Betting on a Bargain Super Bowl
By Deborah Salomon
Oops. After buying that new TV, you're short on cash for Super Bowl eats.
The take-out pizza-wings route, plus beer and dessert for 10 people can easily score $100.
We red-blooded Americans manage to earmark food for every holiday. Super Bowl Sunday has become a snack-a-rama. You know it's a big deal when Nabisco markets football-shaped Oreos.
But remember - nobody expects gourmet goodies. Pull off a quarterback sneak:
n Chili on the cheap: Pour three or four cans of store-brand pinto and red kidney beans in a soup pot or, even better, CrockPot. Remove casings from several links of spicy turkey or chicken sausage; break up meat, brown in skillet, drain, add to beans along with a jar of store-brand medium salsa and a tablespoon or two of brown sugar. Stir well and simmer, covered, for at least 30 minutes, longer in a CrockPot. For a thicker chili, stir in a few spoonfuls of mashed potato flakes. Make a double batch of corn muffin mix in a 9-by-13 inch pan. Put the chili pot or CrockPot right on the table, with bowls, a ladle and crushed tortilla chips for topping.
n Creative cole slaw, chili's best friend: Dump two bags of angel hair coleslaw cabbage (at Harris Teeter) into a bowl. Finely grate a carrot into cabbage. Press two garlic cloves over all. Bring 1 cup vinegar to a boil. Add 2 tablespoons sugar and stir until dissolved. Whisk in a scant ? cup vegetable oil. Pour over cabbage and fluff with fork. Add freshly grated black pepper to taste. Cover and refrigerate several hours or overnight, fluffing occasionally. Pour off excess liquid before serving.
n The pizza sandwich solution: Split two long French or Italian loaves lengthwise. Spread lightly with canned pasta sauce. Fill with paper-thin pepperoni or Genoa salami slices (sliced to order at deli counter), provolone cheese, green pepper and red onion slices (also paper-thin). Wrap loaves securely in foil and bake at 350 degrees for 15-25 minutes, depending on thickness of bread. Slice without unwrapping.
n Chipper dip: Mix in blender a pint of light sour cream, a pint of low-fat cottage cheese and one chili seasoning packet. Scrape into bowl, sprinkle with paprika and chopped scallions.
n Takes the cake: Rub a nonstick 9-by13 inch pan with oil. Line bottom with waxed paper or parchment. Rub paper with oil. Fill with yellow or white cake mix prepared according to package directions. When cool, turn cake out of pan onto foil or other platter. Frost with simple buttercream (6 tablespoons softened butter or margarine, confectioners' sugar, milk, vanilla) tinted green, if desired. Before frosting sets, attach football-shaped Oreos (pulled apart) around sides of cake. Draw yard lines with chocolate icing from a tube. Construct goal posts with pretzel sticks and melted candle wax.
Add a keg ... and may the best team win.
Contact Deborah Salomon at email@example.com.
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