We hear it all the time, “It’s all about the bling!” Well today, Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend runners who registered for the Disney Cruise Line Castaway Cay Challenge will not be disappointed as we reveal the treasure waiting for them at Disney’s private island in the Bahamas.
The inaugural Castaway Cay Challenge takes place in January 2015. Hundreds of runners are combining the excitement of participating in a marathon weekend event with a four-night cruise aboard the Disney Dream. After running their event at Walt Disney World Resort, challenge participants set sail on a four-night cruise and run the Castaway Cay 5K to earn the inaugural Castaway Cay Challenge finisher medal. They will also enjoy exclusive runDisney activities throughout the cruise, including featured menu items, guest speaker session and special merchandise.
Now some of you might be wondering how can I get one of these amazing medals?
If you are registered for the 2015 Disney Princess Half Marathon you still have the opportunity to claim your treasure. Registered runners can book the four-night cruise aboard the Disney Dream departing Feb. 23 from Port Canaveral, and participate in the Castaway Cay Challenge.
It’s the perfect way to extend your family trip or your ultimate girls weekend and keep the celebration going for four more nights. In addition to the Castaway Cay 5K and the Castaway Cay Challenge finisher medal, runners can purchase a trip to Senses Spa for a post-race massage, a steam bath or sauna in the Rainforest room. Continue to relax by the fresh water pools, jetted hot tubs or take an exciting ride on The AquaDuck, a thrilling transparent tube water coaster that actually goes off the side of the ship. End your days with the girls enjoying a Broadway-style show, or dancing and celebrating the night away in one of several nightclubs.
For more information and to register for the Disney Princess Weekend Castaway Cay Challenge, visit runDisney.com.
Fall is here – the season for California apples – and elegant Carthay Circle Restaurant at Disney California Adventure park is taking advantage of the bounty with this beautiful Harvest Apple Salad, which also includes the richness of duck confit to match the tart, sweet apples.
Confit (pronounced con-fee) may sound daunting, but it’s basically a French term for slowly roasting the duck while it’s submerged in liquid – in this recipe it’s duck fat and olive oil. This is one of those recipes that takes time, but the reward is a rich, bright salad that’s perfect for a dinner party.
In case you can’t get to the beautiful Carthay Circle Restaurant, inside the detailed re-creation of the iconic Carthay Circle Theatre at Disney California Adventure park, Chef Francisco Origel shows us how it’s done. This seasonal recipe is just one of the many California-inspired dishes on the menu.
Harvest Apple Salad with Crispy Duck Confit
- 4 skin-on, bone-in duck legs
- Coarse salt freshly ground black pepper
- 2 sprigs fresh thyme, 3 dried bay leaves
- Olive oil for covering duck in roasting pan
- 1/3 cup fresh apple cider
- 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1/4 cup honey mustard or Dijon mustard
- 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh parsley
- 1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
- Coarse salt, freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 4 gala apples, peeled, cored, and cut into 6 wedges per apple
- 4 tablespoons melted butter
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 4 granny smith apples, peeled, cored, and cut into 1/4-inch-wide sticks
- 6 cups thinly sliced kale
- 6 cups thinly sliced frisée lettuce
- 10 breakfast radishes, thinly sliced
For duck confit:
- Generously salt and pepper duck legs and set aside at room temperature for 1 hour.
Prick skin of duck legs all over with a needle or a small, sharp knife, being careful not to pierce the meat. Preheat oven to 300°F.
- Heat skillet over medium-high heat and sear duck legs until golden on both sides. Place in a baking dish just large enough to fit all 6 legs and cover with rendered duck fat from skillet. Add thyme, bay leaves, and enough olive oil to submerge duck.
- Place in oven, uncovered, and bake 2 hours. Remove from oven and allow to cool in fat to room temperature.
- Remove duck legs from fat; remove meat from bones, discarding bones; pull meat into shreds.
- Place shredded meat in a medium skillet over medium-high heat; cook just until duck is crispy. Set aside.
- Place apple cider and vinegar in a small saucepan over high heat. Bring to a boil and reduce by half, about 8 to 10 minutes. Set aside to cool completely.
- Combine reduced apple cider-vinegar and mustard in blender; blend until combined. With blender on medium speed, slowly stream in olive oil.
- Removed from blender and place in bowl; stir in thyme and parsley. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Smear cold butter in bottom of large skillet. Sprinkle with brown sugar. Add apples slices and turn on heat to medium-high. As butter begins to melt and sugar caramelizes, turn apples to brown both sides. Add more butter if necessary; cook apples until tender, about 8 to 10 minutes, turning often. Remove from heat and set aside.
- Combine kale, frisée, radishes, and gala apple sticks in a large bowl, tossing to combine. Add shredded duck.
- Add just enough dressing to coat, tossing to combine. Serve immediately with caramelized apple slices.
Living in Florida, fall is my favorite time of year. Temperatures start to dip, the humidity (sort of) takes a break and autumn is in the air. Fall has already arrived here at Downtown Disney – and I know this because I’m surrounded by pumpkin-tinged treats. See a few of my top picks below:
- Pumpkin Spice Caramel Squares from Ghirardelli – you can only find these bites of amazingness in September and October, so stock up while you can. My fellow Disney Parks Blog author Jennifer Fickley-Baker introduced me to these mouth-watering morsels and I love/hate her for it!
- Pumpkin Shampoo and Conditioner Bars from Basin – with potassium, alpha-carotene, zinc, beta-carotene and lutein, they make your hair strong, soft and silky – a perfect complement to any Halloween costume you may be considering. (Rumor has it Basin also has a “Pumpkin Patch” soap, too. So fun.)
- Pumpkin Spice Latte from Starbucks – this caffeinated favorite needs no explanation; my motto: once you’ve taken your first sip of the season, cute boots, bulky sweaters and festive scarves are fair game, no matter what the thermometer reads.
- Sweet Treats from Goofy’s Candy Company and Candy Cauldron – luckily, we’ve got eight weeks to sample the latest concoctions from my go-to candy shops. First up? Pumpkin fudge. (Review: Amazing.)
Keep up with the latest seasonal offerings from Downtown Disney via our Twitter handle, @WDWDowntown. In the meantime, tell me which pumpkin product you can’t wait to try in the comments below.
Happy fall, y’all! (I’m originally from Georgia, so I can say that.)
Wondering what merchandise events are headed your way this October at the Walt Disney World Resort? Take a look!
It’s the details that make you feel like you’re in another world at a Disney Park, and horticulture plays a huge role in creating that feeling. When you’re walking through the untamed jungles of Adventureland in Disneyland park, you may notice the towering bamboo plants near Tarzan’s Treehouse. As you’re strolling through the wooded mountains of Grizzly Peak at Disney California Adventure park, you see the colorful California foliage. These are some of the magical details created every season by the Disneyland Resort Horticulture team. Here are some things you might not know about horticulture at the Disneyland Resort:
The band Hanson (“I Will Come to You”) will take to the stage tonight at the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival in the event’s Eat to the Beat concert series.
Andrae Gill, Adventures by Disney
posted on September 29th, 2014 by
With more than two-dozen incredible destinations to choose from, Adventures by Disney allows you to see the world while finding your inner foodie. From creating traditional svele pancakes in Norway and crafting handmade pasta and pizza in Italy to harvesting rice in Laos or grape stomping in Greece, you can immerse yourself in local flavor and cuisine no matter which itinerary you choose.
Over the weekend, we celebrated a special day for the Disney Parks Blog – our five year anniversary. It’s an exciting milestone for us that would not have been possible without your consistent support and participation during the years.
Just wait until you see what merchandise events we have headed your way this October at the Disneyland Resort!
The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror 10-Miler Weekend is returning soon to Walt Disney World Resort. This weekend of runDisney events takes place on October 3-4, and includes a nighttime Disney Villain Hollywood Bash at Disney’s Hollywood Studios following the 10-miler on Saturday. If there was a race I’d like to run, this would be the one due to my love of all things Tower of Terror. The merchandise events development team recently shared with me some of the merchandise create for this event which I thought you’d like to see.