ROASTED SQUASH CONCHIGLIE WITH CHIPOTLE, BRUSSELS SPROUTS AND WALNUTS

September 23, 2016

Roasted Squash Conchiglie with Chipotle, Brussels Sprouts and Walnuts

Roasted Squash Conchiglie with Chipotle, Brussels Sprouts and Walnuts

This is oneeee tasty recipe, fellas! It’s smoky, spicy, creamy (without dairy though) and delicious. Also, it uses everyone’s fall favourite: squash! (hence, the creaminess). I made this recipe because I felt a bit over grilling stuff, and well, in fact, it’s over fellas, that’s it, put your bbq and let it grow moss until next year – time to embrace cozy dishes and comforting food, like this one!

I also wanted to add a bit of a Thanksgiving-y vibe to it with some brussels sprouts, but sans the horrible boiling which makes them taste like little farts. For this recipe I shredded them super thin and I charred them for a bit in a pan (part of the whole smokiness of this dish).

I posted the whole recipe along with a wine pairing over at La Crema wines blog. As I mention on their site, you can customize this recipe and add other yummy things like cheese or cream – for us dairy allergic kweens, we’ll just stick to the original :)

Enjoy!


In partnership with La Crema Wines. All views my own.

Pear S’Mores Crumble

September 16, 2016

Pear S'Mores Crumble

Pear S'Mores Crumble

Pear S'Mores Crumble

YAS KWEEN YAS! Summer is not over yet! So just hold on to your turtle neck sweater for juuust a bit longer and continue to wear your booty shorts, ok maybe, just maybe, you can wear booty shorts AND a turtle neck, but don’t get crazy on the fall shit, mmkay?

This recipe I made for my folks over at West Elm is giving me life right now. It combines our favourite summer treat: s’mores! With the best of early fall fruit: pear! The result is one amazing ooey gooey chocolatey fruity sassy treat, and no, I am not describing my grindr profile.

For reals though, the layer of marshmallows on the top gets all toasty in the oven, but when it cools down a bit it get a bit crunchy on the outside. It’s a bit sexual to be honestly, so just be careful who you eat it with or it could turn into one of those “first thing I know we are just eating a crumble, next thing BAM! We are making pancakes the morning after”, know what I’m sayin?

Ok go get the full scoop and recipe on Front & Main and make it this weekend for your pals!

Pear S'Mores Crumble

Reinventing My Obsession

September 9, 2016

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Before we get started, you should play Chris Isaak’s Wicked Game, cuz this shit’s gonna be sexy.

Ok so, hi yo! How’s it going? Hope you are all enjoying the last days of summer – or if you live in Vancouver; the last days of not-summer-at-all (we got crap weather this year, womp womp).

Today I wanted to share with you a super cool project I’ve been working on for the last few weeks (months actually!). I already kinda told you how I basically had a bit of a creative crisis where my idea maker went on strike and nothing new or cool was coming out of it, other than demanding bitchy requests like “EAT PIZZA NOW”. One of the things I wanted to do to change bad vibe trip was to work with clients that were as passionate for the products as I am for photography and styling, and well, when opportunity knocks at your door you better answer!

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Eat & Snap with us in New York City!

September 7, 2016

Eat & Snap NYC Workshop

Come eat and snap with us in New York Citayyyy. The Atelier Workshop (which is made out of the galactic duo Joann Pai of Slice of Pai, myself, and some cool friends!) are putting together a workshop in New York on October 1st and 2nd where we’ll eat, photograph, and explore the best spots in town workshop while learning some camera, lighting, and composition skills.

What does it take to craft a great photograph? What kind of settings should I use when traveling? What about for indoor photos? (You know for when you find that amazingly cute cafe that’s picture perfect), all of that and more will be taught during class.

Joining us this time is our lovely friend, New Yorker, and Natural Foods Chef Jodi Moreno from What’s Cooking Good Looking – she’ll be sharing with us some fantastic culinary highlights (including her favourite spots in town). We’ll even meet some of her friends at their studios where we can practice some portraits.

So, wanna come eat, have a cocktail or two (or some gourmet juice?), learn about photography, and finally figure out how to document your travels through your camera like a pro? Then SIGN UP HERE! . Spaces are limited and there are a few days left of early bird discount so go for it yo.

Hope to see you all there!!

On Taking Creative Breaks

September 6, 2016

Bourbon and tea

Hello my dearest! It’s papa coco.

Holy smokes it’s been a whiiiiiiile. I honestly feel as if I opened the door to Narnia and just came back to reality, mind you, there was no door to Narnia, it was more like, a pantry full of nutella and I sunk my face in it. Very sexy indeed.

Ok so, I’ll keep it short and sweet; the reason why I was a bit MIA from the blog was because A: I decided to launch my own business and B: my brain burst out in flames from overworking it.

On the launching my own business thing: So I’ve been doing styling and photography full time for over a year now but I was doing it for a company here in Vancouver as their employee (you may have seen them in my posts as Luvo), still working with them, but now as a freelance guy. I decided I wanted to have my own styling + photography studio because I felt it was the next step needed in the natural progression of my career. Not a big deal right? Just do the same thing you’re doing, but with no boss! Easy…. NOT!! Holy shit man (and I’m sure all of you small business owners understand) it is fucking INSANE! All the stuff you gotta do that has nothing to do with the creative side of things like invoicing, contracts, emailing, paying suppliers, bla bla bla, it’s just cray. I think my daily mantra went from oooommmmm to fuck fuck fuck fuck. Saying fuck about 10000 times a day? Yep. Totally doable and so therapeutic.

On top of that I had to create content for this blog and other blogs, and I tried to have a life (which mostly became watching Stranger Things while ordering Dominos). Well yah, let’s just say I was somewhat prepared but not as much as I wanted to and totally got gang banged. But hey, live and learn right!? Super happy tho and wouldn’t go back – and now I’m an ace at gang bangs! The business kind, of course ;)

Grilled pizzas

On taking a creative break: So, since 90% of my brain capacity was being used to growing my business and trying to keep afloat, the other 10% was used for basic needs such as browsing grindr, and eating..and browsing grindr..HA, a boy’s gotta eat! :P All this left me a bit overwhelmed with barely any time to do stuff and didn’t have any energy or even fresh ideas to post on the blog. On one side I felt this stress from my social media not being so up to date as usual, but on the other hand I was like “ok boy, chill, you gotta pay rent, Instagram can wait”. Living under a bridge but with lots of Instagram followers is like being rich with monopoly money, so yah.

I took a little creative break and worked with a few super rad clients and gave all my energy to them. While doing this I totally got hooked with a very rad opportunity to work with a company that was all like “oohh ok cool, wanna take a creative break? We can help” and I’ll be telling you more about that this week (you may have seen my collab on Instagram). Devoting your time to clients and friends (basically making them a priority) and hitting the pause button on social media is totally OK and it actually pays off! Especially if you are building a new portfolio.

Agua Fresca Floats

So why am I telling you all this shiz? Well, first, take it from me: do not let social media pressure you into losing precious moments when those precious moments are sparse due to your hectic schedule. It’s ok, people will understand that you have a life and you gotta take care of yourself, AND your business. And as Ru Paul says, if you don’t love yourself, how the hell you gonna love somebody else, can I get an AMEN!?

And here’s my little piece of advice: travel, take a break, go do something that will inspire you again! Get the fuck out of your house, dude!! It’s so easy to get stuck in a rut without realizing you’re in one (it’s like being in a really shitty relationship with someone that has an OK penis but you know, it’s a penis afterall so you just roll with it… yah no girl, stop, STAAP!). Just remove yourself from the routine and go do something out of the ordinary, take a little painting class, a mini trip, go meet new people (you may hate them, but hey, it was something new!). You get me!? Go refresh that idea maker of yours.

And on that note I would like to say, I AM BAAAACK!! Oh man this feels good. Just so you know there will be more stuff other than food around here, so just bear with me mmmkay?

Nice to see you all in here again, friends :D

Bourbon and tea popsicles

All photos: these were some tasty recipes I made for the guys at West Elm, check out their blog for the full feature of each of these dishes

Breakfast Hack: Tangy Hibiscus Yogurt (dairy-free), Warm Peaches, and Honey

July 7, 2016

Breakfast Hack: Tangy Hibiscus Yogurt (dairy-free), Warm Peaches, and Honey

Breakfast Hack: Tangy Hibiscus Yogurt (dairy-free), Warm Peaches, and Honey

Y’all ready for this? It’s tangy, it’s sweet, it’s summery and fresh….

Ok so since I jumped on the freelance train I’ve had to change my daily habits quite a lot, basically build a new routine from the ground up (almost), and let me tell ya, it ain’t easy! But it’s getting there.

One of the things I’ve had to really focus on is getting a good breakfast that doesn’t annoy me. I’m like that, I need a good breakfast to start the day or the whole thing just goes to the shitter – DIVAAAA, but for reals, cannot take oatmeal on the daily, especially in the summer. Hence, I decided to take steps to be a bit more gourmet about breaky. Yogurt is my absolute fave, but me cannot has dairy, so I’ve gone for those dairy free options which are not the best tasting. I still want to have the nutrition of the dairy-free yogurt but sans the chalk-and-dust after taste of some brands.

To solve this problem I used a plain non-dairy yogurt as a base and I totally accessorized it with ground tea, fresh summer fruit, honey, and nuts. IT WAS SO GOOOOD. And yes, you heard correctly, ground tea is a thing and I’m using it on almost anything these days.

Check out the full recipe after the jump to make your own! (Take the basics and add your own twist).

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Super-Fudgy Dark Chocolate, Cherry, and Tayberry Swirl Ice Cream (Dairy-Free)

June 24, 2016

Super-Fudgy Dark Chocolate, Cherry, and Tayberry Swirl Ice Cream (Dairy-Free)

Super-Fudgy Dark Chocolate, Cherry, and Tayberry Swirl Ice Cream (Dairy-Free)

Ice cream all day rrrrvery day! And it’s dairy-free nonetheless; creamy, fudgy, and velvety. I’ve been playing around with this recipe for some time now, and though it does take a bit longer to make than just dumping a can of coconut cream in the ice cream machine, it’s totally worth the extra effort.

You could say the “science” behind it, is that I have added small bubbles into it, making it more velvety and ice-cream-like, and not rock hard. The addition of this bubbles comes as an italian meringue…say whaaaat? Italian meringue in ice cream? Yup!

Super-Fudgy Dark Chocolate, Cherry, and Tayberry Swirl Ice Cream (Dairy-Free)

Super-Fudgy Dark Chocolate, Cherry, and Tayberry Swirl Ice Cream (Dairy-Free)

Also, have you tried tayberries? They’re freaking delicious! They’re a hybrid of blackberries and raspberries, and I don’t know what kind of voodoo juju was used to make them, but man, are they good.

I made this whole number for Design Sponge! Woop woop. You can find the whole recipe and steps by steps in their In The Kitchen With section. It’s seriously one of my favourite recipes for ice cream, you gotta try it!

Ps. you could vegan-nize this with some vegan meringue action? I’m testing that recipe next!