Food & Football

For those of you living under a rock, Sunday was the Super Bowl and I decided it was a fine time to break in my new television. Best Buy was having a sale and I had Christmas money and gift cards burning a hole in my pocket so I’m the proud owner of a 60-inch man tv. Yep, 60 inches of high-def glory. It’s spectacular, not gonna lie.

My brother and my parentals hadn’t met G2‘s mom yet so we all converged on my house to watch the game. There was a pool (Mom won 3 of 4 quarters, including the final she isn’t invited back next year) and lots of food. I may have overcooked. Possibly. Just a little bit.

Come to find out, I ♥ crock pots. I used two on SBS: one for chili and one for chicken nachos (recipes to follow below) and I also enjoy football food that’s odd, outta me.

Our menu consisted of the following:

  • Slow-Cooker Chili
  • Chicken Nachos (made in the crock pot and looking like they might turn into fine leftover enchiladas)
  • Spinach & Artichoke dip
  • Loaded Potato Skins
  • Peanut Butter & Chocolate Crunch Bars
  • Assorted meats and cheese
  • Fried chicken (*disclaimer: I didn’t make this on Sunday morning. Rather, I had made a ridiculous amount of thighs and drumsticks for dinner on Friday night and they really needed to go to a good home so I busted the chicken out too.)

It was a solid line up of eats, if I do say so myself.

The game was fun and truly, all I asked was that the game wasn’t a blowout so I appreciate the Packers and the Steelers making it interesting. I have tons of leftovers (as does my brother, who took a lot home) especially since it was near 80 degrees on Sunday so hearty chili wasn’t exactly a hit, although I tasted it and was pleased with the recipe, but I think next time I will add more beans.

Here’s the recipe round up for my SBS Party:

Slow-Cooker Chili

  • 2 lbs. ground chuck
  • 1 cup of chopped yellow onion
  • 1 green pepper, chopped
  • 2-3 ribs of celery, finely chopped
  • 1 large (28-ounce) can of crushed tomatoes
  • 1 8-ounce can of tomato sauce
  • 3 cans of kidney beans, drained
  • 2 tsp. of black pepper
  • 4 tsp. chili powder
  • 2 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp. garlic salt

In a large skillet, brown the ground chuck and drain the fat. Combine all the ingredients in a crock pot on LOW and let the magic happen. In approximately 7 hours, you will have deliciousness. This recipe has some kick on the back end, so I recommend mixing in the shredded cheese and sour cream when serving. The sour cream will cool the kick without sacrificing the flavor.

Southwestern Chicken Nachos (we used this more as a dip but heap this on top of chips and it could be delish!)

  • 1 small bag of frozen corn
  • 3 large, frozen boneless/skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 16-ounce jar of medium salsa (for those of you who aren’t into spice, trust me when I say medium salsa. Mild just isn’t enough flavor.)
  • 1 can of black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 8-ounce package of cream cheese
  • tortilla chips
  • Additional toppings, such as: cilantro, shredded cheeses, sour cream, sliced olives, etc.

Empty the bag of frozen corn onto the bottom of the crock pot. Place the frozen chicken on top of the corn, then cover the chicken with the salsa and black beans. Cook on HIGH for one hour, then reduce the setting to LOW for 4 more hours. Shred the chicken with forks, then mix in the cream cheese until creamy. Now’s the time when you can pile up a platter of tortilla chips then top them with the nachos and additional toppings, but we just ate it as dip with the chips and it worked well. It’s currently being enjoyed on its own in a bowl, in a very cereal-like method of consumption.

Spinach-Artichoke Dip

  • 1 14-ounce can of artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
  • 1 10-ounce package of frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained
  • 1 8-ounce container of fat free plain yogurt or, if you’re me, 2 single-serve (6-ounce) yogurts that are on sale 10-for-$5 and just eat the other four ounces
  • 1 1/2 cups of shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 cup of chopped green onion
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tbsp of cayenne pepper, plus a sprinkle for the top
  • tortilla chips or crackers for serving
  • sour cream and salsa (optional, but since we had them on the table anyway…)

Preheat oven to 350. Combine all ingredients, saving 1/2 cup of cheese for use later, in a mixing bowl. Pour mixture into a 9-inch pie plate or quiche casserole dish. Sprinkle the top with a little cayenne and top that with the remaining mozzarella. Bake for 20-25 minutes and serve with tortilla chips or crackers.

Loaded Potato Skins
The only thing I hate about potato skins is that good potato I had to basically get rid of to get at the skins. As a big fan of carbs in general, this seems like such a waste! Sigh.

  • Small Russet potatoes
  • Bacon
  • Shredded Extra Sharp Cheese
  • Sour Cream

Preheat the over to 400. Wash the potatoes and with a very sharp knife, cut them in half, long ways (or, hot-dog way, if you prefer). Scoop out the potato (I didn’t do this very precisely, again, because it seemed like such a waste of perfectly good potato insides!) and place on a foil-lined baking sheet, skin-side down until soft (in my oven it was about 30-40 minutes). While the potatoes are baking, begin frying the bacon. Be sure to fry extra bacon in case one of your guests likes to “sample” bacon every chance he gets. When the bacon is done, transfer it to a paper towel-lined plate and save the bacon grease. Crumble the bacon to bits. When the potatoes are done, I fried the skins in the bacon drippings to add a little more bacon flavor. Remove from the frying pan and return to the baking sheet. Top with bacon bits and cheese and bake again for another 15-20 minutes, or until the cheese melts. Serve with sour cream.

Peanut Butter & Chocolate Crunch Bars

  • 2 1/2 cups of peanut butter
  • 3/4 cup of butter,melted
  • 2 cups of powdered sugar
  • 1 package from a box of graham crackers, crumbled in a ziploc bag to smithereens (I opted for honey grahams, but I suppose cinnamon could be used)
  • 2 packages of semi-sweet chocolate chips

Beat HALF of the peanut butter and butter until creamy. Gradually add in 1 cup of the powdered sugar. With a wooden spoon, mix in the graham cracker crumbs, 1 package of chocolate chips, followed by the remaining powdered sugar. Spread evenly into a greased 13×9 pan. Melt the remaining peanut butter and other bag of chocolate chips in a saucepan on LOW until melted together and creamy. Spread over the top of the mixture in the pan and refrigerate for at least one hour (unless it’s a freakishly warm, 80-degree day, then keep them chilled for as long as possible so as not to melt in your house in February).

So that was my big Super Bowl Sunday cook-a-thon. I really like cooking. I like it even more when there are people around for whom to cook.