Wednesday, June 16, 2010

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Kathy Casey Food Studios

Last night a spectacular Seattle Foodie event organized by Keren Brown was going on in Ballard at Kathy Casey's Food Studio. The event was to highlight Kathy's cookbook, Sips & Apps and Lorna Yee's new cookbook, The Newlywed Kitchen. I had The Newlywed Kitchen on my Amazon Wishlist and my Birthday is coming up. I happened to find it sitting on my doorstep the day before the event. What good timing. I might have caved in and bought it last night if I didn't get it as a birthday present from a friend. I did however pick up a copy of Sips & Apps signed by Kathy before leaving.

There were loads of yummy bites to eat including cheeses, preserves and chutneys, appetizers from Sips & Apps and some sweets from The Newlywed Kitchen. I tried several of the appetizers and my favorite was probably the lamb sliders. The homemade rosemary buns were perfectly soft with a slightly crisp crust. Under the lamb patties were pickled red onions. I also really enjoyed the peppadew peppers stuffed with cream cheese and almonds that were plated around the bar. The only sweet I tried was Lorna's Fudge brownies and only because I had heard people talking about how good they were. I probably wouldn't have tried them otherwise. I'm not a big fudge fan, mainly because fudge is normally so rich and sweet and one bite is enough. These brownies, though they are fudgy, they aren't sweet like most fudges and brownies I've had. The dark chocolate just melted in my mouth. I had to stop myself from eating more than one.

Three different cocktails were being highlighted at the event. I was able to try all 3 without passing out.

The Tuscan Rosemary Drop was the first cocktail. It is a version of a lemon drop martini and was topped off with a honey lemon flavored foam. Kathy did a little presentation on how to make them. She uses homemade limoncello only aged for a few days. I always thought it took a month or more to make but she proved it can be done in less time and it was good. She also suggested starting off with a citrus vodka. Seems like a good idea, especially if you don't plan on aging it for very long.

The Charleston 75 was my favorite. It's a Southern take on the French 75. Muddled peaches and red vermouth are a few of the ingredients that make it different. It also contains bourbon and she used Maker's Mark, one of my favs, during the demonstration. I think the peaches are what makes this cocktail stand out.

The Tropical Tiki Time Sangria was the final cocktail I tried. It was the first time I've had a Sangria that wasn't red. I didn't see a demo of this drink so not sure what all was in it but there was lots of tasty fruit in it, including a garnish of star fruit.

We also got to meet Corky Luster from Ballard Bee Company. Kathy has a bee hive in back of her studio and Corky was there to show it to us and answer all our questions. I usually get a little freaked out by bees/hornets/yellow jackets/etc. but I know these guys are just pollen hungry and aren't likely to sting people so I got pretty close. Learned some interesting facts about bees: It takes 36 bees their entire life to make 1 Tbsp of honey. Bees travel several miles looking for pollen and always return to the same hive. There are bee guards that fight off any bees that try to enter the hive that aren't supposed to be there. Makes me wonder how they know which ones belong there and which ones don't. There are many thousands of bees in the hive. It was interesting to watch the bees coming in and out of the hive. Corky pulled out some of the trays of honeycomb and showed us where some had baby bees growing. They weren't quite as far along as the ones in the hive we knocked down off my roof. Kind of makes me want to put a hive in my backyard. There's always some bees around my lavender. I wonder how far they traveled for it.

Kathy and Lorna took a few minutes during the night to talk a little bit about their books and answer some questions from the other foodies. We found out that Lorna's favorite recipe from her cookbook is the red velvet cake. She said it was so easy to make and described it as a dump cake, where you simply dump all the ingredients into a bowl, mix, and bake. I love red velvet cake so that is one I will have to try. Kathy has been in her beautiful studio on Ballard Ave for around 10 years, before it was such a cool location. She also talked about how she met her husband on a blind date and made him swoon with a wonderful seafood dish.

Kathy Casey and Lorna Yee Lorna Yee
Kathy Casey Mixing Drinks
Corky Luster Ballard Bee Guy
Lamb Slider
Apps and Cheese
Stuffed Peppadew Peppers
Lorna Yee's Brownies
Bacon Blue Cheese & Pecan Cocktail Cookies Tuscan Rosemary Drop with Honey Lemon Foam
Charleston 75
Tropical Tiki Time Sangria

A few more photos from the event can be found on my Flickr Set.


  1. Looks like a fabulous time! Cocktails look great, and the bees look really interesting!

  2. Agreed, it looked so nice and "refreshing" with all these drinks!
    Lorna's That woman kills me she is so pretty :)