The Weekend Gourmet: My Premier Video Blog Post: Weeknight Pizza & Salad Courtesy of Foodbuzz and Newman's Own F

Friday, March 11, 2011

My Premier Video Blog Post: Weeknight Pizza & Salad Courtesy of Foodbuzz and Newman's Own

I came home two weeks ago to find a rather large box sitting in my living room. Michael told me that it had arrived for me earlier that afternoon. I wasn't expecting a package, but was very excited when I saw Foodbuzz's address on the box! I had submitted proposals for several of their Tastemaker programs, and I was hoping that one of them had been accepted. When I opened the box, I literally squealed with delight. The Weekend Gourmet had been selected to create a video blog post featuring Newman's Own food products in a recipe that could be prepared in less than 30 minutes!

The box contained three jars of Newman's Own pasta sauce, three bottles of their yummy salad dressing, two coupons for free Newman's Own pizza, and my very own Flip HD camera to shoot my video! My first task was to decide what to cook...and how to do it in the most creative way possible. I've been making a salad for the past few years that uses Newman's Own Lighten Up! Raspberry and Walnut Dressing, so I decided that would be on the menu. I figured that making something I was very familiar with would be less stressful. And what goes better with salad than a delicious pizza? I decided to add a few fun ingredients to a Newman's Own Thin & Crispy Four Cheese Pizza.


Now that I had decided WHAT to cook, I had to figure out the rest of the details. Enter my very talented family! My brother-in-law and sister-in-law have a large, well-lit kitchen in their house...and they graciously offered to let me use it to shoot the video. My sister-in-law has excellent taste and created a gorgeous and colorful set for me, and my brother-in-law did a fantastic job manning the Flip HD camera. Michael got into the act as well...he provided excellent, creative suggestions and feedback during the post-production phase of the project. It was definitely a team effort, and I'm so grateful for all their assistance!!

And now? I'm proud to present The Weekend Gourmet's premier video blog post, courtesy of Foodbuzz and Newman's Own:


I hope that you enjoyed putting a name and a voice to my ramblings in here, and that you'll give my salad and pizza creations a try very soon! The salad is a great combo of flavors: sweet and tangy dressing, tart strawberries, creamy and salty feta, and sweet and crunchy pecans. This salad is a staple at Casa Garcia...we eat it at least once a week. This was my first time to try Newman's Own frozen pizza, and I was very impressed with the quality. It came out crispy and perfect after just 10 minutes in the oven! The best part? This meal is on the table faster than you can have pizza delivered, and you get to choose exactly what toppings you want.

While you're here, I hope you'll take a minute to scroll down to the next post and enter my Pillsbury Bake-Off prize pack giveaway!! The Poppin' Fresh apron in the prize pack is adorable...and the recipes in the little cookbook look amazing. All of them are quick-to-make because they feature Pillsbury convenience products...

Disclosure: As part of the Foodbuzz Tastemaker Program, I received Newman's Own food products and  a Flip HD camera in order to create this video.

18 comments:

  1. Oh, Wendy! You did GREAT! Girl, you have found a new career, for sure ... I'm so excited that your blog is taking off like this and you are getting to do something that you so obviously enjoy and have a real talent for! Can't wait to see your next video! :)

    (And by the way, that pizza looks to die for! And the salad, too!)

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  2. Smile. Smile. Smile! You did such a great job. I loved hearing your sweet voice and seeing your video. I wish I could come over for dinner at your place. I hope we get to see a lot more videos in the future. Thank you for sharing this delicious meal. I hope you have a beautiful weekend. Thanks for getting mine off to a tasty start!

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  3. Like! Like! Like! How fun for you! Great job - hope to see more videos!

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  4. wait, could you be any cuter? no? i didn't think so. =)

    this is awesome, wendy! i love the way you dressed-up a frozen pizza - we occasionally do that to sort of 'split the difference,' health/cost/flavor-wise between a restaurant pizza + a frozen pizza. yours looks awesome, as does the salad. great job!

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  5. Wendy! Bravo, you did a wonderful job with your video. You were so confident, and this didn't look like a first video at all. Kudos to your production crew also. did you practice before hand or was this the first take? I've never made a video before.

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  6. Thanks so much for all the sweet compliments! In the spirit of full disclosure, this wasn't my first time in front of a camera. My undergrad degree is in Broadcast Journalism, and I was in radio for several years. I also did some on-air TV classes as well. But? It's been 20+ years since I've done anything like this.

    @Becky - I did this without a script, because I wanted it to appear candid and spontaneous. I thought about what I wanted to say in the days leading up to the shoot, but sort of winged it when the camera turned on. We shot each segment in one take...but I did flub a few times and have to start over. iMovie is very easy to cut out the not-so-great moments!

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  7. Oh, Wendy!!!! I love, love, love your video!!! I felt like I knew you from reading your blog so often, but now I love having your video! You have certainly put the video to good use and I sure hope you will be making more videos for us in the future! Wonderful job.
    The pizza was indeed gorgeous, I've not used Feta on a pizza before but it sounds ideal.
    Nicely done!!!

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  8. :O Is that a double oven?! Oh my gosh, I love the light raspberry walnut dressing -- it's my favorite! The pizza sounds delicious and the salad looks amazing. I am very impressed with your video! You were so pleasant and confident. Can't wait to see more from you :)

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  9. Wow, you are awesome!!! So poised and informative!!! Great job :)

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  10. You did an excellent job! Although, I always imagined you'd have a Texan twang, but you sound positively mid-western. I have homemade pizzas on the menu this week, so while Brett and Andrew will eat pepperoni, I'm making your version for mine!

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  11. @Celeste - That's a built-in microwave on top of the oven. My Mom had a double-oven in her last house, and it was so handy during holidays for all that cooking.

    @Louanne - I have a little bit of an accent when I'm sitting around shooting the breeze, but it sort of goes away when I'm in front of a mic or camera...they drilled it into us in journalist school that we needed to avoid accents as much as possible.

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  12. Oh my gosh! That's wonderful! Love the video. Always like putting a voice and movement to the person I can "hear" when reading a blog. You did a great job!

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  13. Hi Wendy-I am so "blown away" impressed with your video. Now I can put a voice on your profile. You are such a "natural" and Pro!
    Loved the video, and your presentation of the entire thing. The pizza looks so inviting and delicious, and so does the salad. Everything on this video was totally "impeccable"...that truly comes from your professional career!
    You are attractive, poised, and really "out there" to make people want to buy the product and make it!
    Bravo...Applaud...You're a Star!!!

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  14. Wendy, your video is nicely done! I love putting a voice with the blog. Everything looks delicious and I really like the idea of feta on a pizza.

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  15. This is such a wonderful video, Wendy! Great job on it. It's so nice to actually put a face and voice to the food bloggers, and I was so happy to see you taking the leap and making a video! We should all be inspired by you, and I hope to eventually do the same. Thanks for sharing!

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  16. Fantastic video..I enjoyed it from beginning to the end..I love the idea that meal is done less than 30 min. I am loving this! Nicely done!!

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  17. Bravo Wendy, I want both the pizza and the salad. Next time I go to TX, I'm going to have to make sure and track you down. I love being able to put the voice to your words. I hope you are going to do more for us.
    -Gina-

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  18. Nice job Wendy!! Both the salad and pizza look divine. Have a wonderful weekend.

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