Sunday Night Special: Super Bowl Edition
Despite having next to no interest in sports whatsoever (I blame it on a Portland upbringing—the Trailblazers were the only pro team we had) our Super Bowl party always ends up being bigger than expected. Even with a healthy-sized apartment, thirty-plus guests can be a challenge.
The problem with hosting parties is that there’s little downtime; keeping the food non-fancy still ends up being a time suck. Buffalo wings have to be cooked in steady batches and even hands-off treats can be a distraction. But then, I’m easily distracted. I didn’t see much of the game or many of the commercials (I did watch the half-time show and was fully expecting "Don't Come Around Here no More") and only ate three measly wings (this was rectified last night when we fried up leftover chicken parts).
I’ve used the same tablecloth and dishware numerous times so if I was to compare Super Bowl parties past there would be uncanny similarities. Life is repetitive that way.
Nearly a quarter of the attendees were vegetarian so I couldn’t let them starve. Spanish-influenced empanadas with Manchego, spinach, almonds and raisins seemed un-boring.
We’ve been overwhelmed with dried goods after James ordered a Rancho Gordo sampler that arrived too late for his father’s Christmas present. I used the included cannellini beans for a healthy-ish bean dip that I livened up with white truffle oil and the recommended balsamic vinegar. I also added chopped sun-dried tomatoes even though the recipe only called for their oil, which apparently is very Mark Bittman. Carrot sticks, red pepper strips and these cheap bruschetta toasts I found at Western Beef went along with the mashed beans.
I’m generally biased against Food Network recipes but for something like hot jalapeno crab dip they seem right on. Do you want a highbrow crab dip?
Buying only two jars of dill pickles was a big mistake because the pickle chips disappeared within seconds. I never understood Costco’s giant condiment jars but now their purpose is perfectly clear. I used another Food TV recipe for the batter and Deann brought buttermilk dressing for dipping.
Impromptu candy-frying erupted. That’s been known to happen when the deep fryer makes an appearance. Kit Kats, Snickers and crowd favorite Cadbury Eggs all got the hot oil treatment. We regretted not having cheesecake on hand since it makes a particularly decadent battered, fried treat. I think last year someone tried deep-frying a whole blackout cake, which is proof that drinking and frying are a dangerous combination.
After a handful of drinks, scary fratty cocktails start sounding good. James loves concocting an old ‘90s Baltimore classic, Surfing on Acid. Jagermeister, Malibu and pineapple sound absolutely wretched, though I have to admit the combo is more pleasing than the sum of the parts. Someone cracked open my blue wildberry cherries, and next thing I knew gummy bears were being added as garnish. These were my kind of people—no prompting from me was needed for such garish flourishes. And I wonder why I felt like death the next morning.
I thought this was a chocolate mousse cake and that it had been decimated. I got a tasty surprise last night when I found 3/4 of it in my freezer. Oh, and it's a chocolate banana tart.
I can't forget the store-bought goodies. Football themed cakes are a must.