Walt Disney World & World Travels

Posts Tagged ‘Epcot

If you’re like me, you don’t like to rush out of the park as soon as the fireworks are over.  Sometimes I like to eat late or would love to relax with a refreshing beverage while waiting for the crowds to clear out.  Disney thinks there may be others like me and are running a trial of an “extra hour” program at a few Epcot restaurants.  From March 28 through April 10 you can book an “extra hour” table at Coral Reef, Garden Grill or Le Cellier.  Sit and enjoy a meal, cocktail or dessert while the crowds leave.

I think it’s a great idea, let me know what you think and if you book it.   By the way if you stop at Le Cellier for dessert; the maple creme brulee is a favorite among half of my family while the chocolate lovers (me) highly recommend the chocolate whiskey cake.

I know a lot of people have been waiting for TRON: Legacy (I’m married to one of them) and while we have to wait until December for the movie, the Monorail to Epcot is bringing a bit of it to life.

Is it just me or does this winter feel like it is dragging on forever!   We’ve had snow, ice & rain and a whole bunch of gray blechy skies.  It was really starting to get me down, but I decided a little touch of Disney would perk me up; so I planned a meal perfect for the weather and for my mood.  So on a cold winters day, my husband and I spent the afternoon making one of our favorite meals: Le Cellier’s  Canadian Cheddar Cheese Soup and pretzel bread!  The soup recipe we got from Disney, the pretzel bread was from a recipe we found while doing some research.  Disney actually buys the breadsticks from a Canadian bakery, so they don’t have the recipe for them.  Don’t worry, this one is really good!

Le Cellier’s Canadian Cheddar Cheese Soup

serves 10
1/2 pound of bacon, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1 medium red onion cut into 1/4 inch pieces
3 celery ribs, cut into 1/4 inch pieces
4 TBSP butter
1 cup all-purpose flour
3 cups chicken stock
4 cups milk
1 pound grated white cheddar cheese
1 TBSP Tabasco sauce
1 TBSP Worcestershire sauce
Coarse salt, freshly gound pepper to taste
1/2 cup warm beer
chopped scallions or chives for garnish

1. In a 4 or 5 quart Dutch oven, cook the bacon, stirring over medium heat for about 5 minutes or until lightly browned.
2. Add the red onion, celery, and butter and saute until the onion has softened, about 5 minutes.
3. Add the flour and cook, stirring constantly, for about 4 minutes over medium heat. Whhisk in the chicken stock and bring to a boil for 1 minute. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
4. Add the milk and continue to simmer for 15 minutes. Do not boil after you add the milk.
5. Remove from the heat and stir in the cheese, Tabasco sauce, Worcestershire sauce, slat & pepper until the cheese is melted and the soup is smooth. Stir in warm beer. If the soup is too thick, thin with some warm milk.
6. Serve the soup hot, garnished with chopped scallions or chives.

Pretzel Breadsticks
2 1/4 Tsp dry yeast
1 1/4 cups warm water
3 1/4 cups bread flour
2 tsps salt
1/4 cup butter, softened

3 TBSP baking soda
2 quarts water
1 large egg yolk mixed with a TBSP or 2 of water
coarse salt

In a small bowl, whick the yeast and 1/4 cup of the water until smooth. In the bowl of a heavy duty mixer fitted with the dough hook, combine the remaining 1 cup water, bread flour, yeast mixture, salt & butter. Mix at slow speed for 3 minutes, scraping down the sides o te bowl and the hook as necessary and the mixture blends evenly. when the ingredients are well combined, increase the speed to high and continue mixing and occasionally scrapping until the dough is firm and elastic (about 8 minutes). If the mixture is too firm for the mixer to handle, finish kneading it by hand. Turn the ball of dough out onto a lightly flowered work surfasce and let rest for 5 minutes, loosely covered with a kitchen towel. Line a baking sheet that will fit in your freezer with parchment paper and set aside. Cut dough into 8 equal pieces. Roll each into a long cylinder about 1 inch in diameter. With the palms of your hands, roll each cylinder into a rope about 12 inches long of even thickness. Place on the prepared baking sheet.

When dough is all shaped into sticks, let it sit in a very warm, moist place to rise until almost doubled in size (about 30-50 minutes). Freeze the rised pretzel dough uncovered on the baking sheet for at least 2 hours and up to 24 hours. The dough should be frozen solid.

Before removing the pretzels from the freezer, combine the baking soda and water in a large sauce pan and bring it to a simmer. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Remove pan from the freezer and using a large flat skimmer, dip each frozen pretzel stick in simmering water for about 3 seconds, letting the excess water drain before returning it to the baking sheet. Brush the pretzels with the egg & water mixture, then sprinkle with coarse salt. Immediately place the baking sheet in the hot oven. Bake for 10 minutes, then lower oven temperature to 375 degrees and bake for 8-12 minutes more.

A few tips on the recipes:  for the soup, chop the bacon and veggies smaller and use a hand blender right before adding the cheese to make the soup extra smooth.  For the breadsticks, we’ve found making more of them, but shorter works better.  They fit in the pot better and on the cookie sheet easier.

If you need a little winter pick me up, make this meal; open up a Molson’s or Labatt’s and imagine that you’re at Epcot.

Still miserable about the weather?  Call me and we’ll plan your Disney trip!

Disney and pizza.  If you’re like me, those two things have never gone well together.  The crust has never been right and the sauce, blech.   I’ve never liked the park or resort pizzas.

A new 300 seat restaurant is under construction in the Italy pavilion.  Wood fired pizzas and dough made with water similar to the water back in Naples.  I hope it tastes as good as it sounds!  There is no name for the restaurant yet, but it is expected to open in Fall 2010.  The new restaurant will be owned and operated by the Patina Restaurant Group.  They also own Naples 45 on Park Ave in NY and Naples Ristorante e Napolini in Downtown Disney at Disneyland.

A couple of Disney Dining news items caught my eye that I wanted to pass on to everyone else.

If you’re a “foodie”, this will make you drool: Victoria and Albert’s at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort and Spa has a new website.  Not only is there information about the restaurant, Chef  Scott Hunnel, the dining room, etc; there’s food porn & examples of the menus.  YUM!

V & A’s dining menu Chefs Table & Queen Victoria’s Room menu

The other interesting news I saw was on The Disney Food Blog (great site, if you haven’t seen it).  The Refreshment Port at Epcot – you know the one; used to serve McDonalds fries & chicken nuggets.  They have a new menu, one seemingly inspired by the International Food & Wine Festival.  The new menu features Latin foods like empanadas, tostones & Dulche de leche ice cream sundaes as well as Frozen Bacardi Mojitos.  Check out the story & pictures of the menu board at The Disney Food Blog.

Happy eating!

 

This is a small sample of what you will see and hear around Disney World during the Holiday Season.   I hope that you enjoy it as much as I do! 

 Here are some pictures from my previous Disney Holiday Vacations with some of my favorite events & decorations including the gingerbread carousel at Disney’s Beach Club, the gingerbread house at the Grand Floridian, Osborne Family Lights, Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party, and the Candlelight Processional with celebrity narrator Neil Patrick Harris.


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