Logo name authorBy Mark Keane

The Oscars return this Sunday but sadly it’s another year mired in controversy as black actors are once again snubbed for nominations. If you’re going to join the likes of Spike Lee, Will and Jada Pinkett Smith by snubbing the event, then you won’t see host Chris Rock lambasting The Academy and its members, and you will also miss out on Leonardo DiCaprio finally getting his hands on one of those gold statues! We’ve come up with a list of dishes to feast on for the Oscars, and since the event usually lasts for four long hours, we recommend making all of them! It’s time to get cooking and don’t forget to let The Academy know what you think with #OscarSoWhite.

 

The Martian

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Matt Damon and The Martian both got Oscar nominations as he portrayed an astronaut that was left for dead and stranded on Mars. It seems likely that Matt won’t win another Oscar with this role, so thankfully we won’t have to listen to him preach to us about some issue important to him. If you haven’t seen the film, Matt Damon uses his extensive knowledge of science, botany and engineering to grow potatoes until he can be rescued. Stimulating stuff!

Sticking with the films theme, we recommend starting the Oscars with a Martian potato salad. Astronauts are able to grow lettuce in their space station, so let’s shred some romaine lettuce and add it to a few cooked potatoes. It may surprise you to hear that some of the food that gets brought on space flights includes the likes of almonds, celery, apples, carrots, olive oil and bread. To finish off your salad, toast those almonds in a 170 degree oven till golden, approx 8-10 minutes, finely chop your celery, peel and quarter some apples to give a bit of sweetness, grate some carrots, cut the bread into pieces and fry in butter then add all this together in a bowl. Make a dressing with olive oil and balsamic vinegar, drizzle this over your Martian salad, and chow down as you watch Matt Damon’s soul get destroyed when the Oscar goes to Leo!


Brooklyn

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Brooklyn was a story close to the hearts of many older Irish people, with Saoirse Ronan giving another fine performance as an Irish immigrant having to choose between a new life in America or a return to the old life she railed against. 1950’s Ireland wasn’t the most exciting culinary time for us, but there were some dishes that one can find on many restaurant menus today.

“Cally”, also known as champ, was a dish of potatoes mashed with loads of butter and scallions, while “Goody” was a dessert dish which used old bread by heating it in hot milk with sugar and raisins, very similar to bread and butter pudding. Another classic Irish dessert was jelly and custard, but we think making bread and butter pudding is far more appealing and addictive to eat while watching the Oscars. Have some fun with it by using brioche instead of your regular white bread, add in as many vanilla pods, raisins and cinnamon as you can handle. Then watch with trepidation to see if Saoirse Ronan will best Brie Larson for that Oscar!


 Sicario

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We are kinda shocked that Sicario wasn’t nominated for Best Motion Picture. The film had you pinned to your seat and didn’t sugar coat the war between USA and the Mexican drug cartels. It had amazing performances by Emily Blunt, who somehow didn’t get an Oscar nomination, Josh Brolin as a mysterious flip flop wearing agent, and Benicio Del Toro in classic brooding form.

While you patiently sit through the Oscars, waiting to see who wins the Best Motion Picture of the Year, hint: it will be The Revenant, you can raise a burrito or quesadilla to Sicario, the actual best film of the year. To have a taste of Mexico, you could visit Picado Mexican Pantry in Portobello and stock up on ingredients and give Mexican cooking a bash. If you’re like us and would rather just get your hands on the end product straight away, K Chido offer authentic Mexican street food for pick up.


#OscarSoWhite

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The Oscars has long been known for a lack of diversity, but its reached boiling point this year as films like “Creed” and “Straight Outta Compton”, starring black directors and actors were completely ignored. Although we agreed with Will Smith not getting a nomination for his role in Concussion, we definitely thought Idris Elba deserved one over Matt Damon. As for Adam McKay’ nomination for Best Director over Ryan Coogler and F. Gary Gray, no comment….

If you want to try make some authentic New Orleans food in support of #OscarSoWhite then we’ve got some tasty options for you. You’ve no doubt heard of gumbo before, it’s a shrimp and chicken stew with okra, celery, bell peppers and onions, packed full of flavour. You can then soak up any leftover juices with some traditional buttermilk cornbread. Once you try that, you will wonder why no restaurants are serving it here! Of course, it would be a crime not to partake in some peach cobbler or beignets. Hopefully next year will be a better one for Oscar diversity!


Leonardo DiCaprio

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Leonardo DiCaprio has been nominated for 6 Oscars and it’s become a running joke about him never getting his hands on one. Always the bridesmaid, never the bride Leo. Despite tough competition from the likes of Bryan Cranston in Trumbo, Michael Fassbender in Steve Jobs, and Eddie Redmayne in The Danish Girl, this has to be the year when Leo triumphs!

You could take a page out of Leo’s book and chow down on some buffalo liver, but you may struggle to eat it all. Chances are you will turn the Oscars off once the Best Performance by an Actor is announced, so let’s celebrate Leo’s win not with food but with champagne. Here’s to you Leo, surely you won’t get snubbed again!

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