Welcome back friends! This week we’ll be cooking Remy’s Ratatouille from one of my favorite Disney and Pixar films, Ratatouille!
This recipe is featured near the end of the film when Remy is preparing a meal for the food critic, Anton Ego. It is referred to briefly as a “peasant’s dish”, but Remy’s version ignores all labels and boils down to good food that comforts the soul.
Ratatouille is warm and comforting; the perfect main or side dish for a cool or cold day. The arrangement of vegetables within the baking dish is creative and fun to do, although give yourself enough time to mise en place before beginning! Anyone can cook, bon appetit!
2 eggplant, trimmed and very thinly sliced
6-8 Roma tomatoes, trimmed and very thinly sliced
2 yellow squash, trimmed and very thinly sliced
2 zucchini, trimmed and very thinly sliced
2 tablespoons of olive oil
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 onion, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 yellow bell pepper, diced
Pepper, to taste
Salt, to taste
28 ounce can of crushed tomatoes
2 tablespoons of fresh basil, chopped
4 tablespoons of olive oil
2 tablespoons of fresh basil, chopped
1 teaspoon of garlic, minced
2 tablespoons of parsley, chopped
2 teaspoons of fresh thyme
Salt, to taste
Pepper, to taste
Slice the eggplant, tomatoes, squash, and zucchini into approximately 1-mm rounds (I used a mandolin when possible), then set aside.
To make the sauce, heat the olive oil in an oven-safe pan over medium-high heat.
Sauté the onion, garlic, and bell peppers until soft (about 10 minutes), then season with salt and pepper.
Add the crushed tomatoes and stir until the ingredients are fully incorporated, then remove from heat, add the basil and stir again.
Pre-heat the oven for 375 F.
Arrange the sliced veggies in a repeating pattern (squash, zucchini, eggplant, tomato) on top of the sauce from the outer edge to the middle of the pan, then season with salt and pepper.
To prepare the herb seasoning, mix together the basil, garlic, parsley, thyme, salt, pepper, and olive oil in a small bowl.
Brush the herb seasoning over the arranged vegetables.
Cut a circle of parchment paper and place it over the vegetables in the pan, then bake for 40 minutes.
Remove the parchment paper, then bake for another 20 minutes, until the vegetables are softened.
Welcome back friends! This week we are cooking Linguini’s soup from one of my favorite Disney and Pixar films, Ratatouille!
This is referred to as Linguini’s soup by the staff at Gusteau’s restaurant, but we all know Linguini made a mess of it and Remy couldn’t resist doctoring it up to make it more palatable before escaping from the kitchen.
It is never said what kind of soup this is, but judging by what Remy adds, we can conclude it is probably a variation of potato and leek soup! This soup is creamy and filling, the perfect cozy dinner on a cold night!
3 tablespoons of unsalted butter
3 cloves of garlic, peeled and smashed
4 large leeks, white and light green parts only, roughly chopped
1⁄4 teaspoon of ground black pepper
1 teaspoon of salt
2 lb. of potatoes, peeled and roughly chopped
6 cups of vegetable broth
2 bay leaves
3 sprigs of fresh thyme
1 cup of heavy cream
Chives, finely chopped, for serving
In a large soup pot or dutch oven, melt the butter over medium heat.
Add the garlic, leeks, black pepper and salt. Cook, stirring regularly, until soft and wilted (about 10 to 15 minutes).
Add the potatoes, broth, bay leaves and thyme to the pot, then bring to a boil.
Cover the soup and turn the heat down to medium / low.
Simmer for 45 minutes, or until the potatoes are very soft.
Remove from the heat, then remove the bay leaves and thyme sprigs. Purée the soup with an immersion blender until smooth.
Add the heavy cream, place back on the heat and bring to a simmer.
Taste and adjust the seasoning to your liking with salt and pepper.
I grew up watching a healthy dose of animated Disney and Pixar movies, they had a positive impact on me, and I would love to continue the tradition with my daughter. We’ve already watched a few and as her attention span grows I’d like to watch more. Let’s be honest though, child(ren) or not, you’re never too old to love and enjoy these films. I’ve created this handy dandy Pixar watch list to keep track; please feel free to use it as a reference!
Welcome back friends! I hope this post finds you and your loved ones safe and healthy! This week we’ll be baking Jack Jack’s Num Num Chocolate Chip Cookies from Disney and Pixar’s Incredibles 2.
This recipe is featured when Lucius Best (Frozone) checks in on Bob Parr (Mr. Incredible) in his new homemaking role. Bob is struggling with Jack Jack’s abundant powers, but has discovered he will temporarily settle down for cookies.
These chocolate chip cookies are slender, soft and scrumptious. Pixar recently released an official recipe for Jack Jack’s cookies that looks and tastes absolutely fantastic, but the cookies come out much thicker-looking than the ones in the film so I decided to create my own independent recipe for the fun of it. I imagine Jack Jack wouldn’t discriminate!
JACK JACK’S NUM NUM COOKIES
1 cup of butter, softened
1 1/2 cups of packed brown sugar (I used dark)
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
2 large eggs
2 1/4 cups of cake flour
1 teaspoon of baking soda
1 teaspoon of salt
2 cups of semi-sweet chocolate chips
Using a mixer, cream the butter and brown sugar.
Add the vanilla and then the eggs in one at a time, mixing after each egg.
In a separate bowl, combine the cake flour, baking soda and salt with a whisk.
Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet, mixing well after each addition until a thick fluffy dough forms.
Using a mixing spoon, fold in the 2 cups of semi-sweet chocolate chips until well-distributed throughout the dough.
Cover the bowl and place it in the refrigerator for about 24 hours. This step is optional if you’re in a rush for the cookies, but they will spread a little less if chilled.
After the dough has chilled, preheat the oven to 325F and prepare a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Remove the dough from the refrigerator and using a small ice cream scoop or a regular spoon (I used a spoon), begin portioning out the dough into balls of cookie dough (about 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 inches in diameter), and placing them on the baking sheet.
Place the baking sheet in the oven and bake for about 14 minutes. Baking time may vary depending on your oven so please keep an eye on the cookies and find a time that works for you.
Remove the cookies from the oven when they are golden brown on the edges and allow them to cool on the pan for about 2 minutes. Then remove them from the pan and allow them to completely cool on a wire rack.
Welcome back friends! This week we’ll be baking the cupcakes Randall bakes in the hope of making new friends at Monster’s University in Disney and Pixar’s Monster’s University.
These “Be My Pal” cupcakes are featured right before Randall leaves for a campus party. He’s baked them to impress members of the fraternity he’s trying to join and asks Mike to join him, but Mike declines to study instead.
In all honesty, I feel a little guilty for not making the cupcake portion of this recipe from scratch. I am rationalizing it by an idea that a college student probably wouldn’t want to take the time to bake everything from scratch, but on the flip-side this is Randall we’re talking about; it could go either way! I look forward to revisiting this recipe in the future and re-creating it completely from scratch, but in the meantime, enjoy and substitute butter for a more homemade flavor!
1 box of Devil’s Food Cake Mix (I used Duncan Hines)
1/3 cup butter (or vegetable oil)
3 large eggs
1 cup water
Preheat the oven to 350 F.
Melt the butter in a small saucepan and set it aside to cool.
Line a muffin/cupcake pan with cupcake liners and spray them lightly with cooking spray.
Place the dry cake mix in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, combine the melted butter, eggs and water.
Slowly add the combined wet ingredients to the dry cake mix a little at a time, mixing until smooth.
Distribute the batter into the prepared cupcake liners, filling each liner about about 2/3 full (you can use an ice cream scoop or I used a small measuring cup).
Bake the cupcakes for 18 to 21 minutes, until a toothpick poked into the center of each cupcake comes out clean.
Remove them from the oven and allow them to cool completely before frosting.
1 8 oz. package of cream cheese (room temperature)
1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream (cold)
1 1/2 cups powdered confectioners sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
Refrigerate or freeze your mixing bowl and whisk attachment(s) for 10-15 minutes before using, then whip the heavy whipping cream on high speed for 1 to 2 minutes until it’s thick, fluffy and spreadable.
In a second mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese and powdered sugar slowly until well incorporated, then add the vanilla extract.
Fold the whipped cream into the cream cheese mixture.
Separate out about a third of the frosting out into a small bowl and add red food coloring until it reaches the desired hue for the “Be My Pal” letters.
Spread the white frosting on each cupcake using a butter knife.
Place the red frosting into a piping bag and spell out “Be My Pal” onto 7 (or more) of the cupcakes.
Welcome back friends! This week we’re baking the concha bread, or pan dulce, Dante tries to steal in Disney and Pixar’s heartfelt and visually stunning Pixar film, Coco.
When Miguel’s family brings him back to the land of the dead to ask Mama Imelda for help, they enter the Department of Family Reunions and Dante tries to steal a plate of sweets off of one of the desks. The Concha bread is on this plate, and it can also be seen in various scenes throughout the film.
Like the tamales, I wanted to research and find a traditional recipe for this treat. I then took my recipe to my friends to see if they thought it was traditional enough and they approved! There are different variations of toppings out there, but I chose to go with something closer to the film, with no food coloring.
I’ve never really worked with yeast before; it’s really fascinating to see the dough doubling in size! The topping is cinnamon deliciousness and I highly recommend eating these freshly baked and warm, but they do hold up well the following few days.
1 packet (1/4 ounce) of active dry yeast
1⁄2 cup of warm water
1⁄2 cup of warm evaporated milk
1/3 cup of sugar
1/3 cup of butter (melted)
1 teaspoon of salt
4 cups of all-purpose flour (plus enough to lightly flour a surface)
1⁄2 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
In a large bowl stir together the yeast and the warm water., then let the mixture stand for 10 minutes.
Stir in the egg, evaporated milk, sugar, melted butter and salt.
Stir in 2 cups of the flour and then gradually stir in another 2 cups of flour and the cinnamon to make a dough.
Place the dough on a lightly floured surface. Knead for 3 to 5 minutes or until smooth and elastic, then shape into a ball.
Transfer the ball of dough to a large greased bowl and turn it to coat the surface of the dough.
Cover and let it rise in a warm place until doubled in size (about 1 to 1 1⁄4 hours).
Punch down the dough, then cover, and let it stand for another 10 minutes.
Make the topping (see below).
Divide the dough into 12 portions and shape each portion into a smooth ball.
Place the dough balls about 3 inches apart on baking sheets lined with parchment paper and press down on each dough ball slightly.
Divide the topping into 12 balled up portions; then pat each ball flat.
Place one round of topping on each dough ball.
Using a sharp paring knife, cut grooves in the topping to resemble a scallop shell.
Cover the rolls and let them rise in a warm place until nearly doubled in size (about 45 minutes).
Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
Bake rolls for 18 to 20 minutes or until light golden brown.
Remove from the baking sheets to cool on wire racks.
Serve warm or cool.
1⁄2 cup of butter, softened
2/3 cup of sugar
1 cup of all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons of ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon of vanilla extract
In a medium bowl, beat the softened butter with an electric mixer on medium speed for 30 seconds.
Add the sugar, beating until well mixed.
Stir in the flour, cinnamon, and vanilla; mix until well incorporated.
Welcome back friends! This week we are creating the churros a Skeleton brings back with him to the Land of the Dead in the heartfelt and visually stunning Pixar film, Coco.
When Miguel’s family brings him back to the land of the dead to ask Mama Imelda for help, they join a customs line and our friend with the churros is at the front of this line. We never really get to know this Skeleton, but he likes churros and that’s a perfect excuse to make them!
These are delicious andthey taste exactly like churros should taste, but they came out the size of fries due to my pastry tip being small! I plan on buying myself a bigger pastry tip, but the moral of the story is, churros are delicious in any size!
vegetable oil (corn or canola)
1 cup of water
1/2 cup of butter
1/4 teaspoon of salt
1/2 cup of sugar
1 cup of all-purpose flour, sifted
1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon
In a medium saucepan, heat the water and butter together until the butter melts.
Add the salt and 1 tablespoon of the sugar, then stir until they’re dissolved.
Bring mixture to a full boil, then mix in the flour, stirring vigorously to blend well. Continue stirring for about a minute or until mixture forms into a doughy ball, but remove from the heat after about 30 seconds or the churros will not puff properly.
Add eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Continue mixing until all the egg is completely incorporated and the dough is glossy. Set aside to cool and rest for about 5 minutes.
Mix remaining sugar and cinnamon in a shallow dish and set aside.
In a heavy/deep pan or deep fryer heat at least 2 inches of oil to 375 F.
Test the temperature of your frying oil. Drop a small ball of the dough into the hot oil. It should bubble up to the surface immediately. If is doesn’t, the oil is not hot enough and you’ll end up with soggy, greasy churros.
Spoon the dough mixture into a cake decorators’ piping tube with the largest star tip available. Rolling down from the top, squeeze 4-inch strips of dough into the hot oil. Don’t crowd the churros. 3 or 4 at a time is about right. Fry 3-4 minutes, turning once, until golden brown.
Remove from the oil with a slotted spoon and set onto paper towels to drain. Roll churros in cinnamon/sugar mixture and serve warm.
Welcome back friends! This week we are creating Abuelita’s tamales from the heartfelt and visually stunning Pixar film, Coco.
Our first two recipes from Frankenweenie (the Double Dutch Cherry Muffins and the Dutch Apple Cake) were featured as actual recipes in a cookbook during a scene in the film, but this is the first recipe we are creating based on our interpretation of what is seen in the film.
Miguel’s family, especially his Abuelita, are very traditional so I tried to find the most traditional recipe for tamales I could. I then took that tamale recipe to my friends and asked them whether or not they believed it was genuine and got a resounding yes!
Tamales take time to make as there are many steps, but if you have family or friends to help, it could go by much quicker! Your reward is a tasty meal that can be enjoyed fresh or frozen for later!
RED CHILI SAUCE
15 large dried chillies (ie: anaheim, new mexico, california or pasilla)
2 teaspoons of ground cumin
4-5 garlic cloves
1 teaspoons of salt
2 teaspoons of melted shortening, or 2 teaspoons of olive oil
2 teaspoons of all-purpose flour
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Remove any stems and seeds from the dried peppers.
Place the peppers in a single layer on a baking sheet and roast them in the oven for 2 to 5 minutes, or until you smell a sweet roasted aroma (check often to avoid burning).
Remove the peppers from the oven and soak them in enough hot water to cover for about 30 minutes, or until cool.
Put the peppers, 2 ½ cups of the soaking water, cumin, garlic and salt into blender (save the remaining soaking water).
Cover and blend until smooth.
In a small to medium saucepan, melt the shortening and stir in flour over medium heat until browned.
Gently stir in blended chili mixture.
Simmer uncovered for 5 to 10 minutes or until slightly thickened. If the sauce gets too thick, stir in up to 1 cup of the remaining soaking water until you reach the desired thickness.
3 ½ lb. of pork shoulder or butt, cut up and trimmed of fat
10 cups of water
1 medium onion, peeled and quartered
3 garlic cloves, minced
3 ½ teaspoons of salt
3 to 4 cups of red chili sauce (see above)
¾ cup of shortening
6 cups of masa harina
1 ½ teaspoons of baking powder
50 dried corn husks (8 inches)
In a Dutch oven, bring the pork, water, onion, garlic and 1 ½ teaspoons of salt to boil.
Simmer covered for about 2 ½ hours or until the meat is very tender.
Remove the meat from the broth and allow both to cool.
Using two forks, shred the meat.
Strain the broth and reserve 6 cups.
Start to soak corn husks in warm water for at least 20 minutes; rinse to remove any corn silk and drain well.
In a large sauce pan, heat the red chili sauce and add the shredded meat; simmer, covered for 10 minutes.
To make the masa, beat shortening on medium speed in a large bowl for 1 minute.
In separate bowl, stir together masa harina, baking powder and 2 teaspoons of salt.
Alternately add the masa harina mixture and broth to shortening, beating well after each addition. Add just enough broth to make a thick, creamy paste.
To assemble each tamale, spread about 2 tablespoons of the masa mixture on the center of the corn husk.
Place about 1 tablespoon of the meat and sauce mixture in the middle of the masa.
Fold in the sides of the husk and then fold up the bottom.
Using strips of corn husk, tie each tamale together.
Place a mound of husks or a foil ball in the center of your steamer basket.
Lean the tamales in the basket, open side up.
Add water to your steamer to just below the basket.
Bring the water to a boil and reduce heat.
Cover and steam for 40 minutes, adding water when necessary.
You can freeze these for future meals, leave them in the husks and place them in freezer bags.