic palette of white, blush, and pink florals from Native Flower Company really brought in the couple’s desire for a romantic atmosphere. We loved setting the scene for the fabulous meal to come!

A Bar Inspired Sophisticated Wedding Reception http://www.culinarycrafts.com/bar-inspired-wedding/

Of course, a gorgeously elegant wedding day deserves a fabulously upscale, plated dinner for all the guests – but, of course, we gave that a twist for an extra element of unique-ness.  So, we served a starter of a summer favorite, Watermelon with Arugula, Goat Cheese, Fresh Mint, and Balsamic Reduction and then an entree of our AMAZING “Hello, Gorgeous!” Burgers which featured our House-made Grilled Brioche Bun and Culinary Craft’s Secret Sauce with a side of Hand-Cut Truffle Parmesan Fries with Smoked Aioli.

This wedding was SO fun to put together. The Culinary Crafts team are suckers for a gorgeous, elegant event, but raise the bar and ask us to get creative with a menu of classic, bar food to fit the upscale theme of the event? Yes, please!  Such a great day – and, just in time for all of you starting to plan for Valentine’s Day, we wanted to invite you all to an elegant and romantic event of your own!

Culinary Crafts will be hosting a Romantic Pop Up Restaurant dinner on February 14th at our own downtown venue, The Tasting Room. Please join us for a lavish and decadent 6-course dinner that is sure to dazzle your senses!  Find more details here.  We can’t wait to show you and your special someone what an amazing dining experience we offer to every one of our guests!  See you soon and happy dreaming, everyone!

Check out more Salt Lake City, Park City, and Utah County catering at www.culinarycrafts.com!

VENDORS // Catering: Culinary Crafts // Venue:   McCune Mansion  // Photography: Melissa Kelsey Photography // Florals: Native Flower Company // Calligraphy:  Karli Noel // Gown: Modern Trousseau // Bridal Shop: Alta Moda Bridal

REPOST: A Modern Asian-Themed Wedding at The Leonardo Museum

By | Culinary Crafts Events, Parties, Vendor Love!, Wedding Trends | No Comments


We revisit this colorful and contemporary celebration featured in the pages of our magazine.

In celebration of Chinese New Year this weekend, we’re #FBF-ing to Candice Yee & Eric Bender’s Real Utah Wedding featured in our Summer/Fall 2013 issue.

The “Modern Shanghai” and “Upscale Chinatown” themed wedding at The Leonardo Museum in downtown Salt Lake City—planned and designed by FUSE Weddings & Events—was inspired by the couple’s love of travel and Asian street food. Culinary Crafts recreated some of the duo’s favorite eats for the cocktail hour, including skewered shrimp satay, pork pot stickers, and Thai-style fish cakes served with chopsticks in take-out containers lined with Chinese newspaper. The morning of the big day the couple held a traditional Chinese tea ceremony, a nod to the bride’s family’s heritage. During the reception, Yee swapped her Vera Wang gown for a traditional red Chinese dress. The couple later departed among a sea of sparklers and glowing Chinese Kongming paper lanterns.

Read the couple’s love story + wedding details here, and see more photos of their festivities here!


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Check out more Salt Lake City, Park City, and Utah County catering at www.culinarycrafts.com!

Delectable Food Photography Tips for Mouth-Watering Images

By | Culinary Crafts Events, Food, Top 5 Tips, Wedding Trends | No Comments

It doesn’t matter whether you’re trying to gain more followers on Instagram or another social platform, upgrade your cooking website by refreshing it with new images, or perhaps publish a cookbook – whatever your reasons are, photos sell your product!

You need to learn how to take photos visitors on your website or your followers and friends online will cry over. It’s not as difficult as it sounds and you’ll need to stick to a couple of rules.


Use Natural Lighting

If you want to get the right color and make it clear to everyone looking at the photo that you were in the presence of a culinary master-piece, my suggestion is to use natural lighting and take your photos in daylight. The flash of your camera, along with other forms of artificial lights will change the natural shade of the meal in front of you, and you want everything to look natural and tasty.

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Choose Your Pieces with Care

Before you take a photo, it’s important that you select only the most representable pieces of food you want to capture on camera. So, you need to spend some time making that selection in order to end up with a photo that’s absolutely perfect.

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Find Just the Right Angle

This one will take time and you must endure in your persistence – probably the most difficult thing about catching the yumminess of a certain meal and transferring it into a photo is finding the right angle. You’ll need to move around and experiment.

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Have a Tripod with You

Photo shoots require precision and you don’t want something like your hands shaking due to tiredness to stand in the way of you making the perfect photo. You can easily solve this problem if you carry your tripod with you, so make it an essential piece of your equipment.

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Experiment with Your Composition

Photographing food is a time-sensitive process – either it will get cold or it will melt before your eyes. So, if you don’t see things working out in the very beginning, change the table right away and move that composition in front of you around until you make it look as delicious as it tastes. Naturally, you’ll need a good photo editing job done afterwards so you can accent those crumbling layers and emphasize colors.

If you plan on doing this in the future, my suggestion is to learn about setting the table and decorating it with the use of various ornaments. This can come in handy when you’re on the set and trying to get the perfect photo, because you will be able to spot if anything is wrong with the composition in front of you, so you can fix it right away and prevent the food from getting ruined right before your eyes. There’s a lot to be learned here and you can only become better with practice, so make sure to get lots of it.

Guest post: written by Isabella Foreman

Friday Instagram of the Week!

By | Culinary Crafts Events, Culinary Crafts Marketing Foodies, Event Tips and Planning, Every Day Life at Culinary Crafts, Food, Instagram of the Week, Modern Wedding Style, Hot Tips for Cool Brides, Parties, Wedding Trends | No Comments


For today’s Instagram of the Week, we have picked an AWESOME capture from one of our GORGEOUS (and amazing!) brides, @fearnofight!  We love it when our couples post fun things like this from their wedding day and it makes everyone at Culinary Crafts feel so happy to have added a special memory like this for our clients – So fun!  Thank you so much for sharing!  And, remember, for your chance to be next week’s Instagram of the Week, remember to tag us at @culinarycrafts or add the hashtag #culinarycrafts to your posts and check back to see who gets picked next!  Happy weekend, everyone!

Check out more Salt Lake City, Park City, and Utah County catering at www.culinarycrafts.com!

Happy Holidays from Culinary Crafts!

By | Every Day Life at Culinary Crafts, Holiday Parties, Sharing the Love -Vendor and Client Relationships, Vendor Love! | No Comments


Everyone here at Culinary Crafts wishes our family, friends, and vendor partners a very MERRY Holiday and a Happy New Year!  Cheers to good food, good friends, and the jolliest of days to you all!  Oh, and don’t forget to check out our trailer for The Craft(s) which premieres January 1st!

Happy Holidays, everyone!

Check out more Salt Lake City, Park City, and Utah County catering at www.culinarycrafts.com!

Introducing The Craft(s) YouTube Channel Trailer

By | Culinary Crafts Events, Food, Recipes | No Comments

We are so excited to share with you the trailer for the new YouTube Channel we’re launching in January! This show is all about the food, the ingredients, and the craft! It will not be a how to. You’ll see Mary, Ryan, and Kaleb doing some of the coolest things we do here at Culinary Crafts. So sit back, relax, and enjoy the #foodporn you’re about to see. And remember, do NOT do this at home.

Check out more Salt Lake City, Park City, and Utah County catering at www.culinarycrafts.com!

Shrimp? & Grits (& Honey ? & Salt)

By | News, Pop Up Restaurants, Recipe of the Month, Recipes | No Comments

Shrimp & Grits & Salt & Honey!

I’m so excited to share this ultimate Shrimp and Grits recipe with you! It’s one of the 7 courses I’ll be serving at our “Honey and Salt” Pop-up Restaurant this month. This recipe calls for mushrooms, which add a delicious richness to the classic southern dish. And, I’ll be topping it off with a dash of Utah Real Salt and a drizzle of local honey, which takes this dish to whole new level of scrumptious! This is just a sample of the incredible food we’ll be serving at the Pop-up. To experience the entire evening, please join us at Snuck Farm, Friday September 30th. Seating is limited, so make your reservations soon.

Enjoy!  Mary


Shrimp with Smokey Grits and Mushrooms
Serves 10
Ingredients for the Grits
2 T olive oil
1 onion
3 cups stone ground grits
8 oz. grated smoked gouda
9 cups chicken stock
2 cups heavy cream
Redmond Real salt and pepper to taste

Finely dice onion and saute in olive oil until onion is translucent. Add the grits and stir until they are evenly coated in the oil. Add the water & chicken base and cook the grits simmering until tender and water is almost absorbed. Add the cream and stir. Add the grated cheese and stir until every thing is fully mixed. Serve immediately for best result.

Ingredients for the Shrimp, Sausage, and Bacon
8 oz of Creminelli sausage, finely chopped (or any hard salami of your choice)
8 oz of smoked bacon, chopped
2 lb. of mushrooms, sliced
2 bunches of green onion
2 T garlic, chopped
3 lb. of shrimp, peeled and deveined (20-24 count size)
1 T shrimp or lobster base
2 t. Old Bay seasoning
1 t. paprika
4 cups water
6 oz. butter, cut in pieces
Redmond Real salt and pepper to taste.
Diced red bell pepper and chives to garnish

Saute the sausage, bacon, mushrooms, and garlic until the mushrooms are cooked and bacon is crispy. Add a bit of olive oil, if needed. Add water and spices. Bring to a boil and add the shrimp and green onions. Cook until shrimp are pink and cooked. Slowly add the butter, constantly whisking until it is incorporated.

Spoon the grits into the bottom of a bowl and ladle the shrimp mixture over the top. Drizzle with a touch of honey and Redmond Real Salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with chopped chive and red bell pepper.

How To Make House-Made Chips

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Chips are the perfect side dish for anything this summer. Whether you’re inside or outside on a hot summer day this July, homemade chips will be perfect. It’s such a fun, personal touch when you make your own chips instead of just opening a bag. You can specialize the taste of them to whatever you want too, they’re super customizable.

How To Make House-Made Chips www.culinarycrafts.com


  • Potatoes (any kind, but we used russet here)
  • Seasoning (you put together to taste)
  • Canola Oil
  • Mandolin slicer

How To Make House-Made Chips www.culinarycrafts.com

First slice your potatoes with the mandolin slicer. You’ll want to use the thinnest setting so they really get the potato chip texture. Then put in a bowl and rinse the potato slices with water to get the starch off. Drain the water. Repeat 4 times, or until the water is clear.

How To Make House-Made Chips www.culinarycrafts.com

Then put the potato slices onto a towel and pat dry. Water and oil don’t mix so this step is important!

How To Make House-Made Chips www.culinarycrafts.com

After all the water is off the potato slices, it’s time to fry them! If you’re doing thin slices like what we did, anywhere from 300-350 degrees is a perfect temperature. Test one potato slice first to make sure the oil is hot enough. You’ll know it’s hot enough when the potato floats on the top instead of sinking. Make sure the slices don’t stick to each other because spots on the potato won’t be able to cook fully if they touch.

How To Make House-Made Chips www.culinarycrafts.com

It will take about 2 minutes per side, or golden brown. You’ll be able to tell when it done because the potato slices won’t be bubbling anymore. Take a strainer and scoop out the chips.

How To Make House-Made Chips www.culinarycrafts.com

Put them on a towel and let it soak up the oil, but not too much because that’s how you get the seasoning to stick to the chips.

How To Make House-Made Chips www.culinarycrafts.com

For the seasoning you can mix whatever you’d like together. You could just do salt, or you can made it more of a BBQ flavor, or whatever you’d like! For the seasoning we used, it’s a mix of sugar, salt, pepper, paprika, chili powder, ground mustard, onion powder, and garlic powder. Those are the flavors Chef Danielle likes, but you can mix it together and taste test it to make it perfect.

Take the seasoning and sprinkle it on your chips and mix thoroughly to coat evenly.

How To Make House-Made Chips www.culinarycrafts.com

Now they’re done! Enjoy your homemade chips, they will be delicious!

How To Make House-Made Chips www.culinarycrafts.com

Check out more Salt Lake City, Park City, and Utah County catering at www.culinarycrafts.com!

How To Make House-Made Chips www.culinarycrafts.com

Friday Instagram of the Week!

By | Ask Mary, Culinary Crafts Events, Event Tips and Planning, Every Day Life at Culinary Crafts, Featured: Culinary Crafts in the Press, Food, Holiday Parties, How To, Instagram of the Week, News, Parties, Recipes, Tips | No Comments


Today’s Instagram of the Week comes from our friends at Studio 5 where our very own Mary Crafts-Homer showed the viewers some FANTASTIC 4th of July party ideas!  (I mean, sparklers in a patriotic cake?!  Yes please!)  We love celebrating the 4th of July and love to come up with such fun and creative eats!  Thank you to Brooke and Studio 5 for sharing this pic and also letting us share our ideas with your viewers!  We had so much fun!  Remember, for your chance to be next week’s Instagram of the Week, just add the hashtag #culinarycrafts to your posts or tag us at @culinarycrafts and check back to see who next week’s pick is!  Happy 4th of July, everyone!

Check out more Salt Lake City, Park City, and Utah County catering at www.culinarycrafts.com!

Why homemade whipped cream is the best

By | Food, How To, Recipes, Tips | No Comments

Do you think whipped cream is hard to make? Well, it’s not! It’s actually super easy and only 3 ingrediants. We did an experiment to show you can amazing homemade whipped cream done perfectly is! We used 4 different whipped creams to find out which ones deflate faster.

On the far left we have the cream that was whipped on high, then the cream that was whipped too long, then the perfect one, then cream from a Ready Whip can. The top picture was taken right after they were done, then 1 hour later, then 3 hours later.

Whipped cream experiment, which one is the best?

As you can see, the Ready Whip whipped cream deflated completely. The whipped cream that was whipped on high was smoothed down too, it wasn’t firm enough. The one that was whipped too long stayed really well, but if you look closely the edges are grainy. The Chantilly cream that was made perfectly stayed the exact same and it’s perfect!

Now that you can see the benefits of making whipped cream from home and correctly, here are the instructions on how to do it!