Love and Confections: June 2012

June 13, 2012

Food Blog Forum 2012 - Day 2


You can view my Food Blog Forum Day 1 post here.

Day 2

I was beyond excited to start day 2 of the Food Blog Forum. Our day started promptly at 8am. We had to take the monorail from the Polynesian resort, transfer at the Ticket & Transportation Center, and then another monorail to Epcot. Our Saturday seminar took place in the Odyssey Pavilion.

Since it was St. Patrick's Day, a lot of attendees, including myself, were festive and wore green. We had a delicious breakfast and got settled for the seminar. The first presentation was Photography & Styling: Sharing  Your Food Story Through Your Creative Voice by Diane Cu and Todd Porter.

They presented on Focus, Balance, Texture, Color, Lines, Movement & Motion, Height, Moment and Story. Among the great advice Diane and Todd gave, were a few points that I felt were the most valuable.
 - Don't compare your photographs to others
 - Authenticity is beautiful
 - Don't be afraid of highlights and shadows
 - Mood, Feel, Voice, Message. Know what you want to say

Another presentation I thought was very valuable was David Leite's How to Write Bigger, Better, More Badass Food Posts. David focused on twelve points in a "checklist" about how to write a better blog post. I could list them all here and discuss what he discussed, but I'm not going to. Instead, I am going to tell you something he told us, in fact, it is what stood out most from his entire presentation. "Write about life with honesty, authenticity and specificity." I think that definitely sums up how I want to write and how I want to become a better writer.

Lunch at Epcot was an event in and of itself - Disney really does know how to throw a party!

This is just a sample of the amazing food offered to us...

Seared Tofu with Zucchini and Eggplant Ratatouille, Roasted Mushrooms, Lentils and Sun-dried Tomato Puree

Slow-roasted Bourbon-induced Black Pig Heritage Pork Tenderloin Slider with Local Hydro Grown Greens and Heirloom Tomato on Golden Spelt roll, Super Grain (Quinoa) Fries with Himalayan Sea Salt & House-made Ketchup

Soda Float with Rotovap Extracted CO2-infused Vanilla Lemonade with Nitro Whipped, No Sugar Pomegranate Ice

Stewed Lentils, Spicy Cauliflower, Onions, Tomatoes, and Mint served with Basmati Rice, Pappadam, and an assortment of Sanaa Signature Dips and Spreads

In addition to the desserts, the Disney Pastry Chefs also had cake and chocolate showpieces decorating the tables.

Clockwise from top left: Berry Gateau with Port Wine Foam, Mascarpone Cheesecake with Lavender-infused Florida Strawberries, Peruvian Chocolate Cylinder with St. Germain Glaze, Olive Oil-infused Chocolate Truffle Mousse with Sea Salted Caramel, and Chocolate Ravioli with Cognac

After lunch, we headed back to the Odyssey Pavilion for our Round Table discussions. I chose Blog Design with Lindsay Landis, Writing Bigger, Better, More Badass Food Posts with David Leite, Photography & Styling Live Demonstration with Diane Cu and Aran Goyoaga, and Recipe Development & Writing with Jennie Perillo and Kelly Senyei.

All the sessions were extremely helpful, but I wish they were more than just 30 minutes each. Lindsay did a question and answer type session and focused on specific blog design questions we had. David did basically the same thing, and went into more detail on helpful writing tips. Diane and Aran styled and shot a salad in front of us, and showed us a little of the process between a food stylist and food photographer. Jennie and Kelly talked to us about the different types of recipe categories for blogs and tips for writing and testing recipes. I'm glad I chose those four round tables, because they are what I am currently focusing on trying to improve at the moment.

Photography & Styling Live Demo - Diane Cu & Aran Goyoaga

The seminar ended around 4:30 and everyone went their separate ways until later in the evening. I went back to the Polynesian hotel to drop off my awesome swag bag, and check on M - he spent the day (his birthday) with a friend, "drinking around the world" in Epcot's World Showcase. 

The After-party was later in the evening at Epcot's World Showcase. I met up with Emily from Sage Recipes and headed back to Epcot. We had an Irish themed dessert buffet and great views of the IllumiNations firework show. 

I took the two photos on the left. Diane Cu took the photo on the right of Emily and Me watching the firework show. 

Thank you to everyone that was involved with the Food Blog Forum Orlando 2012. I cannot wait until next year!

Diane Cu & Todd Porter - White on Rice Couple
David Leite - Leite's Culinaria
Lindsay Landis - Love and Olive Oil & Purr Design
Aran Goyoaga - Cannelle et Vanille
Jennie Perillo - In Jennie's Kitchen
Kelly Senyei - Just A Taste
Emily Jacobs - Sage Recipes

Until next time, 

June 1, 2012

Food Blog Forum 2012 - Day 1

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Better late than never...

After almost three months of fighting with my computer, I caved and am finally posting from M's computer. The daunting task of going through a lot of photos and transferring them to his computer has made this more difficult than it should be (besides dealing with the fact that my computer is out of commission for who-knows-what).

In mid-March, I attended the Food Blog Forum in Orlando, FL. After attending last year, I was beyond excited for all the wonderful festivities, speakers and panels that were planned - along with the amazing food, of course.

Julie Deily, of The Little Kitchen, and Dawn Viola had outdone themselves again. This past year, the Food Blog Forum partnered with the Walt Disney World Resort! It was a fabulous and fun-filled weekend for many food bloggers.


A Friday night welcome reception at the Grand Floridian Resort & Spa started the weekend off right.

Everyone mixed and mingled, chatting with old friends and making new ones, while enjoying the fabulous food Walt Disney World provided.

Antipasti Cones

Assortment of Shrimp

 Salad "Trees" - these were the coolest food sculptures I have ever seen. The martini glasses, filled with assorted salads, "floated" in these metal trees. I want one of my own ;-)

Desserts: Mango Haupia Verrines (top right), Blood Orange Timbale (top left) & Cake Pops

The Welcome Reception was great. I headed back to the hotel to celebrate M's birthday with my family and eagerly awaited the next day

Until next time,