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The Osborne Family Spectacle of Dancing Lights at Disney's Hollywood Studios

Tastes From Around the Globe at Epcot Holidays Around the World November 28 – December 30

posted on November 10th, 2014 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer


It’s the most wonderful time of the year: Holidays Around the World at Epcot where the World Showcase countries reflect the seasonal traditions – including tastes of homelands far, far away.

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Starting our stroll at Promenade Refreshments, try the Turkey Waffle – a filling sweet potato waffle with roast turkey and green bean casserole (all-in-one holiday dinner). Then head to Canada for pecan-maple bark, a nod to our Northern neighbor’s bounteous maple sugar production. Next door in the United Kingdom, it’s hot applejack cider with whiskey and a blend of seasonal spices – sip while you listen to stories of Father Christmas.

France sweetly celebrates with the classic bûche de noël au chocolate (chocolate cake shaped like a log) at Les Halles Boulangerie Patisserie, and glace au apin d’epices (gingerbread ice cream) at L’Artisan des Glaces.

Japan adds teriyaki chicken karaage, a Japanese version of crispy fried chicken bites with teriyaki sauce, at Kabuki Cafe, and you can hear the story of the hollow-round Daruma doll and the Japanese customs of the New Year.

Up next, American Adventure, with freshly baked gingerbread men, chocolate chunk cookies and sugar cookies, hot chocolate, hot apple cider and peppermint bark at the Sugar and Spice Holiday Bakery (perfect snacks for the Candlelight Processional). Look for Santa and Mrs. Claus, along with Hanukkah and Kwanzaa celebrations throughout the holidays, plus our favorite Voices of Liberty Dickens Carolers.

At Italy you can meet La Befana, the kind-hearted witch who arrives on the eve of the Epiphany to grant gifts to good children – like panettone, the sweet bread loaf served at the Gelato kiosk, along with sweet moscato wine and ciocolata calda (hot chocolate).

In Germany, listen as Helga tells the story of the first Christmas tree as you nibble on stollen fruit cake and sip glühwein (hot spiced wine).

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Learn about the Christmas gnome in Norway and indulge in the traditional rice cream at Kringla Bakeri Og Kafe (so popular they leave it on the menu year-round).

Then take another lap around the World Showcase Lagoon to burn all those calories – ‘tis the season!

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Authentic Tastes for Disney ¡Viva Navidad! at Disney California Adventure Park

posted on November 10th, 2014 by Rachel Brent, Food & Beverage Marketing Communications Coordinator


¡Saludos Amigos!

Disney ¡Viva Navidad! is returning to Disney California Adventure park later this week, but you can get a taste of the celebration now. Chefs at Paradise Garden Grill are cooking up authentic tastes inspired by Latino culture with a special Disney ¡Viva Navidad! menu.

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Entrées:

  • Torta al Pastor – Fresh made telera bread with al pastor pork, chorizo beans, lettuce, avocado mash, and crema served with tortilla chips and salsa
  • Sopes De Barbacoa – Sopes with barbacoa, chorizo beans, cabbage, cotija cheese, and crema served with achiote rice, tortilla chips and salsa
  • Street-style Tacos – Three barbacoa soft corn tacos garnished with cilantro and onion served with achiote rice, tortilla chips and salsa
  • Ceviche – Fresh fish and shrimp marinated in citrus juices, cilantro, onions, and chiles served with a side of tortilla chips and salsa
  • Chicken Mole – Roasted chicken topped with chocolate-infused smoked chili sauce with achiote rice, corn salad and a side of tortillas
  • House-made Pozole – Mild chile and pork stew with hominy and oregano served with tortilla chips

Desserts:

  • Buñuelos with Cajeta – Two golden-fried flour tortillas dusted with cinnamon sugar, served with a side of cajeta
  • Sweet Tamales – A pair of traditionally-made sweet tamales with pineapple and golden raisins
  • Champurrado – Traditional Christmas-time Mexican hot chocolate made with chocolate, milk and cornmeal

Kids Meals:

  • Kids’ Cheese Quesadilla – A whole-wheat tortilla with melted cheese, carrots, sliced apples, and a choice of small low fat milk or small Dasani water
  • Kids’ Power Pack – Includes Dannon Danimals yogurt, a petite banana, whole-grain “fish” crackers, carrots, sliced apples, and a choice of small low fat milk or small Dasani water

Featured ¡Viva Navidad! Beverages:

  • Red Sangria
  • Corona
  • Negra Modelo

Tip: The al fresco seating area of Paradise Garden Grill is the perfect place to enjoy a meal while taking in all the sights and sounds of Disney ¡Viva Navidad!

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Comfort Food Hidden Gems at Walt Disney World Resort

posted on November 10th, 2014 by Rachel Brent, Food & Beverage Marketing Communications Coordinator


As the weather cools down, I begin to crave comfort food. We all have a favorite food that is as satisfying as it is nostalgic—Walt Disney himself adored chili with beans. Some of the best memories are made around the dinner table, and I can’t think of a better way to make memories with family than sharing comfort food at Walt Disney World Resort. Here are a few of my favorite tastes of home from across property:

Chicken Pot Pie from Columbia Harbour House at Magic Kingdom Park Seafood Mac & Cheese from Columbia Harbour House at Magic Kingdom Park

From my childhood in Wisconsin, the first thing that comes to mind when I think of comfort food is ooey-gooey macaroni and cheese. At Columbia Harbor House in Magic Kingdom Park, they’ve upped the ante at dinnertime by adding lobster and shrimp to their macaroni and cheese. Also on the dinner menu is the piping hot chicken pot pie, filled with tender white-meat chicken, vegetables and gravy and topped with crunchy breadcrumbs.

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Just a monorail ride away is Contempo Café at Disney’s Contemporary Resort, which offers a savory beef pot roast with seasonal vegetables, mashed potatoes and gravy. Available only at dinner, it’s just like mom used to make. Contempo Café also recently added some new flatbread pizzas to their menu. My pick would have to be the smoked pulled pork flatbread, topped with barbecue sauce, Monterey Jack cheese and vegetable-style slaw.

Chicken and Waffles from ESPN Club BBQ Grilled Cheese Sandwich from ESPN Club

Head over to ESPN Club at Disney’s BoardWalk for chicken and waffles with a kick—jalapeno-cornmeal waffles topped with buttermilk fried chicken and Angry Maple chicken gravy. Brand new on the menu is a barbecue pulled pork grilled cheese sandwich served on thick-cut brioche. Trust me, it’s as good as it sounds.

Loaded Baked Potato

Sassagoula Floatworks and Food Factory at Disney’s Port Orleans Resort – French Quarter is serving up four new loaded baked potato meals, each served with a side of soup or salad. Choose from a baked potato topped with one of the following: barbecued pork; broccoli, cheddar, and bacon; chili and cheese; or chicken, bacon, and cheddar. Whichever you choose, you can’t go wrong.

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Comfort food isn’t just for dinner. At Kusafiri Bakery in Disney’s Animal Kingdom, you’ll find this Colossal Mickey-shaped cinnamon roll, which can easily serve two. Drizzled with caramel sauce and icing, to share or not to share is the only question you’ll have.

What’s your favorite Disney Parks food to eat when the weather cools?

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Filed: Disney Dining, Disney's Animal Kingdom, Hotels & Resorts, Magic Kingdom, Walt Disney World Resort

Honey Lemon’s Honeybee Cupcakes Inspired by Hungry Bear Restaurant at Disneyland Park

posted on November 7th, 2014 by Rachel Brent, Food & Beverage Marketing Communications Coordinator


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Everyone is buzzing about the heartwarming adventure film, “Big Hero 6,” in theaters today. To celebrate, we created a series of “Big Hero 6” themed recipes you’ll see over the next few weeks inspired by Walt Disney Parks and Resorts.

Today, we’re excited to share Honey Lemon’s Honeybee Cupcakes, inspired by Hungry Bear Restaurant in Disneyland park. Whether you choose to decorate your cupcakes to look like Baymax or with bumblebees — bee-lieve me, they make the perfect post-movie treat.

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New Viewing Options Coming to ‘Fantasmic!’ at Disneyland Park

posted on November 6th, 2014 by Erin Glover, Social Media Director, Disneyland Resort


Disneyland park guests will be able to experience the popular nighttime spectacular “Fantasmic!” with new viewing options beginning December 12. Similar to the options for “World of Color” at Disney California Adventure park, “Fantasmic!” will feature reserved and stand-by viewing as well as several all-new dining packages. This new reserved viewing will give guests more time to enjoy other entertainment and attractions across the Disneyland Resort.

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Beginning December 12, a “Fantasmic!” FASTPASS will be required to gain access to the show’s reserved viewing space. Beginning at Disneyland park opening, “Fantasmic!” FASTPASS distribution will take place along Big Thunder Trail in Frontierland. They will be distributed on a first-come, first-served basis until one hour prior to show time or while supplies last, whichever comes first. Each “Fantasmic!” FASTPASS will indicate the assigned showtime, suggested return time and assigned viewing section. Also, a non-ticketed area will be available in the “Fantasmic!” viewing area each night for limited stand-by viewing on a first-come, first-served basis.

Guests will also have the option to receive a “Fantasmic!” FASTPASS with the purchase of new “Fantasmic!” dining packages, including dinner at Blue Bayou Restaurant, special table-service seating at River Belle Terrace, a new dessert party at Hungry Bear Restaurant, on-the-go options and more. Check out all of the new “Fantasmic!” dining packages here.

Reservations for December 12 and beyond will be available for booking beginning November 12. Space is limited for these experiences, so advance reservations are recommended online at disneyland.com or by calling 714-781-DINE (714-781-3463).

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Here’s a First Look at Breakfast Menu for New Trattoria al Forno Opening in December at Disney’s BoardWalk

posted on November 6th, 2014 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer


Waffles with espresso-mascarpone cream … poached eggs with fennel sausage, Parmesan and tomato gravy over soft polenta … the breakfast menu at the new Trattoria al Forno offers American favorites along with some classic Italian tastes. Opening day is December 18.

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“Fresh ingredients are key,” says Chef Dee Foundoukis. You can get a classic American breakfast with bacon and eggs, but we wanted to offer some Italian tastes, too.” Like the frittata and the scrambled eggs with fresh mozzarella, tomatoes and basil. (Our favorite is the cured Italian meats with tomatoes, hard-boiled egg and cheese with fonduta, a warm, cheesy sauce for dipping bread.)

The spacious, family-friendly dining room is inspired by farms in the Italian countryside, with a big open kitchen and the smell of wood burning in the oven. It’s a terrific spot to fuel up for a day in the theme parks.

Trattoria al Forno will be open 7:30-11 a.m. for breakfast, 5-10 p.m. for dinner, and accepts the Disney Dining Plan. For reservations, call 407-WDW-DINE or www.disneyworld.com/dine.

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Get a Taste of Disney’s ‘Big Hero 6’ at Disneyland Resort

posted on November 5th, 2014 by Rachel Brent, Food & Beverage Marketing Communications Coordinator


Hello, I am Rachel, your personal dining companion. Your scan shows that your ghrelin levels are high and salivation glands are active. Diagnosis: hunger. Here are some offerings that can improve this condition:

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Inspired by the streets of San Fransokyo, the city where Disney’s “Big Hero 6” takes place, try the teriyaki street dog at Award Wieners in Disney California Adventure park. This teriyaki-glazed all-beef hot dog is served on a garlic chive roll, topped with wasabi mayonnaise, and ginger, carrot and cucumber slaw. There’s also a deliciously refreshing coconut milk tea, served cold with coconut and lychee flavors. These limited-time offerings are as unique as they are tasty.

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If you love Baymax as much as I do, I suggest getting your drink in the Baymax souvenir sipper; the most caring beverage companion in San Fransokyo. The Baymax Sipper will be available at Tangaroa Terrace, Tomorrowland Terrace, Tomorrowland Lemonade Cart and Award Wieners.

These items will only be around for a limited time, starting on Friday, November 7, when Disney’s “Big Hero 6” hits theaters.

Baymax is now also available at Disney’s Hollywood Studios at Walt Disney World Resort. The sipper is sold at ABC Commissary, Backlot Express, Rosie’s All American Café, Peevy’s, and at popcorn carts and outdoor kiosks throughout the park.

Are you satisfied with your care?

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Filed: Disney California Adventure Park, Disney Dining, Disneyland Park, Disneyland Resort, Hotels & Resorts

Recipe Just in Time for Holidays from The Hollywood Brown Derby Restaurant at Disney’s Hollywood Studios

posted on November 5th, 2014 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer


‘Tis the season for parties and sharing indulgent bites, from savory to sweet. This is one of our favorites from The Hollywood Brown Derby Restaurant at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, where Pastry Chef Andreas Born works his magic with chocolate, toffee and bananas – a trifecta of deliciousness.

The Hollywood Brown Derby is tops for dining at the theme park, with an all-day menu featuring original creations such as blue lump crab springs rolls, Scotch maple-glazed Loch Duart Salmon and pan-seared, coriander-crusted black grouper. But you can also get a simple grilled burger (it just happens to be Wagyu beef and topped with a fried egg) and the ever-classic Cobb Salad, made from the same recipe as the original in Hollywood, California.

Watch Chef Andreas create this beautiful and tasty sweet finish – he tops with fancy bites, but you can rest assured it’s just as delicious without. It take a little time to make the mousse, but the result is worth it.

For reservations at The Hollywood Brown Derby Restaurant, call 407-WDW-DINE or visit disneyworld.com.

Banana Toffee Mousse on Cocoa Crunch
Serves 12

  • 1 cup white chocolate chips
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon powdered gelatin
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 1/2 medium bananas, peeled and mashed
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 12 tablespoons crushed chocolate cookies
  • 1/2 cup chocolate-covered toffee pieces
  1. Place white chocolate chips in a heatproof bowl set over a small saucepan of simmering water, making sure bottom of bowl does not touch water. Melt chocolate, stirring frequently. Remove from heat and set aside.
  2. Place eggs, egg yolks, and sugar in double boiler over simmering water; whisk for 4 minutes and remove from heat.
  3. Sprinkle gelatin over hot water in a small bowl and set aside for 5 minutes. Microwave 10 seconds, stirring gelatin until melted. Set aside.
  4. Beat eggs and sugar together in the bowl of an electric mixer until fluffy. Stir in gelatin mixture, then mashed bananas. Fold in melted white chocolate.
  5. Whip heavy cream to soft peaks in a separate large bowl. Gently fold whipped cream into banana mixture to create mousse. Divide mixture in half.
  6. Spoon 1 tablespoon chocolate cookie crumbs in the bottom of 12 1/2-cup ramekins. Evenly top each with half of mousse. Add thin layer of toffee pieces. Repeat process with remaining mousse.
  7. Refrigerate at least 2 hours before serving.
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Hearty Pozole Soup, the Perfect Fall Supper from Paradise Garden Grill at Disney California Adventure Park

posted on November 4th, 2014 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer


At Disneyland and Walt Disney World Resorts, we rejoice in fall’s dip in temperature – nothing dramatic, but the perfect excuse to bring out the soup recipes.

Paradise Garden Grill is offering this classic Mexican soup as part of Disney ¡Viva Navidad! at Disney California Adventure park. It is also offered at Rancho Del Zocalo Restaurante in Disneyland park on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. Since it’s not always there, here’s the recipe for you to try at home. And it’s even better the second day. Pozole (or posole) is a hearty hybrid of soup and stew with chewy hominy and tender pork – the fresh garnishes add crunch and freshness.

Pozole
Serves 8 to 10

  • 2 pounds pork shoulder, cut into 1- to 1 1/2-inch cubes
  • 6 garlic cloves, peeled, and split lengthwise
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 large yellow onion, diced
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 tablespoons coarse salt, divided
  • 6 dried Guajillo chiles
  • 2 dried ancho or New Mexico chiles
  • 1/2 medium sweet onion, cut into large pieces
  • 3 medium or 2 large plum tomatoes, cut in half lengthwise and cored
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon Mexican oregano
  • 1 (15-ounce) can white hominy, drained and rinsed

Garnishes

  • 1/2 small head green cabbage, finely shredded
  • 6 radishes, sliced thinly
  • 3 limes, quartered
  • 1 bunch fresh cilantro, large stems removed, leaves roughly chopped
  • 1/2 medium onion, finely diced
  1. Rinse diced pork under cold water until water runs clear. Transfer pork to a large stock pot over medium-high heat; add 8 cups cold water. Bring to a simmer; skim off and discard foam and solids that float to surface.
  2. Stir in garlic, bay leaves, onion, cumin, and 1 tablespoon salt. Turn heat to medium to keep soup at a light simmer. Cover and simmer 90 minutes (do not boil). Periodically skim foam from surface.
  3. Meanwhile, remove and discard stems, seeds, and large veins from dried chiles. Break into large pieces in a medium saucepan and add 3 cups water. Top with sweet onion, tomatoes, and garlic cloves, keeping chiles submerged. Cover and simmer 10 minutes, then remove from heat and set aside 15 to 20 minutes.
  4. Working in 2 batches, puree chile mixture with cooking liquid in a blender until smooth. Pour mixture through a fine-mesh sieve into soup pot, pressing solids with back of spoon to extract liquid.
  5. Simmer soup for 90 minutes, then stir in black pepper, oregano, and hominy. Taste and season with additional salt, if desired.
  6. Remove a piece of pork and taste for doneness. If meat is not tender, simmer 15 to 20 minutes more.
  7. Serve hot soup with garnishes for topping.
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Celebrate Thanksgiving at Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa

posted on November 3rd, 2014 by Tyler Slater, Public Relations Manager, Disney Destinations


Family and food are two of the best things to be thankful for this Thanksgiving season, and what better way to celebrate than on a vacation to Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa? In fact, Sunset Magazine recently voted Aulani as one of the “top ten warm-weather Thanksgiving getaways.” So envision your ‘ohana spending November 27 floating down the Waikolohe Stream or exploring the Menehune Adventure Trail and then enjoying a delicious array of food and fun at the Aulani Thanksgiving Feast.

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The Kaiona Ballroom will be transformed into a celebratory feast full of Hawaiian holiday traditions sprinkled with Disney magic. You’ll enjoy familiar Thanksgiving favorites … but with an island twist. For example, start with the heirloom tomato salad with Maui onion and micro basil and then follow that scrumptious starter with the longboard-braised boneless beef short ribs. Of course, no Thanksgiving meal is complete without turkey or ham – so be sure not to miss the guava- and pineapple-glazed ham and roasted turkey with sage stuffing, giblet gravy, and fresh cranberry-orange chutney. Also, live music from local entertainers will be featured, as well as a special Disney character greeting experiences exclusively for Aulani Thanksgiving Feast guests!

This “pumpkin pie” perfect feast will have two seatings: the first seating is from 4-6 p.m. and the second seating is from 6:30-8:30 p.m. The Aulani Thanksgiving Feast costs $84.99 for guests ages 10 and up; $42.99 for keiki ages 3 to 9. Please keep in mind that this event has limited seating, so be sure to call (808) 674-6200 to book your reservation today. Find more information and more menu details here.

What are you most thankful for this Thanksgiving? Tell us in the comments below!

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