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Serving Up Some Radical Refreshments For IDW’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Day!

Today, October 25th, IDW is celebrating those four, famous, butt-kicking terrapin brothers – Leonardo, Donatello, Raphael, and Michelangelo – with Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Day! The Ninja Turtles made their first ever appearance in May of 1984 in a comic (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles #1) created by Kevin Eastman and Peter Laird and released by Mirage Studios. Fast forward a few decades to 2011 when IDW acquired the license for the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (or TMNT for short) and a new era for the anthropomorphic brothers has begun! IDW Publishing released their first TMNT comic in August of 2011 and has produced over 150 comics, graphic novels, collected editions, and trade paperbacks since then! IDW Games also has been quite busy with the franchise with their releases of TMNT: Shadows of the Past, several new Hero Pack expansions (April O’Neil, Casey Jones, and, as of today, Master Splinter!), and their newest game: TMNT Showdown: Bebop and Rocksteady Madness!

TMNT Shirt

My TMNT t-shirt (thanks mom!) waiting for me to finish cooking and baking so I don’t get it covered in flour!
(All photos were taken and edited by KristaG unless otherwise stated)

What kind of celebration would this be, however, if there wasn’t any food involved? This is where some of the fun comes in – for me, at least (the rest of it comes from playing various TMNT cartoons in the background and rocking my Michelangelo t-shirt)! I’ve got a pretty full day planned for myself and my play group and, at some point, I’m probably going to need to feed them! As we’re gaming and I’d hate to mess up game components or risk some serious spills, I’m making everything as gaming friendly as possible!

Pizza

A cheese and pepperoni pizza ready to bake! Cowabunga dudes!

While there are plenty of people who don’t know which Ninja Turtle is which or what weapons each turtle uses, most people know that a Ninja Turtle’s favorite food is pizza, which is exactly what we are serving at my house today! Over the years there have been some pretty gnarly sounding pizza topping combinations featured in the TMNT universe including jelly beans and sausage, marshmallows and pepperoni, peanut butter and jelly, and granola and licorice! Gross! As you can guess, none of these will be at my house today, but, if you’re curious about these or other topping combinations that have been mentioned in the franchise, the fine people over at Foodbeast.com have actually made them into real pizzas with a gourmet look! For my event, however, we are going to be making some artisan pizzas from scratch so that there will be plenty of options – healthy and non – for everyone to choose from. I’ll also be baking some more basic pizzas like pepperoni and cheese for the kids to enjoy!

TMNT Apples

They’re both adorable and healthy snacks!
(image from bettycrocker.com)

I will also be serving some Ninja Turtle themed apples to help balance out all of the carbs! These were really easy to make and all you need are some green apples (we used a combination of granny smith and golden delicious apples), some candy eyes, and a box of Betty Crocker’s Fruit By the Foot Flavor Mixers. This box of Fruit By the Foot is perfect for making little ninja masks as they come in all of the right colors! Once you cut the fruit snacks and separate the colors out, wrap them around the apple and cut slits in them for “eye holes.” Carefully slide a candy eye between the fruit snack and the apple. We used a food-safe edible marker to make faces on them, but this can also be done with icing, cutting out a small portion of the apple, or by affixing a little piece of red fruit snack that has been cut into the shape of a mouth! You can find the full recipe over at the Betty Crocker website.

Shell-Shocked Sugar Cookies!

For my birthday this year, my mom sent me a box of Betty Crocker Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles Shell-Shocked Sugar Cookie Mix and I have been saving it for a special occasion. Today is that day! These cookies come with included edible images, which make decorating a breeze and the cookie dough turns green as it’s mixed together! This means all I needed was some oil, water and an egg. Paired with my other dessert (see below), this is a great addition to my table and I may need to see if mom can send me another box!

My other dessert for today is going to be a little more time-consuming than making my cookies, but they are definitely worth it! Though Shredder is probably the most well-known of the TMNT villains, one of my favorites is Krang/Kraang and all of the shenanigans he pulls while trying to (re)connect with Dimension X and his Technodrome. Krang is fairly “brain-like” in appearance so I am making brain-shaped popcorn balls! After popping my popcorn (about 6 cups once it was popped), I will be melting down a bag of mini marshmallows with 3 tablespoons of butter. To give it a little color, I’ll be adding a couple of small drops of red food coloring to make the marshmallow mixture a pinkish tint. However, I want a swirled texture for the full “brain” appearance, so I’m not going to completely stir everything in! Once this is done, add the mixture to the popcorn and begin shaping the popcorn balls. To give it a more “brain”-like shape, however, I’m not really going form them into “balls” so much as little half-circle mounds. For a finishing touch, I thinking of thinning down some more red food coloring and painting in some shading and details. (Sorry, no pics as these haven’t been made just yet!)

Toxic Ooze Drink

A glass of non-alcoholic Toxic Ooze

With all of these goodies, we are going to also need something to drink! For a non-alcoholic option, I made some “Toxic Ooze” using a recipe that I found on Simone Graham’s blog: Great Fun etc. It’s a sweet yet sugar free green tea and apple punch. When it came to having an adults-only beverage, I made “Sewer Slime.” This particular slime is actually an adaptation of the Ginger Pear White Sangria recipe from Kitchen Treaty. I changed a few small things to suit my personal tastes and those of my guests, but otherwise, it’s pretty similar. I’m also making sure to provide plenty of water for these long gaming sessions!

That’s it for the food for this year. I think next year I’m going to try and make a serious throwback for anyone who grew up in the 90’s or paid attention back then to all of the random food tie-ins that popped up (and I don’t just mean at Pizza Hut, though they have had quite a long history of teaming up with the Ninja Turtles!). I haven’t quite decided how I’m going to do it just yet, but I am determined to try and recreate the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle Pudding Pies that Hostess put out in 1990 to accompany the release of the first movie! If you don’t remember these, here’s the commercial to remind you. Until then, I’m going to kick back, watch some cartoons, eat, play some games, and potentially make the short trek to the comic book store down the street (Empire’s Comics Vault) to pick up my copy of the TMNT Day Sampler comic or, if they have it, the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Ultimate Collection, Vol. 1 from IDW Publishing.

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