It’s Cocktails & Desserts This Oscar Party!

Try as I might, I could pretty much only come up with dessert and cocktail themed food this year for the Oscars.  But I am fairly certain none of my friends will be complaining.  I mean what can you do when there is actually a movie nominated called “The Danish Girl”?  You gotta serve danish, right?

Or, you could serve “The Big Short Cake” with “Straight Outta Compote” and “Whipped Creem”.

The Big Short Cake



So  when it comes to dessert recipes, I head to my go-to dessert gal, Joy the Baker and while her Snickerdoodle Strawberry Shortcake recipe looks amazing (I grew up making and eating snickerdoodles), I think I will stick with a classic shortcake recipe she has on her blog.  Then I hopped over to another favorite, Minimalist Baker for a Simple Berry Compote. For the whipped “creem”, you are on your own.

The other title that was almost a given this year was “Bridge of Spies” which will now be my “Bridge of Pies”.  While this could have been added to my dessert theme, I thought I would try my hand at another JTB recipe that has been on my list – Bite-sized Baked Brie Pies.  Well, she doesn’t call them pies, but they do look an awful lot like mini pies so I think they will work just fine. Now I just need to figure out how to display them across some bridge type plate or platter.

Bridge Of Pies

Moving on to cocktails, I will leave this up to our host Robin to come up with her signature cocktails.  She usually comes up with several new ones every year and they are always quite tasty.  The honeydew martini she served a few years back was a surprise hit. But if I had to make some suggestions, well… I am sure I can manage to come up with a few.  White on Rice always have beautiful looking cocktails on their blog and having tasted a few at workshop and events, I can attest to their deliciousness.  The Chili Martini Cocktail looks like it has just the right amount of sweet and spicy.  Anyone who knows me, knows I like a bit of kick to my cocktail.  The Blood Orange Gin and Tonic and the Blood Orange Margarita both look amazing and then there is the Sea Salt Iced Coffee (technically not a cocktail but incredible – trust me, you must try it).


50 Shades of Gray Goose

Well, since that is a lot of booze and sugar, I thought I would throw in one hearty dish.  My easy, classic 7-layer dip which in this case will now be an 8-layer dip.  Now I just need to figure out what that 8th layer will be…  Will blog about that one later.

The Hateful 8 Layer Dip

And yes, I know, George isn’t nominated or even to the best of my knowledge involved in any movies this year but you still gotta have some hot dish and it still has to have a George Clooney sign because, damn, he is hot!

George Clooney is hot

Happy Oscars!!

Elmo and Ollie’s Dutch Baby Pancake with Buttery Apples

Well here it is. My first post of the year. My first post as a fully unemployed, stay-at-home mom. My first post that should have been done a couple months ago but I seem to be busier now than I was when I was working! I have already let the stresses and busyness of daily life get me down. But today I stopped to look through the photos I took for this post (back in mid-January) and I had an epiphany. A beautiful realization that the reason I am so busy is that I can now immerse myself in my son’s life. And it is amazing how busy a 5 year old’s life can be. Not because of overbooking of activities and classes, etc. But with school and his afterschool play program; building awesome spaceships and robots out of Legos; making Star Wars paper airplanes from a fortunately “dummies” guide to making the Millennium Falcon; protecting his family of stuffed animals from the roving polar bear in our house and thankfully for me (and my blog) cooking.

Ollie loves to cook and he has quite a palate. I woke up a few weeks ago to him shouting, “Cinnamon! Peanut butter! Garlic!” and came out to a blindfolded son and my mom passing different items under his nose. I was impressed when she pulled out the ginger and he guessed it immediately . He has also on many occasions commented on my cooking in insightful ways, telling me the rice is too salty (it was – I added too much stock to give it flavor) or that we overcooked his steak. We cooked it well done and apparently he would prefer it medium rare. So a few weeks ago amidst the chaos of our life when Ollie pulled out his Sesame Street cookbook, I am glad I took the time (and had the ingredients) to make the Dutch Baby Pancake with Buttery Apples with him.

The New Naked Chef!

The New Naked Chef!

Ready for Sautéing

Ready for Sautéing

Warm Buttery Apples

Warm Buttery Apples

Ollie's Favorite Part

Ollie’s Favorite Part

Ollie takes the first bite to make sure it is okay.

Ollie takes the first bite to make sure it is okay.

So next time I complain about being too busy, will someone remind me that being busy with volunteering at school, cooking dinners, making school lunches and taking my son to the numerous friends’ birthday parties and soccer classes is exactly what I wished for. And I am loving it.

Arrivederci Hollywood! For now…

It's for you, Ernie

It’s for you, Ernie

Dutch Baby Pancake with Buttery Apples

Recipe adapted from “C is for Cooking. Recipes from the Street.” (Sesame Street, that is)


2 eggs
1 tsp vegetable oil
1/2 cup milk (I used unsweetened organic Almond Milk)
1/2 cup white whole wheat flour
2 tbsp sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tbsp butter (I used Organic Earth Balance)
2 large apples, peeled and thinly sliced

Confectioner’s sugar for dusting

Preheat oved to 425 degrees (this is always the step I forget and then I get impatient and put my dish into the oven before the oven is fully ready. Definitely let the oven fully preheat for this recipe.)  Grease a shallow pie pan or an ovenproof skillet.  In a medium bowl, beat the eggs, oil and milk together until well blended. Add the flour, sugar, salt and cinnamon to the bowl and stir until smooth.  A few small lumps are okay. Pour the batter into the greased pan.  Bake for 10 minutes and then reduce the heat to 350 degrees and bake until the pancake is lightly browned and puffed up.  Approximately 5 – 8 minutes longer.

While the pancake is baking, heat the butter in a large skillet and add the apples.  Sauté until the apples are tender and lightly browned, approximately 10 minutes.

Spoon the apples over the warm pancake and use a fine mesh strainer to dust with confectioner’s sugar.  Enjoy immediately!

Yup - I think he liked it!

Yup – I think he liked it!