As one might expect from bloggers who focus on food and film, we spend a lot of time developing our Oscar night menu. It’s one of the most important creations of our entire year. The ideal menu includes all the necessary courses for a proper dinner party while also paying homage to the year in film and having a healthy sense of humor about the whole thing. There are several approaches one can take in adapting the year's nominated films and performances into an appropriate menu. We end up bouncing around a lot of terrible ideas for food and drinks before settling on nine, hopefully less terrible, dishes that will represent the Best Picture nominees and make for the perfect Oscars feast.
Dishes based on the title of the film are often the easiest to come up with. In previous years this has brought us such gems as War Horseradish Potato Gratin, Midnight in Pear-is French Pear Martinis, and Bailey's Salted Caramel Chocolate Life of Pi(e). At times we've looked to the theme or spirit of the film for inspiration: think Hawaiian Rum Punch for The Descendants or Calvin Candie's White Cake with Strawberry Splatter for Django Unchained. Other times we'll get stuck and need to settle with something like ParmaSean Penn Roasted Broccoli for The Tree of Life because Sean Penn was in it and broccoli look like little trees (hey - it tasted delicious!). In a perfect world, your creativity won't require explanations or clarifications, but we're not always perfect (case in point: Thyme Hugougères - which not only incorporated the film's title, but gougères are French (the film took place in France!) and the main character lived in a clock tower (thyme/time!)). You should most importantly enjoy your evening, so with nine nominees it's perfectly all right to get lazy for some (Jean Valjean's Loaf of Bread for Les Misérables). But occasionally the movie provides you with the one perfect option for your Oscar get-together: Minnie's Chocolate Mousse Pie for The Help (minus her special ingredient...unless you're inviting people you strongly dislike) or Crabby Snacks & Homemades for Silver Linings Playbook (though we still have yet to discern just what exactly those are).
This year's lineup of Best Picture nominees is truly incredible and diverse. We're still finalizing our menu selections, but stay tuned as we create a meal that features the nine movies in contention! The only dish we've settled on so far? Nebraskalamari featuring June Squid.