My Oscar Party Menu Based on the 2013 Best Picture Nominees!

oscar-nominationsHey Ya’ll,

Back by popular demand, is my ‘Easy Oscar Party Menu’ based on the year’s Best Picture Nominees! 

Oscars+2013+Nominations+2If you’ve seen all of the films that made the Academy’s Best Picture list, then you know how different they all are! Sure, a couple of them share a few similar qualities or locales, but for the most part, especially when it comes to food, this collection of films is like comparing apples to oranges.

Keyartmontage_620x465With that said, I think I’ve managed to make selections that reflect each film (with the exception of the pie representing Life of Pi —that has nothing to do with the film, it’s just a silly play on words!) and still create a cohesive spread of tasty treats for your Oscar party guests to enjoy.

Screen Shot 2013-02-20 at 2.16.05 PMScreen Shot 2013-02-20 at 2.15.57 PM

Most of my selections are self-explanatory, but for some of the more specific suggestions, I’ve included the recipes below.

hush_puppies640Cheddar Jalapeno Hushpuppies – Recipe via FoxsNews.com
This appetizer is inspired by the main character’s name: Hushpuppy.

1 Cup yellow cornmeal
1 1/2 Tablespoon all purpose flour
1 1/2 Tablespoon tablespoons sugar
3/4 Teaspoon coarse kosher salt
1/2 Teaspoon baking powder
1/4 Teaspoon baking soda
1/4 Teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 Cup buttermilk, well shaken
2 Tablespoon beaten egg
1 1/2 Tablespoon chopped seeded jalapeño chile
5 Ounces extra sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
Canola oil or vegetable oil for frying
1 lime

Creamy Ranch Avocado Dip
1/2 Cup mayonaise
1/2 Cup sour cream
1/2 Tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 Tablespoon olive oil
3 Tablespoon buttermilk
1/2 Small red onion
1/2 Teaspoon kosher salt
1 Avocado (peeled, seeded and diced)

Whisk first 7 ingredients in a bowl just to to blend. Whisk buttermilk, egg, and jalapeno in small bowl to blend. Stir buttermilk mixture and cheddar cheese into dry ingredients.

Add about 1 1/2 inches of oil to a pan or dutch oven. Attach deep-fry thermometer to pan; heat oil to 320°F over medium heat. Working in batches of 4 or 5, drop batter by tablespoonfuls into oil.

Cook until golden, turning occasionally, about 3 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer hush puppies to paper towels and squeeze just a bit of fresh lime juice over the top while they are still warm.

For the Avocado Ranch dip, place all ingredients into the bowl of a food processor. Process until mixture is smooth and well blended. Serve alongside Hush Puppies.

crabbysnacksCrabby Snacks – Recipe via http://lindseysluscious.blogspot.com
This philly-centric pre-game appetizer is inspired by a line of dialogue that the mother repeats throughout the film: “I’m making crabby snacks and home-mades!”.

6 English muffins, split
1 (5 or 6 oz.) jar cheese spread, room temperature
2 tablespoons butter, softened
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
a few shakes hot sauce, to taste
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon granulated garlic
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 (or 2) tablespoon(s) freshly chopped parsley
1 (6 or 7 oz.) can crabmeat, drained, flaked
Garnish with diced green onions and tomatoes, if desired

Heat oven to 350°. Arrange split muffins, cut side up, on a baking pan lined with foil. Toast for a few minutes in the oven while it’s preheating until the muffins start to turn golden around the edges.

In a medium bowl, mash the cheese spread with butter, mayonnaise, Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, onion powder, granulated garlic, pepper, and parsley. Stir in the crabmeat (and baby shrimp, if using). Spread evenly over the split, toasted muffins.

Return to the oven for 10 minutes, or until hot and bubbly. Cut into quarters and serve warm, garnished with green onions and/or diced tomatoes, if desired. Makes 48 crabby bites. Pair with dip made with melted cheddar, mixed with mustard and dash of paprika.

63231_f520Utterly Deadly Pecan Pie – Recipe Via http://www.food.com

1 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups corn syrup (I use 1/2 dark and 1/2 light)
4 eggs
1/4 cup butter
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
1 1/2 cups pecans, coarsely broken
1 unbaked deep dish pie shellIn saucepan boil sugar and corn syrup together for 2 to 3 minutes; set aside to cool slightly.In large bowl beat eggs lightly and very slowly pour the syrup mixture into the eggs, stirring constantly.  At this point I like to strain the mixture to make sure it’s smooth and lump free. Stir in butter, vanilla, and pecans and pour into crust. Bake in a 350°F oven for about 45 to 60 minutes or until set.

DSCF3277Mini Flour-less Dark Chocolate CakesRecipe Via TasteofHome.com

4 eggs, separated
8 ounces 53% cacao dark baking chocolate, coarsely chopped
3 tablespoons butter, cubed
1/3 cup plus 1/4 cup sugar, divided
1-1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 container (2-1/2 ounces) prune baby food
1 teaspoon dark baking cocoa or baking cocoa
1/2 teaspoon confectioners’ sugar

Preheat the oven to 350ºC and place muffin cases in a 12 cup muffin tin. Place egg whites in a small bowl; let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, in a small saucepan, melt chocolate and butter over low heat, stirring constantly. Remove from the heat; cool slightly.

In a large bowl, beat egg yolks on high speed for 3 minutes or until light and fluffy. Gradually add 1/3 cup sugar and vanilla, beating until thick and lemon-colored. Beat in baby food and chocolate mixture. Beat egg whites on medium speed until soft peaks form. Gradually beat in remaining sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, on
high until stiff glossy peaks form; fold into batter.

Pour into prepared muffin tin. Bake at 350° for 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out with moist crumbs. Cool on a wire rack for 20 minutes.
When cool, ice with a chocolate ganache or sprinkle with confectioners’ sugar – enjoy!

As far as party activities go, an Oscars party has built-in entertainment!

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Just be sure to download and print out some Official Oscar Ballots for your friends to make their predictions before the show begins. Then, prepare a special prize for whoever selected the most Oscar winners at the end of the night. If you’re on a budget, just make a nice doggy-bag filled with a selection of left-over goodies for the winner to take home and enjoy. Good Luck and enjoy the show!
-Brian

3 thoughts on “My Oscar Party Menu Based on the 2013 Best Picture Nominees!

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