How Football Foodies Began
By: Alan Copland, Generations Family Practice COO
Several years ago, Dr. Glodowski and I began an enjoyable custom. Since I have NFL Red Zone on my cable service, he came over every Sunday and we glutted ourselves on six solid hours of NFL highlights, live. Following the action of each game is engaging, as it is constantly switching from game to game to catch the best plays, but all in all, having solid action and no commercials feels worth it.
Last year we added a new custom to our ritual: choice of eats and beer. We put the names of each team in the league on strips of paper and put them in a hat. Every Sunday we drew two teams from the hat. The rule was that the food we would serve (picture two grown, hungry men sitting on a couch for six hours with ample beer) had to be related to the city that the teams drawn came from. For example, the Packers would require food known or loved by folks in Green Bay, Wisconsin – fondue and/or brats is the answer for that one. We can get esoteric – Cincinnati’s food was Skyline Chili (a chili recipe including chocolate, which was not bad) which comes from a locally well-known chain in the Cincinnati area,. The dishes could be cooked in our kitchen, or purchased locally or via the web (as long it was available Sunday afternoon). The beer also had to originate from one of the target cities (and often came from both). We became “Football Foodies.”
Why are we sharing this story?
We thought that some of you might like to get in on our fun by helping us choose what to eat (We will try not to blame you for the Monday morning GI issues tasting the cuisine). To sweeten the deal, we decided to turn it into a Football Foodie Contest! Every Sunday, for four weeks in a row, we’ll draw the cities for the following week and let you know what they are. Check Facebook (make sure to Follow Us) on Sunday evenings. LIKE that week’s Contest Post AND COMMENT with your culinary suggestions for those cities. We’ll choose from the recipes you suggest, and prepare and devour (hopefully) an appetizer and a main course. EVERY WEEK WILL HAVE A WINNER! The winning entries for each week will receive a $20 Gift Certificate to a local eatery of our choice.
We will compile the names of ALL ENTRIES for the four week period and hold a GRAND PRIZE DRAWING. Everyone who submits a recipe will be entered for a chance to WIN a pair of tickets to the Carolina Panthers / Green Bay Packers game in Charlotte on December 17, 2017!!
Each week, to make it more fun, we’ll share with you the food choices for the coming Sunday and maybe a little history of that dish. We will also save the names of the folks whose recipes we sampled and have a surprise for each of you at the end of the season.
Here is an example to get you started…
Two weeks ago, we drew the Minnesota Vikings and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. After racking our brains, and with some help from Google, we came up with Booyah for the Vikes and Tampa Bay Grits for the Bucs.
Booyah comes from northern Minnesota and Michigan. It is a beef/chicken/vegetable soup/stew. According to Wikipedia, it is a thick stew, probably of Belgian origin, found throughout the northern/ mid-western states. Since it is normally made in 30-gallon “Booyah kettles”, big pots simmered all day over an open fire (we cheated), it is also the name of an Autumn party at which the main entertainment is Booyah.
Tampa Bay Grits are a shrimp and sausage grits recipe from the West Coast of Florida. There seems to be a good variability in the recipe, and it is served in several noted restaurants in the Tampa area. Seems like a great football meal to us.
These are very different dishes from different cuisines, yet oddly, combined with the brews of the afternoon — Florida Cracker Belgian style white ale (Cigar City Brewing) and Edmund Fitzgerald Porter (Great Lakes Brewing Company) — they were perfectly matched.
Can’t wait for next week’s kickoff!
And the recipes with their sources…
- 2-1/2 lbs. bone-in, English-style short ribs, trimmed, meat and bones separated (I used bone-in beef chuck short ribs)
- 2-1/2 lbs. bone-in chicken thighs, trimmed
- 1 T. vegetable oil
- 2 yellow onions, chopped fine
- 2 ribs celery, minced
- 8 c. low sodium chicken broth
- 2 bay leaves
- 4 c. shredded green cabbage
- 1 28-oz. can diced tomatoes
- 8 oz. rutabaga, peeled and cut into ½” pieces
- 1 lb. russet potatoes, peeled and cut into ½” pieces
- 3 large carrots, peeled and sliced ¼” thick
- 1 c. frozen peas
- 1 T. freshly squeezed lemon juice
- Pat beef and chicken dry with paper towels and season with salt and black pepper. Heat oil in Dutch oven over medium-high heat until just smoking. Brown beef on all sides, about 10 minutes; transfer to plate. Cook chicken until browned all over, about 10 minutes; transfer to plate. When chicken is cool enough to handle, remove and discard skin.
- Pour off all but 1-1/2 teaspoons fat from pot. Add onions and celery and cook over medium heat until softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in broth and bay leaves, scraping up any browned bits. Add beef, beef bones, and chicken, and bring to boil.
- Reduce heat to low and simmer, covered, until chicken registers 175° F, about 30 minutes. Transfer chicken to bowl. When chicken is cool enough to handle, shred into bite-size pieces, discarding bones. Cover chicken and refrigerate. Continue to simmer stew until beef is tender, about 1-1/4 hours longer. Transfer beef to plate. When cool enough to handle, shred into bite-size pieces, discarding fat. Remove beef bones and bay leaves. Strain broth through fine-mesh strainer; discard solids. Allow liquid to settle, about 5 minutes, then skim off fat and return liquid to pot.
- Add shredded beef, cabbage, tomatoes, rutabaga, 1-1/4 teaspoon salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper to liquid and bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until rutabaga is translucent around edges, about 15 minutes. Stir in potatoes and carrots and cook until vegetables are tender, about 20 minutes. Add chicken and peas, and simmer until heated through, 2 to 3 minutes. Off heat, stir in lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve
TAMPA BAY GRITS
- 1 package mild or beef smoked sausage
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 large bell pepper, thinly sliced
- 1 large green or yellow pepper, thinly sliced
- 1 medium yellow onion, peeled and sliced
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- ¼ Cup white wine
- Grits Ingredients
- 1 ½ cups water
- ¼ cup heavy cream (if calories and fat content are an issue for your family, low-fat half and half can replace this ingredient)
- 1 clove finely minced garlic
- 2 tablespoons butter (again, if dietary concerns are a worry for your family, margarine can be used as a substitute)
- 1 teaspoon each of chopped fresh herbs, such as basil, oregano, parsley and thyme (our personal favorites are basil, sage, dill, and oregano. Feel free to experiment with different combinations of spices. We encourage fresh spices though, jarred can be too strong in flavor)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 ½ cups milk (you can use skim milk for this step. It saves calories and still contains all of the nutrients of 2% milk)
- 1 cup stone ground white cornmeal (the layman’s term is grits. We promise you that once you have grits, you will never look back)
- Salt and pepper to taste
- ½ cup grated parmesan cheese (we suggest getting this fresh from the deli section of your local supermarket)
- Prepare grits in a large saucepan. Start by combining the herbs, garlic oil and 1 tablespoon butter or margarine. On low heat, stir for about 3 minutes.
- Gradually stir in water and milk. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Be careful heating the milk so it doesn’t burn.
- Gradually whisk in the cornmeal. You want to do this slowly and consistently. You don’t want grits recipe that is clumpy. Reduce heat to low. Cook and stir for 5-6 minutes until the grits have a thick texture like oatmeal.
- Next stir in the cream and remaining butter. Mix until well blended. Add in the fresh Parmesan cheese, salt, and pepper. Slice the Uncle John’s Pride Hot Country Sausage into pieces. In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Cook sausage until it is browned, approximately 5-7 minutes. In the same skillet, add the peppers, onions, and garlic. Saute for 2-3 minutes. Slowly stir in the wine. Cook and stir until onions and peppers are tender and the wine has reduced. Spoon the prepared grits onto plates. Top with sausage, peppers, and onions. Garnish with a drizzle of olive oil and additional Parmesan cheese.