This year we had a Hobbit party for my son for his 7th birthday. I was so busy with getting ready I didn’t get to take nearly as many photos as I would have liked. We had a “No admittance except on party business” sign on the door, flowers and and a birthday banner, and a table groaning with food.
The menu was from the book’s “an unexpected party” chapter: Seed cake from here, scones from here with raspberry jam, apple pie from here, mince tarts from here, cheese and pickles, ham, pork pie from here, cold chicken, plus a giant birthday cake like the one from “The Lord of the Rings”. I’ve put all the recipes at the bottom of the page.
We made a “Smaug the terrible” piñata filled with chocolate gold coins. To make Smaug I taped several balloons together for the body, a long thin balloon for the tail, and used rolled cardboard for the horns, wings, forelegs, snout, spines and horns. I covered it all with two layers of newspaper dipped in paste. When it was well dry, we painted it with acrylic paint and covered the wings in red tissue paper. We filled him with lots of chocolate gold coins and the kids all got a turn battling with him before he got a small hole in the bottom and gave up his horde. My son fell in love with him though so we ended up having to keep him once the battle was done. Loot bags were treasure chests filled with the coins and small lego hobbit sets, it was a huge success!
We had also planned for the kids to play “riddles in the dark” with gold rings my husband had “forged” but the kids were too busy playing so we just handed them out. To make them we took a package of kids toy rings from the dollar store, cut off the jems, sanded and spray painted them gold. They look fantastic. I had wanted to do fireworks but one small box was $50 and I was already at my budget’s limit and I was worried my husband was going to think I was getting carried away a bit (who, me?).
My son was dressed in the most adorable waistcoat I sewed him from a brocade runner I found at the Goodwill. I also tacked the hem of his grey slacks to just below the knee. He went to the theater like that with his sandals on and I carried him in from the car (during a snowstorm of course). We gathered up all his friends and went and sat down and as the movie began Ian Holm said the words “In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit…” My son was sitting in the row directly behind me and he threw his arms around my neck in excitement. We’d had such fun with him reading the book to me and he was so excited and this was finally the big day! It was truly a “party of special magnificence” and it was
“brought home to me, it is no bad thing to celebrate a simple life.”
And what, you may ask, does this Hobbit talk have any business on a Disney/Universal movie night blog? Well, I’ll tell you! This!
Lemon Seed Cake Recipe
50 g poppy seeds
185 ml warm milk
220 g caster sugar
300 g self-raising flour
200 g unsalted butter, softened
1 lemon, rind grated, juiced
300 g icing sugar
1. Preheat the oven to 180°C. Lightly grease loaf pan.
2. Combine the poppy seeds and milk in a bowl and set aside for 15 minutes.
3. Combine the caster sugar and 185g of the butter until light and fluffy. Mix in the eggs. Fold in the flour gradually, alternate with the poppy seed and milk mix. Finally stir in lemon rind. Alternatively add the ingredients to an electric mixer. Beat on high for 5 minutes until the mixture is pale and thick. Pour into the pan and bake in the oven for 40 minutes or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Turn onto a wire rack to cool.
4. Meanwhile, melt the remaining butter and place in a bowl with the icing sugar and lemon juice. Beat with an electric beater until smooth, then drizzle over the cake.
125 mL white sugar
25 mL baking powder
2.5 mL salt
180 mL butter
1 egg, beaten
150 mL milk
1 package white chocolate chips
375 mL frozen cranberries
1. Preheat oven to 200˚C.
2. In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Cut in butter. Mix the egg and milk in a small bowl, and stir into flour mixture until moistened. Add chips and cranberries
3. Shape into wedges or rounds, and place on the baking sheet.
4. Bake 15 minutes in the preheated oven, or until golden brown.
125 mL unsalted butter
45 mL all-purpose flour
75 mL water
125 mL white sugar
125 mL packed brown sugar
8 Granny Smith apples – peeled, cored and sliced
1. Preheat oven to 220˚C. Melt the butter in a saucepan. Stir in flour to form a paste. Add water, white sugar and brown sugar, and bring to a boil. Reduce temperature and let simmer.
2. Place the bottom crust in your pan. Fill with apples, mounded slightly. Cover with a lattice work crust. Gently pour the sugar and butter liquid over the crust. Pour slowly so that it does not run off.
3. Bake 15 minutes in the preheated oven. Reduce the temperature to 175˚C. Continue baking for 35 to 45 minutes, until apples are soft.
30 mL butter
10 mL lemon juice
125 mL white sugar
2.5 mL ground cinnamon
1 mL ground nutmeg
7 mL vanilla extract
500 mL prepared mincemeat
1 egg yolk
15 mL water
1. Preheat an oven to 230˚C.
2. Place apples, butter, and lemon juice into a saucepan over medium heat, and cook, stirring often, until the apples are tender, 8 to 10 minutes. Stir in sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and vanilla extract.
3. Mix in the mincemeat until thoroughly combined, and set the pie filling aside. Cut rounds from pastry (we used a latrge tea cup), place in muffin tins, and pour the filling into the pastry. Top tarts with a layer of crust (we did star shapes from a cookie cutter). In a small bowl, whisk the egg yolk with water, and brush the yolk mixture over the top crust.
4. Bake in the preheated oven for 15 minutes, then reduce oven temperature to 175˚C and bake until the crust is golden brown and the filling is bubbling, 20 to 25 more minutes.
32 oz lean ground pork
16 oz lean ground beef
375 mL mashed potatoes
salt and ground black pepper to taste
5 mL ground nutmeg
1 egg whiteMethod:
1. Brown ground beef and ground pork over medium heat until thoroughly cooked. Drain off grease.
2. Mix together cooked meat, potatoes, salt, pepper, and nutmeg.
3. Line a pie dish with pastry. Spoon pork mixture into pie crust, and top with second pie crust. Brush top crust with egg white. Shield crust edges with aluminum foil to prevent burning.
4. Bake at 190˚C for 45 minutes. Remove foil for final 15 minutes of baking to brown edges.