Top Ten Tips for Football FoodNov 09
1. It’s all about the food. Remember that success will be measured by the quality of the food.
2. Prepare Days in Advance. In order to put out a spread worthy of having your name attached to it, you need to prepare days in advance and do some of the cooking yourself.
3. It starts with (homemade) dip. Anyone can buy dip so try making guacamole, a white cheese, a French onion, or a spinach and artichoke dip. You’ll be surprised how much better they are when they’re homemade and so will your guests. And be sure to buy enough bags of chips. Once the chips are gone, the dip might as well be, too.
4. Meat preparation makes the difference. Try marinating the chicken breasts and steaks for at least a day to give them an irresistible flavor. As far as the burgers, be creative. Purchase ground beef and pack them into balls yourself. This allows you to insert onions, jalapenos, or any other ingredient into the ground beef before grilling them.
5. Buffalo wings are a no-brainer. You can try making these yourself, but it’s much easier going to a local restaurant or grocery store where you know they have the best wings. Make sure you put the order in with plenty of lead time—the establishment may very well be closed on a Sunday morning before an NFL game.
6. Let guests customize their sandwiches. Set up a mini sandwich-making table and let guests pick from a variety of cheeses, meats, and possibly breads to create their ultimate sandwich.
7. Warm up souls on a cold, winter day. It’s more likely than not that you or a relative have a can’t-miss soup or chili. Share your tasty chili, French onion, or meat and potato soup with your tailgating guests to give them feeling in their toes and fingers again.
8. Everyone needs a drink. Make sure you have alcoholic beverages, juices, pops, and water. Expand your horizons by concocting a cocktail with both alcohol and without, to stimulate taste buds of those guests over and under 21.
9. Dessert is a must. You’ve done everything else so well so don’t neglect dessert. This means no last-minute stops at the gas station to get candy bars and frozen ice cream treats. Take an hour or two of your time to bake something. Anything from brownies or peanut butter and chocolate bars to lemon bars will be a big hit. Remember, the dessert is the complement to your perfect tailgate.
10. Think Ahead. The perfect spread at a football party takes heightened attention to detail and a bit of your time. It’s not going to come together in a matter of hours. The more you think ahead about it, the better it’s going to turn out. Give yourself about a week to prepare and your guests will appreciate the finished the product. And have fun learning how to make new things!