Larger than Life

Written by Thursday, 30 June 2016

GOURMET EVENTS HAWAII * 808 735 7788 * This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. | June 30, 2016
Billiards are Better Bigger

Photo Courtesy of George Pimentel
Incorporate some fun into your next event with larger than life elements, such as this life size pool table. The billiard balls are actually made up of soccer balls allowing you to step onto the table and "kick" your shots into the pockets.

 
Filled to the Brim

Photo Courtesy of Anita from Hungry Couple
Food is often presented larger than life. From towering cakes to all-you-can-eat buffets.

This "fruit bowl" not only feeds hundreds of guests, it also works as a beautiful decorative centerpiece. Colorful fruits such as grapes, sliced kiwi, and whole pineapple are beautifully arranged with tropical flowers. 

 
Punch that Packs a Punch

Photo Courtesy of Shell Tu
Sangria is the perfect punch for a large crowd. This beautiful starfruit sangria is sure to impress and is easy to make in big batches. 

INGREDIENTS

12 ounces sauvignon blanc or dry riesling, chilled

6 ounces London dry gin, such as Tanqueray

8 ounces freshly squeezed lemon juice

6 ounces simple syrup

10 dashes orange bitters

1 starfruit

ice

3 ounces chilled club soda or ginger beer

 

DIRECTIONS
  1. In a large pitcher, stir wine, gin, lemon juice, simple syrup, and orange bitters together. Add 1 cup of ice and stir well.
  2. Slice starfruit into 1/4-inch thick slices. Fill serving glasses with ice and line sides with starfruit slices. Add club soda or ginger beer to wine mixture, stir gently to blend, and pour into serving glasses.
Life Size Karaoke

Photo Courtesy of Vntana
Have you ever done karaoke and imagined yourself on stage with your favorite star? Now you can with life size hologram karaoke by Vntana. Currently Rob Thomas from Matchbox 20 invites you to sing with him as a hologram. We imagine more stars will be on board soon.
 
Tip Courtesy of Billboard
 

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Perfectly Paired Parties

Written by Thursday, 23 June 2016

GOURMET EVENTS HAWAII * 808 735 7788 * This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. | June 23, 2016
Peaches and Cream

Photo Courtesy of Anna Routh and Graham Terhune
Peaches and creamy colored flowers are perfectly paired along this farmer's table with simple and elegant white runner. This light and fragrant combination add a delicate summery touch. Peaches are combined with peach and cream colored roses, peach blossoms, and grapevines. The wooden floral bowls of fruit and flowers make for a lovely guest favor.
 
 
Peanut Butter and Jelly

Photo Courtesy of Anita from Hungry Couple
No matter how old we get, there's something comforting about the classic peanut butter and jelly pair. However, classic doesn't mean boring. This PBJ twist turns the classic into a flavorful dessert parfait.

Ingredients
4 All butter shortbread cookies
1/2 Cup jam (your favorite flavor)
1 Tablespoon water 
1/2 Cup peanut butter
2 oz. Cream cheese
1/2 Cup powdered sugar
1/4 Cup milk
2 Tablespoons peanut butter chips
2 Tablespoons salted peanuts, chopped (optional)
2 Mason jars (8 oz. each)
Large pinch of salt

Place the cookies in a plastic bag and crumble them with your hands or by using a rolling pin or even a can of beans.  The cookies can have a few chunks left.  In a small bowl, combine the jam with the water and warm very slightly in the microwave.  In a medium bowl, combine the cream cheese and powdered sugar, add the peanut butter and milk and whisk until completely smooth and combined.  Mix in a pinch of salt and taste to see if you'd like to add more.  Remember that the cookies and jam are very sweet so the peanut butter mixture should have a good bit of savory saltiness to it.

Layer the bottom of the jars with1/4 of the cookie mixture in each jar.  Spoon about 2 tablespoons of the jam into each jar and top with a quarter of the peanut butter chips in each.  Add about a quarter of the peanut butter mixture into each jar, top with the remaining cookies, jam, chips and peanut butter.  Sprinkle on the salted peanuts, if desired.
 
 
Gin and Tonic with a Twist

Photo Courtesy of Maryanne Cabrera
Two great pairs come together in this cocktail, Gin and Tonic and Cucumber and Mint.


INGREDIENTS:

1 oz lime juice

2 oz gin

1 oz mint syrup*

4 oz sparkling water

thinly sliced cucumber

sliced limes

 

DIRECTIONS:
In a serving glass, combine lime juice, gin, mint syrup and sparkling water. Garnish with sliced cucumber and sliced lime. Top glass with ice. Add additional mint syrup, according to taste if desired. Serve immediately.
*Mint syrup: Bring to a boil 1 cup water, 1 cup sugar, and a handful of torn mint leaves. Remove from heat, cover pot, and allow mint to steep for 30 minutes. Strain mint and store mint syrup in the fridge until ready to use.
 
Event Combo

Photo Courtesy of Event Combo
Even events can be paired with their perfect match thanks to EventCombo. This ticketing system allows event organizers to bundle tickets with other items attendees may be interested in. Dinner and a Show? Sports & Fitness? Meetings & Networking?

It's all here perfectly paired.
 
 

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Summer and the Season of Festivals

Written by Thursday, 16 June 2016

GOURMET EVENTS HAWAII * 808 735 7788 * This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. | June 16, 2016
Festive Fiestas

Photo Courtesy of Loic Nicolas Photography
Summer and Festival Season has Arrived!!!
 
Forget boring white and bring color to your outdoor festivities with a brightly hued tent instead! These colorful tents are sure to be a conversation piece. 
 
Strategically placed tables and seating add to the allure of the tent during the day and dim lighting will make the colors glow in the evening.

Festival Food

Photo Courtesy of Taylor McIntyre
Food on a stick is a given during any festival so for your next event spice it up by presenting it in a beautiful and unique way.  Get creative by displaying culinary bites in a grassy "food" patch along with dipping sauces presented in edible dishes like this hollowed out pepper.

The food can be simple like the fried catfish shown here. It's the presentation that makes it fun.

 
 
 
Flavorful Fusion Feasts

Photo Courtesy of Heather Meldrom
Festival flavored drinks like margaritas and beer are staples during the summer. Why not fuse the two into a margarita shandy for a new flavor twist?

INGREDIENTS

1 (12 ounce) can frozen limeade concentrate

8 ounces reposado tequila

12 ounces water

1 lime, thinly sliced

24 ounces lager or pilsner, chilled

Optional: kosher salt for rimming glasses


DIRECTIONS
  1. In a large pitcher, combine limeade concentrate, tequila, and water. Stir until limeade is dissolved. Chill if desired, up to 6 hours, or proceed immediately to next step.
  2. Just prior to serving, fill pitcher with ice, lime slices, and beer. Serve in salt-rimmed glasses if desired.
Full Turn Photos

Photo Courtesy of Craig Barritt
Photo booths may seem overdone at festivals, so why not over do it a step more and get the full 360 degree shot like this 360 degree photo booth. Guests can get crazy at every angle and print either their best side or a panoramic selfie.


 
 

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Sunrise, Sunset

Written by Thursday, 09 June 2016

GOURMET EVENTS HAWAII * 808 735 7788 * This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. | June 9, 2016
Soak up the Sunrise

Photo Courtesy of Stephanie Stiavetti
We're sharing everything sun related this week. 
 
When thinking about food or drink, we often think of tequila sunrises. We found this Tequila Sunrise Marmalade for an interesting twist on the popular drink. Use this as a complement for a sunrise breakfast event.
 
INGREDIENTS

4 pounds navel oranges, scrubbed clean

1 1/2 cup freshly squeezed or store-bought pomegranate juice, strained of seeds

1 1/2 cups water

1/4 cup high quality tequila

4 cups sugar

1/2 teaspoon butter

1/4 teaspoon salt


 

DIRECTIONS
  1. Place a small plate in the freezer so you can test the jam for proper thickness later. Make sure your jars and lids are sterilized and ready to go.
     
  2. Use a zester to remove the zest from the oranges. Add the zest to a large, deep, heavy-bottomed pot. Remove the remaining peels from the oranges. Wrap the peels in cheesecloth, secure with butcher's twine, and add to pot.
     
  3. Use a sharp knife to cut the oranges in between the pith into clean segments, making sure to work over a bowl to catch any escaping juice. Squeeze remaining pith and discard. (See video instructions here). Pulse the oranges in a food to chop the segments into coarse chunks that are about 1/2-inch across, 2 to 3 short pulses. Add the oranges to the pot with the zest and peels. Strain the juice you saved while segmenting the oranges and add it to the pot, along with the pomegranate juice.
     
  4. Add 1 1/2 cups of water to the pot and bring to a boil over medium heat. Once boiling, lower heat to low and simmer for 20 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool. Once cool, remove the bag of peels from the pot and gently squeeze the juice from the bag. Do not wring it completely, which will make the marmalade bitter--just release any loose, excess juice absorbed by the peels and then discard the bag.
     
  5. Add tequila, sugar, butter, and salt to the pot, stirring well to combine. Cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until the fruit begins to bubble and spit. Cook for 30 minutes longer, stirring frequently to keep the fruit from burning.
     
  6. Begin testing the marmalade for doneness: Spread 1/2 teaspoon of cooked fruit on the cold plate and place it back in the freezer. Wait 30 seconds, then run your finger through the fruit. It should be thick enough to maintain a path when you run your finger through it. If you'd like thicker marmalade, place the plate back in the freezer and cook the fruit for another 4 minutes and test again. Repeat until desired thickness is achieved, but be careful about cooking too long or you will alter the taste of your marmalade.
     
  7. Remove pot from heat and use a spoon to skim any foam from the surface of the fruit. Ladle marmalade into sterilized jars and process them in a hot water bath for 10 minutes. Unopened jars will keep at room temperature for up to 6 months. Opened marmalade should be refrigerated.
When the Sun Sets

Photo Courtesy of James Horan
While the northern hemisphere might be moving to longer days, the southern hemisphere is inching towards earlier sunsets. Australia is taking advantage of the extra darkness by lighting up area attractions. Transforming iconic attractions, walls, and even bridges and waterways into spectacular light displays creates infinite decor possibilities. This amazing display comes from the Taronga Zoo, who hopes to shed light on endangered species.
 
 

 
 
A Hazy Shade of Sunshine

Photo Courtesy of Elana Lepkowski
Opt for the opposite in sun related drinks. Instead of a tequila sunrise, choose the Hazy Sunset - A Pineapple/Rum Cocktail with Smoked Ice. Using the smoked ice gradually changes the flavor as it melts, just as a sunsets colors change as it melts into the horizon.

INGREDIENTS
 

Smoked Ice: 

1 tray ice cubes

Wood chips for smoking
 

Pineapple Rum Cocktail:

1 1/2 ounces light rum, such as 10 Cane

1/2 ounce overproof rum, such as Lemon Hart Demerara

2 ounces pineapple juice

1/2 ounce freshly squeezed lime juice from 1 lime

1/4 ounce simple syrup (see note above)

2 dashes Angostura bitters

Smoked Ice Cubes

Fresh cherry, pineapple chunk, and mint sprig, for garnish



DIRECTIONS
  1. For Smoked Ice: Place water in baking dish or pie plate. Following instructions of your smoker, heat wood chips until smoking. Set dish of water in smoker, cover, and smoke 10 to 20 minutes. Alternatively, line bottom of roasting pan with aluminum foil and arrange 1/2 cup wood chips on one side of pan. Using a butane torch or long-reach lighter, carefully burn wood chips until smoking but not in flames. Carefully set rack in roasting pan, set water on rack opposite the wood chips, cover, and smoke 10 to 20 minutes.
     
  2. Pour smoked water into ice-cube tray and freeze. 
     
  3. For the Cocktail: Add both rums, pineapple juice, lime juice, simple syrup, and bitters to a cocktail shaker and fill 2/3 full with non-smoked ice. Shake until well chilled, about 20 seconds. Add smoked ice cubes to a double rocks glass, and strain cocktail into glass. Garnish with a cherry, pineapple chunk, and mint sprig. Serve immediately.
 
Solar Selfies

Photo Courtesy of Fotofwd
The sun even comes into play with a solar powered on-site printing device for events. FotoFwd collects photos based on hashtags and guests can then use the device to print their favorite moments. We love that the stand alone printer is solar powered, meaning you can place it anywhere you want... how about the beach?
 
 
 

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All Things Pineapple

Written by Thursday, 02 June 2016

GOURMET EVENTS HAWAII * 808 735 7788 * This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. | June 2, 2016
The Golden Fruit

Photo Courtesy of Courtney Whitmore
Pineapples are all the rage and it's no wonder; they are delicious 
and aesthetically interesting. 
 
For this Gold Themed event, full size pineapples were cored, spray painted gold, 
and used to hold floral arrangements. 
 
We also love the mini pineapple stems to show guests their seating assignments! 


The Pineapple Express

Photo Courtesy of Ethan Calabrese
Pineapple cups are an exotic yet simple way to serve your guests delicious cocktails and mocktails. Your guests will feel like they have stepped into a tropical paradise no matter where your event is being held.
 
Get your event started with these refreshing Thai-Mango-Pineapple Coolers.

INGREDIENTS

1 teaspoon fresh ginger juice from one (1-inch) section fresh ginger

1 teaspoon fresh galangal juice from one (1-inch) section fresh galangal (see note above)

1 tablespoon fresh lime juice from 1 lime, peel, seeds, and pith removed

1/2 cup (4 ounces) fresh mango juice from about 2 cups cubed mango (about 8 ounces)

1 1/2 cups (6 ounces) fresh pineapple juice from about 2 cups cubed pineapple (about 10 ounces)

2 tablespoons canned full-fat coconut milk

 


DIRECTIONS
  1. Juice ginger, galangal, lime, mango, and pineapple in order listed. Mix all juices together in a glass with coconut milk. Stir well and serve.

 
 
 
Pineapple Down-Under

Photo Courtesy of Anna Markow
It's Pineapple everything this week, so of course we are giving you a fun pineapple recipe. Pair this traditional Australian cookie with 
pineapple sorbet/meringue for a unique twist.

INGREDIENTS

For the Biscuits:

2 cups (about 10 ounces) all purpose flour

2 cups (about 10 ounces) whole oats

1 cup (about 4 1/2 ounces) dessicated coconut (unsweetened)

2 cups (about 14 ounces) sugar

1 cup (2 sticks, 16 tablespoons) unsalted butter

2 tablespoons golden syrup or honey

3/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 cup boiling water

For the Spoom:

1 2/3 cup pineapple puree

1 cup cold water

1 tablespoon juice from 1 lime

3 egg whites

Pinch salt

3/4 cup (about 5 ounces) sugar

DIRECTIONS
  1. For the Biscuits: Set a rack in center of oven. Preheat oven to 350°F. Place flour, oats, coconut, and sugar in medium mixing bowl and whisk to evenly combine. Combine butter and golden syrup/honey in a small saucepan over low heat and allow butter to melt fully. Stir to evenly combine; set aside. Dissolve baking soda in boiling water, then add to butter mixture. Pour liquid mixture into dry ingredients and fold to fully incorporate. Allow dough to rest until butter cools and sets up to create a firm dough, 5 to 10 minutes. Divide dough into 1 inch balls and place on parchment or silicone-lined baking sheet, leaving 2 to 3 inches between the balls. Flatten slightly into thick discs, then bake for 8 minutes, turn and continue baking until dark golden-brown. Allow to fully cool before removing from sheet.
  2. For the Spoom: Prepare an ice cream maker for churning. Combine pineapple puree, water, and lime juice in a medium bowl and mix well. Place egg whites and salt in bowl of stand mixer and whip until foamy. Continue whipping to stiff peaks. Whisk half of meringue into puree mixture, then gently fold in rest of meringue with whisk. Immediately churn in ice cream maker until spoom is thoroughly chilled and holds its shape when spooned.
  3. To Assemble: Once spoom is done churning (it will be very fluffy), pile onto half of the biscuits and top with remaining biscuits, pairing up similarly shaped and sized biscuits. Place on lined baking sheet and immediately freeze until firm, then wrap individually in plastic.



 
In the Green (Screen)

Photo Courtesy of Juan M Delgado
Why go with the usual photo booth when you can have a green screened television booth, complete with boom mic and camera. In this event, guests tested out their bilingual skills by reading from a teleprompter. 
 
The video can then be quickly edited with a background and then broadcast either to the participant or the event attendees. The possibilities to customize are endless.
 

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Heating Up and Cooling Off

Written by Thursday, 26 May 2016

GOURMET EVENTS HAWAII * 808 735 7788 * This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. | May 26, 2016
Heating Up

Photo Courtesy of Urban Decay
To announce their new line of lipsticks, Urban Decay went with a hot after hours theme. Guests could "check-in" to a No Tell Motel to test the new hues. Inside the motel, various boudoir rooms featured oversized lipstick sofas, romantic beds and lighted makeup mirrors. 

Cooling Off

Photo Courtesy of Ice Bulb
No matter what you're guests are drinking, you can brand it with your own custom ice cubes. Companies such as Ice Bulb create unique and custom ice cube that are meant to cool off your drink, but maintain a long lasting shape. Ice such as this one in atypical shape also minimizes dilution. Even if you don't need a custom shape, Ice Bulb makes ice balls and ship all over the US.

 
 
Smokin' Hot Flavor

Photo Courtesy of Joshua Bousel
Bring back the heat with a Smoky Chicken Tinga Tacos. Tinga, which is a mixture of onions, tomatillo, fire roasted tomatoes and chipotles give it the smoky and spicy flavor

INGREDIENTS

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

1 1/2 pounds skin-on, bone-in chicken thighs

1 cup medium diced white onion

2 medium cloves garlic, smashed and peeled

1 large tomatillo, husk removed, rinsed, and roughly chopped

1/2 teaspoon Mexican oregano

1/4 teaspoon ground cumin

One (14.5-ounce) can fire-roasted diced or crushed tomatoes

2 tablespoons roughly chopped chipotles plus 2 tablespoons adobo sauce from one (7-ounce) can

1/2 cup homemade chicken stock or low-sodium chicken broth

1 bay leaf

Kosher salt

Warm corn tortillas, tomatillo salsa, onion, cilantro, grated cotija cheese, and lime wedges for serving


DIRECTIONS

 

 

Heat oil in a Dutch oven or large pot over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add chicken thighs skin-side down and cook until well browned, about 6 minutes. Flip thighs and continue to cook until other side is lightly browned, about 3 minutes. Transfer chicken to a plate, leaving fat in pan, and set aside.

 

 


Add onions and garlic to Dutch oven and cook, stirring occasionally, until onions have browned around the edges, about 5 minutes. Add tomatillo and cook until browned around the edges, about 4 minutes. Add oregano and cumin and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add tomatoes, chipotle, and adobo sauce and stir to combine. Remove from heat.

 

 


Transfer sauce to the jar of a blender and puree until smooth. Pour sauce back into pan, stir in chicken stock and bay leaf, and bring to a boil over medium heat. Nestle chicken thighs in sauce, reduce to a simmer, and cook until meat registers 165°F in thickest part of thigh on an instant-read thermometer. Transfer chicken to a plate and let sit until cool enough to handle. Remove sauce from heat and discard bay leaf.

 

 


Pull chicken meat into strips, discarding skin, any large pieces of fat, and bones. Stir chicken into sauce and cook over medium heat until warmed through, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat and season with salt to taste.

 

Spoon chicken into warm tortillas and top with tomatillo salsa, onion, cilantro, and cotija cheese. Serve with lime wedges.

 
 
Chillin' Out

Photo Courtesy of Jagermeister
Photo booths are always popular at events, but why go for traditional when you can go shocking? Guests at the Electric Daisy Carnival in New York were blasted with cold carbon dioxide as they entered the photo booth room to capture a surprise reaction.

 

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