Serious Entertaining: A True Detective Dinner Party Menu


Sunday marks the season finale of my new favorite nightmare / widely acclaimed HBO series, True Detective. And if there's one thing I've learned from watching this particular mystery unfold, it's that the show is ripe with allusion. To food. Also, I'm told, to some other things, like death, Nietzsche, and the occult.

Now, if you haven't been watching, I'll do my best to avoid spoilers, but I'd also strongly recommend that you stop reading this immediately and head straight for your preferred viewing method (cough, my boyfriend's parents' HBO GO account). You can thank me later.

Appetizer: Beef Spirals


First up, a tribute to the show's eerily recurring spiral-shaped symbol, in the fitting form of dead meat grilled beef. Flank steak is wrapped around a crunchy, cheesy, meaty filling of garlic, scallions, parsley, salami, Fontina, and Parmigiano, and bread crumbs. Roll it on up like a jelly roll, slice it into individual servings, and fire away! If the "flesh" bit rings a little too nauseatingly true, you could also go with some grilled cheese roll-ups. Same idea, only cheese.

Get the recipe for Grilled Beef Pinwheels »

Side: Seedy Breadsticks


[Photograph: Donna Currie]

I'd recommend going craftsy with these and building your very own devil's trap centerpiece—a little butcher's twine would do the trick nicely. Or just scatter them about in dark corners to terrify your guests. But even in a breadbasket, these "seedy" sticks are "bound" to remind you of the show's darkest moments.

Get the recipe for Crispy Seedy Breadsticks»

Main: Green Spaghetti Monster


[Photograph: Suzanne Lehrer]

The elusive green-eared spaghetti monster gets a fittingly heated tribute with this pasta recipe, featuring a spicy arugula and jalapeño pesto, sprinkled with finely julienned slivers of zucchini.

Get the recipe for Spaghetti with Arugula-Jalapeño Pesto and Zucchini »

Dessert: Yellow King Cake


[Photograph: María del Mar Sacasa]

Time your dessert with the great unveiling of the show's mysterious antagonist, The Yellow King. Properly drizzled, the icing even takes on a hair-raising resemblance to a real crown. Spooky!

Though this version features a white glaze topped with multi-colored sugar, a squeeze of food coloring and some yellow sanding sugar will quickly transform this bad boy into the perfect vessel for a ritualistic massacre. With your mouth.

Feeling a little lazy? Grab a box of yellow cake or try this quick and easy yellow birthday cake recipe from scratch!

Get the recipe for Quick King Cake »

Drinks: Whiskey and Lone Star


[Photograph: Shutterstock]

And, of course, no True Detective viewing would be complete without a generous serving of booze. We'll be drowning our sorrows and fears in a whole lot of whiskey, with a chaser of Lone Star tall boys. Can-carving tutorial, anyone?

Not sure which whiskey to go for? Check out our guides:

What punny True Detective foods did we miss? Some red herring mayhaps? A wreath of thyme?