The Big Game of the year is almost upon us. Super Sunday has become one of the biggest party days of the year, and the food served plays about as big a role in the fun as either team’s quarterback.
If you’re hosting one of these Superstravaganzas, it’s time to put together your game plan so you’ll score points with the crowd no matter who wins on the field. You need party food ideas that won’t keep you huddled up in the kitchen the whole time.
That’s where our Big Game Menu comes in. It’s Big on taste appeal and light on work detail. Just like many of the teams in the playoffs, we’ve put a premium on speed with this spread. Most of these dishes come together quickly and won’t leave you trapped in the kitchen like a QB that’s sacked in the backfield.
In addition to the simple, high-scoring recipes cooked up by our chefs, we’ve plotted out some game day strategy (i.e., party tips) that’ll help make you the MVP with both the football fanatics and the casual fans who are there more for the social experience…or the funny TV commercials.
On the Menu
You know there will be some meat lovers there. We suggest serving meatloaf in a new way—handheld—in the form of hearty Game Day Meatloaf Sandwiches. Rustic artisan bread dresses them up a bit. We recommend you use meatloaf from your local supermarket deli to save time and effort.
Shrimp with Homemade Cocktail Sauce adds premium quality to your spread. Again, you can find reasonably priced cooked shrimp at the supermarket, club store or seafood shop. Our recipe for cocktail sauce is simple, superb…and easy to tweak to your taste preferences.
Our Buffalo Chicken Cheesy Dip will be as big a hit as a blindside sack on the quarterback. Meaty, sassy and perfect for topping crackers, chips—or our Homemade Pita Crisps. Great for dipping fresh vegetables, too.
Another wonderful dip that’s excellent with fresh-cut veggies is our Creamy Herb Dipping Sauce. Cool, creamy and a lovely shade of green. Perfect for Jets and Packers fans—too bad they got knocked out of the playoffs.
What about beverages? Well, you can’t go wrong keeping bottles of beer on ice. But Freshly-Made Margaritas pumps up the crowd with a little extra spirit. Our recipe will earn cheers from the crowd, no matter how the game is going.
For the fan that has a sweet tooth, we’ve got a super-simple recipe idea: Peanut Butter Cup Cookies. These will be gone long before the final whistle blows, guaranteed.
Touch down here, we’re piling on more Super recipes!
Extra Points and Party Tips
Organize a points pool. Have guests draw numbers before the kickoff. Winners are determined by who has the last digit of each team’s score. (Anyone who’s ever worked in an office or factory knows how to do this. Everyone can put in a dollar, or just award a gag prize to the winners). Set it up so someone wins after each quarter, as well as at the end of the game.
Be ad critics. Sometimes the commercials are more entertaining than the game. Go to Superbowl Ads and check out their ‘Preview of Who’s Advertising in 2010’ to create a ballot for the game telecast and have everyone rank their most and least favorites. Check USA Today the day after the game to see how your voting compares with their panel.
Set the buffet. To set up the buffet table, arrange bowls and plates for serving at the front of the table. Place serving spoons, tongs and ladles on small plates around the food, and arrange rolled napkins with silverware inside. Place glasses at the end of the buffet.
Keep drinks handy. Serve a generous assortment of beer and soda in a large tub filled with ice, and your pitcher of margaritas in the ‘fridge.
Be ready for overtime. Keep things like the Buffalo Chicken Cheesy Dip and chicken wings warm in a chafing dish or on a hot plate.
Work ahead. Make as much as you can in advance of game day. The Creamy Herb Dip is actually better made ahead and served the next day.
Make it easy. Go easy on yourself and order takeout wings from your favorite restaurant, club store, or supermarket deli. Arrange on an impressive platter and serve with prepared ranch or blue cheese dressing. Top the wings with crumbled blue cheese to draw “oohs” from your guests.
Make it light. For waist watchers, serve a veggie tray from the supermarket. Or cut fresh vegetables into spears for dipping and serve in glasses (as shown, left). Our homemade pita crisps make a better-for-you alternative to chips.
Buy what you can to jazz things up. Your local supermarket will have cool stuff to add color and flair to your party: football-decorated cookies and cakes in the bakery, napkins and tablecloths in the paper goods section.
For more ideas and game info, visit superbowl.com
More Super recipes below!