Whether you’re a football fanatic watching your team play in the ultimate game or you just love a good get together, Super Bowl parties have become a winter tradition. If you’re going to throw a proper party, you need to serve great food. Instead of opening a bag of chips and letting guests fend for themselves, try some of these classic game-friendly appetizers to get your guests cheering for you at halftime.
Avocado sales reach their highest point in early February because of the Super Bowl. That’s because just about everyone loves guacamole, the cool creamy avocado dip that makes a delicious counterpoint to a hot, spicy salsa. Skip the jar and make your own guacamole in minutes. Just mash some avocados with a fork, sprinkle on salt and pepper to taste, and stir in a dash of sour cream and a squeeze or two of lime juice. You can make the basic recipe your own with fresh minced garlic or onions, a spoonful of salsa or a twist of lemon instead of lime. Leave it chunky or mash it smooth according to your taste. Serve it with a big bowl of tortilla chips, salsa and sour cream for dipping.
Another hit during Super Bowl Sunday, nachos are practically synonymous with football party food. Make your own loaded nachos for game day with a few ingredients you probably already have in your kitchen. Saute ground beef in a skillet until it’s fully cooked, then drain away the excess fat. Stir in taco seasoning or your own spice blend with cumin, chili powder and onion flakes. Shake tortilla chips onto a baking sheet and top them evenly with the meat mixture. Open a can of refried beans and spread a few spoonfuls on the chips.
Add shredded cheddar and Monterrey jack over the meaty chips and pop them into a 350-degree oven until the cheese melts thoroughly. Transfer the chips to a serving tray and bring on the party guests. You can top the nachos with cool sour cream, fresh salsa, pickled jalapenos or homemade guacamole.
Hot, spicy, buttery and flavorful, buffalo wings are far easier to make at home than you might think. Make the wings in batches to keep them hot and fresh. Make a spicy flour mixture to coat the wings in a sealable plastic bag. Add flour, cayenne pepper, garlic powder, salt and black pepper to the bag and shake it to mix the spices. Add a dozen raw wings at a time to the flour mixture and shake them until they’re coated. Transfer them to a baking sheet and refrigerate them for a couple of hours; this helps the wings keep their form during cooking.
Heat your oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit; while the oven’s heating, mix a cup of melted butter with hot sauce – Louisiana natives Tabasco or Crystal are perfect for wings – to taste. Dip the chilled, floured wings into the butter and replace them on the baking sheet, then bake them for about 40 to 45 minutes or until they’re cooked through. Turn them once during cooking.
Classic buffalo wings are served with celery slices and blue cheese dressing, but you can mix up the formula with ranch dressing or crisp green pepper slices.