I’d Like To Thank The Academy…

Last night we had a BIG Oscar party in our house and I was a little nervous since it was the first big shindig in our casa, well that and I chose to make a flotilla of food. I simply adore our gentle friends and one thing I know about our group is we love to eat. With that in mind I was going to make darn sure everyone had enough to nibble on during the three hour show. 

The Obligatory Picture of Colin Firth

Epicurious assembled menu plans based on the Best Picture nominees and the one that stood out to us was the Inception option. It’s very French inspired since part of the movie takes place in Paris – the scene with the city folding on top of itself is still incredible every time I see it.  Although I liked the recipes they suggested, I decided to stick wtih French fare but do it my way. And the award goes to…. 

 To get real nerdy about it I made an “Execution Plan” to ensure everything was done by 6:00 p.m. so we could watch arrivals and snarkily judge away. 

  • 2:00 p.m. Prep and mis en place
  • 3:00 p.m. Make compote for Brie, while compote cooks, make pots de creme, refrigerate
  • 3:30 p.m. Make soup
  • 4:00 p.m.  Make green beans, assemble and bake Brie rounds
  • 5:00 p.m. Make sandwiches
  • 5:40 p.m. Fire steaks, let rest and slice, make fries
  • 6:00 p.m. Guests arrive

Everything pretty much went according to plan and let me tell you, the soup, green beans, sandwiches and brie rounds with that stellar compote were delicious. For the steak frites I kept it very simple. David (the super poodle) ran to the store and bought a Weber charcoal grill so he could grill them properly. Little salt and pepper on the steaks, grill and you are done.  I took  frozen fries and mixed with salt, pepper, garlic powder and thyme leaves and baked until crispy. Thanks to my lovely and talented niece Alex who is a bomb chef for coming up with that tasty concoction.  

I’m giggling at the thought of the Pots de Creme because the flavor was amazing but I didn’t have enough glasses to properly make individual servings, so I decided to place the whole shebang in a large ramekin. Yeah, don’t do that. We had to put it in the freezer so it would set up, but a few minutes on the table and it was like ice cream. Of course, no one cared and it was gone by the end of the night but I highly suggest not being an idiot like moi and scratch the idea if you can’t do it individually. 

The Oscars were OK this year, a little zzzzzzzzzz at times and it wasn’t as exciting as in years past but I am so happy for The King’s Speech! It’s an excellent, heart warming story and if you haven’t seen it yet, GO. 

Here’s our spread and more posts to come this week…I hope. :) 

Easy, Breezy Breakfast

Yesterday morning I was starving and needed sustenance ASAP. For anyone who knows me, I AM the Snickers commercial where I turn into a grouchy mcgroucherstein if I don’t eat. Since I needed to eat pretty quickly, I  improvised and created a fun breakfast sandwich that I call the Sanity Saver so I could get food in my belly and David didn’t have to tolerate a hungry diva.

Sanity Saver Breakfast Sandwich (Photo by Emily Ingle)

 

To ensure I get a few more vegetables in my diet, I’ve been grabbing these Green Giant Health Blends in the freezer section. I decided to serve their antioxidant blend (red peppers, carrots, broccoli) and a poached egg on top of toasted whole wheat bread all smothered with Everyday with Rachael Ray’s Good-For-You Hollandaise Sauce. A little salt and pepper on top and you’ve got breakfast in a flash. We both really, really liked this and more importantly the diva crisis was averted. There’s only room for one diva in this house and I think we all know who that is…

Gabriel! Our Diva-licous Cat!

Choke-sotto!

I kid because I love. After making this dish from Everyday with Rachael Ray, we were a little surprised it didn’t have a catchier name than her usual recipe titles such as stoup (not a stew, not a soup, it’s stoup!), so we started coming up with our own crummy names such as Choke-Sotto or Lemo-Choko-Sotto to play off the real name of Lemon-Artichoke Risotto. In Rachael’s words, this was yummo!

Lemon-Artichoke Risotto (Photo by Dan Roberts)

Honestly, this might be one of our favorite risottos we’ve made here at the casa. Risottos are not one of my favorites to make because you stand and stir for 20-30 minutes, and that requires a muscle that’s underdeveloped in me: patience.  Now compared to my friend Lindsay at Apron Adventures, who loves making risotto, I’d rather watch paint dry. What I did like about this was the layers of flavor that are easily applied to make this a delicious risotto: artichokes, toasted walnuts, parmesan cheese and lemon. Bright and comforting all at the same time. And quite perfect for the insane artic chill we have here in Austin. Oh yeah, I got to experience my first rolling blackouts today with power for 15 minute intervals every 45 minutes. Let me tell you, it was one of the most productive days this year…wink, wink.

If you have risotto paranoia give this one a try for me, I promise you will like it.  I’m sorry, every time I type risotto I think of Chef Ramsay from Hell’s Kitchen, “Where the hell is my risotto?!”.  For your viewing pleasure (NSFW).

Grilled Cheese If You Please

I think Grilled Cheese and Tomato Soup might be one of my favorite comfort food combos of all time. My reigning favorite still has to be Luna Park’s in Los Angeles Cheeselitz and Tomato Soup, but a homemade version with Kale? Sign me up! I chose this Grilled Cheese-and-Kale Sandwiches with Tomato Soup from Everyday with Rachael Rayfor a fun kid’s night at Casa Kealey. To be honest, I don’t have too much to say except this was simple, fast and easy to make, and absolutely delicious. The havarti cheese was super melty. You know the kind of grilled cheese that you pull away from the sandwich and strings of gooey cheese come out? Yeah, that kind and here’s your drool cup. Also, the soup was creamy and a perfect complement to the sandwich. I actually kept dunking my sandwich into the soup. Finally, there was kale. I’ve professed my undying love for kale again and again so I won’t bore you with the love poems or sonnets I have for it. This was a fun, delicious and quick meal that’s perfect for all ages.

Now about this artic chill. There are icicles on our porch. Icicles…ACK! I do hope it snows though so I can go outside and make snow angels!

Grilled Cheese-and-Kale Sandwiches with Tomato Soup (Photo by Dan Roberts)