I’ve never been to New Orleans, but it’s on the hit list for sure. Crawfish, creole cooking and bourbon all sound pretty good to me. So I’m preparing a feast, on what to me is one of the best days of the year, to honor the great host city of Superbowl 2013.
Let’s get it out of the way before we get to the really good stuff. Sadly, because my New England Patriots and my second husband Tom Brady were brutally ousted by the stupid birds, and my other favourite team had a heartbreaking loss in the divisionals to Atlanta, I’m cheering for the 49ers today. They’re a great West Coast team and their QB knows how to do it right, so I’m feeling pretty good about this whole thing.
And we all know that you need great food to go with a great game, so today I’m pulling out all the stops; and leaving all the calories in! I was originally going to do something in honor of the teams (Maryland crab cakes etc.), and then I decided that I couldn’t pass up an excuse to go NOLA style. It’s a joint effort today, my better half is quarterbacking the ribs and I’m pulling everything else together.
Yesterday I made homemade BBQ sauce, compliments of the new Barefoot Contessa cookbook, Foolproof. I love the simplicity of Ina Garten’s food, and although I usually slim down her recipes this one didn’t appear to need any modification. The end result was about 5 cups of the most delicious, vinegary, thick and rich BBQ sauce I’ve ever had. I was ready to take a bath in it! The main ingredient is not ketchup as one might think, rather it has Dijon, hoisin, tomato paste, honey, cider vinegar, Worcestershire and soy sauce to name a few. It cost way more to make than buying it off the shelf, but it will last for a long time in the fridge. So move over Sweet Baby Ray, my sauce is the boss!
So with the ribs all rubbed down and doing their thing in the fridge for now, I spent the morning making the game-winning touchdown of the meal. Sticky toffee bourbon cake (also from the Barefoot Contessa). If that doesn’t scream NOLA I’m not sure what does. I modified the recipe only slightly, to integrate some espresso. BC doesn’t seem to like coffee flavoured things, but in my humble opinion you can’t make sticky toffee anything without a little kick of beans. We have a few bourbons in the house at the moment, but I opted for Buffalo Trace. Basically you make your cake, loaded with dates, and then as soon as you pull it out of the oven you poke holes all over it and smother it with a rich caramely bourbon sauce. After it soaks in I’ll flip it and pour the rest on top. So as you can imagine, my apartment smells pretty freaking fantastic right about now!
I figured we should get some veggies in with this amazing meal, so at half time (cause I actually care more about the game than Beyonce) I’ll be making sweet and spicy mashed yams (BC recipe), and a brussels sprout and kale slaw.
Can’t wait to get this party started! Regardless of whether you’re watching the Harbowl or the Superbaugh let’s hope for a great game. And if my team loses I’m expecting to see quite the victory dance from good old Ray Lewis so I guess either way I’m happy.