You would think coming up with new and interesting Super Bowl recipe ideas would be difficult to do year after year, but when you think about the endless combinations of food that are available, it's not that difficult. What IS difficult is trying not to eat it all when something you create tastes good. That's a problem I encountered when making Buffalo chicken nachos, and hopefully you will enjoy them as much as I did. With that, here is this year's Super Bowl spread, and we included one recipe each to represent Green Bay and Pittsburgh. While each recipe serves 4-6, that will vary based on how hungry everyone is, and also what else there is to eat at the party.
Buffalo Chicken Nachos
1 bag sturdy tortilla chips (or 3-4 cups)
3-4 chicken breast halves, trimmed of visible fat
Salt and pepper
1 cup Buffalo chicken hot sauce (Frank's is always a good choice)
1/2 cup chopped tomatoes
1/3 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese
1/4 cup pickled jalapeno peppers
Spread chips in a large baking dish and set aside. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Mist a large nonstick grill pan or large nonstick skillet with cooking spray, sprinkle some salt and pepper over chicken, and grill for 4-5 minutes per side or until no longer pink in the center. Let rest on a plate for a few minutes, then cut into bite-sized pieces. Place chicken pieces in a medium saucepan over medium-low heat, and add hot sauce. Let simmer for 3-4 minutes, then pour chicken/sauce mixture over nachos. Sprinkle with remaining ingredients, and bake for 5 minutes or until blue cheese is melted and chips just begin to brown. Serve immediately, and be ready to make more.
Brat and Wisconsin Cheddar Mini Pizzas (Green Bay)
2 small ready-made pizza crusts (such as Mama Mary's)
1 small green pepper, diced
1 small sweet onion, diced
1 pre-cooked bratwurst (Johnsonville beer brats are awesome), sliced
1 cup shredded extra sharp cheddar cheese (Wisconsin cheese is really good, but any kind of good cheddar will do for this pizza)
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Brush pizza crusts with a bit of olive oil and set aside. Heat about 2 teaspoons of oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium heat, and fry pepper, onion and brat slices for about 5 minutes or until onions are translucent. Sprinkle pizza crusts evenly with cheese, then spread brat mixture over the top. Bake for about 7-8 minutes, or until the edges of the pizza begin to brown. Cut into slices or bite-size pieces and serve.
Deep-Fried Pierogies (Pittsburgh)
1 box frozen mini potato and cheese pierogies (Mrs. T's are always good)
Vegetable oil for deep-frying
Heat about two inches of oil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat (or use a deep-fryer if you have one and prefer that) until you can feel the warmth easily when placing your hand about an inch away from the oil, or until a safe cooking thermometer shows the oil to be about 350 degrees. Remove pan from heat briefly, and very carefully lower about 10-12 frozen pierogies into the oil. Cook for 3-4 minutes, or just as they begin to brown, and then remove with a slotted metal spoon or spatula to a paper-towel lined bowl. Repeat process for as many batches of pierogies as you need, making sure the oil rises to cooking temperature before adding pierogies each time. Serve with ketchup for dipping on the side.
1 box Brownie mix (with or without walnuts)
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/4 cup water
1 small apple, peeled and diced
4 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
2 tablespoons applesauce
Prepare brownies according to package directions (you usually have to add egg, oil and water), adding apple, bacon, and applesauce. Bake for 40-45 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let cool for about 15-20 minutes and then slice brownies into small squares to serve.