Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Red Carpet Ready!

One of my favorite days of the year is Oscar Sunday. The glitz and glamour of it all is so exciting. The dresses, the stars, the thrill of the movies... all an escape into another world. The other world of the movies themselves and that of the actors and this life of glitter in the spotlight.

For many years now my mom and I have termed this day to be OUR "Superbowl" since we really have no interest whatsoever in the Superbowl itself. And several years back before I met my husband and started a family I had begun a tradition of having an Academy Awards Party. I had had about 2 or 3 before we got married then one the first year when I was pregnant with my daughter and then after that.... Well it seemed so hard with the little ones. I got lazy. Lazy about planning... lazy about inviting people... not enough friends in my "new life". My husband isn't into it or wanting to really participate and so I just blew off the party. I still watched of course! And usually made some good food to go along with the show too.

But now, I am ready to get back to some of the things I love to do and have put aside for so many years. I am designing a lot but now starting to read again and ready to put more parties and entertaining and dining out into the mix. I miss it so much. To ensure I went through with the Oscar party, I emailed a save-the-date. And if there is one thing I hate is flakiness and failure to go through with something you said you were going to do. So then I was obligated. I sent out the invitations. The party was ON!

I began thinking of a menu and how to decorate. I didn't want to spend too too much money and did not want anything that would tie me to the kitchen while my guests were here and the show was rolling. So the key was good home created food and decorations with a touch of Hollywood sparkle.

It began with the menu.... I started to think about the films that had been nominated for best picture. The stage began to appear and set in my mind. And I came up with the following!

Black Swan Bean Soup
simple and healthy black bean soup
garnished with cilantro, bell peppers, sour cream and tortilla strips

The King's Salad
the El Torito salad!
romaine lettuce with bell peppers, pepitas, cotija cheese
tortilla strips and cilantro pepita dressing

True Grit Taco Bar
flour and corn tortillas with carne asada and pollo asada
with garnishes of cilantro, onion, tomato, cheese, guacamole and salsa

JalapeƱo Fighter Dip
spicy jalapenos and green chilis in a creamy cheese concoction
with a panko crust and tortilla chips for dipping

Inception Cocktail
part margarita-part champagne
this sexy cocktail is made with a refreshing blend
of lime juice, tequila, mint and champagne

Winter's Bone Brownies
a decadent marbled brownie
with rich chocolate and a cream cheese swirl

Toy Story Snack Bar
all the favorites!
popcorn, red vines, licorice, cinnamon bears,
m&m’s, hot tamales and gourmet gumballs

I decorated the Toy Story bar with my kids toys! Fun fun fun!!!

I made wine charms for the glasses with the various Oscar award categories.

My daughter helped out by cutting stars from gold paper I had lying around and strewing beads around on the tables. The night was a success! Just so much fun and I am thankful that I dipped back into the entertaining game and for all the friends that joined me for grand evening.

And of course... you will need to start with the perfect invitation! I have created one just for the occasion!


Stay tuned for my black bean soup recipe!


Pille said...

i like throwing themed parties - and have got several neat ideas for next time. I love how you've written out the menu!!!

Brenh said...

oh yay you're back!!!! I've been coming by wondering if you were going to appear again and here you are! i love the menu. so appropriate for the occasion! Weren't the awards the best yet!

Nicole said...

Pille- Thank you for stopping by! I am so glad I could give you some good ideas. Planning the menu was so much fun! I can't wait to see what theme parties you might hold in the future!

Hey Bren! Long time, no chat ... I know! I have been around and even cooking and checking blogs from time to time. I love the look of your blog/website these days. So clean and gorgeous. But I spend most of my time working on designs (which bring in the money) and being a mom! The kids do keep me on my toes! And YES! I loved the awards! Soooo much fun!

Sherry said...

Hi Nicole,

Love your party ideas. We love the Oscars, too! Could you give the specific recipe for your Inception cocktail? Sounds great. We're in California now - yay! Hope we can meet you sometime. My daughter would enjoy spending a day "on the job" with your husband, I know. :)

Nicole said...

Hi Sherry,

For the "Inception Cocktail" I basically was inspired by the Moet Starlet recipe on this page: http://www.oscars.org/awards/academyawards/partykit/index.html
But I did not go hunting around for elderflower liqueur or starfruit!

That would be fun to meet up sometime. What city are you in? Are you South County?

I will try to let you know if my husband is ever on anything of note or interesting for your daughter. Lately he has just done some commercials which are not that exciting. But you and Erin would be proud of my daughter! She just had the performance of her first play yesterday. It was a short musical rendition of Pinocchio. She had one line in addition to the ensemble singing she did. So cute!