Movie Night Madness

I am a passionate lover of terrible movies. Sharknado, Piranha 3D, Tranformers…basically, if it’s got a robot or a monster, I’m in. What better way to view some glorious creature feature than with a movie night? Gather your friends and turn off the lights, ’cause the show’s about to start!

When I think of movie night snacks, ‘indulgent’ is the first word that comes to mind. However, buying all of the popcorn and candy your heart desires at a movie theater is a serious punch to the wallet. Making snacks at home is cheaper, (slightly) healthier, and you can put booze in it!

No movie night is complete without a little booze, after all.

 

My menu hits all the flavors you crave while watching a giant robot and a massive sea creature come to blows. Sriracha Lime Popcorn is a little spicy and very addictive–make sure to have more than one bowl on hand. For the main attraction, I present the Salted Butterscotch Bourbon Float. This treat is a monster on its own, complete with ice cream, cream soda, coconut whipped cream, and salted bourbon butterscotch sauce. Truly, a dessert for the ages.

While the float seems to have a lot of steps, it is quite easy to put together. Just make the butterscotch sauce and pop the coconut cream into the fridge the night before; once it’s showtime, plop everything into a glass. Add some of your favorite candies, and there you have it!

Sriracha Lime Popcorn

You’ll need:

  • 1/4 cup kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon Sriracha
  • 1 teaspoon lime juice
  • 2/3 cup popcorn kernels
  • 1/4 cup coconut or canola oil

1. Put the salt, Sriracha, and lime juice in a small bowl and mash it together with a fork.
2. Heat the oil in a large pot with three popcorn kernels. Cover with the pot lid but leave a space to vent steam.
3. When the three kernels pop, pour in the rest of the popcorn and remove the pot from the heat. Count to thirty. This allows all the kernels to come to temperature so that you’ll have no burned or unpopped kernels.
4. After thirty seconds, place pot back on heat. Remove once the popping has slowed considerably and pour into a bowl. Top with the Sriracha lime salt. Enjoy!

Salted Bourbon Butterscotch Floats

You’ll need:

For the Float:

  • Non-dairy vanilla ice cream of your choice (I love Soy Creamy from Trader Joe’s)
  • Cream Soda
  • Bourbon

For the Salted Butterscotch Sauce:

  • 1 can coconut milk
  • 4 tablespoons agave syrup
  • 3 teaspoons vanilla
  • 1/2 tablespoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons bourbon
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch

1. Mix coconut milk, agave syrup, vanilla, and salt in a saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium heat. Be patient, because this part takes a while. As it simmers, it will darken and reduce.
2. Once it looks like thin pudding and is bubbling, stir the bourbon and cornstarch together to make a slurry. Pour into the coconut milk mixture and whisk until thickened. Use immediately or pour into an airtight container to store.
3. If you want to reheat the sauce, float its container in some hot water for a few minutes. Don’t microwave, as this sauce can break.

For the Coconut Whipped Cream:

  • 1 can coconut cream (I use Trader Joe’s)
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar

1. Let the coconut cream sit overnight in the fridge. The next day, scoop the cream into a mixing bowl and leave the coconut water behind.
2. Beat the coconut cream and the powdered sugar with a mixer until creamy and fluffy.

Assembly:

1. Place scoops of the non-dairy ice cream into a big glass. Drizzle with butterscotch sauce.
2. Pour in the cream soda. Add a shot of bourbon if you’re feeling saucy.
3. Top with whipped cream and even more butterscotch sauce.

 

Enjoy these tasty treats while watching your favorite movie–Pacific Rim, for example. That’s the best movie of all time–everyone says so. Or at least, I say so.

Happy weekend, everyone!

Photos by the marvelous Rachael Pace

Advertisements

Spring Break, No Regrets!

While my posts will usually be about hosting and entertaining friends, I wanted to do a special post about my spring break. This year, I applied to be an adviser for my college’s alternative break program. The concept is that, instead of going to the beach, students can use this free week to perform acts of service. Alternative Breaks sends students all over the country, and I was chosen to go to Kendalia, Texas, to work at Kendalia Wildlife Rescue and Rehabilitation.

As someone who is hoping to work in animal advocacy, getting this opportunity was incredible. KWRR is full of animals who have been rescued from terrible situations. There are mountain lions from roadside zoos, monkeys from labs, and sheep saved from slaughterhouses. There are FIV+ cats, elderly chihuahuas, and a few feral pigs. The staff there are dedicated to giving these animals as natural a life as possible. They are also committed to treating each animal with respect; no one is considered an ‘it’, but rather referred to as a ‘he’ or ‘she’.

I was completely blown away by how the staff worked so hard for the animals. However, the staff is small, and projects were piling up. The Alternative Breaks crew–myself included–did our best to help out KWRR. We built and painted fences, collected branches, made enrichment toys (including a hammock for a mountain lion!), and socialized with the cats and dogs. It was hard work, but I truly loved every second of it!

Places like Kendalia Wildlife Rescue and Rehabilitation are so important because they are the ones looking after the animals that the rest of society has forgotten. Taking care of these animals is hard, dirty, tiring work, but to see how happy the animals were was well and truly worth it. Plus, I got to feed a mountain lion, and how cool is that?

We also had one free day to explore Austin, and let me tell you guys, it was a vegan’s dream. We ate at Conan’s Pizza, which had the best vegan pizza I have ever had. They used Daiya cheese, and I am super stoked to find some and use it at home. We also went to Sweet Ritual, an incredible vegan ice cream shop. They use coconut, almond, or cashew milk as the base of the ice cream. I had cookies ‘n cream and rocky road–it was heaven.

If you have the opportunity to give back a little to the world around you, I challenge you to do it. Whether it’s helping out at your local animal shelter or making the commitment to only buy cruelty-free products, every little piece helps. Some of my fellow Alt-Breakers have decided to give veganism a spin–I am very proud of them.

So, don’t forget to give the animals in your life a hug, and I hope you all had as awesome a spring break as I did!