Tasty Tuesday–The Eleventh Disney Diner

For our penultimate Disney Dinner of the summer, I turned to Delicious Disney for all three recipes. We started with the seasonal old fashioned from the Enchanted Rose Lounge. Yes, an old fashioned is by nature an alcoholic drink. But what my children were most interested in was the combination of fall flavors like cranberry and rosemary, so I substituted apple cider for the alcohol, which paired well with the other flavors in the drink.

For the main course, I made honey spicy crispy chicken from Nine Dragons Restaurant, a fine dining establishment in the China area of Epcot’s World Showcase. I don’t usually deep fry chicken, but I made an exception, and I’m glad I did, because this was one of the best recipes we tried all summer!

For dessert, I made Amorette’s recipe for pumpkin crème brûlée topped with sable cookies. This was kind of a disaster, because I dropped mine on the floor, breaking the ramekin in the process. I’m told it was good, though, and it kept with the “fall flavors” theme of the meal.

Stay tuned for our final summer Disney Dinner!

Tasty Tuesday–Disney Drinks and Dessert, Part Two

The first time we had just Disney drinks and dessert, it was because the dinner I had made to go with them was a failure. This time, I made just drinks and dessert just for fun! The Lava Smoothie from Leaping Horse Libations at Disney’s BoardWalk Villas tasted like the tropics in a glass!

And because we just haven’t had enough Mickey Mouse-shaped food, I made Mickey Mouse Rick Krispie treats that were extra special because they were topped with white chocolate and m&ms!

This was a fun way to sneak a few more Disney-themed items into our summer!

Tasty Tuesday–The Tenth Disney Dinner

Our tenth Disney Dinner was all about taking a second chance on the rib recipe that didn’t turn out earlier in the summer, but before we get to that, a drink I put a lot of effort into coming up with, the Frozen Sunshine from Disney’s Beach Club Resort. The more Disney Dinners we had, the harder it was to find drink recipes that didn’t include alcohol, or that could at least have the alcohol substituted out. I went through pretty much all of the recipes in our cookbooks, so I turned to the internet for copycat recipes, which is where I found this Creamsicle in a cup!

I was still upset about the “Disney Disaster” we had previously, so I gave the hoisin chili sticky ribs from Delicious Disney based on Chef Morimoto’s recipe from his restaurant at Disney Springs, Morimoto Asia, another shot, substituting baby back ribs for spare ribs. They were perfect…definitely the best ribs I’ve ever made!

For dessert, we had Mickey Mouse-shaped beignets with lavender sugar. Can you have too many Mickey-shaped treats?!?

This was a fun meal, and I really enjoyed the redemption when making the ribs!

Tasty Tuesday–The Ninth Disney Dinner, Star Wars Edition

Our ninth Disney Dinner was A Big Deal, because I tried to recapture the magic of something we tried at Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge at Hollywood Studios…but first, something new and something a little scary, the Sarjenn Snowcap, a cola slushy topped with sweetened, condensed milk. I wasn’t really sure how it would taste, but in the end it was very similar to a cola float, and very good.

The star of the meal was Batuuan Ronto Wraps, a popular item at Hollywood Studios. We shared a Ronto Wrap our first day at the park, and Turkey liked it so much, he bought his own for dinner the second day we were there. The Galaxy’s Edge version has both sliced pork and a sausage, but we had ours with just the sausage, and it really wasn’t missing much.

For dessert, we had Cavaellin Spice Creams, which were pretty much gingerbread cookie whoopee pies filled with orange cream cheese frosting.

It was fun to really have a little bit of Disney at home!

Tasty Tuesday–The Eighth Disney Dinner

I planned our eighth Disney Dinner to coordinate with a very special day…Dole Whip Day, something we were especially excited about since we had recently tried an actual Dole Whip! But first, the drink. I made Cinderella’s Midnight Magic Punch, which was delicious, pretty, and extra fun with the rock candy stirring rod!

The main course was Monte Cristo sandwiches with currant jelly sauce. I have wanted to make Monte Cristos for years, but the idea of it was always too intimidating. They really weren’t bad to make, though, and they were really, really delicious!

And in honor of Dole Whip Day, a “Frozen Pineapple Treat Inspired by Dole Whip.” I think we were all skeptical, because we liked the Dole Whip we had a the Magic Kingdom so much, and we knew it wouldn’t be quite the same, but we all agreed that it was a pretty decent facsimile!

This was an especially fun Disney Dinner because it included something we had actually tried on our trip…stay tuned for the next one, where the main course is a replica of a meal we had a Hollywood Studios!

Tasty Tuesday–The Seventh Disney (Breakfast for) Dinner

I planned our seventh Disney Dinner to coincide with Bastille Day, so I had an excuse to make S’mores French Toast Sandwiches (or “delicious hot schmoes”) as found in Hollywood Studio’s Toy Story Land. Since it was such a decadent meal, we didn’t have dessert, but who needs it when dinner looks like this?!?

For the drink, I used the recipe for Keshian Spiced Milk from the Star Wars Life Day Cookbook…it was very much like a horchata, and very tasty!

Normally I wouldn’t make something like this for dinner, but for a special occasion, it was fun, and it may even return to the table as a dessert in the future!

Tasty Tuesday–The Sixth Disney Dinner

For our first Disney Dinner after returning home from Disney World, I turned to the “sandwich of the future,” the Handwich! I chose chili as the filling, but there are so many other options…I think we might have to try some more of them! Creating the cones out of crescent roll dough was only a little tricky (the real struggle was getting them off of the forms when they were done!), and they didn’t fall apart quite as much as I expected when we were eating them.

For dessert, I made 50’s Prime Time Café-style peanut butter and jelly milkshakes (or just jelly, for Moose), which were really delicious!

This is about the halfway point in the Disney Dinners I planned, so there’s more fun to come…stay tuned!

Summer School 2022

What can I say about this year’s summer school? One thing is for certain…I know I’ll never top it!

Yes, we had a reading list, and there were some amazing choices on there (Ladybug in particular really enjoyed many of the titles), but this summer was all about travel and experiences, including visits to Walt Disney World’s EPCOT, Hollywood Studios, Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom. It was like four days of field trips on steroids, where we went on rides, built things, and even learned things! (And let’s not forgot the three days of field trip equivalents in Washington D.C., where we visited monuments and memorials and museums, toured the US Capitol, and walked the grounds of George Washington’s Mount Vernon! Plus the day at Kennedy Space Center after our Disney fun concluded!)

Back at home, we kept the Disney magic going with art projects:

And games:

And lots and lots of cooking! We had 12 “Disney Dinners” at home over the summer (plus the one we indulged in at The Hollywood Brown Derby), which let us sample copycat recipes from the theme parks and the Disney World resorts:

Ladybug and Bunny especially enjoyed baking and decorating some Mickey Mouse cookies:

It wouldn’t be summer school without a Lego build, and we found the perfect set to reflect our summer fun!

And we squeezed in a few craft projects, including an amazing pumpkin coach, a cupcake liner lei modeled by Stitch, and a string art Mickey Mouse head that left glitter everywhere!

We also watched a ton of Disney documentaries (thank you Disney+) and classic Disney movies, some we had seen before, and some that were new to us. I especially loved the mid-century documentaries from when the theme parks were just getting their start, but the more modern ones, that focused on attractions we saw at Disney World (and their California counterparts) were fascinating, especially after we had the experience of seeing them first-hand.

Like I said, there won’t ever be a summer school like this again, where we were able to blend fun and learning and so many experiences together, but I’m really glad we got to do it once in our lifetime!

Tasty Tuesday–The Hollywood Brown Derby

Although we sampled a lot of food at Disney World, we only enjoyed one full sit-down meal while we were there. It was a really good one, though…we went to The Hollywood Brown Derby!

I really wanted to play I Love Lucy by visiting the “local watering hole.” Actually, I’ve eaten at the Disney World Hollywood Brown Derby before, back when Disney’s Hollywood Studios was called Disney-MGM Studios…so, a pretty long time ago! My memories of eating there were all mixed up with the I Love Lucy episode, so it was exciting to see it again in person!

The entrance is bright, and as soon as you walk in, you see the caricatures on the wall that the original restaurant was famous for.

The restaurant really does look like it did on TV, including the round booths and more caricatures (our favorite of those, seeing as there was no two-frame-picture of Jimmy Durante and his Schnozzola, was a pair of Bob Hopes on either side of Bing Crosby!).

On to the food. We shared a 50th anniversary “EARidescent Sip-a-bration,” which was a lemonade fruit punch with an adorable little Pluto perched on the side that you dropped into the drink to add a little Disney magic. And we got to keep the cup!

We also shared an appetizer, the Charcuterie Board, which was excellent. Several members of our family had the Famous Cobb Salad (which is named after Bob, yes I said Bob, Cobb), but as far as I know, it wasn’t “tossed in a derby.” Turkey ordered the Filet Mignon with Walt Disney’s Roast Beef Hash, and I really wish I had photographed it after he cut into it so you could see how beautifully rare it was!

I may be biased, but I’m pretty sure my meal, the Shrimp and Scallops Newberg, was the best. It was served with a sherry cream sauce, and the waiter (who was fantastic!), brought me a spoon and told me to make sure I finished all the sauce…so I did! It was one of the best meals I’ve ever had!

We shared two desserts, the 50th Celebration Baked Alaska and the Crème Brûlée. Both were absolutely amazing, and look how pretty!

Did I mentioned the wall lamps shaped like derby hats?

We made it out of the restaurant without flinging pie on anyone, so I’m not sure how successful we were at playing I Love Lucy, but we had a great time!

Tasty Tuesday–The Fifth Disney (Breakfast for) Dinner

For our fifth Disney Dinner, I turned to a family favorite…breakfast-for-dinner. I chose recipes from the Frozen “Winter Wonderland Holiday Brunch” in Entertaining with Disney to create the menu, starting with Elsa’s eggnog, which was a punch made by mixing my homemade eggnog with 7-Up and vanilla ice cream:

The main course was Anna’s ham, egg, and cheese croissant sandwiches:

I kept dessert simple…strawberry frozen hearts:

This dinner was really fun, and I love any excuse to make breakfast in the evening!