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Dinner and a Movie: Squanto-A Warrior’s Tale


Dinner and a Movie for Squanto: A Warrior's Tale Recipes for dinner, dessert, and snacksWelcome to my new series, Dinner and a Movie!  I’m so excited about this idea and I hope you are, too. 

Dinner and a Movie is going to rock, starting now.  Every month, on the first Friday, I’ll bring you a movie suggestion and recipes for a meal, dessert, and snack to go with the movie.  An entire family night, already planned.  Do you love it?!

I debated long and hard about what film to start out with on this launch.  New series, new film, right?  And I want to bring you book-based films for your family to enjoy together.  But I also want the film to be relevant to the present, the same way my Story Times are relevant to the present.  So I thought (it being November) a Thanksgiving-related movie would be best.  I hope you’re following my reasoning and not wondering why the heck I’m not suggesting something brand new.

Enjoying a movie on family night with a meal and snacks that relate to it is a great way to have fun and still have a bit of education thrown in.  Just don’t make it look like learning.  It’s sneakier.

The Movie

Squanto: A Warrior’s Tale

Squanto: A Warrior's Tale Dinner and a MovieOkay, so this Disney movie isn’t exactly based on a book.  But it is about Squanto, the Native American who helped the Pilgrims learn how to survive in the New World.  And because it is about his life, it’s very easy to compare it to Squanto: Friend of the Pilgrims by Clyde Robert Bulla.

Also, it’s not new.  Rather, it was released in 1990.

But the film is a rousing adventure that, while not being perhaps the most historically accurate, is highly entertaining and a good place to start talking about the history of Thanksgiving.  My boys actually watched this for the first time with me just the other day, and they loved it.  So it holds up.

Besides, who can resist Mandy Pantinkin as Brother Daniel, one of the priests who helped Squanto escape slavery in England?

Um, no one.  Because Mandy Pantinkin (Hello, my name is Inigo Montoya.  You killed my father.  Prepare to die).

The MealCrockpot Beef Stew, Jalapeno Cornbread, and Buffalo Chicken Bites for Dinner and a Movie: Squanto-A Warrior's Tale

Slow Cooker Beef Stew

A good stew combines all the elements of gardening showcased in the film.  There might be a bit more prep work here than you like with a slow cooker recipe, but it guarantees a nice, thick, cozy stew.  So don’t skip the steps and end up with vegetable soup.

What you need:

  • 1 1/2 lbs stew meat
  • 3 T oil
  • 3/4 cup flour
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 4 cups boiling beef broth
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 4 medium potatos, skin intact, cubed
  • 1/2 lb baby carrots
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1/4 t allspice
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce

What you do:

  • Turn slow cooker on high
  • Pour in 2 Tbsp oil
  • Place flour, salt, and pepper in a medium bowl
  • Allow oil to heat in slow cooker while you dredge stew meat in flour mixture (reserve remaining flour)
  • Drop dredged stew meat into slow cooker and stir until oil is soaked up
  • Heat remaining oil in a medium skillet
  • Saute onions, garlic, and celery for about 2 minutes, until just beginning to soften
  • Add remaining flour and stir until oil is soaked up
  • Add sauteed vegetables to crock, stirring to incorporate
  • Pour boiling beef broth over meat and onion mixture
  • Add cubed potatoes, carrots, bay leaves allspice, sugar and Worcestershire sauce
  • Reduce heat to low
  • Walk away for 6 hours


Jalapeno Cornbread

Jalapeno Cornbread and Buffalo Chicken Cheese Bites

Because Squanto taught the Pilgrims how to plant corn.  This slightly spicy cornbread pairs deliciously with beef stew.  If you aren’t into spicy, omit the jalapenos.  Boom.

For those of you who tried this recipe before 11/13/16, I’m begging you to try it again.  The Lit Mama messed up.  Because originally the recipe read 3 tsp of baking SODA when it should have been baking POWDER.  Thanks to my lovely reader, Nicole, for pointing out my gaff.  The recipe is correct now.  No, really, I swear.

What you need:

  • 3/4 cup yellow cornmeal
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 3 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 egg, well-beaten
  • 2 Tbsp melted butter
  • 1/2 cup frozen corn
  • 1/4 cup chopped jalapeno peppers

What you do:

  • Heat oven to 425F
  • Grease a cast-iron skillet or 8″ cake pan
  • Mix dry ingredients in a large bowl
  • In a medium bowl, mix milk, egg, and butter
  • Add milk mixture to dry ingredients
  • Fold in corn and jalapenos
  • Bake 20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Buffalo Chicken Bites

Not really necessary to the meal, these make a delicious and fun addition.

What you need:

  • 1 store-bought rotisserie chicken (I just slow-cooked a whole chicken the day before)
  • 1/4 cup hot sauce
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 cups shredded hot pepper jack cheese
  • 1 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 cups panko bread crumbs
  • Vegetable oil, for frying

What you do:

  • Heat oil to 350F
  • Pick the meat from the chicken and discard the skin
  • Place the chicken in a large bowl and add the hot sauce, pepper, cheese, and toss to combine
  • Rol the chicken into 2-inch balls (about the size of a golf ball
  • Place the flour, eggs, and bread crumbs in 3 separate bowls
  • Roll each ball in the flour, then the egg, then the bread crumbs
  • Fry in the heated oil in batches for about 2 minutes per batch
  • Remove to a paper towel-lined plate to drain

The Dessert

Pumpkin cheesecake cookie bites

Pumpkin Cheesecake Cookie Bites

Because squash.  Right?  I mean, you could make pumpkin pie or something, but these cookie bites are delish!

What you need:

  • 8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs (for rolling the cookies)

What you do:

  • Preheat the oven to 350F
  • In a large bowl, cream the cream cheese, butter, and pumpkin until completely smooth
  • Add in the sugar and vanilla and stir until combined
  • Add the flour, 1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs, pumpkin pie spice, and cinnamon.
  • Scoop into balls and roll in the remaining graham cracker crumbs
  • Place on the tray and bake for 15 minutes. Remove and slightly press down so they are flat.
  • Bake for 3 more minutes.
  • Repeat with remaining dough.
  • Let cool and store in the refrigerator

The Snack

Popcorn Snack for Squanto: Dinner and a Movie


Squanto actually makes popcorn over a fire for the priests while he’s staying with them.  The scene is cute and funny, and eating your own popcorn while watching it makes good times.

I really hope you give this a go and see if Dinner and a Movie fits your family’s style.  I’ll have a new one for you in December.  I. can’t. wait.

Love wins,



Check out these other great In the Kitchen Posts

In the Kitchen with Homeschool Blogging Network

Learning Life Skills in the Kitchen – Monique at Living Life and Learning

How to Help Your Sensory Kids Enjoy Holiday Meals – Ginny at Not So Formulaic

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KT Brison
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About KT Brison

KT Brison is a former children’s librarian and educator who gave all that up for the most important job in her life—homeschooling her boys. Though she loves the outdoors and rambling around her farm, she can usually be found with her nose in a book. Any book. As long as it has words.
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  1. Hi we tried the cornbread and I’m pretty sure I have never put 3 tsp of baking soda in anything unless I was tripling a recipe. So it has a strange after taste. Are you certain that is the correct amount? Thanks for the great idea, I am looking forward to doing many more dinner and a movie nights in the future!

    • Nicole, I am so sorry. Thank you so much for pointing this out. It’s supposed to be baking POWDER. I totally typed the wrong word. Thank you for letting me know; I will update the post. Please try the cornbread again with the correct ingredients- I promise, it really is delicious. Gar!

  2. I’ve never heard of this movie, but we love the Clyde Robert Bulla book. Sounds great! Thanks for sharing this at Booknificent Thursday last week on Mommynificent.com!
    Tina at Mommynificent recently posted…Booknificent Thursday Link Up Party #173My Profile

  3. Wow, what a fantastic idea for a blog series! We have never seen that movie, so will definitely add it to our watch list, and now I’m dying to try these recipes too! Thank you so much for linking up to Funtastic Friday!

  4. What a great idea! I have never heard of this movie; will have to add it to our “must see” list.
    Mother of 3 recently posted…Beavertail Lighthouse Field TripMy Profile

  5. I love the idea of sneaking learning into the movies….shhh…. don’t tell my hubby but I even do that with him. hehe. I’ve actually never heard of this movie before so I really appreciate the fact you shared it. I’m always up for a good movie and one that has history in it is super cool, especially for this time of the year.

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