Welcome to Foodie Friday at ARWB. You came expecting food, right? Well have a little patience because I will be sharing some deliciousness with you; it just might not be what you expected. I want to share a few thoughts on @MegaphoneSummit held in Fayetteville in early August.
First, all of TWB community owes a HUGE thanks to Stephanie Buckley and Allyson Twiggs-Dyer for the hours they put into the planning, preparation and implementation of this two-day event. Compared to all they have to produce, my planning for the Foodie Friday portion is minimal. And before this year’s summit was even over, the thinking had started for 2018.
Second, thanks to all of you who attended and supported the presenters, both national and regional. I’m sure there were things we took away from each one who shared. Having Rebekah Radice and Peg Fitzpatrick in the same room is a feat, much less having them share their incredible wealth of knowledge.
In looking back over the past several years of programming, how many times has our friend P.Allen Smith joined us to share his expertise? Aren’t we lucky in Arkansas to have such a phenomenally talented expert at our fingertips?
Weren’t we fortunate as well to learn from our local foodie celebrities turned cookbook authors, Liz Bray and Amy Hannon? We learned that it’s not so much about the food but about the community we create around our tables that really matters.
Also, look at how we’ve grown. My first AWB (Arkansas Women Bloggers) meeting was in Mountain View at the Ozark Folk Center which was actually the 2nd meeting. Oh my! We easily fit into one relatively small auditorium. But even then, you were willing to share your talents with everyone.
There were cowboy boots and proposals. Just ask Gina K.
Remember the Iron Chef competition? You guys rocked it. I’m sorry we can’t do that any more.
That’s called community. And that sense of community still exists today even though we’ve grown from one state to many and from just women to our dudes as well. From “mommy bloggers” to “social media influencers. From amateurs to professionals.
We choose the path we walk. We learn along the way. From one another…from those with more knowledge and experience. But we choose to also realize that we are unique. We don’t compare because we know it steals us of our uniqueness and the beauty of being just who we are.
We camped out together at Ferncliff and the spiders and who knows what else. It was lovely. And we grew into a body cohesive. And we changed our name. Again. AWBU. Arkansas Women Bloggers University was born.
Plus, we ate hot dogs and had a picnic feast. We shared stories and more stories and realized we were blossoming into something new. And scary…and exciting.
The caterpillar was emerging and the butterfly was born.
Somewhere along the way we were “discovered.” ARWB became more than just Arkansas Women Bloggers. Suddenly, there was Texas. And Kansas and Alabama. And Georgia. And Missouri. and OMG Mississippi, And, of course, Oklahoma. We can’t forget Oklahoma, y’all. We just have to work on their southern accent.
Rogers. Hot Springs, Fayetteville. They’ve all been home to our coming togethers. Few of us realize what that entails. They are all lovely locations, but not all can support what we now know our members desire.
And we became Megaphone Summit ’cause we had lots to say and share. Don’t we always?
Y’all are the best and you deserve the best.
That’s why in 2018 we are returning to Fayetteville and @ExpFayetteville on August 3-4 for Megaphone Summit 2018. You’ll be there, won’t you?
Plan now to attend. Here’s how (Thanks @TaylorBradford for the infographic.)
And you just know there’ll be jam, right? Like my favorite Peach Habanero with Ginger. Or, maybe your favorite. Which one would you choose?
Kelli Reep has never been accused of possessing grace or dignity so this recipe is perfectly suited for her. Peanut Butter Freakies are a super mash-up of all things junk food – corn chips, peanut butter, sugar, corn syrup – even chocolate chips. Serve it at a party to ensure everyone has something to talk about.
Find out what Kelli has to say about these Peanut Butter Freakies HERE.
KD Reep is a writer, public relations practitioner and aspiring author in Little Rock. She owns Flywrite Communications Inc., a marketing communications agency in Mabelvale. She is a six-time recipient of the Public Relations Society of America’s Prism award and has been published statewide as well as in the Arkansas Times, Inviting Arkansas, Savvy Magazine, Bourbon & Boots, Arkansas Money & Politics, Delta Farm Press and Rice Farmer magazine, among others.
Some foods are meant to be together: peas and carrots, beets and goat cheese, peanut butter and jelly… What? Beets and goat cheese weren’t the first things to come to mind? Well, I’ll save that for another day. I wanted to share a simple recipe for a snack I like to make using a combo most of us know and love, peanut butter and jelly.
This was actually an accidental discovery due to lack of planning and foresight secondary to vacation induced crazy-brain. You know what I mean? Fortunately, this marriage of flavors is somewhat flexible and I did not go down as the mom who starved her kiddos in the sand. These little roll-up bites are handy for travel, pre-workout, post-workout, or basically anytime you need a little pick-me up. I recently made them for a quick trip we made to the beach. And like a hot dog is to the ballpark, everything tastes better on the beach!
To see what genius I did go HERE.
Jodi Coffee, who blogs at The Coffee House Life, is the mom of three beautiful and energetic little girls that ALWAYS give her something to blog about. She loves to try new things — food, travel and adventure. In her spare time…wait a minute. What is that? She enjoys training for triathlons, and is currently chasing a lifetime dream of crossing the finish line of her first IRONMAN. She is a backyard farmer, a farmers’ market manager and enjoys helping bring healthy opportunities to her community.
I’m so excited to bring you an incredible line-up of presenters for Foodie Friday #Megaphone17. Each of our speakers brings a special talent and expertise to our program, and you won’t want to miss a single one of them. All sessions will be held at the Fayetteville Town Center Mockingbird Room.
The Brand Within You
Amy Nelson Hannon of Springdale, Ark., is the owner of Euna Mae’s, a one-of-a-kind kitchen boutique that has become not only a special place to locals but has quickly become a destination shop for many around the country. Her hospitality message of Love Welcome Serve™ combined with her refreshing enthusiasm and approachable recipes has ignited a passion for the kitchen in both new and seasoned cooks. In addition to her kitchen store, Amy has an expansive media platform that includes a cooking show on Northwest Arkansas’ NBC station, as well as several social media platforms and a food blog.
Her first cookbook Love Welcome Serve: Food that Gathers and Gives will be available nationwide in November 2017. It is available for preorder now at https://shopeunamaes.myshopify.com/collections/exclusive-products/products/love-welcome-serve-recipes-that-gather-and-give-signed-cookbook-with-optional-exclusive-gift-sets-free-shipping.
Follow Amy on Twitter @amynelsonhannon and Euna Maes on Instagram
Liz Bray is a former kindergarten teacher, who left the classroom in 2002 to become a personal chef, fulfilling her deep passion of cooking for others. After many years, she renovated a charming old building in downtown Benton that featured a commercial kitchen offering space for catered events, cooking classes and cooking for clients. Before it even opened, people were excited about a place for lunch, which was not her plan, but because she loved to please people with food, she allowed it to turn into a restaurant for lunch, a catered event space on nights and weekends, and cooking classes as often as possible.
Realizing her vision and passion were being absorbed in running a restaurant, she chose to sell Leave It to Liz in 2013 and return to her original heart.
Liz is a wife, mother of two and grandmother of four. She shares her love of cooking with her grandchildren, especially Sophie who seems destined to become a baker.
Liz will be sharing her food journey, her learning experiences in writing her book, why she chose to self-publish, the pros and cons of that decision, and how she is marketing her book.
Her newly published cookbook, Leave It to Liz, will be available for purchase at Megaphone. It can be mail ordered by contacting Liz at 6479 Congo Road, Benton, AR 72019. For more details, feel free to message her on Facebook or Instagram.
Food As Art
Jason Paul Roth is a chef, educator, and artist currently living in Springdale. AR. He became interested in food at a very young age while watching PBS cooking shows on television. After tinkering around at home, he found his way into a fine dining restaurant kitchen at age 14. Soon Jason began a traditional apprenticeship at Mary Elaine’s, a restaurant in Phoenix, Ariz. That foundation taught him the technical skills to began his journey. Through the years, he has worked in many different parts of the culinary field. After stints in Las Vegas, Phoenix, Los Angeles and Maine, Jason landed in NWA and is currently the chef and owner of Heirloom, a boutique fine dining restaurant. Jason is also a chef/instructor at Brightwater, a newly- opened culinary school in Bentonville, Ark.
“I have a passion for creativity, restaurants and hospitality. All standards for someone in my field. But is there more for a chef? Where is the line between a skilled craftsmen and an artist? I want to find out and maybe start to draw outside those lines. I’m very excited about exploring the use of food as art in our modern day society. Art effects change and with the power of social media to translate images to a wider audience there is an unpaved road ahead for chefs to use their talents for more than just a meal. I would like to travel all avenues and parts of this mostly unexplored road to see where it leads. You often hear people say, “you eat with your eyes first”, so food presentation has long been important to us as chefs, but I would like to take it further. This talk is my way of trying to bring that medium into a larger light, beyond the walls of a restaurant. With food as our palate, and a plate as our canvas, let’s have a conversation about FOOD AS ART.”
Say Cheese- Creating Food Photos That Create Smiles
Nancy Pruitt is a photographer based out of Little Rock, AR. About 10 years ago, she decided to take a hobby she was passionate about and turn it into a family-benefiting career. Photographing everything from families to food, it is her desire to tell a story through her photography and learn from each experience. Most recently she has helped stage and capture the images for Chef Liz Bray’s inaugural cookbook, Just Leave it to Liz. Nancy and her husband Doug have 3 grown children and are in the process of developing a small farm with the goal of creating an indoor and outdoor photography studio as well as a home for their family and wide variety of critters.
“In this session we will discuss the photography aspect of your food presentations on social media and in print . We will look at some ways to get your images looking their best with some basic and creative photography tools.”
Bring your cameras!
Follow Nancy on Instagram.
Foodie Friday Hostesses
Got a question? These ladies have all the answers!
Megaphone Summit full schedule: HERE
Thanks, y’all. See you there!
Here are your hashtags:)
When I heard this month’s song was Cheeseburger in Paradise I knew I had to do a good burger recipe. My dad is a Jimmy Buffett fan. All through my childhood on any road trip, including all the trips to Tulsa from Springdale and Florida, Jimmy Buffett CDs were what we would listen to. Cheeseburger in Paradise was always a favorite as a sing along. I’m sure I knew all the words by the time I was eight. The songs hold a special place in my heart and make me smile every time I hear them.
So today I am going to share with you a favorite charcoal grilled burger complete with bacon and cheddar cheese. Oh, and let’s not forget the homemade fries. Hubby and I couldn’t agree on which fries we wanted so I made both sweet potato fries and regular fries. Homemade fries seem daunting but they really are quite simple and healthier since they are baked. READ MORE
Renee, the voice behind If Spoons Could Talk, loves everything food related. You will often see her taking pictures of her food before eating, while her husband shakes his head, smiles and waits to eat, because of course she has to take a picture of his too. Her time is spent in the kitchen cooking, on the computer researching recipes, the rest of her time is spent with her husband and two fur babies watching TV. Now she is making time to get a masters and just got a full time teaching job. You can find her on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest as If Spoons Could Talk and on Twitter as Spoons Could Talk.
Throughout June we’ve been celebrating tart, red-ripened, delicious raspberries, and I’ve been humming “Raspberry Beret” the entire month. Can’t help it, y’all.
Now you’re humming along as well, I bet. Or singing. I admire you if you are.
One of our favorites for the short summer season of fresh raspberries is a Fresh Raspberry Sorbet. Less caloric than an ice cream, sorbet tempts you into thinking you can eat it with abandon. Well, maybe not. But it is light and refreshing on the palate.
And it’s summer. And the raspberries are in season. To find out how I make my Fresh Raspberry Sorbet, read more.
There have been so many delicious raspberry recipes this month. I hope you’ve taken the time to give them a try and to thank our Foodie Friday participants for going the extra mile to share those with you.
Remember Jeanetta’s Choco-Raspberry Micro Cake? Bet that’s making your mouth water about now! Go ahead. You can make this in no time.
Renee and I pretty much had the same idea of bringing that raspberry goodness to a sorbet. I’m thinking you should try both — twice the love, ya’ know.
After eating our fill of cake and sorbet, Connie and Lyndi helped us out by bringing something healthy to the table. I’m thinking Connie’s Quick Raspberry Muffins would make a nice addition to a Fourth of July breakfast or brunch,
and Lyndi’s Raspberry-Spinach Salad would start off any Independence Day dinner with tons of flavor and goodness.
Have a safe and enjoyable holiday. Thanks.ya’ll.
You just knew I would.
When I saw that this month’s theme song was Raspberry Beret ,I knew I had to make something. I had never heard of the song until around Christmas 2016 while we were at my in-laws for the holidays. It came on the radio and my father-in-law was singing along— except he would say sorbet instead of beret. It took me a few times to figure out that the song wasn’t about dessert and that it was supposed to be beret. I have not forgotten about it and it still makes me smile.
This sorbet recipe is adapted from the one that my in-laws made while we were home for Fourth of July a few years ago. I must say it is delicious but the best part is that it is very easy to make. Read More
Renee, the voice behind If Spoons Could Talk, loves everything food related. You will often see her taking pictures of her food before eating, while her smiling husband shakes his head and waits to eat because, of course, she has to take a picture of his as well. Her time is spent cooking in the kitchen, researching recipes on the computer, or eating what she’s been researching and cooking! The rest of her time is spent with her husband and two fur babies watching TV. Now she is making time to get a masters so she can be a full-time teacher. You can find her on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest as If Spoons Could Talk and on Twitter as Spoons Could Talk And of course over at If Spoons Could Talk
While I like to experiment in the kitchen, sometimes it’s just nice to go with the familiar. And easy. That’s exactly what this Poppy Seed Chicken is for me. Familiar and easy. Honestly, I mostly make this from memory.
Do you have those dishes you make so frequently that you have to stop and think when someone asks you for the recipe? There’s a bit of comfort in that, I think.
This Poppy Seed Chicken screams comfort. I usually divide the casserole in half and freeze part for later use or share it with someone. It sure is nice to have a ready meal available in the freezer for those busy, busy days. It’s also nice to be able to share as well.
Serve this with a simple salad and vegetable side and your meal is made.
I am a southern girl, through and through I tell ya, born and raised here in Arkansas. But one thing I don’t always find joy in here in the south is the summer heat. Well, more specifically the humidity and sticky feeling that comes with it. Yuck, I mean can’t a girl get a couple months of nice dry heat without all the sweating? It’s not like I can live in the pool all summer, although that does sound amazing!
Here I am confessing that I am not a fan of the sweltering heat, but there are a many things that I do love about spring and summer time. One of those things being all the local berries I have access to. I am super lucky when it comes to living just over a mile from a local blueberry farmer. How awesome is that?
Renee’s Berry Farm has the most amazing blueberries and each year I find myself anticipating their opening. They are a small and charming farm and everyone around here loves to go reap the benefits of the owner’s hard work. So the short window of their blueberry season is usually a very busy one. If you drive by on those mornings, the popularity of their farm can be measured by all the cars parked in their lot. If you don’t keep an eye on the opening dates and get there early each morning, you may sadly miss out. Oh, what a sad day that would be!
My family loves berries and we use them in many ways throughout the year so it is important to me that I always stock up on these wonderful blueberries and freeze some for the colder months. There are so many ways to enjoy them like smoothies, cobblers or crumbles, muffins, and of course coffee cake.
Ah, coffee cake, such a wonderful invention in my opinion. Considering I live off coffee most days it is only natural that I would love a cake that pairs so well with my steamy cup of “liquid mom power”. This Blueberry Coffee Cake is such a treat, and it is always good with my dear coffee! It is moist with a buttery crumble on top, bursting with that blueberry flavor! Along with the amazing flavor, it is also easy to make. The recipe comes together pretty quickly, making it a great weekend breakfast, a nice surprise for your company after dinner, or any spacial occasion when you want a tasty snack.
Oh, who am I kidding, who needs a special occasion for cake? Not me, that’s for sure. After all, it is sugar and gluten free so no worries about guilt when you have a slice, or two! I hope you enjoy this coffee cake around your table as much I do around mine. It really is part of the magic that gets this girl through hot southern days! Okay, okay, I might be complaining a little about hot sweaty summer temps or all the trips to the storm shelter during spring, but I wouldn’t change one thing about living in Arkansas. Well, maybe the tornado thing, but even still, I love my hot mess of a life here! But, the blueberries, this coffee cake, and my air conditioning sure make it a lot more enjoyable, just saying!
Keri is a sassy southern girl who loves cooking, reading and spending time with her family. She is a former corporate minded gal turned homeschool mom and baker. When she’s not covered in some flour you can find her blogging about recipes and getting healthy over at My Table for Three. Keri loves to share and interact on Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest.