A few weeks ago my friend Haley, who writes one of my favorite blogs, Cheap Recipe Blog, emailed me and asked if I'd like to join in on a little event she was hosting for the Academy Awards. She was looking for food bloggers who like movies, to write a blog post with a recipe that represented an Academy Award Best Picture nominated film that she would assign. Seeing that I am an avid movie watcher, I of course agreed to join in.
Now I have to be honest here and say that I believe that this was one of the most lackluster years for movies in a very long while. Usually I try to see every Best Picture nominee so I feel prepared for awards season, but not this year. This year I believe that some of the movies were nominated not because they were really great, but just because there wasn't anything else to nominate.
When Haley assigned Whiplash to me as my movie, I accepted it like a big girl. I hadn't seen it and didn't plan to because it just didn't appeal to me. I was kind of hoping for The Theory of Everything or Imitation Game because I had seen them both and they were set in the UK. I had a ton of English recipes and that would have been a walk in the park for me. Even Birdman would have been good, not because I loved the movie, but I had already seen it and between the name and the Broadway setting, I felt the food related possibilities were endless.
So the next Sunday I found myself in a darkened theater with 100 or so other movie watchers viewing this "in your face" movie about a talented drummer during his freshman year at a prestigious music school. To say he is challenged by the conductor of a competitive performance ensemble, is an understatement. He is pushed, pulled and twisted inside out by this sadistic instructor along with everyone else who comes near their practice room.
Lest you think that I hated this movie, I have to say that I was entertained and did appreciate the twist at the end and found the performances by the main characters dynamic, moving and at times infuriating. I left this movie with the wheels in my head spinning. So thanks Haley, you made me try something new that I would never have seen without your organizing this blogger event.
Pairing this movie up with a recipe really turned our to be easier than I thought because like most college students, the lead character in Whiplash loves the pizza at a nearby pizzeria. Since there are a couple of scenes here , I thought that pizza would be a perfect choice.
I don't remember if he ever mentioned what his favorite flavor was, but I wanted to do something a bit more sophisticated than your average cheese or pepperoni pizza. I finally decided on potato, bacon and rosemary that I believe would be a great nibble for an awards night gathering. It is easy, just a little bit dressed up, and most of all, golden to fit the theme of the night. I hope you enjoy it.
If you'd like a little more inspiration for an Academy Awards gathering of your own, please visit the other participants of this event for their recipes. Here is a list with links to their blog posts:
Golden Potato Bacon and Rosemary Pizza
1 pound purchased or homemade pizza dough
2 small to medium size Yukon Gold potatoes, very thinly sliced
6 slices bacon, sliced into thin strips across and fried until almost crispy
1/2 small sweet yellow onion, thinly sliced across then cut in quarters
1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, chopped
1 clove garlic, crushed
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup Italian blend cheese
1 cup Asiago cheese, grated
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Place pizza dough in the center of a pizza pan or on a pizza peel that has been liberally dusted with corn meal or flour. Stretch dough into a 12" round. Set aside.
In a large bowl combine the potatoes, cooked bacon, onion, rosemary, garlic, red pepper flakes, olive oil and salt and pepper to taste. Toss well to coat.
Spread potato mixture evenly over the dough. Sprinkle both cheeses over the top.
Place in the preheated oven and bake until golden brown, about 20 minutes.
Cool for 5 minutes before slicing.