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12 Things I have Learned by Making All the Food In Disney Movies

I am postponing our Moana post until next week, so I can have time to do a proper “final” post. I put the word “final” in quotations for a reason that I’ll explain later.

These last two years have been crazy. There have been times where I wanted to throw in the towel, but I’m glad I kept on going. Looking back at this blog, I’m amazed at what was accomplished. I did a rough count of recipes and there were around 350. Thanks Walt for putting in so much food into your movies! haha. Its pretty crazy that next week, we’ll be all caught up. I won’t stop posting, but it won’t be as regular as I have been. I honestly need a little break!  

But don’t worry, I’ll definitely do posts after every Disney movie that comes out and I’ll start doing some random other animated movies here and there. I’m thinking of maybe doing some Ghibli films and maybe branching out and doing some live-action films like Harry Potter. I’m open to suggestions. So leave a comment, post on our FB page, tweet at us etc.

I never professed to be a professional chef, or anything close to it. But this blog really has really taught me a lot about cooking, and I definitely am a better cook than when I started. Here are some things I have learned along the way.

1.  Always add around 10 more minutes to a recipe’s total make time

I don’t know if I’m a slow chef or what, but my prep-times are always longer than what recipes . It is important to give yourself ample amount of time to cook, especially if you have company coming over or have a time-constraint. Always make time for the inevitable mishap.

 

2. Taste the food along the way

A painter will never focus 100% on her subject and never look at what she is painting until the very end. Likewise, when cooking, you shouldn’t throw everything in and hope for the best at the end. Granted, there are some recipes where it is hard to taste along the way, but many, especially stove-top dishes, you can taste as you put in ingredients to see how the flavor has changed. This will not only allow you to increase or decrease future ingredients, but it will give you a better understanding of how different substances affect the dish as a whole.

 

3. More spice isn’t necessarily always best

In the past, I would love to cook dishes and put in basil, paprika, parsley, salt, pepper, thyme, rosemary, lemon, mint, etc all at once. It definitely gave the food flavor, but I have found that many times, less spice is more. For instance, the best ribs I have ever made (the Christmas Ribs from Frozen) were only spiced with salt and pepper. No bbq sauce, no all-spice, just salt and pepper. Also, if you are cooking for people, it is smart to under-spice your food just a bit. Some people prefer less, some prefer more and you can always add table-salt.

 

4. Mix order and mix time is actually important while baking

It all gets mixed into the same goop, so why not just throw in all the ingredients at once? Well, in baking, order makes a difference. If you throw everything in at once, specific flavors don’t get mixed well, and consistency will change. Also, be sure to understand how long you should mix certain things. For example, when baking cookies, if you don’t over-beat the eggs (only beat for ~15 seconds), the cookies will turn out fluffier.

 

5. Even Rats can Make Fancy Food

There seems to be a misconception in society that restaurant food is better than home-cooked food. But just as Gusteau always says “Anyone Can Cook”, and fancy food isn’t too hard lots of the time. It all comes down to the ingredients used. Sometimes, it may be hard to get quality ingredients, but if you’re wanting to make a gourmet meal for someone special, it is worth it. Making fancy meals usually aren’t too much harder than following a recipe for any other meal. But make sure you take care when following the recipe.

 

6. Get a mandolin slicer

I can’t believe I never had one before a couple years ago. They are really cheap (I think I got mine for under $20) and they are so convenient for chopping veggies. With a mandolin slicer, you’re able to get equally sized veggies which is great because they cook more evenly. This is especially important if you want to make ratatouille. The days are gone when I would take a bite of food and have one zucchini be super mushy and another one be too thick and raw. Other important kitchen items would be: a kitchenaid mixer, a nice sharp knife, and a cast-iron pan

 

7. Smell is important

I have always had a horrible sense of smell. However, my sense of smell has been fine-tuned while I’m cooking. I am able to sense when food is done or on the verge of burning and even when different flavors are needed. Some may have this knack natively, but it may take some developing for others like me. It is important to use all your senses while cooking. The more senses you pay attention to while cooking, the better your food will turn out. Next time you’re having a good meal, examine what makes it good with all your senses. Is it golden brown? Does the crust make a nice crackling sound? Does it have a pleasant aroma? What about the texture makes it pleasing? How do the flavors play together in your mouth?

 

8. Presentation is hard, but important

This is definitely the biggest weakness I have. I am terrible at making food, especially baked food, looked good. I am constantly having to get my wife to decorate cakes for me and making dishes look good. While to a blind person, a ugly cake and a pretty cake may taste the same, to everyone else, seeing a badly presented dish creates a bias. Even when I am cooking for myself, if it looks bad, it never tastes as good. Conversely, if it looks amazing, it always tastes better than it should.

 

9.  Dishes suck

Ugh, this has been the bane of my last two years. It is an unavoidable downfall of cooking though, that is, unless you hire a cleaning guy or have an army of well-trained children that will jump at the opportunity to wash a dish.  It is the worst after making a huge meal, to see the piles of dishes in the sink and dreading what has to come next. Some may say that it is best to just suck it up and do the dishes right after dinner. I’m the opposite. I like to give myself a respite before jumping in. The bad part about my way, is that sometimes the dishes get put off for days  at a time.

 

10. Cooking is tiring

Going along with my last point, cooking is physically and mentally draining. There have been times where I have cooked for hours straight. At the end, my feet hurt, I’m sweating and have to fight staying awake when I finally sit down. It sure makes for a great presentation when I have guests over right after. I have gained a huge respect for those that make cooking their living. It is a tiring job, but a well-rewarding job.

 

11. There are so many different types of food out there

One of the greatest things this blog has done for me is opened my eyes to the wonderful world of food. There are so many different types of dishes out there. Many of which I have never heard of, but tasted amazing. There were times where I would be watching a Disney movie and have had no idea what the food shown was. I would do some research and find out that it was a old dish, native to the area of the movie. I would make it and be exposed to flavors I had never experienced before. I suggest that you stop the slow-cooker meat and potatoes, the spaghetti and tacos for a bit and branch out. Try to make some food from times and locations you have never thought of. It will expand your taste-buds and maybe even bring in some new regulars to your weekly meals.

 

12. Passion makes perfect

Above all, the best thing I have learned is that when I am passionate about making a dish good, it usually turns out good. There have been many times where I’ve been tired and kind of phoned-in a meal. When I’ve been apathetic like that, the meals have never turned out great. However, when I am truly excited to make a new dish, I put in the care and attention that is needed to make it great.

 

 

 

Overall, I have loved my experience of food-blogging. It has been very eye-opening and has increased my skill of cooking tenfold. If you have the opportunity to challenge yourself, whether it be make a new recipe a week or even incorporate a new spice into your cooking, I recommend you take it. 

Thank you to all of our followers who have supported us on this journey. We hope to continue baking with you as the years go on!

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Finding Dory – Fish Bites

Quick links: Fish Bites | Verdict

 

I finally got to see Finding Dory. I sadly didn’t get to see it in theaters. Luckily, it was released on Netflix right before doing this post. I thought it was a good sequel, but not better than the first. Sadly, it didn’t show much food at all. 
Its kinda crazy that this is the second to last post before we’re all caught up. Sorry it isn’t a huge post, and Moana won’t be huge either, but it will at least be fun.
Also, if you have enjoyed this blog, be sure to check out our patreon! www.patreon.com/disneymeals

 

Foods Shown

 

Fish Bites

These were consumed by Hank when he and Dory were waiting in the stroller for the signal.

They are one of our favorite type of cracker and they were really fun to make. I did accidentally overcook them a bit and didn’t have a fish-shaped cutter, but other than that, they were great.

Fish Bites
Yields 7
Write a review
Print
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
35 min
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
35 min
Ingredients
  1. 8 ounces, Shredded Sharp Cheddar Cheese
  2. 4 Tablespoons Butter, Cut Into Cubes
  3. 1 cup Flour
  4. ¾ teaspoons Salt
  5. 2 Tablespoons Water
  6. Recommended: A small fish-shaped cookie cutter
Instructions
  1. Pulse everything (except water) together in the food processor until the dough resembles coarse sand.
  2. Pulse in water, 1 tablespoon at a time.
  3. Remove dough from the processor, wrap in plastic, and chill for 20 minutes.
  4. Roll out the dough and cut fish shapes. You can use a toothpick to make the eyes and smile if desired.
  5. Place on a parchment paper lined cookie sheet.
  6. Bake at 350 degrees F for about 12-15 minutes, or until crispy.
DisneyMeals http://disneymeals.me/

 


Will it Help You Find Your Family?

I was amazed of how similar the Fish Bites tasted to Gold Fish crackers. They were delicious and pretty easy to make.

Verdict:

Fish Bites – 8/10

 

Thank You!

A big thank you to our Patrons (http://www.patreon.com/disneymeals)
DeAnna
Barbara
Aly (http://www.dreamstobecome.com)

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Zootopia – Carrots on a Stick, Juice Bar, Jumbo Pop, and Italian Wedding Cake

Quick links: Carrot on a Stick | Juice Bar Juices | Jumbo Pop | Italian Wedding Cake | Verdict   Wow, we’re almost done. This is the third to last Disney movie that we’re going to be doing before we’re caught up. Zootopia is such an amazing movie that touches on so many great and important issues. It also is set in…
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Good Dinosaur – Dinosaur Corn

Quick links: Dino Corn | Verdict

 

Good Dinosaur is by far the most disappointing Disney/Pixar movie for me. I LOVE dinosaurs and have since I was little. When I heard that they were making a movie starring dinosaurs, and answering the question “What if the meteor never hit,” my mind raced with all the awesome possibilities this movie could contain.  And then the movie came out…and it was a sloppy, generic boy and “dog” movie with dinosaurs for some reason. The fact that they were dinosaurs didn’t really even show in the movie. They could have been gorillas and the movie would have been the same. 

That all said, it wasn’t a HORRIBLE movie, but I’d actually say its on par with Home on the Range.

 

Foods Shown

 

Cowboy Dinosaur Corn

So, they don’t actually show the dinosaurs eat their harvest.

But here’s a Good Dinosaur inspired recipe. Cowboy Dinosaur Corn

Cowboy Dinosaur Corn
Write a review
Print
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
30 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
30 min
Ingredients
  1. 4 slices of bacon
  2. 3 tablespoons of unsalted butter
  3. 16 oz Corn
  4. 1/2 c flour
  5. 1 egg
  6. Up to 1/2 cup of whole milk
  7. Fresh cracked black pepper, to taste
  8. Kosher salt to taste
  9. 1/4 tsp chili powder
  10. Fresh herbs, such as parsley, to garnish, optional
Instructions
  1. Cook the bacon in a large skillet.
  2. Remove the bacon, but leave the drippings
  3. Crumble the bacon and set aside.
  4. Mix the eggs, flour, salt, pepper and milk
  5. Mix in the corn until well mixed
  6. Melt the butter in the drippings
  7. Drop in the battered corn and fry until golden brown, flip to fry the other side
  8. Break up the golden corn inside the skillet (it usually will just stick together)
  9. Add the bacon and cook for a bit longer on a lower heat before serving.
DisneyMeals http://disneymeals.me/

 


Will it Make the Movie Better?

The corn was pretty good. Nothing amazing, but a good side.

Verdict:

Dino Corn – 6.8/10

 

Thank You!

A big thank you to our Patrons (http://www.patreon.com/disneymeals)
DeAnna
Barbara
Aly (http://www.dreamstobecome.com)