The Oscars might not have a host this year, but no one will be going home hungry. Thanks to Wolfgang Puck catering and Sequoia Productions, over 1,500 lucky celebrities, and industry guests will be well fed after the long Academy Awards show on Sunday, February 24, 2019.
The Governor’s Ball kitchen staff will go through 35 pounds winter black truffles from Burgundy, alone, which will be shaved on over 400 signature pizzas and pasta dishes like the mac-n-cheese plus the legendary chicken pot pie.
“We really want to make our customers happy,” says Wolfgang Puck. At Spago we serve the Wienerschnitzel and the Hotel Bel Air we make the chicken pot pie because it was so popular at the Oscars. People who stayed in the hotel asked for it. So, we put it on the menu. We have a great mixture of traditional and innovative,” confirms the world-famous chef.
The potato with caviar, smoked salmon Oscars and 24-karat-gold Valrhona chocolate statues are also making a return to the menu this year. New this time around is a fancy shaved ham from Spain served with burrata and grilled fruit; Miyazaki Wagyu beef with spicy ginger carrot puree and ponzu sauce, and for dessert, baked fried chocolate shell stuffed with orange crème and caviar.
Coppola wines and Piper Heidsieck Champagne will be flowing along with creative tequila cocktails by Don Julio including the frothy El Dorado with coconut milk and cold brew coffee served in a gold egg shell topped with smoked salt and cocoa nibs and straw for delicate sipping.
As we heard one German reporter exclaim on the way out of the pre-party press preview, “That Wagyu beef is the best drunk food ever. You will fall asleep in your Uber.” Or in this case, limo.
If you decide to throw your own Oscar bash, here is the coveted chicken pot pie recipe.
Good luck and enjoy!
CHICKEN POT PIE (recipe courtesy Wolfgang Puck, adapted from “Wolfgang Puck Makes it Easy,” Rutledge Hill Press, 2004)
Yield: Serves 4
2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken, cut into 1-inch chunks Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour 4 tablespoons vegetable oil 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided 1/2 pound organic red-skinned potatoes, cut into 1/2-inch pieces 1/2 pound organic carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces 1 medium yellow onion, peeled and diced 2 garlic cloves, minced Pinch of crushed red pepper flakes 1 sprig thyme 1 bay leaf 1 cup white wine 2 cups organic chicken stock 1 cup plus 1 tablespoon heavy cream 1/4 cup dry sherry 1/2 cup shelled or frozen peas Approximately 1/2 pound frozen puff pastry, defrosted following package instructions 1 cage-free egg
Season the chicken pieces with salt and pepper, and toss in a mixing bowl with 2 tablespoons of the flour until evenly coated. In a large skillet over high heat, heat 2 tablespoons of the oil. Add the chicken pieces, reduce the heat slightly, and sauté, turning them occasionally, until light golden and thoroughly cooked, about 5 to 10 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the chicken to a plate and set aside. Add the remaining oil and 2 tablespoons of the butter to the pan, then add the potatoes, carrots, and onions and sauté until they begin to look glossy and bright, 2 to 3 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium, stir in the garlic, red pepper flakes, thyme, and bay leaf, and sauté, just until the vegetables begin to color slightly, 2 to 3 minutes more.
Add the wine, turn up the heat, stir and scrape with a wooden spoon to deglaze the pan deposits, and simmer until the liquid reduces by about half, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the chicken stock and the 1 cup of cream. Bring the liquid to a boil, reduce the heat slightly, and simmer briskly until the liquid reduces by about half again and is thick and creamy, about 15 minutes. Remove the sprig of thyme and the bay leaf.
Stir in the reserved chicken pieces and the sherry. Stir together the butter and remaining flour and stir this paste into the mixture. Season the sauce to taste with salt and pepper. Transfer to 4 large individual ovenproof 2-cup soup bowls, 4 ramekins of the same size, or a 2-quart baking dish. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until the filling is cold, at least 1 hour.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Make sure the puff pastry is no thicker than 1/4 inch. With the tip of a sharp knife, cut the pastry into 4 circles that will overhang the rim of the serving bowls or ramekins by about half an inch; for a single large baking dish, cut 4 circles that will cover its top, or use one large sheet.
In a small bowl, beat together the egg and the remaining 1 tablespoon cream to make an egg wash. Brush the tops and outsides of the rims of the bowls. Place the bowls, ramekins, or baking dish on a baking tray and place the puff pastry circles on top, pressing them gently over the sides of the dishes. Pierce the tops with the tip of a paring knife. Brush the top of the pastry with egg wash. Carefully transfer the baking sheet to the oven and bake until the filling is bubbling hot and the pastry is a deep golden brown, 25 to 35 minutes. Serve hot.