A Film Festival Adventure and Fig, Prosciutto and Walnut Pizza

The Epic Christoper Walken

The Epic Christoper Walken

It was this time last year that I was enjoying my first ever Toronto International Film Festival experience.  Being the biggest in the world and known as the one ALL the stars love to come too I had always wanted to participate however busy schedules, friends unavailability, lack of money always saw me watching it pass by season after season.Last year it seemed the stars had aligned just perfectly and I finally had my tickets in hand.  A close work friend and I had decided since it was going to be our first and considering we still had to go to work each day that we would start light.  The sheer number of movies (100 plus ) can be completely overwhelming so to make things easier we let TIFF do the picking.  By purchasing the TIFF choice Special Presentation package of 3 movies we were guaranteed some celebrities and some potentially great films.

The Gorgeous Catherine Keener

The Gorgeous Catherine Keener

I had read plenty of FAQ’s about the festival, on times to arrive, what to wear, what to expect but nothing could prepare me the utter madhouse downtown Toronto becomes.  We had arrived several hours before our showtime to pick up our tickets but still found ourselves in a line with hundreds in front of us.  Thoughts of hotdog carts rolled over the idea in our heads of grabbing a nice dinner before the show.

I’m the type of person who is aware of everything going on around me.  It is probably a control issue thing but it has never failed to be a benefit in my life.  Case in point as we stood there in line, and I mean stood since it was barely moving I overheard a TIFF volunteer telling people in the crowd behind us that if they wanted to purchase a membership they could skip this line.  Much like the know-it-all I was in school up shot my hand with a “woohoo over here! Tell me more”.  I will tell you I had already been considering a membership, they are reasonably priced and have great benefits, but when the volunteer mentioned that it would be 13 months to cover the end of film fest for the price of 12 (plus the whole skipping the line thing) I was sold.

Two men too gorgeous for words, Dennis Quaid and Zac Efron

Two men too gorgeous for words, Dennis Quaid and Zac Efron

So we jumped out of that line, trotted happily after her like puppies to the members only line consisting of about 5 people ahead of us.  Twenty minutes later we had our tickets and were off to dinner.

After a wonderful and leisurely meal we headed to the Scotia Bank theatre for our first film.  Once again we were greeted by lines of people.  Several different lines in fact so I had to ask another volunteer which line was for the people who already had their tickets.

“This one”, she said indicating the long group of people snaking their way up Yonge Street. “Or if you have a Scotia Bank Visa you can go in this line.”

A much shorter line that would be entering the theatre ahead of the first line she showed us.  Well lo and behold what was in my wallet but a handy dandy Scotia Bank Visa card. This night keeps getting better and better.

I think we stood in that line for about 10 minutes when another volunteer comes up asking the Scotia Bank Visa line people if any of them have a certain Visa (you known one of those hoity toity high limit thingies).  Nope looking down at my card (which is actually my DH’s), I just have the plain old…..wait, what does that say in the corner.  When did we get all high and mighty I think showing them the card they were asking about.  Next thing you know we are pulled out of the line with other like carded members of the public and escorted into the theatre down to a special lounge where cocktails and chocolate were being served and where the select 50 or so people would be allowed into the movie first.  Even without seeing a single movie or celebrity I was enjoying the best TIFF experience ever being  THAT person for just a brief moment.

All three movies we saw that week were outstanding, and as you can see by the pictures a few celebrities were seen but I’ll never forget that initial moment of line jumping feeling like I was “someone”.  But isn’t that what the film festival is all about.  Letting everyone have a chance to be a star.

Not to be forgotten was the most amazing pizza we ate for dinner that evening.  An authentic wood fire crust with toppings of figs, walnuts and honey I thought about that pizza for many weeks after.  Here is my attempt to recreate it at home.  Next time I think I will omit the garlic and drizzle even more honey over top.  Or I’ll just save it for film fest week and eat it there.

Fig, Prosciutto and Walnut Pizza

Use a homemade or premade crust for this pizza

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Ingredients

  • 1 pizza crust
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp basil, chopped
  • 1 cup dried figs, sliced
  • 1/2 cup walnuts
  • 1/4 tbsp honey
  • 1 1/2 cup mozzarella cheese
  • 5 slices prosciutto

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
  2. In a small bowl stir the olive oil with the the garlic. Brush onto the top of the pizza crust.
  3. Sprinkle with basil, figs, walnuts and drizzle with 1/2 of the honey.
  4. Top with cheese and drizzle with remaining honey.
  5. Top with prosciutto.
  6. Bake in oven for 8-10 minutes or until cheese has melted and crust is browned.
Recipe Type: Main Dishes
7.6.4
250

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

In a small bowl stir the olive oil with the the garlic. Brush onto the top of the pizza crust.

Pizza with mozzarella, figs, prosciutto, walnuts and honey from The Tasty Gardener

Pizza with mozzarella, figs, prosciutto, walnuts and honey from The Tasty Gardener

Sprinkle with basil, figs, walnuts and drizzle with 1/2 of the honey.

Pizza with mozzarella, figs, prosciutto, walnuts and honey from The Tasty Gardener

Pizza with mozzarella, figs, prosciutto, walnuts and honey from The Tasty Gardener

Pizza with mozzarella, figs, prosciutto, walnuts and honey from The Tasty Gardener

 

Top with cheese and drizzle with remaining honey.

Pizza with mozzarella, figs, prosciutto, walnuts and honey from The Tasty Gardener

Top with prosciutto.

Pizza with mozzarella, figs, prosciutto, walnuts and honey from The Tasty Gardener

Bake in oven for 8-10 minutes or until cheese has melted and crust is browned.

Pizza with mozzarella, figs, prosciutto, walnuts and honey from The Tasty Gardener

Pizza with mozzarella, figs, prosciutto, walnuts and honey from The Tasty Gardener

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