So. Anyone who knows me well knows that cheese is my favorite food. So when I came in to work last week and Emily of Nomnivorous asked me if I would be interested in a project for Jarlsberg designing and making a sculpture and appetizer assortment for the IACP -International Association of Culinary Professional’s conference launch party, I didn’t even hesitate. My head was immediately spinning with ideas, which I came home babbling about to my partner, The Green Bee, who managed to decipher that and my subway sketches and come up with the sketch we ended up deciding on.
The theme of the conference this year is “The Fashion of Food”, which is even MORE perfect since I design a clothing line by day. I knew I wanted to work out a runway of some sort with some cheesy cow models and mice paparazzi, and I knew I wanted to make mini cheese balls as the fashion show “attendees”, if you will.
First I made my previously posted Yogurt Biscuits only with a freshly made, full fat yogurt, and experimented with adding different amounts of shredded Jarlsberg, and making them in different shapes and sizes.
Then Emily had the great idea (and skills to pull off) making crackers from scratch! She made cheese crackers, honey wheat crackers, herb crackers, and ranch crackers! SO MANY AMAZING CRACKERS! We also made Goat Cheese and Chive Biscuits after we learned that we would also be getting some amazing Chevrai goat cheese to use. This became the first stop on our table display at the event, and we refilled as the night went on.
Next up, I started carving the cheese wheel while The Bee made sculpey animals. I knew I wanted a nice clean stadium seating for the cheeseball heads to sit neatly, and with cheese this fresh, it was actually quite easy. We left the Jarlsberg logo as the runway in the center, and kept a crescent shaped sliver aside from the shredding and I used that to carve the crescent moon.
Then I moved on to cheese balls! We also got sent a case of the best “cream cheese” ever, Snofrisk, which we had never had before and is AMAZING. I just mixed equal parts of both Snofrisk and finely shredded Jarlsberg with a splash of pinot noir and rolled them in to bite size balls, rolling them in slivered almonds, pistachios, pecans, and finally, crushed freeze dried blueberries. these were put on toothpicks and speared in to molded Jarlsberg cube “feet” for them to stand on in the cheese wheel.
After The Bee finished the scupltures we used a food grade silicone compound to make molds of the cows and mice, and melted Jarlsberg to fill them with. I placed the cow torsos on mounds of the Chevrai and decorated them in three different cheese gowns secured with almond slivers. We also molded bows, buttons, ric rac, purses, and fans to decorate and to serve individually at the event.
Then we scooped out some of Jarlsberg’s new dip, which is pretty much the same recipe as pimento cheese only with red onions instead of pimentos. Its basically crack. We served it with raw veggies to cut through the richness, and it was delicious!
All together the table we set up at the event at Santos Party House was gorgeous and it was a fabulous evening, although poorly lit for iPhone pics, my apologies.
There was a ton of wonderful food and booze, and it was so refreshing to hang out with happy, friendly people as opposed to the cranky, hungry women I spend my time with in fashion sometimes!!
I am certainly going to update this post as more coverage of the event appears, but for now, I am very content with the fact that R.L. Stine tweeted our sculpture!!! I read his books when I was a kid until all the pages fell out!
I can’t wait to see what fun thing I get to do next! Haha.