Saturday, February 2, 2008
Go, Team! Er...Who's Playing Again?
Anyone who knows me well can attest that I'm a far cry from a sports fanatic. But the Superbowl? I'm a huge fan, mostly because it entails gathering at someone's house, eating my weight in snack food, and watching the inevitable Bud and Miller slapstick spots. So Jess and I decided to have a party for just those reasons.
Girls only: no yelling at fumbled passes; no "Shhh! The game's back on!" Just a group of cool ladies, some cocktails, and - of course - some great food.
Our trip to Jewel snowballed (no pun intended, and you know what I'm referring to if you've been outside at all this week) from a quick trip to pick up snack provisions into a full-on party offensive.
We went intended to adhere strictly to the list, but ended up, well, offsides. In the Valentine's Day decoration aisle, specifically. Perhaps it was serendipitous, because we realized that a party as girly as the one we were hosting begged pink heart-shaped accessorization. Drink pink punch out of plastic footballs? Never. So after we splurged on some bargain-priced fete decor, we got down to business.
On the party menu:
Crudite Platter w/ French Onion Dip
Superbowl Sundaes (yep, it's a pun)
Pink Funfetti Cupcakes
Velvety Crockpot Sausage Dip (gourmet it ain't, but this is football, after all)
Fried Ravioli Kabobs
And to drink, First Down Punch, as well as whatever the BYOB gods saw fit to bestow upon us.
For the Crudite platter, I was tempted to phone it in and just pick up one of those pre-made jobs at Jewel, but I realized I had some carrots I had ignored in my veggie drawer, so I figured I'd just cut up a few things myself.
I used broccoli (1 bunch), celery (1 bag), carrots (5 medium), and red bell peppers (2). For the dip, I used most of a large container (16 oz.) light sour cream and about 3/4 of a package of French Onion soup/seasoning mix. I just mixed them together. Simple.
The cupcakes were originally supposed to be Strawberry (I wanted them to be pink), but there were none to be found. So I settled on Funfetti, because, let's face it, they're pretty girly, too. As we all know, I don't bake, so of course I just bought the box mix (come to think of it, I have no idea how one would go about making Funfetti cupcakes from scratch). I wanted to top them with cream cheese frosting, but ever since I've been on high-alert about trans fat, I haven't eaten pre-made frosting, because EVERY SINGLE BRAND contains trans fat. So I improvised. I used 1 package light cream cheese (at room temp.), and mixed in about 1/2 c. skim milk and 3 T. powdered sugar. It came out just fine, and NO TRANS FAT. I also got some pink sugary sprinkles to decorate the top.
The crockpot Cheese Dip is a Superbowl classic: Velveeta (1 lb., I used the reduced fat), hot Italian sausage, and 2 cans of diced tomatoes - the preseasoned kind with chiles (I used Red Gold brand, the "Mexican Fiesta" variety). I just browned some sausage (about a 2/3 lb.) and drained it. I cubed the Velveeta and put it in the crockpot with the sausage and the can of tomatoes, with all their yummy liquid. I just put the crockpot on LO and let it hang out for a few hours, stirring it occasionally.
For the Fried Ravioli Kabobs, I used store-bought refrigerated lobster ravioli, zucchini, and baby bella mushrooms. I sliced up the zucchini and mushrooms and caramelized them in a little olive oil with salt and pepper. (I did them each separately, and I made the slices big enough that I could turn them individually with tongs so they got nicely cooked on both sides.) After the ravioli has boiled for about 5 minutes, I put a them in a heated skillet with a little olive oil, and sprinkled some bread crumbs over the top (I had made them a couple weeks ago with some leftover parmesan crisps, but you could use any old kind). I just fried them for about 2-3 minutes, until the bread crumbs sort of stuck onto the raviolis, making a crisp crust. Then I speared a mushroom slice, a ravioli, and a zucchini slice onto a toothpick and served them on a tray.
For the First Down punch, I mixed one part vodka, one part ginger ale, and two parts cranberry cocktail. It was pink and lovely and potent.
We never even got around to making the Superbowl Sundaes, but we did head to Michael's after the game for some pizza.
The party was a smashing success. I think Femme friendly Superbowl parties should be de rigeur - I'm definitely starting the tradition. The ironic thing, though, was that despite our purported disinterest in the actual game, by the end, we were all cheering for the Giants! (Who doesn't love an upset?)
I wasn't sure who to cheer for at first, but when I found out Tom Brady (of the New England Patriots) dumped his pregnant girlfriend for a Victoria's Secret model, I knew I wanted him to perish in the flames of defeat. I got one word for you, Tom: KARMA.
It was a great time! Thanks to all my ladies for coming!
And thanks for reading. More soon....