Football Foodie Contest - Week Three

Monday, 22 January, 2018
Football Foodie

Last week featured a bunch of unexpected, blockbuster trades in the NFL. One of the most significant was wide-out Kelvin Benjamin being traded to the Buffalo Bills for a couple of draft choices. On the surface, it appears to be one of the worst trades ever made. I hope time proves me wrong, and that some of the number 2’s and 3’s on the depth chart come through. Benjamin has certainly not had a career year, and maybe the team felt that he had had enough time to show his worth, and hadn’t. Maybe they thought it was more important to have some speed and a deep threat rather than two big, physical wide/slot receivers. We’ll find out.

Justin’s (Dr. Glodowski) Steelers keep rolling on, looking more and more like true contenders to one of my teams, the Patriots. Our shared fandom of the Giants seems to be doomed this season. We hope that no one else is seriously injured, and that they start thinking about Manning’s replacement at Quarterback.

When Justin and I began the “tradition” of picking teams/cities as food themes for our Red Zone football marathons, one of the first cities we picked was Cincinnati (Bengals). Justin, having spent time living in the Midwest, had heard of something called “skyline chilly” which has two peculiarities (from our point of view): it’s served over spaghetti and one of the ingredients is chocolate. It turned out to be not bad at all, and was the first of our unique regional recipes.

So, it feels kind of like going full circle to feature Cincinnati as one of our cities of the week. It also means that we can’t repeat Cincinnati-style chilis. One of our contributors (who will be in the hunt for the Panthers’ tickets), suggested something I’ve never heard of before, and what we are going to try representing the Queen City – Ritz Crackers with a Twist. We’re both curious to see what this dish will be like a canape. It seems to be simplicity itself. We will see…

Ritz Crackers with a Twist

Courtesy of Gloria C. - Week Three Football Foodie Winner

Ingredients

  • 1 stick melted butter
  • 1 packet Ranch dressing mix
  • ¼ c. grated Parmesan
  • 1 tbsp. red pepper flakes
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 box Ritz crackers

Directions

  1. Toss box of Ritz crackers with all 5 ingredients
  2. Bake in 300-degree oven for 15 minutes

Our other city, Kansas City (for the Chiefs) is a first timer. A little research, and a suggestion from a contributor led to the family of Kansas City Rubs.

Rubs are normally associated with barbecue, which is cooking meat or poultry slowly over indirect heat (usually with a blend of wood chip smoke) to flavor the meat. Kansas City has developed its own special ‘Cue.

It was 1908. Henry Perry operated out of a city back alley, and sold smoked meats to hungry laborers. When he found success, he moved into a space with a roof. And with a team of then no-names in his stable he developed a reputation that continues to draw awe today. Perry was the architect of Kansas City barbecue, and thanks to his vision, a legion of followers would define this city as a leader for barbecue in the nation.

Barbecue in KC is unique. For starters, Kansas City invented and perfected a delicacy called the burnt end. Expect to find it on just about every barbecue menu in Kansas City. Its composition is that crispy portion of the brisket not suitable for slicing, but delicious and full of flavor on its own. Pitmasters will chop it into cubes or chunks, and then submerge it into sauce, often returning it to the smoker for even more smoking. So, Kansas City Burnt Ends is our other recipe of the week

Kansas City Burnt Ends

Courtesy of Peter U. - Week Three Football Foodie Winner

Ingredients

  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup granulated sugar 
  • 1/2 cup salt 
  • 1/3 cup chili powder 
  • 1/4 cup paprika 
  • 6 tablespoons black pepper 
  • 3 tablespoons ground cumin 
  • 3 tablespoons garlic powder 
  • 3 tablespoons onion powder 
  • 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
  • One 10- to 12-pound whole, packer trim beef brisket

Directions

  1. Special equipment: a smoker or grill
  2. Sift the brown sugar, granulated sugar, salt, chili powder, paprika, black pepper, cumin, garlic powder, onion powder and cayenne pepper into a medium bowl and mix well. Set aside.
  3. Trim all the hard fat from the brisket. Trim all the soft fat to 1/4 inch. Prepare a smoker or a grill, following the manufacturer's directions. Stabilize the temperature at 220 degrees F. Use a mild wood such as hickory or cherry for the smoke flavor. Generously cover all sides of the brisket with the rub and gently massage it in. Reserve the leftover rub. Smoke the meat until an instant-read thermometer registers 170 to 185 degrees F when inserted into the flat part of the brisket, about 1 hour per pound. For example, a 10-pound brisket may need to smoke for about 10 or more hours. Monitor the internal temperature.
  4. Separate the point of the meat from the flat. At this time you can slice the flat part off the brisket and eat. Trim the visible fat from the brisket point and coat it with the reserved rub. Return the meat to the smoker and continue cooking until the internal temperature of the brisket point reaches 200 degrees F. Remove the brisket from the smoker to a cutting board and let it sit for 10 to 20 minutes. Cut into chunks and transfer them to a serving platter. Serve it hot with your favorite sauce on the side.

Recipe courtesy of Phil Hopkins, co-owner of Smokin' Guns BBQ in North Kansas City, MO

Liquid Refreshments
Our Beverage Winner for Week Three, Peter U., suggested a Malbec (red wine) from Argentina which is an exclellent suggestion. Though the great majority of Malbecs sold in the US are from Mendoza in Argentina, the wine originated in southwestern France near the city of Cohors. Though the Argentinian vintages are very good, the French are superb. Both Justin and I are really fond of a winery from Cohors which has the “K” (K-Or for example) family of wines. They are available at the Wine Authority in Raleigh, and are worth the trip.

The beer story this week found more searching locally (continue trying to stay local). I was able to find Kansas City beers around and picked up 3 different Boulevard Brewery brews. Tank 7 Farmhouse ale, the Sixth Glass Quadrupel, and barrel aged Bourbon Barrel Quad. Could not get beers from Cincinnati directly, but since Kentucky in just across the Ohio river and the airport for Cincinnati is actually in Kentucky, went for the Kentucky Brewery, getting Bourbon Barrel ale, Vanilla Barrel cream ale, and Peach Barrel. Tasted these from the lightest to the strongest, alternating Kentucky Brewery with the Kansas City brewery. All were different, especially the vanilla barrel. Found these at Triangle wines in Cary. Went hunting for other breweries to sample but found none. Did get help from Matt at Lowe’s in Apex, and then went to Bottle Revolution in Apex. Derek helped me find some possibilities from next week’s teams of Arizona and Seattle. I called the Bottle Shop in Morrisville, as a contributor to our blog recommended them. They did not have any Cincinnati beers but have one from Seattle that will be pursued next week.

Keep up those recommendations!