What is the other occasion? If you’re looking for an excuse to have one last winter party, the 83rd annual Academy Awards will air on Sunday, February 27. If you want to get at all fancy about it, mail invitations right away asking guests to RSVP by February 18.
You can work the Oscar theme, if you like, but the main thing is the food. Start with a variety of hot and cold hors d’oeuvres, allowing 6 pieces per person. Some ideas: Boursin cheese-stuffed snow peas, curried chicken salad in phyllo cups, pâte à choux cheese puffs, phyllo-wrapped asparagus rolls. Or just set out some pâté and dips, like hummus or baba ghanoush.
Have one buffet of nibbles to be replenished throughout the evening and another of “real” food to be set out from 6 to 8 o’clock. Make it “lap food” that requires nothing more than a fork. Display desserts from 7 o’clock to the end of the party. In honor of my Oscar picks, I might make my individual trifles, which are quite elegant. Going along with the idea of individual desserts, maybe I'll make some cupcakes as well. Carrot, I think.
1 cup organic canola oil
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Put 2½-inch paper bake cups in two standard muffin tins. In small bowl, whisk together flour, soda, cinnamon and salt. In another small bowl, stir a tablespoon of flour mixture into chopped nuts and currants to coat and separate.
4 Immediately remove from pans and cool on wire rack for an hour. They must be thoroughly cool before frosting.
5 In bowl of stand mixer, or with a hand mixer, cream together the cream cheese, butter, vanilla extract and salt. Gradually add powdered sugar (no need to sift) and mix until thoroughly combined, adding milk at the end. With a pastry bag fitted with a 2D (sometimes I use a 1M) tip, pipe frosting on cupcakes in a classic swirl.