Who will shine at the Oscars on Sunday – Argo, Bradley Cooper, Jessica Chastain, Angelina’s leg in Atelier Versace? It’s anybody’s guess.
But here’s something that’s certain: the red carpet isn’t just for celebs and their couture statements.
It’s also for the stars of our private Oscar parties, the glammed up bites we’ll serve and shimmering cocktails we’ll sip each time someone makes a Marco Rubio water joke.
Oscar night is a worthy occasion to extend our guilty pleasures. Red carpet hits and wardrobe malfunctions are that much more enjoyable when observed between bites of medium-rare beef tenderloin accented with horseradish sauce and cracked black pepper.
Host Seth MacFarlane’s jokes are that much better with a sip of bourbon luminous with sunset hues.
And Barbra Streisand’s first performance at the Academy Awards in 36 years must be properly celebrated, perhaps with sparkling wine that’s aglow in juicy peach tones.
Whether you throw a big Oscars bash or host a more intimate viewing soiree, check out these recipes and ideas to make your bar and party spread red carpet-ready.
Beef Tenderloin Chips with horseradish sauce
Makes 20 bites
1 tenderloin filet (4 to 6 ounces)
Cracked black pepper
4 ounces sour cream
1 tablespoon horseradish
Pinch salt and pepper
Squeeze lemon juice
2 russet potatoes, sliced thin
2 shallots, sliced thinly and fried crispy
2 tablespoons fresh chives, snipped
For the tenderloin and sauce:
Cut steak into “logs,” season with salt and cracked pepper and sear quickly on all sides in a hot pan. Let rest.
Combine next 5 ingredients to make horseradish sauce.
For the chips:
Heat oil in a deep saucepan until temperature reaches 325 degrees. Drop potato slices in and fry until golden. Drain on paper towels.
Slice steak into 20 thin slices. Place a slice of steak on top of fried potato slice and top with sauce, snipped chives and crispy shallots.
Pistachio crusted Goat Cheese with Roasted Beet
Makes 12 bites
1/2 pound goat cheese log
4 ounces pistachios, crushed
Chives, to garnish
Heat oven to 375 degrees. Roast whole beets until tender, about 1 hour. When cool enough to handle, rub off the beet skins with paper towel. Set aside to cool to room temperature.
When cool, slice beets and cut to desired shape. (Use a cookie cutter to punch out shapes, such as a star or heart.)
Scatter the crushed pistachios on a flat surface.
With a hot knife, cut the goat cheese log into 4 equal wheels. Gently press the cheese into the nuts to coat all sides.
Top each slice with beet round (or desired shape). Garnish with herbs.
Makes about 16 bites
4 slices country loaf or multigrain bread, cut onto bite sized rounds, about 16
Basil mayo, recipe follows
4 slices of cooked bacon, broken into 4 pieces
3 small heirloom tomatoes, sliced
Dot bread rounds with basil mayo. Top with bacon, tomato and another dot of basil mayo. Garnish with chopped lettuce
For the basil mayonnaise:
1/2 cup good mayonnaise
10 basil leaves, chopped
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
Pinch teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tablespoon good olive oil
Whisk together the mayonnaise, basil, salt, pepper, lemon juice and olive oil.
Smoked Salmon Cucumber cups
Makes 15 to 18 bites
3 baby cucumbers
¼ cup cream cheese,
4 ounces smoked salmon, sliced into 1-inch wide strips
1 tablespoon capers
Dill to garnish
Cut cucumber into 1 inch rounds. Hollow out and place a small amount of cream cheese, about 1/2 teaspoon, in bottom of each cucumber cup.
Add a rolled slice of smoked salmon into each cucumber cup. Top with capers and dill.
The Velvet Rope
The Breakers’ new HMF lounge will be mixing this drink on Oscar night.
Makes 1 cocktail
1 1/2 ounces Grey Goose “Le Poire” vodka
1/4 ounce St. Germain elderflower liqueur
3/4 ounce fresh ruby red grapefruit juice
1/2 ounce fresh lemon juice
1/2 ounce simple syrup
Shake ingredients in a cocktail shaker and strain into a martini glass. Garnish with an orchid blossom.
THE GOLDEN OSCAR
The HMF lounge will be serving this drink on Oscar night.
Makes 1 cocktail
2 ounces Chopin vodka
1 ounce peach schnapps
1 ounce peach nectar
Prosecco, to top
Shake ingredients in a cocktail shaker and strain into Champagne flute. Top with prosecco to float.
Sip this drink at the Flagler Steakhouse at The Breakers.
Makes 1 cocktail
1 1/2 ounces Ketel One vodka
3/4 ounce Grand Marnier Cherry liqueur
3/4 ounce fresh lime juice
Shake ingredients in a cocktail shaker and strain over ice. Serve in a sugar-rimmed cocktail glass.
THE OSCAR BLUSH
This cocktail will be served at The Breakers’ Seafood Bar.
Makes 1 cocktail
1 ounce Jim Beam
1 ounce Southern Comfort
1/2 ounce peach puree
2 ounces cranberry juice
2 ounces orange juice
Combine ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice, shake and serve.
MAKE THESE BITES
Learn to make the delicious bites featured in today’s cover story, as well as other hors d’oeuvres, at Lenore Pinello’s In the Kitchen cook shop and demo space. Here are the details:
Oscars Afterparty, the class:
When: Wednesday, Feb. 27, 6:30 p.m.
Where: In the Kitchen, 389 Tequesta Drive (Gallery Square North), Tequesta
Cost: $60 per person
Reserve: call 561-747-7117 or visit www.InTheKitchenNow.com