5 Ideas For A Great “Arrested Development” Party

The Bluths are back! Want to celebrate with an Arrested Development party? Here are 5 ideas for a party the Bluths would be proud of.

1) Décor.

Set the mood with AD-style decor. Try a platter of wax fruit, HomeFill books and records, and rickety furniture from Goodwill that will fall apart the moment someone leans back.

Don’t forget a banner that is either awkwardly affectionate….

Arrested Development family love michael

Source: Tumblr

or hilariously brutal.

Source: Tumblr

Source: Tumblr

Naturally, a giant yellow banana stand would not be out of place.

2) Have plenty of food and drinks.

Must have: Frozen bananas (try this recipe). Must not have: Hot ham water and a dead dove (do not eat). Also consider fried cornbread a la the Cornballer, a Skip’s Scramble breakfast skillet, mayoneggs, and juice. Lots and lots of juice.

Source: Tumblr

Source: Tumblr

3) Throw an AD party, costume-style.

Suggest these costumes to your guests:

– A magician who enters to Europe’s “Final Countdown”
– Someone with a hook. “I’m a monster!”
– A bald man in a bad wig and straw hat.
– Cut-offs. “There are literally dozens of us.”
– A leather daddy.
– An age-inappropriate mother-son duo in matching sailor suits.
– Inside-out clothes, crazy headwear, and a stuffed animal backpack.

4)    Have plenty to do.

15 episodes aren’t enough entertainment for you? Hire an incredibly inept magician or a politically-incorrect puppeteer. Reenact light saber fights from Star Wars. Karaoke (with or without “Afternoon Delight”). Have a chicken dance-off with prizes for accuracy.

Or simply play an AD drinking game. Suggested rules:

One drink
– “Come on!”
– “Marry me!”
– Anytime Tobias says something only Tobias would say.

Two drinks
– “I’ve made a huge mistake.”
– Any mention of hop-ons.
– “Her?”

Three drinks
– “No touching!”
– Hot Cops appear
– Chickens are imitated, however badly

Source: IndieWire

Source: IndieWire

Feel free to add to the rules. Just be aware that more than 10 rules for 15 episodes is a LOT of drinking. Not that that’s always a bad thing. Bring on the dizzies!

5) Skip Bluth family party fouls.

Though there are many, a few stand out as big no-nos.

Do not:
– Invite your cousin’s entire address book and get her fired from her movie studio job.
– Yell “Surprise!” at your own party.
– Act like a Milford man. Be a good host; be social.
– Give a terrible speech.

It’s been seven years since we’ve gotten new episodes of Arrested Development. Make the most of it. “Say goodbye to these, because it’s the last time you’re gonna see them!”

Ah, who are we kidding. We’re going to watch them over and over and still not catch every joke.

 

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Southern Experimentation

The produce that ends up in my fridge is always a surprise.

I buy from Bountiful Baskets, a co-op that for around $15 gives you 15-25 pounds of produce a week. (I weighed it.) The produce comes from small farmers, whatever is in season and in abundant supply, and each basket is half veggies, half fruit. Baskets vary week to week, which forces me to experiment with food I probably wouldn’t pick up on my own.

My wonderful step-father has kindly answered many calls asking him to identify produce I’d never seen before. He doesn’t even make fun of me for it.

With my last basket, I got produce I recognized but had never cooked before. I’m referring to collard greens. Since the basket also included sweet potatoes and peaches, I decided to try my hand at a decidedly Southern meal: sauteed collard greens, roasted sweet potatoes, dirty rice, and peach cobbler.

Considering that the last time I had a Southern meal was at a fast-food place that served red beans and rice in disposable cups, my knowledge of the cuisine is a bit lacking. So I didn’t expect much. Happily, it worked out pretty well (mostly).

I started by boiling the collard greens. As they softened, I scooped them out with a slotted spoon, put them in a colander to drain, and saved the water for boiling the rice. I always want to use the leftover water in some other dish but rarely plan well enough to do so. Finally, it happened.

Look at all the nutritious goodness left behind!

 

On to the sweet potatoes. I used a tried-and-true recipe for roasted sweet potatoes. Simple and delicious.

Is it bad that I selected the oddly-shaped potatoes for our meal and saved the regularly-shaped ones to make sweet potato chews for the dog?

Once those were in the oven, I got started on the dirty rice. The rice went into the yellowed water leftover from boiling collard greens and was ready in no time. That’s when things got really messy. I found a recipe on my phone while I was out and about, and let’s just say my memory of what ingredients I had on hand did not match up to the reality of what was in my kitchen. Oops.

This is what I ended up with:

It tasted about as interesting as it looks. Not very.

It’s got tomatoes, salt, pepper, Krazy Salt, onion powder (how did I not have fresh onions?), soy crumbles, and jamaican jerk seasoning. At least it fit the name “dirty rice” even if it didn’t fit a recipe.

Finally, it was time for the greens. I used a basic sauteed collard greens recipe and used a ton of minced garlic. Toss the greens, garlic, salt, and pepper into a wok, stir for a few minutes, and you’re set.

I love bright colors on a plate.

Here’s how the meal turned out.

Real food bloggers know about presentation, garnish, and lighting. I, on the other hand, am proud I put off eating it long enough to snap a photo.

Not a bad meal. The greens were good and garlicky (in my husband’s words, “who knew greens could be so good?”). The potatoes were so simply done that their natural flavor really shone through. And the rice… well, with a little tapatio sauce, it worked out.

Then I went to finish dessert.

I made a variant of this peach cobbler recipe. Boiling the peaches with some water and sugar really helped cook the peaches so they could spend less time in the oven. I left the skins on, which helped the sauce get a beautiful reddish hue.

Not going to lie, I burned my tongue licking the spoon. Worth it.

For the cobbler topping, I skipped the recipe’s crust and instead mixed 1 cup cooked quinoa with sugar and cinnamon to taste. It’s healthier, gluten-free, and adds protein to the meal. Quinoa is amazing.

The final product:

Fruit plus protein… must be healthy, right?

The crust-to-filling ratio is a little off, but it’s good nonetheless.

Overall, I’d say the experiment was a success. Anytime my husband finishes his plate in under 2 minutes, I did well.

Time for another slice of cobbler…