Who wants some??? Let's Go Ravens!!!

In just a few short weeks, football fans everywhere will celebrate the 2011 Football season by watching one of the biggest sporting events in professional sports – the Super Bowl. For the football faithful, this can be a bittersweet time, especially if your team is in the hunt for a ring (like mine! GO RAVENS!) It’s great to see your team play into January, but you know that once they drop the confetti and hand out the Lombardi trophy, it’s the end of football until August (fingers crossed that there is no lockout!).

As usual, I digress.

For a foodie, the playoff season can be the perfect time to get friends together and send out the 2011 football season in style. Need some ideas? I thought you’d never ask!

  • Regional “Fan”fare: Show support for your favorite team by preparing a dish that represents the team’s city. For example, I am a HUGE Ravens fan (GO RAVENS!). To celebrate our victory over the Kansas City Chiefs last Sunday, I made crab cakes, which are a religion in Baltimore. This would be a good spot for me to insert the recipe here, however, that’ll NEVER happen. Here’s a tip though: stay away from backfin meat – it makes the crab cake very heavy.
  • Foodie Fan Challenge: Inviting friends over to watch the games? Challenge your friends to a cook-off! Pick a few dishes that are easy for everyone to make, and have your guests go head to head. Some dishes to include in the food battle can be:
    • chili
    • wings
    • ribs
    • dessert (there’s always room for dessert!)
  • The “Aluminum Foil” Chef Challenge: So, I hope everyone is familiar with the show Iron Chef America. If you’re not, stop reading this blog right now. (okay, finish the blog and then go find an episode.) If you have a friend that you constantly compete with for “best dish” bragging rights, host an “Aluminum Foil Chef” Challenge. Have one person serve as the Chairman, who will select the “secret ingredient”. Three people will serve as judges, and you and your foodie nemesis will battle head to head for top honors and bragging rights.
  • Kiddie Cook-Off: Cooking isn’t just for adults! Encourage your kids to get in the kitchen by hosting a Kiddie Cook-Off. Each child would have an adult sous chef to handle the stove, but they would be responsible for coming up with the dish and assisting in preparation. Three “junior tasters” determine the winner.

 If you are planning to host a Super Bowl Watch Party, here are a few tips to make your party stand out:

  • Have a theme in mind when planning your décor. To make your party festive and entertaining, have a specific design theme in mind when decorating for your event.
  • Make sure your menu is game friendly. Your menu should contain items that are portable and snackable – if you are planning a full meal, serve it prior to the opening kickoff.
  • Don’t forget to be adventurous! You guys know my favorite phrase when it comes to cooking – be adventurous! Don’t settle for buying pre-seasoned or pre-cooked wings – fire up your stove (or grill – it’s never too cold!) and see what flavor combinations will have the game watchers at your house coming back for seconds! If you really want to get away from traditional football fare, serve ethnic dishes instead – but keep it game-friendly!
  • Engage the non-football enthusiasts. Believe it or not, there may be people at your party that don’t like football. Have something fun for them as well – set up a smaller viewing room for movies or video games.
  • Host an event for the kids! One event you rarely see hosted during the playoffs is a game watching party for kids. Be the envy of the neighborhood and have a special party that is kid-powered. Have fun competitions to keep them engaged, and your game friendly menu will make your house the best on the block.

 

Now that you have some ideas, get out there and host a great event! Oh, and don’t forget….

 

GO RAVENS!

 

 Happy eating!

The Fab Foodie

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