Thursday, February 3, 2011

Quick Fix Super Bowl Ideas

Let's be real about this.... who wants to spend time in the kitchen on Super Bowl Sunday?  I certainly would rather be gathered in front of the TV with my family and friends to cheer on my favorite team (Go Packers!!) while also supporting delicious hops of a local brewery.  So when you're creating a menu for a Super Bowl party it's important to come up with ideas that can be created ahead of time and also won't take a lot of time. 

My recommendation is to make home made pizza's or subs for the main course.  If you don't have time for that then I would suggest calling your local sub or pizza place and placing an order.  This will save you the hassle and a whole lot of time. 

With the main course down.. this will give you plenty of time to create sides and appetizers.  Of course you don't have to do this all by yourself.  Is there a foodie coming to your party?  Assign them a specialty.  I am typically asked to bring a pasta salad. 

Pasta salad's are great for side dishes because it keeps the men full and the light-weights less tipsy.  Starchy and filling.. it's a great choice.  You can always go the traditional salad route too... Caeser salad, Asian salad, what ever you prefer.

We all know who the stars of the show are (well besides the teams on the screen)!  .... Appetizers!!

One of my favorite appetizers to make is Rumaki - also known as bacon wrapped water-chestnuts.  If you have any bacon advocates at your party then this is guaranteed to be a crowd pleaser!  Do you really know any men that don't enjoy bacon?  Doubtful.

The technique that I use is simple... Pre-heat the oven to 425.  Get about 2 or 3 cans of whole water-chestnuts (typically found in the Asian food aisle).  I would recommend getting Center Cut Bacon, which won't have as much fat on the edges.  Cut the bacon in half twice - length and then width.  So essentially you make 4 pieces out of 1 piece of bacon.  Wrap the bacon around the water-chestnut and secure with a toothpick (for a little fun.. pick the colors of your favorite team).  Spray a cookie sheet with non-stick cooking spray and place the wrapped pieces onto the sheet.  When completed.. sprinkle a little seasoning salt over the Rumaki pieces.  Bake for 20 minutes or until the bacon is brown and crispy.  To keep warm, I will place them in a slow cooker and set to warm.  You can leave them plain OR add a sauce to the slow cooker.  Choose your favorite BBQ sauce (which would be appropriate for this year's Super Bowl) OR a Sesame Ginger Marinade.  Yum!!  The guests will love it.

Taco roll-ups are also a crowd-pleaser.  Basically.. just mix up taco dip in a dish - a combination of salsa, cream cheese (at room temperature), green chili's in a can, and taco seasoning.  Spread over large tortilla (buritto size would be best).  Then choose your favorite toppings or make an assortment of toppings.  Diced tomato, black olives, scallions, cheddar cheese.  Spread a thin layer over the entire tortilla and then roll it up.  Cut into bite size pieces and serve!

Check out the Spinach dip appetizer recipe that I provided during the Christmas season. 

Enjoy the big game and enjoy the food without being in the kitchen too long! 

Go Packers!!

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