Dinner and a Disney Movie is a new series on Laughing Place. We have assembled a themed menu to help make your movie night extra special.
It’s time to roll down the bayou with your favorite characters from The Princess and the Frog. In the film, Tiana’s dad makes the best gumbo and dreams of opening his own restaurant. While his dream never came true, Tiana grew up to wish for the same thing. With such tasty looking food in the film, The Princess and the Frog seemed like the perfect choice for our first Dinner and a Disney Movie.
Gumbo was the obvious choice for the main course, since the dish is part of the story. As are beignets, which have been selected for dessert. It all pairs well with a non-alcoholic mint julep (feel free to add booze if you like).
This recipe comes from Tiana’s Cookbook, which was published by Disney Press in 2009. This is supposedly how Tiana makes hers (although in the film she adds hot sauce). I don’t like spicy food and this gumbo recipe manages to be very flavorful without becoming too spicy. I’m also not a fan of seafood so I leave out the shrimp, but the beautiful thing about gumbo is that you can customize it however you please. The recipe says it makes 4 servings, but it's so filling that its more like 6 servings. Serve over rice. It should take 45 minutes to an hour to make.
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 teaspoon ground thyme
- 1 teaspoon Old Bay seasoning (or any cajun seasoning)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 2 quarts chicken stock
- ½ pound smoked sausage sliced
- 1 cup chopped onions
- ½ cup chopped green bell peppers
- ½ cup chopped celery
- 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breast cut into cubes
- 1 pound shrimp (peeled and deveined)
- 4 all-beef wieners cut into ½ inch pieces
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix flour, paprika, thyme, Old Bay, salt and pepper and place in a small pan. Bake in the oven, stirring about every 5 minutes until the mixture gets a little darker (It took mine 30 minutes to get a smidge darker). Remove from the oven and place spice mix in a bowl.
Pour the chicken stock in a large pot on the stove. Add smoked sausage, onions, bell peppers and celery and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer uncovered for 15 minutes.
Add 1 cup water to the spice mix and stir until a paste forms. If it is too thick, add more water. It should still be somewhat liquid or it will form a solid in your pot. Slowly add the paste to the pot, stirring constantly until it is well blended. Add the chicken, shrimp and wieners and cook under medium heat until they are all done, about 15 minutes.
Man Catchin’ Beignets
Disneyland has some amazing beignets, but their recipe isn’t as easy as this one, which is why I once again refer to Tiana’s Cookbook. I have modified it to include honey, the way Tiana does in the film. Makes about 15 beignets.
- 3 cups flour (plus extra to help handle the dough)
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 cup buttermilk
- 1/3 cup water
- 1 egg beaten
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- Vegetable oil
- Powdered sugar
Combine 2 ¾ cups of flour with the sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt and nutmeg in a medium bowl with a whisk. In a seperate large bowl, whisk together buttermilk, water, egg and vanilla extract. Stir in the dry contents of the medium bowl to combine them into a dough.
The dough that has formed will be extra sticky. Pour a generous amount of flour on your workstation (either directly on your counter top, or on wax or parchment paper). Pour the dough onto the flour and rub some flour on your hands. Pat the dough into a ½ inch thick square. Cut the dough into squares, about 2½ inches wide.
Add enough vegetable oil to a saucepan to fill it 2 inches deep and heat the oil (the ideal temperature is 325 degrees on a meat thermometer). On my gas burner, medium-low heat was enough after letting the pot heat for a few minutes. Cook 3 beignets at a time for 3 minutes on each side. Place a wire rack over paper towel to set the cooked beignets on top of. Drizzle honey over them the way Tiana does, then sprinkle them with powdered sugar.
- 2 cups cold water
- 2/3 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 4 mint sprigs
- 1 quart ginger ale
Combine all ingredients except for the ginger ale in a medium bowl and let it sit for 30 minutes. Pour the liquid through a strainer to remove mint sprigs and any lemon pulp that may have gotten into the mixture. Pour in the ginger ale and serve over ice.