January 24th 2010
I’m not a sports fan, but even I am waiting to find out if the New Orleans Saints are going to the Super Bowl. I lived in New Orleans for 12 years and everyone loves an underdog.
Now that I’ve told you just about everything I know about sports, let me talk party food to you. That’s something I really have a knack for. If the Saints do make their way to the big game, make your party center around the food of New Orleans. Have a big slow cooker full of gumbo and another of jambalaya. This way, your guests will be eating the best food of all the Super Bowl parties on your block.
Most large supermarkets have frozen crawfish which adds an exotic touch outside of Louisiana. Use it in the dishes above or in a dip in place of crab. Also, change up the spices a little. You can try some of Emeril’s Essence, which is also available nationwide. Add a little cayenne or Tabasco to spice it up a bit. You can also do it all the easy way with Zatarain’s Mixes. It’s really all up to you.
If the Saints let us down, you can still do better than a table of chips and pre-made dips. Get out your little dipper Crockpot and make a fondue instead of the usual nacho cheese. Even if you use cheddar and beer in it, it’s still a step above. Have lightly toasted bread hunks, steamed veggies, and you can still have a few tortilla chips out for the die hard junk food fans. Turn a plain old bean dip into something special by adding some goat cheese in place of the usual Monterrey jack and puree some chipolte chilies in adobe sauce to replace the jalapenos.
Create a make your own sandwich buffet. Use your Sengware platters to put out an array of thin sliced meats and cheeses. Have and array of interesting rolls – ciabata, oat, whole grain, sunflower and more. Have a few unusual cheeses, including goat cheese, so the vegetarians have something yummy too. Put out smoked mustards, basil aoili, and even steak sauce, they all make a sandwich more interesting.
Have cute mini cupcakes in place of a big cake. You can make them easily at home and even healthy them up with whole wheat pastry flour if you want to. Make sure to put out a fruit tray so your friends can keep their new year’s resolutions at least a little longer.