Saturday, November 17, 2012

WDW 2013: Pinocchio Themed Dinner

Just some of the ingredients for this week's meal!
After an unplanned break last week - I was super super super sick - we are back on track with the Tasteful Countdown for our 2013 Disney trip. This week's movie was Pinocchio. It's not one of my favorites, but it has the song that became Disney's "theme", so it is a must watch. I found out that dad's favorite Disney character growing up with Jiminy Cricket, so that also made it special! We're learning more about each other as a family as we go through this.

The menu was themed around Northern Italy as that is the area that Pinocchio is supposed to take place (who knew?! I always thought he was German! LOL). It was difficult to find something that was Northern Italian that wasn't really *out there* or expensive, or that anyone would eat. I finally found a website that linked recipes by region and away we went.

Dad helped with the menu, I'm trying to keep him excited about this adventure, and so we settled on a main dish of Chicken with a Fire roasted red pepper red sauce over fettucine, and the dessert was a Peach tart with a Cocoa-Almond crust (the best part of that being it was gluten free so mom could have it). I couldn't figure out a good side dish, but my friends at Golden Skate Forums helped me out and suggested Polenta. DorisPulaski gave me a good recipe for a creamy polenta so my menu was all set.

Thursday rolled around and I felt all set - until we realized we never went and got the ingredients. So mom made a quick trip to the store in between her Bible Study and PCC duties, and called me to let me know I'd have to get the stuff out of her car on my way home from the office. No problem, a quick drive over and I had the stuff and was on my way home. That's when I noticed that I was missing some key ingredients - mainly the roasted red peppers!

The peach tart's directions were scary,
but it was successful!
So I sat around hoping I'd just missed a bag in mom's car. No such luck, instead of roasted red peppers she'd bought roasted tomatos! Whoops! So as I started on the dessert mom hurried over to the store and got the missing peppers. The tart had me very nervous because I had to make a syrup with the peaches and I was so scared that I would burn the sugar (I didn't!). When I chose this dish, I just read the ingredients and not the instructions. There's a lot to this little tart! I didn't have all of the tools I needed, but I made do.

With the tart baking in the oven, I started on the main dish. It was easy peasy and I realized the sauce was going to be finished before the rest of the meal! Oh no! I took it off the heat and made the polenta. I was worried I would do it wrong, and so I think I cooked it a bit longer than what I should have, but how was I to know?! While I finished up the polenta I boiled the pasta, and finished the sauce. Unfortunately this meant the polenta was cold by the time it was ready to dish up. I guess I still need to work on my timing!

Main dish was awesome!
The chicken also had me worried, as I didn't want to cook it wrong. Mom "taught" me by doing it herself. She said I watched so I would be able to do it next time... okay, mom, whatever you say! Once everything was done I dished up the plates, sliced up the chicken breasts and served my family. Duane was at youth group, so he was dining on Pizza while we had our own Italian meal. He was fine with missing out - except that he wanted dessert! Mom and Dad loved everything on the menu, but I found I am not a fan of polenta, so mom was happy because that means she's gotten to have left over polenta for days!

We also decided that the next time we make the main dish that we'd make a double batch - we needed more sauce! The sauce was super yummy - and I'm not normally a fan of peppers, but this was really good! I definitely ate all of that on my plate, but I was full from lunch (I ate late, my bad!) so I didn't eat all the chicken and I skipped the polenta.

The tart was so good dad ate half of it!
Dessert was served about half way through the movie, and Duane was back from youth group, so he had nothing to worry about. I am not a fan of peaches at all, so I didn't try a piece, but judging by the reactions of my family they all loved it. I served it with ice cream and the extra peace syrup and they gobbled it up!

Because it was an almond crust, I used almond flour instead of the all purpose the recipe called for - so mom could have it. From what I could tell it didn't do anything to negatively affect the dish - though the dough was a little wetter than it called for. We also had to use frozen peaches, so the syrup was runny and we had more of it, which made the middle of the tart to be very soft, but everything was cooked through. Dad ate the last piece of it the same night, so obviously it was a win!

Next week is Thanksgiving, so no movie night - but I will be baking on Tuesday it looks like! Grandpa is coming from Anchorage to spend the holiday with us, he flies in on Wednesday and will be here through Saturday. Should be fun. Week after next we will be watching Bambi. Going to go with a vegetarian theme as I just find it wrong to eat forest animals while watching it! I'm having trouble coming up with the menu, so it's a good thing that I have a lot of time to figure it out!

If you have any vegetarian ideas please share them with me by commenting on this post! I need all the help I can get!

Links to recipes from this week meal:
Chicken Fettuccine with roasted red pepper sauce
DorisPulaski's Creamy Polenta
Peach Tart with Almond-Cocoa Crust

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