a darling garden party // bloom series

July 3, 2015

a darling garden party // forage + fodderyou guys…things got real girly for our spring bloom series shoot, a darling garden party. inspired by warm nights and effortless ways to beat the heat and pass the time without constantly being stuck indoors, we embraced all things feminine with frocks, custom floral accessories, and edible flowers galore. our garden party was a ‘just because’ event, but how perfect would this be for a small bridal or baby shower?

a darling garden party // forage + foddera darling garden party // forage + fodder

as always, we kept it simple by creating a beautiful atmosphere with items already in our kitchen or found around the house. plus, we actually hosted this event in our own backyard. we figure, why stress, when you can just grab the chairs from around your kitchen table and bring them outside? we opted to use our bar cart and a bedside table as surfaces for serving a delicious spread of treats. it doesn’t have to match – in fact, pairing random, but complimentary items together adds much more character to your event.

a darling garden party // forage + foddera darling garden party // forage + fodder

as far as entertainment goes, we kept it classic with a few rounds of gin rummy and chess. although most of the afternoon was spent sipping and nibbling in between fits of laughter. when the weather is warm, bubbles and crisp refreshing cocktails are priority. we started off with champagne chilled in floral ice cubes for an added touch of beauty. oh, and adding a cube or two to your glass isn’t the worst idea. especially once the ice melts, and you’re left with a lovely little bloom in your glass. i’d recommend this addition to any chilled cocktail.

a darling garden party // forage + foddera darling garden party // forage + foddera darling garden party // forage + foddernow all of these bubbles simply cannot be enjoyed on an empty stomach, so we kept guests snacking on cardamom sugar cookies and and an arugula & goat cheese flatbread – both with edible flowers of course…

a darling garden party // forage + foddera darling garden party // forage + fodder

edible flowers can be purchased in most grocery stores, and you’ll want to be sure that they’re packaged for food use, because that means they’re free of any chemicals and are varieties that are safe to eat. i will say, working with edible flowers takes patience, as the blooms are extremely delicate. however one simple, yet impressive way to incorporate them into your event is by making floral ice cubes.

floral ice cubes

this process takes a bit of time and it’s best to work in layers. fill an ice tray (we recommend a silicon tray that makes larger cubes, like this one) a quarter of the way with water, add flowers facing down, and freeze. this suspends the bloom at the top of your cube. if you fill the entire tray at once, the blooms will float before freezing and you won’t see them as well.

once frozen, add more water to fill halfway, and freeze. finally fill tray to the top, and freeze again. we recommend using distilled water that has been boiled and then cooled for the crystal clear cubes.

next week we’ll be sharing tips from samantha so that you can create custom floral pieces for your own event as well as a recipe for a boozy granita affogato. enjoy the weekend!

photos // photo by betsy     florals // bricolage curated florals    food styling // forage + fodder

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fathers + daughters

June 21, 2015

fathers + daughters // forage + fodderthe mr. and i created an email account for lil’ bug the week we found out we were pregnant. often we send her thoughts and promises, but sometimes just funny stories from pregnancy, or things we want to be sure that she knows about her parents. so on father’s day, i just had to share this note from the mr. because the bond between fathers + daughters is a complicated and beautifully special one:

hey sweet girl,

i understand the importance of not focusing on how cute, nice or pretty you are, not that you aren’t those things, but because you are so much more than those things, and you can be anything you want. but, i had to at least say it this time, because this is the first email i’m writing you where i have known you are a girl…and i’m so excited.

in a way I think i’ve always known that you’ve been a girl, or i’ve at least expected that you would be a girl. your mother says that i’m going to be a great dad for a girl. not that i wouldn’t be a great dad for a boy, but that girls need good dads.

i think i understand what she means, but to make sure that you and i are on the same page, i’m going to write what i think that means to me.

this list is in no particular order:

i promise to be there to pick you up when you fall…or at least when you will let me.

i promise to hold you when you are hurting, and not ask who i need to go hurt…until you ask me to.

i promise to support you and help you grow in whatever your heart desires…even if i don’t understand it.

i promise to show you what real love, care, and support look like, by loving your mother.

i promise to be a real person with real emotions, a lot of emotions, both good and bad…sorry in advance for the bad ones.

(as a side note, i’m an extremely emotional guy, like commercials can bring me to tears emotional. when i found out that you were a girl my heart exploded in the doctors office…so did my tear ducts. then seeing you on the sonogram was life changing. you are amazing.)

i promise to share my hobbies and interests with you, not just the ones that are “appropriate for little girls”.

i promise to listen when you need someone to talk to, and i mean really listen, not just listen so that i can then talk.

i promise to talk when you need me to, give advice, tell stories, or just tell you i love.

i promise to treat you like the unique and truly amazing gift that you are.

i promise to not spoil you and make you think that you are better than anyone else.

i promise to love you like you need, not always like you want.

i hope this list doesn’t sound trite. it’s all from the heart my beautiful, smart, strong, creative daughter.

i love you already and always will,

dad, daddy, pop…whatever you want to call me is fine with me.

rooibos mint tea (two ways) // frvrlnd collaboration

May 19, 2015

rooibos mint iced tea // forage + fodder & frvrld

summer is upon us y’all. so what better time to share this recent collaboration with frvrlnd, olive + rye, and katie jameson photography? when rowen, the woodworker and muse behind frvrlnd, a curated collection of handmade small-batch goods, approached julie and i about creating a few simple recipes for her summer product line, we got right to work.

a typical austin summer brings lots of sunshine (and humidity), so we wanted to create something refreshing and simple to enjoy on the porch with friends. thus we bring you rooibos mint tea two ways! one served on ice with a few bubbles and the other a boozy but easy to sip bourbon cocktail. both drinks share a handful of simple ingredients, and are perfect for your next backyard gathering.

rooibos mint iced tea // forage + fodder & frvrlndrooibos mint iced tea // forage + fodder & frvrlndIMG_9293rooibos mint iced tea // forage + fodder & frvrlnd

this collaboration also gave me an opportunity to test out frvrlnd’ summer product line and i’m completely smitten. frvrlnd muddlers are beautiful, but more importantly, functional, and don’t even get me started on these ambrosia maple boards.

rooibos mint iced tea // forage + fodder & frvrlndIMG_9308

i’m a sucker for prep bowls, so i instantly fell for her scoop collection, which features a variety of sizes and shapes. and all of her products are handmade, so each item is unique and created with care.

rooibos mint iced tea // forage + fodder & frvrlndrooibos mint iced tea // forage + fodder & frvrlnd

rooibos + mint iced tea

5 tsp of loose rooibos tea
24 oz water
25 mint leaves
2 oz simple syrup
lemon, thinly sliced into rounds

chilled club soda

using a linen tea bag or wire mesh tea infuser, steep the tea in water that’s just off the boil until it reaches your desired strength. you’ll want it to be stronger than normal, so 5-10 minutes should be about right. muddle your fresh mint leaves until crushed and add to the steeping tea. in a small pitcher, combine the simple syrup and strained tea & crushed mint mixture, and stir well until combined. fill each glass with ice, leaving room for two lemon slices per glass and split the tea mixture evenly between the glasses. top off with chilled club soda and enjoy. makes four delicious glasses.

rooibos mint iced tea // forage + fodder & frvrlnd

rooibos tea + bourbon cocktail

(makes 2 cocktails)

1 tsp of sugar
10 mint leaves
4 tsp of loose rooibos tea
4 oz hot water

4 oz of bourbon (we used buffalo trace)

using a linen tea bag or tea infuser, steep the tea in boiling hot water. allow to steep for 4-7 minutes, you’ll want the tea to be strong but not too bitter. while the tea is steeping, combine mint and sugar In a cocktail shaker or flat-bottomed cocktail mixing glass. muddle until mint is thoroughly crushed and combined with sugar. once the tea has steeped to desired strength measure out 4 ounces into the shaker (be careful, it might be hot!) and add bourbon. fill shaker with ice and stir until the cocktail is jet cold. double strain the mixture into two cocktail glasses and garnish with lemon peel and mint sprig. enjoy!

this drink would also be wonderful served on ice. Just combine and stir all ingredients without the ice in the shaker and pour into a highball glass filled with ice.

scoops + boards: frvrlnd // cocktail recipe: olive + rye // photos: katie jameson photography 

look who’s back y’all

May 9, 2015

forage + fodder

let’s be honest folks. the posting here has been slim to none recently, and for that we apologize. in our defense, i was finishing up graduate school, an internship, and if you follow us on social media, you know that i’m also building a tiny human at the moment. a lot has been going on in our household but we’re back with LOTS of new recipes, collaborations, travel adventures, and even a few pregnancy guides and reflections for our fellow future parents-to-be. thanks for sticking out the radio silence folks. that was real cool and we appreciate the hell outta you for it.

a mindful wine tasting // floral tips

March 13, 2015

hello again! welcome to our third and final installment of our fall bloom series shoot! you’ve seen the beautiful photos of this dreamy afternoon, so we wanted to share this video that so perfectly captured the experience of our mindful wine tasting. then of course, we’ll tell you how to create a similar atmosphere for your own guests!

Forage + Fodder // Fall Bloom Series from Stringer Productions on Vimeo.

the tablescape for this event was intentionally simple and muted. the white plates, neutral linens, and smooth textures from the serving boards allowed the food and florals to catch the eye of our guests and whet their appetite. we purposely avoided blooms for the table, for something deeper, that invoked the idea of community and curiosity.

a mindful wine tasting // forage + foddera mindful wine tasting // forage + foddera mindful wine tasting // forage + fodder

oh, and don’t think we were going to leave you without some fantastic floral tips from sweet samantha, because let’s face it, she killed it on the florals for this event.

a mindful wine tasting // floral tips

a mindful wine tasting // forage + fodder

the idea of using exposed roots resonated with us all because they remind us that during the cold months and throughout the holiday season, we want to be with those who know us the deepest and keep us rooted. yet, they also remind us of the longing we all feel for spring and new growth. who or what keeps you rooted?

a mindful wine tasting // forage + fodder

to achieve this aesthetic, use any plant with a good root system, like ferns or ivy. if you change the water regularly, your root exposed centerpieces will last a week or longer. after this shoot, i kept these on my kitchen window sill for almost two weeks! these clear, understated vessels are simply repurposed jars found around the house. we love the way the roots catch the eye and how the sunlight makes its way through.

we chose wild, foraged, inspired arrangements in planters rather than vases. in this way, we simply paid an ode to the colors of the season and the tasting: deep greens, rich burgundy, smooth browns and beiges and bright white… all while staying true to the aesthetic of the vessels and stands that displayed these pieces. each unique element speaks for itself, but they work in harmony to create an incredible balance.

a mindful wine tasting // forage + fodder

the bloom series is an ongoing collaboration between forage + fodder, bricolage curated florals, and photo by betsy. each season we will bring you seasonally curated experiences along with simple floral tips and recipes. you can view more of our bloom series here.

our mindful wine tasting features cheese and charcuterie hand-selected by antonelli’s cheese shopthe serving boards and planters are handmade by local rockstar kelly dewitt from kkdw.co.

a mindful wine tasting // wine pairing guide

March 10, 2015

a mindful wine tasting // forage + fodder

the process of hosting a wine tasting can be difficult and overwhelming to say the least. there are so many things to consider when choosing your wine selection, and an endless number of options on what kind of experience to create for your guests. so we’re here to simplify the process for you.

a mindful wine tasting // forage + fodder

step one // set your limits

as far as the  types of wines you’ll be sampling, let the season dictate that for you. in the cooler months, we like to stick with a nice selection of reds. it’s best to offer a range of intensities and flavor notes, but be sure that your choices still complement one another. we began with four basic reds: a merlot, a sangiovese, a cabernet sauvignon, and a malbec. if you don’t already have a few favorite labels in mind, head to your local wine shop, and ask for recommendations of each type that are complex enough for tasting, but not so distinct that they cannot be paired with food. another limit to consider is price. we kept all of our bottles under $10, because you can get some pretty phenomenal wines at this price point.

a midnful wine tasting // forage + fodder

step two // food pairings

in our humble opinion, there’s no better pair to wine than cheese and fruit. it’s not too filling, and versatile enough to work with most people’s food aversions or allergies. it’s also wise to incorporate a variety of textures that will enhance your guests’ experience of savoring each bite. we created a spread of dried figs, apricots, pears, apples, blackberries, almonds, olives, dark chocolate, baguettes, charcuterie, honey and marmalade. we are lucky enough to live in a city that has amazing cheese shops like antonelli’s, so once our wines were purchased, we had their cheese mongers hand select the perfect pairs for each one, including a variety of goat, sheep, and cow’s milk cheese. i mean, how beautiful are these cheeses?

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we presented each wine’s pairings on its own serving board so that guests had some guidance. they were invited to taste the wine on it’s own, and then with the designated pairings to see what new flavors they detected and how the wine changed on their palate.

a mindful wine tasting // forage + fodder

given that we’re hosting an afternoon of wine sampling, it’s extremely important to have actual food on hand too. we kept it simple with roasted cauliflower and a few savory galettes. whatever you choose, just ensure that your guests are not drinking on an empty stomach.

step three // guide your guests

we opted for a blind tasting, because it allows guests to simply enjoy the wine, and not be influenced by the label or price tag. we hid our labels by wrapping each bottle in twine, but numbered them so that guests could pick their favorite and we could reveal the type of wine at the end. each guest was given a notebook to jot down their thoughts of each wine – noting flavors that jumped out at them, the intensity, color, aroma, and finish of each wine. we also wanted a truly intentional experience, so we guided the process by using instruction cards that invited our guests to look, swirl, sip and savor.

a mindful wine tasting // forage + foddera mindful wine tasting // forage + fodder

we also set the tone for a distraction free event by banning cell phones from the table. this allowed guests to truly engage with one another and be present in the moment. it also made for great conversation and lots of laughter.

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this is just glimpse into our process, but we’d love to hear from you! any questions you have about hosting your own wine tasting? let us know in the comments!

the bloom series is an ongoing collaboration between forage + fodder, bricolage curated florals, and photo by betsy. each season we will bring you seasonally curated experiences along with simple floral tips and recipes. you can view more of our bloom series here.

our mindful wine tasting features cheese and charcuterie hand-selected by antonelli’s cheese shopthe serving boards and planters are handmade by local rockstar kelly dewitt from kkdw.co.

a mindful wine tasting // bloom series

March 6, 2015

a mindful wine tasting // forage + fodder

it’s cold just about everywhere. so what better time to recall the sunshine and autumn breezes that set the tone for the mindful wine tasting we hosted this fall for the second installment of our bloom series?

a mindful wine tasting // forage + foddera mindful wine tasting // forage + foddera mindful wine tasting // forage + foddera mindful wine tasting // forage + foddera mindful wine tasting // forage + fodder

rather than share recipes, we wanted to emphasize the act of slowing down, and truly savoring the flavor of a spread that’s handpicked to match your wine. today is simply an introduction to the experience with a few words from yours truly, but stay tuned for floral tips, as well as tips on how to create your own mindful wine tasting, no matter the season.

a mindful wine tasting

If your weeks are anything like mine, then you’re all too familiar with that revolving door sensation that comes from five consecutive days of multi-tasking, ticking down checklists, meeting deadlines, and somewhere in the madness creating minimal space for meals, hygiene, and sleep…in that order. Showers feel like an obligation you have to check off your list and meals turn into what you can shovel down at red lights in between destinations. Somewhere in this hectic momentum we create for ourselves, we lose something. We lose the ability to be still – to stop, to notice, and most importantly to be present. This sense of presence lives in the absence of ‘how will this translate into the perfect instagram shot?’ or ‘what needs to be done when we get home?’ The presence I’m talking about opens our awareness to the small, but priceless pleasure of the everyday.

With this in mind, we chose to create an experience for those close to us, and for ourselves, to slow down, lift our eyes and focus our gaze on those experiences we’ve been missing since we’ve been on autopilot. A mindful wine tasting set in a familiar backyard was just what we needed to bring ourselves out of the haze.

When our friends arrived and saw the spread, the initial instinct was to dig in. To consume the beauty of the table without giving it a second thought. This is how we operate when we don’t have the luxury of time on our side. But we wanted to do things differently. Phones were tabled for the night; music was replaced by laughter and the sounds of autumn. We sat together, and we let our eyes feast before our stomachs for once. In this focus, this delayed gratification of sorts; we were setting ourselves up to enjoy these everyday pleasures on an entirely new level. Guests took turns reading invitations to look, swirl, sip and savor; each step of the process swallowing up several minutes. We took notes on the color, texture, aroma, and flavor of the wines. We closed our eyes and let our imaginations wonder. We were curious for what seems like the first time in a long time.

After initially tasting each wine and comparing impressions, we paired them with the bounty of a simple spread; blackberries, assorted cheeses, figs, honey, and more. Again, we tasted, we sampled, we took our time, and we studied items that we’d previously consumed with reckless abandon time and time again. There’s almost something childlike about dining in this way because the experience is akin to tasting flavors for the very first time.

The roots of our friendship run deep, yet we were all hearing stories untold, learning details of one another that were once muffled by the hum of our own internal chatter. Somehow this felt different. We’d created a new experience from the familiar, and it changed us. It gave us a hunger for slowing down and being intentional with one another – a hunger that will eventually dissipate if not fed often. A hunger that will surely get lost in the weekly revolutions if we do not make time to satiate it. If anything this afternoon was a reminder that enjoying the simple things is allowed to be a priority. This is not a call to burn your checklists, but an invitation to re-evaluate what’s important and perhaps find priority in the curious, intentional, and slow-moving gift of pausing.

the bloom series is an ongoing collaboration between forage + fodder, bricolage curated florals, and photo by betsy. each season we will bring you seasonally curated experiences along with simple floral tips and recipes. you can view more of our bloom series here.

our mindful wine tasting features cheese and charcuterie hand-selected by antonelli’s cheese shop. the serving boards and planters are handmade by local rockstar kelly dewitt from kkdw.co.

lemon + thyme fruit galettes & a tasty lillet cocktail

February 13, 2015

galette 2

looking for a last minute treat for the weekend? whether you’re celebrating valentine’s day or just enjoying saturday – celebrating your boo, your bestie, or simply how awesome you are, these lemon thyme fruit galettes are where it’s at y’all. love is all about finding your perfect pair, so naturally, julie of olive + rye, created this sparkling gin + lillet cocktail to sip alongside these beauties.

the mister and i had our first date on february 7th so we’ve never really been in the habit of celebrating valentine’s day. it’s no secret that i’m a fan of date nights at home, but for this year’s anniversary (celebrating 9 years since our first date, woah) we took an afternoon for a progressive lunch, starting at hillside farmacy and ending with beignets and coffee at épicerie. so tomorrow we’ll be laying low at home, starting with breakfast in bed with these galettes and cooking up a nice dinner with my parents later that night. how do you celebrate valentine’s day?

lemon thyme fruit galettes // forage + fodderlemon thyme fruit galettes // forage + fodder

keeping with our style of simplicity, these recipes are easy, even if you’re new to baking. the best part is you can make a batch of dough, and fill it with any fruit your heart desires. i couldn’t choose, so i made an assortment. the peach was my absolute favorite. if you’re a fan of tartness, then the raspberry galette is right up your alley. i can only do so much tartness, so if i made the raspberry again, i’d probably add a layer of whipped cream on top to cut the flavor a little. other great options are figs, strawberries, apples – really the skies the limit!

lillet cocktail 1lemon thyme fruit galettes // forage + fodder

lemon thyme fruit galettes

2 cups all- purpose flour
1/2 ts salt
13 tbs (aka 1 stick plus 5 tablespoons) cold unsalted butter, diced
6 tbs Greek yogurt
1 tbs white wine vinegar
juice of 1/2 a lemon
3/4 ts lemon zest
2 thyme sprigs, washed with stems removed
1/4 cup ice water
thinly sliced fruit of your choice (we used peaches and pears)
washed fruit of your choice (raspberries, blackberries, or blueberries)
1 egg, beaten with 1 tablespoon water, for egg wash
honey (optional)

lemon thyme dough

combine flour, salt, and butter, using a food processor or your fingertips, until the flour mixture has the texture of uncooked couscous. in a small dish, whisk together the sour cream, vinegar, lemon juice, zest, thyme and water, and combine it with the butter-flour mixture. using a spatula, stir until a craggy dough forms. knead the dough into a large ball while still in the bowl. pat it into a flattish ball, wrap it in plastic wrap, and chill it in the fridge for 1 hour (it can last up to 2 days). recipe makes enough dough for six small galettes or 2 large ones.

galette assembly

preheat oven to 400 degrees and line a baking sheet or pizza stone with parchment paper and set aside. in a small bowl, whisk together egg and water. on a well floured surface (i use my counter), separate and roll the chilled dough into a 6-inch circles, and transfer dough to the lined baking sheet. leaving a 2-inch border, either spread the berries or lay the fruit slices evenly over dough. fold over the edges of dough, so that each fold overlaps the previous one. using a basting brush, coat each fold before making the next one, being sure to pinch the overlapping dough together so that it seals.if you want to sweeten your galette, drizzle a little bit of honey over the top before baking.

dough recipe adapted from here.

 

sparkling gin + lillet cocktail

1.5 oz gin
1 oz lillet blanc
.5 oz thyme simple syrup
cava (or any sparkling wine / champagne)

place gin, lillet blanc, and thyme simple syrup in a mixing glass. top with ice and stir until jet cold. strain mixture into a champagne flute. top with cava and garnish with a sprig of thyme.

gift guide // for your leading lady

December 14, 2014

gift guide // forage + fodder

this year’s gift guide is about embracing simplicity. i’ve been on a real mission of self-care lately, thus this gift guide for the leading lady in your life is centered around slowing down, feeling nourished, and seeking inspiration.

slowing down // the holidays are sort of a whirlwind for us – family reunions, photos, epic meals, stories, and of course a little bit of traffic everywhere we go,  so i relish in the chance to create a sense of calm and comfort when i can. this easy-going striped jumper travels well and lends itself to layers, because christmas weather is always a wildcard here. and these cozy moccasins are the perfect travel companion. this time of year, i am constantly burning candles, and this teakwood & tobacco scent has become a staple in our home. it’s perfect for curling up on cloudy days with a good book.

feeling nourished // first and foremost, these products from beautycounter are sort of a dream come true for me. they’re entire line is composed of safe and natural products whose ingredients contain the essentials – that means no fillers, no unnecessary scents, and most importantly they follow some of the strictest guidelines, so you don’t worry about what you’re actually putting on your skin. right now, their sugar scrub and hydrating body lotion are at the top of my list. to keep with the theme of natural pampering, i’ve come to love butter nail polish. although i don’t paint my nails often, when i do, i stick to a few choice shades, this union jack black being one of them. being a fairly no frills gal, i maintain a minimal to no make up routine. so this lip & cheek stain is easy to keep in my bag, and whip out when i want just a pinch of color.

seeking inspiration // it shouldn’t be news to you that i’m a big fan of kinfolk, so obviously their cookbook makes the list for dreaming up meals to share with those we love. i’ve also become recently smitten with stella maria baer’s incredible moon prints. there are a few i would love to hang above my bed and just gaze at for hours. seriously, they’re incredible. these brass gems would be a welcomed addition to my workshop, and i think there’s an endless number of ways to style them. lastly, these coconut palm hair sticks are a must for when these curls need to go up and away so i can get some serious work done. and let’s just say that those adorable earrings are my ‘just because’ gift idea. i mean what woman wouldn’t love them?

one // two // three // four // five // six // seven // eight // nine // ten // eleven

roasted squash + carrot soup for whiskey + honey

November 12, 2014

roasted squash + carrot soup // forage + fodderi recently created a roasted butternut squash + carrot soup for the whiskey + honey journal. never heard of them? well then you’re in for a treat. whiskey + honey is a seattle/austin based, family run, and home to a careful curation of vintage goods and wares. if you want to learn more, follow them on instagram and keep an eye out for their weekly sales.

roasted squash + carrot soup // forage + fodderroasted squash + carrot soup // forage + fodderroasted squash + carrot soup // forage + fodder

visit their site for the full recipe!