Most of us can't be at a Food Network party like this one.

For Oscar Night, Ro Howe, chef-owner of Barraud Caterers, in New York, offers a menu of munchables that will keep you fixed on the stars, not continually ducking out to the kitchen.—Ed.

No matter what you might think, the Oscars is a sporting event. How else would you describe a marathon of people, cars, animals, and monsters dashing, jumping, gyrating, and spinning across the screen, accompanied by frenzied music and interrupted by the usual overdose of ads selling gratuitous amounts of car-stuff, jewelry-stuff, house-stuff, and food-stuff?

The two-minute hiatuses, interposed between swift-screenings and thanks-mumblings for the awards (supposedly so lights can be reprogrammed and scenery swiveled into a new configuration), are really scheduled so the network can sell you the experience they think you need so you buy the things they’re selling.

This marathon, like other sporting events, poses a problem. How and what can you eat during the evening? A dining room dinner–sprint is neither feasible nor healthy. Putting a TV on the dining table is as urbane as trailer-camping. So what’s left?  Greasy chip nibbles in a bag in your lap?

Believe me, I have some far better options! Happily, all of them can be served at room temperature of heated quickly and placed before your guests. Not quite Wimbledon, darling, but then, what is?

Here are some ideas for munchable finger food to savor as you pay attention to the screen—munchables that will not require sitting at a table but will give you a proper meal, as long as you eat them in balanced proportions. Some of these dishes are easy to put together just before the show; others will take you longer to prepare.


Oscar Night Menu

Mushroom frittatas

Middle Eastern lamb “piggies” with fruit mustard

Chipotle-cured shrimp Magdalena muffins

Pâte de Campagne, roasted pear, and pickle with Dijon-buttered toast

Blue cheese, apple, and berry-port tortillas

Hummus with radish and cucumber

Lobster Thermidor in chive crêpes

Gingered carrot tart with cardamom buttermilk-cream-cheese mousse and carrot cake crumble


Next: recipes, and some tips on day-of preparation. 





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