Spring fun — eating, cooking, drinking and decorating the home — was the subject of Wednesday night’s first in-person Dish and Design event since 2019.

Guests at the Great Lakes Culinary Center in Southfield were treated not only to demonstrations by area chefs and lodging experts, but also to food, beverages and plenty of great freebies.

“It’s been a long winter…we’re ready for the start of the entertainment season,” presenter Laurie Bolach of Olive’s Bloombox told Ferndale. She shared flower arrangement ideas and talked about 2022 decorating trends like tabletop gardens, moss and spring wreaths using fresh flowers and greens.

Laurie Bolach of Olive's Bloombox with a flower arrangement she presented during Dish and Design at the Great Lakes Culinary Center in Southfield on March 23, 2022.

Hosted by Homestyle columnist Maureen Feighan and presented by Busch’s Fresh Food Market, Dish and Design began with wine, beer and a hearty spread from center chef Reva Constantine with roasted tomato pies, chicken quesadillas glazed with chili, beef yakitori and heaps of fries, dips and spreads.

In addition to Bolach, the evening’s lineup included chef and caterer Cat Shapiro of Thyme & Honey presenting a quick charcuterie class, Ivy Kitchen and Cocktails owner Nya Marshall with a cocktail demonstration and an informative cooking presentation from the executive chef Lloyd Roberts of the Adachi restaurant in Birmingham. .

Nya Marshall, owner of Ivy Kitchen + Cocktails, during Dish and Design at the Great Lakes Culinary Center, Southfield on March 23, 2022.

Filippa Schultz of Washington Township, who was one of about 100 people at Dish and Design, said she preferred the in-person event. During the pandemic, The Detroit News hosted several virtual Dish and Design events that offered a unique look at some of the presenters’ homes and stores. Nothing beats the buzz of a live event with food and drink samples, though.

“I just think it’s a well-rounded program,” she said. “They have food, they have cocktails and flowers, I like that. I think people are really excited to come back there.”

In addition to Chef Constantine’s spread, the audience was also treated to mini charcuterie samples from Shapiro’s Thyme & Honey. She built a small version of one of her charcuterie boards and gave tips for making your own at home. Also called cheese boards or pasture boards, she recommends starting with “a food container” like wood or marble, and avoiding using metal.

A charcuterie board designed by Cat Shapiro, owner of Thyme and Honey, during Dish and Design at the Great Lakes Culinary Center in Southfield on March 23, 2022.

As for the cheeses, she says, mix them up and explain what she calls “the three-cheese rule.”

“You’re going to choose a cheese you like, a new cheese you’ve never tried before, and then you’re going to choose a fan favorite, so there’s a bit of everything for everyone,” she said. declared.

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Marshall of Ivy Kitchen also handed out samples to the public. She prepared drinks from the menu at her restaurant, which also offers a number of mocktails. Dish and Design audiences got a taste of Jefferson Boulevard, which Marshall made with Woodford Reserve, Aperol, Amaro, lemon juice and honey syrup. She garnished it with a sprig of rosemary.

While making drinks Wednesday night, Marshall spoke about Ivy Kitchen’s commitment to being an eco-friendly restaurant, bringing great food to its east Detroit neighborhood and setting a good example for the area.

“We are one of the only restaurants that recycles our food waste,” she said. “We have a partnership with the largest black-owned composter, Detroit Dirt … we recycle all of our food waste, then we buy it in the spring and turn it into great compost that we use in our gardens and flower beds. ”

Along with armfuls of books — including “Iconic Images of Detroit’s Past: History through the lens of The Detroit News” — other Dish and Design giveaways were gift certificates for presenters’ businesses, including $300 for Adachi in Birmingham .

The restaurant’s executive chef, Roberts, who learned from world-renowned masters such as Jean-Georges Vongerichten and Nobu Matsuhisa, treated the audience to a cooking demonstration of Adachi’s Newstyle King Salmon with Wasabi Kizami, Asian Pear and Soy Vinaigrette -ginger.

He and his team prepared samples for the public of a vibrant seaweed salad and delicately prepared sushi-grade salmon dressed in a freshly made soy-ginger vinaigrette.

Adachi Executive Chef Lloyd Roberts prepares King Salmon Sashimi during Dish and Design at the Great Lakes Culinary Center, Southfield on March 23, 2022.

Roberts said the bandage had a variety of uses.

“This one, you can use it on a cold dish, you can use it on a salad or on meat, it’s very versatile,” he said. Among the cooking tips he shared was using grapeseed oil, which he says is flavorless, when making homemade salad dressing to let other flavors shine through.

For ingredients like Pickled Ginger or Wasabi Kizami, he recommends going to local specialty stores like 168 Asian Mart or H Mart.

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Twitter: @melodybaetens