Gumball Centerpiece posted in: Events, Great Products, Society News

Photos courtesy of Jen O’Sullivan


Last week I attended Uncensored (great industry conference) to stay on the forefront of what’s hip and happening in the world of special events. I had the good fortune to develop relationships with some talented peers, share experiences, exchange information and get ideas and inspiration for future events. Here’s a cute, fun, inexpensive decor idea, and hello, portions of it are totally edible!

Use bright color gumballs to fill various sized jars or containers, accented with grass and paper flowers (as shown above), or feather boas. These bright, festive centerpieces would are perfect for a range of events – everything from a children’s birthday party to a meeting or conference as an unexpected fun twist for the kid in all of us. Adapt this idea to an all white wedding shower. Use white gumballs with alternating accents of white paper flowers and boas placed atop tables of white linen with sparkle sheer overlays.

And better still, let this decor pull double duty. Just before the end of the party or meeting, place small scoops and clear plastic bags next to the centerpieces, and encourage guests to take some gum to go! Guests get a fun takeaway, and you have a little less cleanup!

Party on!

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Recipes from Chef Jon Ashton posted in: Food and Beverage

Society, I would like to share a few wonderful recipes from Chef Jon Ashton that I picked up from the Relish Cooking Show.

I had the opportunity to taste the Pork Loin and Polenta and it was Delicious!

Rosemary Apricot Pork Tenderloin

2 pounds pork tenderloin
3 tablespoons olive oil
6 tablespoons finely minced rosemary
6 garlic cloves, minced
Coarsely ground black pepper
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup apricot preserves
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 garlic cloves, pressed
1. Preheat oven to 400F. 
2. Brush pork with 1 tablespoon oil; sprinkle with rosemary, garlic, salt and pepper. Heat remaining 2 tablespoons oil in large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Add pork and cook until brown on all sides, turning often, about 5 minutes. 
3. Transfer pan to oven, and roast pork until meat thermometer registers 150F, about 15 minutes.
4. While pork roasts, combine preserves, lemon juice and garlic. 
5. Remove pan from oven and brush jam mixture over pork. Let rest 8 minutes. Cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Serve on top of polenta. Drizzle sauce on top. 
Serves 8

Recipe by Relish Chef Jon Ashton

Nutritional Information
Per serving: 300 calories, 7g fat, 85mg chol., 30g prot.,
27g carbs., 0g fiber, 360mg sodium

Creamy Cheese Polenta

2 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
2 cups whole milk
1 cup polenta or yellow stone-ground cornmeal
1/8 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 cup finely grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese 
1 tablespoon butter
1/2 teaspoon salt

1. Place broth and milk in a saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Add polenta, whisking to prevent clumping. Reduce heat to low. Add thyme and cook, stirring constantly, until liquid is absorbed and polenta is creamy and thoroughly cooked, 5 to 10 minutes.
2. Add cheese, butter and salt, stirring gently until incorporated.

Serves 8

Recipe by Relish Chef Jon Ashton

Nutritional Information
Per serving: 130calories, 5g fat, 15mg chol., 5g prot., 15g carbs., 3g fiber, 410mg sodium.

Bananas Flambé Recipe

If using a gas range top, take pan away from heat before adding alcohol.

2 large ripe pears, halved, cored and cut lengthwise into ½” slices
2 tablespoons butter, unsalted
2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
3 tablespoons spiced or dark rum
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
1 cup ginger snap cookies
1quart vanilla bean ice cream


  1. Combine butter and brown sugar in a non-stick sauté pan and melt over medium heat. Once sugar has dissolved, add pear slices and cook 3 minutes.
  2. Add lime juice and cook for 15 seconds.
  3. 3. Carefully add rum and ignite with long match or stick lighter (be sure to keep away from face and hands). Swirl the pan to coat pear slices in caramel mixture. Continue cooking until flame subsides, 1-2 minutes. Remove from heat.
  4. Dive pears evenly between 4 plates.
  5. Place cookies in a zip-top bag and crush into course crumbles. Garnish each plate with crumbles. Garnish each plate with crumbles and top with a scoop of ice cream

Recipe by Relish Chef Jon Ashton

 Nutritional Information
Per serving (without ice cream): 410 calories, 11g fat, 30mg chol., 1g prot., 57g carbs., 3g fiber, 5mg sodium.
So what are you waiting for Society?

Let’s get cookin’!

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Recipe for One Entertaining Evening posted in: Entertainment, Events, Food and Beverage


1 witty British Chef

A handful of great food and bev recipes

2lb laughter

1 heaping spoonful cooking tips

2 lemons, massaged (for detailed instructions on this one…you had to be there)

1 dozen good tunes

A dash of Relish

Mix all the above ingredients together. Sprinkle with your best girlfriends to taste.

Savor the evening!

Society, if you did not attend the Relish Cooking Show hosted by The Register Herald, then you missed out. What a fun and entertaining evening! Seriously, the next day I had to schedule an appointment with my Dermatologist for Botox to diminish the appearance of fine lines resulting from smiling and laughing so much.

Chef Jon Ashton wowed the crowd with his culinary wisdom, charm and humor as he shared his love of food, people, and healthy living. I came away from the event inspired, smiling, and armed with new recipes and cooking tips.

For a “jolly good time”, be sure to indulge in this event when it comes to an area near you. Visit Relish Magazine for scheduled upcoming shows (and great recipes). Trust me, you will not be disappointed.

Happy Days!

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Ace the Cake posted in: Entertaining Essentials, Events, Food and Beverage, Great Products

Would you like to create the Ace of Cakes like Duff Goldman, but don’t feel you have the talent or the time? Well, now you can with Duff’s cake tattoos.

The creative food artist has made it easy to take tasty treats to sweet sensations in a snap. Just peel and place. And voila! A masterpiece!  Use Duff’s cake tattoos to transform your cake, cupcakes or cookies into designer desserts. The edible art is perfect for guys and dolls and is available in a variety of designs ranging from skulls to whimsical florals, and from an elegant black and white filigree-esque pattern to camo! Use Duff’s cake tattoos to dress up a cake or dessert buffet for a bridal shower or to add impact to your next birthday cake. 

Each package includes 2 sheet of edible cake tattoos and makes 2 tiers on a cake, 20 cupcakes or 20 cookies. Snag your treat tattoos for $12 at and the edible art will arrive to you on your doorstep.

Send photos of your delicious desserts using Duff’s cake tattoos to us at with ‘creating designer desserts with cake tattoos’ in the subject line between now and December 20th, and we will share your designs with The Society as inspiration for their own parties and holiday celebrations.


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