This year marks the 5th anniversary of my annual Oscar party. Each year, my mommy friends come over in their sweats so we can plant ourselves in front of the TV for a good four hours and watch, and talk, and eat, and then watch, and talk, and eat some more. And each year, I create a menu that celebrates the nominees for best picture.
As a foodie, this is by far my favourite culinary event of the year. It is the event that allows me to stretch my creative wings and achieve true Martha Stewart status.
While I'm always proud of my Oscar party menus, I'm pretty sure that this year is my best yet. Not only because the movies themselves are super-easy to pair with foods, but because I've finally figured out how to combine my menu into a cohesive cocktail party menu.
Here's the thing: nobody ever wants to stuff themselves silly while watching some of the most beautiful women in the world slink down the red carpet wearing the tightest & skimpiest of clothing. But at the same time, it can't be healthy "diet" food; that's no fun either. So, after hours of careful consideration, this is what I came up with:
Cayla's Oscar Menu-Inspired by the 2013 Best Picture Nominees.
1. Argo: Maple Fudge
Rationale: While it is a great movie, some of the facts may have been "fudged" and it needs a bit more Canada mixed in.
2. L'Amour: Hershey Kisses & French wine
Rationale: Do I really need to explain?
3. Les Mis: French bread & brie
Rationale: Jean Valjean goes to prison for stealing a loaf of bread...which is the premise for the entire movie. As for the cheese? What kind of host would I be if I served my guests plain bread?
4. Life of Pi and Lincoln: Mini Apple Pi
Rationale: Apple, because nothing is more American than apple pie. And pie because its Pi.
5. Django Unchained: Mini white cake cupcakes with blood red berry coulis
Rationale: there is a major scene in the movie involving white cake and because its Quinten, there has to be tons of blood.
6. Silver Linings Playbook: Warm Crab Dip
Rationale: At each football game, Bradley Cooper's mom makes crabby snacks and homemades. I did my research and found out that crabby snacks are pretty much crab dip on a cracker while homemade are homemade egg noodles. Nobody wants to eat egg noodles at an Oscar party so crab dip it is!
7. Beasts of the Southern Wild: Hushpuppies
Rationale: the main character is named Hushpuppy. Did you know that the actress who plays her is the youngest ever Best Actress nominee? Did you also know that this was my favorite movie of the year & the one I'm hoping will win?
In case you didn't know, a hushpuppy is like a savory, deep-fried fluffy cornbread muffin. Here's the recipe:
1 cup cornmeal
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
2/3 cup buttermilk
2 green onions, thinly sliced
4 cups of vegetable or grapeseed oil for deepfrying
salt and pepper to taste
spicy honey drizzle:
2/3 cup honey
2 Tablespoons garlic chili sauce
1. Pour oil in a large pot and begin preheating on medium-high heat.
2. Place all ingredients for the hush puppies into a large bowl and whisk together to create a thick batter.
3. Once the oil has reached 350 degrees, drop in 1 tbsp of batter for about 3-5 minutes. Youcan make 3 at a time. This will take several batches.
4. Drain on paper towels and season with salt and pepper.
5. In a small bowl combine the honey and chili sauce and stir together.
6. Serve the hush puppies warm with a drizzle of the spicy honey sauce.
PS. You may have noticed that there is no dish for Zero Dark Thirty. It was not an oversight. It was an excellent film that accurately portrayed an historical event whose repercussions are still being felt today. I felt it was wrong to reduce terrorism and scenes of torture to a plate of hummus with pita.