Friday, April 17, 2009

Graduation Ad - one of a kind...

Calling out to any and all parents of Graduates: wouldn't you rather enjoy your child's success rather than working your buns off to make all of their friends and relatives happy? Let me take care of the details! Call 541.261.5783 today and book your party for peace of mind...

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Hawaiian Style Grown Up Party and then, my first catered Kid's Party...

Wow! Last week was big. Two parties in one weekend, and again, both total successes. Robin Dawson was AGAIN the most amazing friend ever and swooped in with her graceful hard working dedication to help me bust out loads of food - and even brought treats to keep me nourished through the long prep hours. I really don't know what I would do without her... THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!

On to the Parties...

The first was my trade party for Erin O'Kelly-Muck for her AMAZING work on my web site - - check it out if you haven't already done so. It was her husband Chris's 40th Birthday and they chose a wonderful Hawaiian Style menu. Her family flew in from Colorado and close friends from all over town showed up to celebrate Chris' new celebrity status by a listing in the Ashland Daily Tidings that Erin surprised him with. We were all surprised by the first warm day of spring, and everyone found it highly enjoyable to lounge outside in the late afternoon sun and enjoy each others company until it got to cold to bear.

The menu as follows:
~Mini Kalua Pulled Pork Sandwiches w/ a Pineapple-Sweet Chili BBQ Sauce
~Fresh Spring Rolls w/ a Peanut Sauce
~Sesame Rice Balls stuffed w/ Pickled Vegges and Fresh Sushi-Grade Ahi served w/ Sweet Chili Dipping Sauce
~Mac Salad (what Hawaiian Party is complete w/o mac salad?)
~Tropical Fruit Salad (mango, kiwi, pineapple & blood oranges)
~Fresh Cucumber Salad
~Pineapple Upside-Down Cake for dessert - yum yum yum!

The second shin dig of the weekend was for my neighbor Milo's 4th Birthday. He helped me plan the menu, and I've got to say, I had so much fun preparing food for this party. His mother, Shannon, was looking for an all organic and reduced sugar menu; I was impressed with both the menu she chose and the flavor and quality of food that came out.

The Menu:
~Organic Fruit Skewers w/ Strawberris, Kiwi, Blood Oranges, Blueberries, and Apples
~Mini Gorgonzola Tarts w/ Cranberry Chutney on the Side
~Tea Sandwiches (crusts off) cut into small triangles
*Cucumber w/ Dill Cream Cheese on Sourdough
*Almond Butter and Bilberry on Whole Wheat
~Crudites w/ Ranch Dressing
~Reduced Sugar Carrot-Maple Cake w/ Cream Cheese Frosting

I used Maple syrup to sweeten the cake, and thought it turned out absolutely delicious! For those who always wondered how, here's the recipe:

Reduced Sugar Carrot-Maple Cake
w/ Cream Cheese Frosting

Preheat oven 350˚
Line a 15 x 11.5 inch baking pan with parchment paper for easy removal from pan

In a Large bowl, whisk together then set aside:
*3 3/4 cup AP Flour
*2 tsp. baking powder
*1.5 tsp baking soda
*2 tsp cinnamon
*1 tsp nutmeg
*1/4 tsp cloves
*3/4 tsp salt

In cuisinart fitted with shredding blade, process, then add to dry ingredients:
*1.5 pounds carrots, peeled

Wipe out cuisinart, the process for 20-30 seconds:
*1.5 cups maple syrup
*4 eggs

With the machine still running, slowly add until emulsified:
*1.5 cups oil

Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients, making sure that all is incorporated but take care not to over-mix. Pour prepared batter into pan. Bake 30 minutes total, rotating after 20 minutes to ensure even browning. Done when a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool in pan up to 2 hours. Invert cake onto sheet pan, then back on to whatever platter you plan to serve it on. Frost (recipe below). Garnish w/ small shreds of carrots placed in a star pattern over cake with poppy seeds in the center of each star. YUM!

Process in clean Cuisinart until combined (about 5 -10 seconds):
*12 oz cream cheese, softened but still cool (1.5 pkg usually)
*8 Tbs. butter, softened but still cool (1 stick)
*2 Tbs. Maple syrup
*1 tsp vanilla extract

Scrape down workbowl as needed then add and process until smooth (about 10 seconds):
*3/4 cup powdered sugar

Enjoy! Let me know how it turns out for you - I'm sure you'll be impressed!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

35th B-Day Party - Appetizers Galore!

Great hors d'oeuvres and cocktails were enjoyed by all last Saturday (the 7th of March) for Megan Danforth's 35th Birthday Party. Frank the Spank poured beverages for the party-goers, and I noticed a marvelous dance party later in the evening where the crowd let loose and looked like they were having a great time. Megan mentioned that many people commented on and loved the food - success! I had so much fun at this event; Appetizer parties are a great way to show off a wide range of culinary delectables and make a large group of folks really happy.

Her menu was as follows:
*Bloody Mary soup Shots
(served in Shot Glasses and Garnished w/ Pan-Seared Spiced Prawns, Celery & Cilantro)
*Mini-Gorgonzola Tarts w/ a Cranberry-Pear Chutney
*Chorizo Stuffed Dates wrapped in Bacon
*Baked Brie with Raspberries
*Savory Fennel and Onion Rolls
*Sun Dried-Tomato & Green Onion Stuffed Mushrooms w/ Parmesan
*Endive Boats w/ Crisp Pears & Apples tossed in a White Onion-Poppyseed Vinaigrette and Garnished with Garden Chives

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Roarin' 20's Party a BLAST!!!!!!

I have never had so much fun at a party. Ever. Almost everyone dressed up, all of the alcohol was consumed, the food devoured, and the band unparalleled. The AnnieMac Band whooped it up something fierce, and everyone I've talked to since the party said they had the time of their lives. "The best dancing ever," was a common sentiment, as well as "The strongest drinks ever," due to Frank the Spank's pouring style. The costumes were fantastic, and set an ambiance that dragged people to the dance floor to shake it until the police told us to stop (midnight curfew in Ashland on the weekends, booooo!) The clean up was fast and efficient and I'd like to take a moment to thank each and every person who stayed and drunkenly helped us completely get the Pioneer Hall squeaky clean. Marta (my sister) even woke up from her nap in my car to mop the entire floor! We received a huge amount of donations from party-goers and their support really helped us be able to afford this shindig. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!! Special thanks go to: Robin & Gabe Dawson (for everything!), Marta and Bryan (for set-up, take down and everything in between), Allysa & David Sherman, Craig (for paying for the venue), Steve the Photographer, Nancy Roberts (for giving me my amazing 20's style hair and makeup and the bitchin' photos), the AnnieMac band for making this party so amazing, and each and every person who showed up. What a turn out! I have compiled a short list (as in three people right now) of different online places to check out some photo's. If you have any, please write me so I can add yours to share with everyone.
*Nancy Roberts of Plush Photography:
*Steven Addington of Kiaterna Design Group:
*Shannon Christoper (Renu - A Hair Salon):
Enjoy and please write soon so I can add yours to the list!

2009 Wedding Showcase a SUCCESS

Event Analysis:
The 2009 Wedding Showcase (held January 24th and 25th in Medford, OR this year) was a complete success. I met and talked with hundreds of people (brides, grooms, mothers, friends, sisters, children etc.) and served delicious bite-sized appetizers for everyone to sample. My friend Robin Dawson was a tremendous help and worked side-by-side with me for both days. (By the end, neither of us could talk and our faces hurt from smiling!) On Saturday we served two hors d'oeuvres: a festive 'Gorgonzola Tart w/ Cranberry-Pear Chutney' and a decadent 'Chili-Chocolate Tart' for dessert. On Sunday, samples of 'Wild Lox on Crustini w/ Dill Chevre & Green Onions' were passed out and then finished with freshly made 'Lemon Bars' to cleanse the pallet.
Personal Opinion...
It became evident that there was a WIDE range of tastes out there, and it was fascinating to watch people's reactions. One woman would love the Gorgonzola Tart while her friend would refuse to try, another would ask to have seconds (and sometimes thirds) on Lox & Crustini while her mother would want to spit it out (as she was not a fan of fish). I had couples prefer one appetizer to the other constantly; it was very educational, though it felt like the vast majority of people loved what I prepared. That said, I'm relieved I created two different options for each day. It better reflected my catering skills, as well as satisfied the varying tastes and opinions of a rather large group of people.
Side note: to Robin - thank you thank you thank you for all of your hard work and support!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Roarin' 20's Party UPDATE!


*We have a venue for our Roarin' Twenties Party*
Pioneer Hall across from Lithia Park.

What: Elena & Awna's 'Roarin' 20's Birthday Extravaganza!'
When: January 30th, seven to midnight
Where: Pioneer Hall, across from Lithia Park
Why: Why not? I'm turning 29, and Elena's turning 20-10!
Etc etc etc... We'll have live music by the incredible AnnieMac band, with moonshine and spirits provided by us. It's definitely a dress up party, so grab your feathers, fringe, and fedoras and let's shake it till the city of Ashland kicks us out. Bring your friends, the more the merrier!

Monday, January 12, 2009

The First Flavor of the Year...

Happy New Year and welcome to my very first blog! A little intimidating, but good golly it's up and running. I'll be posting information about different events and parties that are coming up, as well as follow-up details on the shin digs that are over and complete. I think this will be a great way for those interested in AZ Catering services to get a better flavor of my personal style, and I promise to be very very honest. That said, here I go...

what: Ashland Outdoor Store's Annual Winter Sale
when: January 16, 2009 (this Saturday!)
where: at the Ashland Outdoor Store (37 3rd St.)
7 pm until everything's gone...
why: Come check out the great sale and
try delicious AZ Catering hors d'oeuvres!

what: Southern Oregon's 2009 Wedding Showcase.
It's a two day Wedding Showcase with over 70 vendors
(see poster for more information).
when: January 24th and 25th, 10-4 pm.
where: at The Ramada Inn in Medford Oregon (2250 Biddle Rd, Medford, OR 97504).
why: A chance to try some of my delicious food... I'll have a booth there and look forward to meeting over 600 registered brides and their entourage.

what: Elena & Awna's 'Roarin' 20's Birthday Extravaganza!'
when: January 30th, seven to midnight
where: to be announced... please check back
why: Because it's my golden birthday (turning 29 on the 29th!) and Elena's turning 20-10...
Time to CELEBRATE!!!!
extras: All are invited! Definitely a dress up party, so grab your feathers and fringe, we'll supply the hooch, and we'll all dance until midnight...

Thanks for reading, this was fun! If you have any questions, please write me at: or call 541.261.5783

awna out...