Sunshine on a Plate for La La Land

From the get-go, let me confess, I don’t usually seek out musicals.  Don’t get me wrong, I don’t hate them.  I’ve seen Cats at least four times (should I even admit to that?). Jesus Christ Superstar is a nostalgic favorite for me and my sister.  I can sing along with most of Les Misérables.

But, I never had the urge to watch La La Land, even after it was nominated for sixteen Oscars in 2016.  And, even after it won Best Director (Damien Chazelle) and Best Actress (Emma Stone), I still didn’t really care.

Wendy recommended this film for the February Movies & Munchies feature so I decided to play along.  I started watching it and during the opening number I had already decided that I would multitask through the rest of the film.  Then the story grabbed me. It seemed to me that as the relationship between Seb and Mia grows and then struggles, the music actually took a back seat to the acting.  I was hooked.  I ended up loving this film.  (I did have to get past seeing Ken every time Ryan Gosling opened his mouth, especially to sing.)

That being said, there was not hardly any food seen on screen.  There were drinks and cocktails, of course, because it is L.A.  Seb mentions chicken a couple of times (and I even think he’s shown cooking it at one point).

Even though that opening number was a little silly in comparison to the rest of the film, I decided to make something citrusy and focus on “Another Day in the Sun.” I was thinking maybe a citrusy cocktail or a hippy, dippy California smoothie.

Then our bi-monthly farm bag came and was full of kiwi and blood oranges and the featured recipe was described as “Sunshine on a Plate.”  That sealed the deal for me.

Fennel, kiwi and blood oranges from the farm bag.

Sunshine on a Plate Salad

Debra (based Fennel Citrus Microgreen Salad + Citrus Vinaigrette)

This salad would be equally good with other fruits you might have on hand like berries, apples and pears.


  • 1 orange, juiced and zest
  • 1/4 c. olive oil
  • 2 T. apple cider vinegar
  • 1 T. Dijon mustard
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 fennel bulb, trimmed and shaved thin (Save the fronds for garnishing the salad.)
  • 2 oranges, supremed (peeled and cut into sections)
  • 2 kiwi, peeled and sliced
  • a bowlful of mixed greens (about 9 oz.)
  • shaved Parmesan


  1. Make the vinaigrette.  Place the orange juice, zest, olive oil, vinegar, mustard, garlic clove and salt and pepper in a half-pint jar.  Shake well and set aside.

    Blood orange vinaigrette

  2. Place the greens in a serving bowl, arrange the shaved fennel, orange slices, and kiwi slices on top.  Drizzle the vinaigrette generously  on top and garnish with the fennel fronds.  Finish with some Parmesan shavings.  Serve.

Yield: 4

Thanks to Wendy for hosting this month.  I’m trying to think of some movie-book tie-ins so we can partner with Cook the Books in the upcoming months. If you have some suggestions, please leave a comment.

2 comments to Sunshine on a Plate for La La Land

  • I’m so glad that you ended up enjoying it and I love that Salad. How fortuitous that the basket arrived as you were looking for the perfect tie-in.

  • mae

    That looks like a great salad dressing recipe. I’ve never seen that film: I may be even less fond of musicals than you are. You asked for foodie films: My favorite of all time is “Tampopo” but it might be hard to find.

    best, mae at