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Dinner and a movie: ‘E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial’

E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial movie - flying bicycle
Photo credit: Universal Pictures

Shorter days and chilly nights mean it’s time to break out childhood favorites that make you feel cozy, inside and out. Remember how warm your heart-light felt after watching “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial” for the first time? Share that feeling with your family by cueing up this classic ’80s kids’ flick and serving up some yummy comfort food.

No need to play hooky like Elliot to spend some QT with E.T. Just stream it on Netflix or Amazon anytime you can get the whole fam — and their appetites — in one place. Cook up this delicious “E.T.”-inspired menu, and take your loved ones on a ride across the moon to a land of ugly crying and the cutest little Drew Barrymore you’ve ever seen.

Dress the part

Grab your favorite red hoodie or, if you’d rather skip the outerwear, swaddle yourself in a white blanket (no squeezing into a bike basket necessary). A striped mock-turtleneck with overalls will make you feel just like Gertie, especially when paired with yarn-bowed pigtails. For extra authenticity, carry around a pot of flowers. To be clear, though, you won’t look quite as adorable as Gertie did — no one ever could.

E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial Drew Barrymore kiss
Photo credit: Universal Pictures

Get your “E.T.” on

Before you can fill your belly with U.T.O.’s (unidentified tasty objects, naturally), you have to get the movie ready:

MOVIE: “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial.” (Don’t have it? Get it at Amazon or see more options)
RUNNING TIME: 1 hour, 55 minutes
YEAR OF RELEASE: 1982
RATING: PG
STARRING: Henry Thomas, Drew Barrymore, Robert MacNaughton

Dinner and a movie: Your “E.T.” menu

And now, for our feature presentation…

Entrée: Pizza pasta

Elliot is waiting for the pizza delivery guy when he finds E.T. in his family’s garage. You don’t get off the hook by ordering a pie, but with minimal effort, you’ll have a dinner even more delicious. Start off with Sugar & Soul’s one pan pizza pasta, perfect for chilly evenings.

What makes this dish so great is that you have as many options as you would toppings at your local pizza place. You could do pepperoni, green peppers and black olives. Or sausage, mushroom and onions. Bacon and extra cheese might be delish, too. (Just don’t do pineapple. Pineapple does not belong on pizza.)

Since it’s one pan, you won’t even have much of an argument over who does the dishes, unlike Michael and Elliot.

Sugar & Soul's one pan pizza pasta
Photo credit: Sugar & Soul

MORE: Instant Pot butter chicken recipe

Side dish: Rainbow roasted vegetables

You have to get some veggies in, and one dish in particular will draw out a minor but deeply emotionally-charged detail in the movie.

At the very end, as E.T.’s spacecraft takes off carrying him back home, a rainbow appears in the sky in the spacecraft’s wake — mirroring the rainbow blinds in Elliot’s room, where E.T. spent most of his time on our planet.

The rainbow E.T. gives Elliot as a goodbye gift signifies that he will always think of Elliot’s home as his home, too. Just another reason to get choked up at the end!

Our rainbow roasted vegetables are a sweet nod to that small but significant detail, and they are packed with nutrients.

Dinner and a movie roasted rainbow veggies

Dessert: Reese’s Pieces cookies

“E.T.” made Reese’s Pieces one of the most iconic food items to come out of the ’80s, so obviously you need to include it — and this treat is a totally decadent way to do it.

These Reese’s Pieces soft peanut butter cookies by Averie Cooks are exactly what you always wished your mom would have waiting for you after school. If you want to be extra — and who doesn’t want to be extra when it comes to dessert? — go ahead and squish some vanilla ice cream between two of them and make a sandwich.

Dinner and a movie Reese's cookies
Photo credit: Averie Cooks

MORE: Copycat Snickers bars

Bonus! Nightcap

After all that yumminess, settle your tummy with a nice hot pot of chrysanthemum tea. It will revive you, much like E.T. revived a pot of chrysanthemums with his healing powers.

Dinner and a movie Chrysanthemum tea
Photo credit: Omnivore’s Cookbook

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