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Prepare for Super Bowl Sunday

POSTED: January 22, 2014 1:00 a.m.

In the words of Hank Williams Jr., “Are you ready for some football?”

Yes, I know Carrie Underwood is the new voice of the NFL. And yes, I’m aware that we’ve been enjoying football for the past five months.

But on the first Sunday of February, the football stars and moons align once again for The Big Game.

Now we love some football at our house no matter who is on the field. So on Super Bowl Sunday, you’ll find us glued to the sofa, food in hand, ready for those boys to duke it out all for the sake of some gridiron enjoyment.

How about a super party to celebrate the Super Bowl? This could be just family or it could be a big ‘ol shindig. Either way, let’s have some fun with it.

For your decorations, inexpensive artificial grass also known as AstroTurf at the local home improvement store makes a great tablecloth. It brings the football field right to your party. Using helmets, pompoms and footballs on the tables adds to the fun. For added pizazz, use yellow napkins folded in triangles to resemble penalty flags.

And no party is complete these days without the hot new item off the runway, flashing football ice cubes. These things have LED lights inside and are guaranteed to be 100 percent waterproof. Let’s hope.

There are some fun games such as football and commercial bingo on the Internet to ramp up the fun factor. For more football-enhanced decor, the buffet table can be set to resemble bleachers using graduated heights to display the food.

And while we may cheer the plays, talk about the players and yell at the refs, let’s face it, at our house, it’s all about the food! Well, and the commercials, but I’ll get to that in a minute.

Football-watching food is just about the best there is. Let’s see, there are wings, chicken fingers, pizza, popcorn, tacos, subs, sliders — oh, the list could go on and on. But we can’t have football at our house without Huddle Up Dip. It is, hands down, our favorite thing. We’ve eaten it with chips, veggies and more times than we care to admit, with a spoon ... right out of the pan. It’s just that good.

But before we get to the recipe, let’s discuss the commercials. When I was studying marketing in college, our assignment was to categorize the commercials by effectiveness. I don’t know about you, but how in the world do you decide what is an effective commercial. Funny? (Ferris) Ridiculous? (talking frogs) Heartwarming? (Clydesdales) Whatever the case, the commercials are pure entertainment value.

So whether you’re watching for the commercials or cheering for your favorite team, enjoy the day. And for the love of all things good and proper, please, I beg you, step away from the foam finger.

Huddle Up Dip

2 pounds pork sausage, cooked, crumbled and drained

2 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese

2 cans diced tomatoes with green chilies

Tortilla chips

Place cooked sausage in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add cream cheese and stir until it is melted. Add tomatoes and heat through.

Serve immediately. If desired, transfer to a small slow cooker to serve and keep warm. Serve with tortilla chips.

Crevolyn Wiley is a Gainesville resident with her first published cookbook “Cooking with Crevolyn” available at J&J Foods. She can be contacted at crevolyn.wiley@jandjfoods.com.


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