The Splendid Cook

Many of you are familiar with the iconic NPR radio show, The Splendid Table. (If you aren’t, you’re missing out and should visit today!) The show is split into two parts, with the first half usually revolving around top notch professionals in the culinary world. And trust me you don’t have to be an expert to appreciate the seeds of knowledge shared during this part of the show. However, I wait patiently for the second portion of the show, called “Stump the Cook” when Lynn flexes her foodie muscles, haha.

The general gist of the second segment is when regular folks (like you and me) call in and give Lynn five random ingredients from their kitchens. No gimmicks, this is off the cuff and Lynn “freestyles” if you will, in delivering one-to-several ideas on how to make a dish with the ingredients that you would actually want to eat. Personally, Lynn Rossetto Kasper never fails to blow my mind with her cooking / ingredient / recipe knowledge. Seriously, she is what we call in my household as “NEXT LEVEL!”

Where am I going with all of this? Well, after any given food photoshoot we are often left with a random assortment of raw ingredients. What we can’t donate to the local food banks, we have to figure out what to do with it. So, I would like to play a little round of what I’m calling “Stump the Studio” to honor this creative challenge. I’ve had John select five ingredients at random from our studio kitchen… so wish me luck!

John’s Ingredient Selection

  1. Louisiana Style Cajun Seasoning
  2. Ground Mustard
  3. All Purpose Flour
  4. American Cheese Slices
  5. Large Jar of Deli Style Whole Pepperoncini

Emily’s 5 Minute Cajun Stuffed Pepperconcini

  • Combine 1/2 cup all purpose flour, 2 tablespoons cajun seasoning and 1 teaspoon ground mustard in a bowl and set aside.
  • Take pepperoncini and cut a small portion off the top to allow for stuffing.
  • Cut cheese slices in half, roll them up and stuff into pepperoncini.
  • Roll cheese stuffed peppers in dry mix. Coat generously.
  • Drizzle 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a pan and get the oil nice and hot.
  • Drop stuffed peppers into pan allowing the crust and pepper to brown, as well as, the cheese to melt.
  • Pull the peppers off the pan, allow to cool slightly and enjoy watching your co-workers eat your strange recipe – haha!

I have to say I was quite surprised that I came up with something edible from this random ingredient mash-up in about five minutes. There is more than enough room for improvement with this recipe, including my complete lack of food styling abilities, haha, but honestly this was a fun exercise none the less! This was giggle inducing for sure, and I encourage everyone to take a moment, grab some ingredients and allow for creativity to take the wheel and have a splendid day! :)

– Emily, Questionable Recipe Developer


Behind the Scenes Blog

Behind the Scenes Blog

Behind the Scenes Blog
Behind the Scenes Blog

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“& Company”

According to some handwriting analysis experts, the way an individual crafts their written word can reflect more than 5,000 different personality traits. Let us all channel the science of graphology and peek into the psyche that is our enchilada-loving, creatively-driven, studio leader’s mind… we’re going to guess there are a lot of empty chocolate wrappers rolling around in there somewhere, hah!

– Dreier & Company

& Company - Kyle


Thai Food Kyle

“Thai Food” by Kyle Dreier

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Food & Entertainment Inspiration

About two years ago, my husband and I bought our first place together. Ever since, we have been in full-fledged nesting mode. Now that we have a space to call our own, nesting has been accompanied by the “dinner party bug.” There is no mistake that I’ve been bitten and this summer so far, we have hosted countless gatherings. Which as of late, has lead to a certain amount of entertainment idea fatigue. It’s certainly not the people giving me pause and we have so many other friends that we want to entertain, but the pressure to host the perfect evening has had me weighed down… “Isn’t food supposed to bring people together, not apart?!” (Insert image of me shaking my fist towards the sky.)

All that said, I’ve been on a mission to simplify the food + friends = fun equation. Which got me thinking, how can I apply the food fun I experience daily at the Dreier & Company studio into activities to gather around the home with friends? When I boiled it down, I found three ingredients that make our studio stand out: the people. thoughtful details. being flexible.

With those three ingredients and recent photoshoots in mind, here are some ideas to jazz up “entertainment” at home. Join me in rebelling against the sit-down dinner!

Popsicle Party

During the hotter months, Dreier & Company will often make afternoon popsicle runs to Las Paletas to give clients and crew a sweet refresher on set. Why not have friends over for popsicles during the peak of a sunny day? Turn on the sprinkler or grab a kiddie pool, and let the fun begin! If it rains, let your inner kid splash the puddles with your popsicle in tow.

Neighborhood Block Party

We’ve got a friendly and welcoming crew here at the studio who know how to make clients feel at home. Embrace a “fast friends” motto, get outside and meet the neighbors! Use your driveway, porch or alley as the meeting point and serve simple dips, hotdogs and hamburgers. Invite your new neighbor friends to bring drinks, their favorite side or a yard chair to kick back and mingle.

Dog Bar

It’s no secret that our team is full of animal lovers. (A dog or two may or may not have made appearances in the studio before, hehe!) Have a fenced in yard? Call the buddies on a week night, tell them to bring Fido over for a play date. While the dogs bark, sniff and play… catch up on the daily grind over a few beers at your new “dog park” watering hole.

Crawfish Boil

Recently Dreier & Company has been experimenting with making food “fly” on camera and we tested on a southern, crawfish boil. It was so hilarious to see the little crustaceans soar on camera! So, what is easier than a one pot meal for a large group of guests?! (Hint: Nothing, hah!) Spread the meal out on newsprint and let your guests dive into the messy goodness and chat the evening away.

Backyard Movie Night

Grab a solid, light color bed sheet and hang it outside to project a movie on. (FYI: There are countless homemade smartphone projector hacks on Pinterest.) Spread out on the yard or porch and feast upon pizza, popcorn, M&Ms and mega gulp sodas… get lost in talking the finer points of “chick flicks” vs Quentin Tarantino vs Pixar’s greatest hits… much like we do in the office.

I hope you’re feeling as inspired as me!

– Emily


Entertaining Image Montage

Food Photography by Kyle Dreier  |  Styling Contributors Teresa Blackburn, Paul Grimes & Whitney Kemp

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Behind the Scenes: On Set

It’s hard to believe that it’s already July and the middle of summer – time really does fly! The year so far has been a busy one and we’re looking forward to even more food filled photoshoots as 2016 progresses. It’s been especially entertaining to look back at all the behind the scenes images on our Instagram account and to reflect on the fun/inspired/silly/productive/chocolate filled times on set.  So, why don’t we take really quick stroll down memory lane and take a peek at life on set…

– Dreier & Company

P.S. Keep up with us and all our food filled shenanigans by following us on Instagram. If Facebook is more your style, rest assured, you can find us there, too.

Behind the Scenes, On Set

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Recent Work, Fazoli’s

We’ve said it before, but its worth repeating… “recent” is a relative term in the world of professional photography. Our food centric photo + motion studio is consistently buzzing with activity and we’re always shooting new work for different advertising, corporate and editorial clients, but often we’re not allowed to share the photographic goods for several months. The images and videos we shoot are for carefully crafted campaigns and prominent publications that are planned weeks/months/years in advance, so we absolutely understand the need for a little secrecy.

All that said, we’re happy to share some work we did back in December for fast food Italian eatery, Fazoli’s. Chances are you might even have a Fazoli’s restaurant in your neighborhood, as they currently operate approximately 217 restaurants in 26 states. Now take a look at these mouth watering meals and see if you’re not in the mood for pizza, pasta and endless breadsticks (we know we are!)… hehe!

– Dreier & Company
Fazoli's Entree

Fazoli's Family Pizza

Fazoli's Salad

Fazoli's Lifestyle Salad

Fazoli's Lifestyle & Entree

Fazoli's Sub Sandwich

Fazoli's Cheesecake

Food Photography by Kyle Dreier | Food Styling by Teresa Blackburn

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“& Company”

Well, lookie here… it’s our third installment of company questionnaire time, hehe! Today we all get to peek behind the curtain of Emily’s mind. She’s Dreier & Company’s resident Marketing & Prop Wrangler. Emily does the heavy lifting in marketing and puts her art/design background to good use for the studio. Upbeat and to the point, let’s see what Emily has on her mind…

– Dreier & Company

Questionnaire Emily

Emily, Marketing & Prop Wrangler

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